Position Information

Position Information Message
Assistant Public Defender - Intake
About Us:
The Office of the Ohio Public Defender ("OPD") is the state agency responsible for providing legal representation and other services to people accused or convicted of a crime who cannot afford to hire an attorney.
Our Mission:      Advocating. Fighting. Helping.
Our Vision:         A Fair Justice System. 
Our Values:        Compassion. Dignity. Equity. Integrity. Service. Community.
Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:  Our commitment to inclusion is inseparable from our commitment to a fair justice system. We strive to ensure inclusive spaces and services for our staff, our clients, and Ohio’s diverse communities. We are committed to building a work environment where all our team members have a voice and can embrace our differences to innovate service to the public. We can best meet our public defense mission through a diverse workforce and an inclusive workplace, where employees thrive, our mission is accomplished, and Ohioans are served. #TeamOPD is grounded in diversity, equity, inclusion as we work together to pursue fairness and justice for all people.
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About the Position and What You'll Do:
The Intake Section of the Legal Department is often the first point of contact between the Office of the Ohio Public Defender and people who are incarcerated in the state of Ohio and their loved ones. The section receives requests for assistance through letter and phone and is responsible for both evaluating claims for legal viability and communicating with potential clients and their loved ones with clarity, empathy, and respect. The section refers cases for litigation, offers resources and support to people who the office is unable to represent, and develops accessible legal information to provide people who encounter the criminal legal system.
In this position, you will work closely with three fellow Intake attorneys and a supervising attorney and will collaborate with colleagues on client advocacy across the Legal Department. A commitment to indigent defense and compassion for clients will be key to your success. Excellent interpersonal skills, intellectual curiosity, and comfort with constructive feedback will also be valuable attributes for you in this position.
Under the direction of the Intake Section Supervisor, you will review cases for merit; respond to correspondence from people who are incarcerated, courts, and outside counsel; provide direct representation for clients; and develop systems for delivery of legal information to people incarcerated in the state of Ohio. The position currently offers you the opportunity to work from home for a portion of time, so to be successful you will need to be self-motivated and comfortable communicating via Teams or other conferencing software during those times.
Essential duties of the position include, but aren't limited to, the following:
  • Determines client eligibility for representation by the Office of the Ohio Public Defender; if necessary, obtains initial client information for preparation of case files. Daily reads and prioritizes incoming letters and case files as distributed by supervisor (i.e., Memorandums in Support of Jurisdiction (MISJ), Post Convictions, Delayed Appeals, Federal Habeas, Delayed MISJ, new-trial requests, general requests letters, pro-se packet request, etc.), into categories; may also classify duty calls from judges, attorneys, or potential client families. Creates and manages a system ensuring that all letters and case files are timely addressed.
  • Reads and evaluates letters and files with an eye toward priority deadlines, conducts legal and factual research to determine if argued & addressed issues have the merit that is required for representation; if not, prepares correspondence explaining why the office will not pursue this issue on the client’s behalf; encloses supporting documents and information for referrals to other offices as appropriate (e.g., pro-se packets). Advances cases with merit to the Intake supervisor for case assignment.
  • Responds to requests for legal assistance over the phone by speaking with people seeking help and/or their families.
  • Generates and revises legal information about processes that impact incarcerated people (i.e., judicial release; habeas corpus; delayed appeals; MISJs) with attention to literacy and access.
The Assistant Public Defender position is assigned to the State of Ohio’s E1 Pay Schedule, Pay Range 13. Unless required by legislation or union contract, starting salary will be the minimum salary of that pay range (step 1, currently $31.56 per hour) associated with this position. These ranges provide a standardized pathway for pay increases: with continued employment, new hires move to the next step in the range after 6 months and annually thereafter. The State of Ohio typically has Cost of Living Adjustments that increase wages in these ranges each fiscal year. 
Note: In the event a candidate demonstrates exceptional qualifications above minimum, they may qualify for a starting salary above step 1.
FY23 Assistant Public Defender  Pay Range
Step 1 Step 2 Step 3 Step 4 Step 5 Step 6 Step 7 Step 8
$31.56 $33.29 $35.11 $37.00 $39.09 $41.19 $42.88 $44.90
PLEASE NOTE:  A WRITING SAMPLE AND COVER LETTER MUST BE SUBMITTED WITH THIS APPLICATION.  Your application will not be considered without a writing sample and cover letter.
The Office of the Ohio Public Defender complies with federal and state disability laws and makes reasonable accommodations for applicants and employees with disabilities. If reasonable accommodation is needed to participate in the job application or interview process, please contact Tamra Meister, ADA Coordinator, at 614-466-5394 or HCM@opd.ohio.gov.

To apply, please visit our job portal: ?https://dasstateoh.taleo.net/careersection/oh_ext/jobdetail.ftl?job=220008Q4&tz=GMT-04%3A00&tzname=America%2FNew_York

Deadline to apply: Thursday 9/29/22
Position: Assistant Public Defender - Intake
Organization: The Office of the Ohio Public Defender
Location: Columbus,  OH 
United States
Salary: $31.56 - $44.90
Posting Start Date: 9/21/2022
Date Posted: 9/23/2022

Admission to Ohio bar pursuant to section 4705.01.

Note: Prior to representing a client in federal court or U.S. Supreme court, attorney shall obtain admission to practice law in that court; prior to appointment as appellate counsel for an indigent defendant in a capital case pursuant to Appt.Coun.R. 5.02 & 5.03, an attorney shall obtain certification from the Commission on Appointment of Counsel in Capital Cases.

Note: Eligibility to practice under a Certificate to Practice Law Pending Admission in Ohio, under Rule I, Section 19 of the Supreme Court Rules for the Government of the Bar of Ohio, or eligibility to practice under a Temporary Certification for Practice in Legal services, Public Defender, and Law School Programs under Rule IX of the Supreme Court Rules for the Government of the Bar of Ohio, may be accepted in lieu of admission to the Ohio Bar pursuant to R.C. Section 4705.02.

Status: This listing expires on: 12/22/2022
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Organization Information
The Office of the Ohio Public Defender
250 E broad St Ste 1400

Columbus,  OH 43215
United States
(614) 466-5394
Elijah Kelly