Public Defender I

  • Spokane, Washington
  • Jun 28, 2022
Full Time Court Administration Legal Services
  • Salary: $58,693.68 - $70,323.84 Annually USD

Job Description


The City of Spokane Public Defender's Office seeks creative, client-focused advocates to join our diverse team of public defense attorneys. If you have a passion for public defense and a commitment to representing indigent persons, you have found your team!

Successful candidates are dedicated advocates, think critically and creatively in a fast-paced environment and are open to accepting feedback and opportunities to grow.

  • You use independent judgment, to determine the proper course of action within the limits of law.
  • You have the ability to maintain extensive outside contacts, to obtain or supply factual information.
  • You must be able to prepare legal briefs and develop strategy, arguments and testimony.
  • You have strong negotiation skills and bring those to court, in defense of your clients.
  • You care about your community and the citizens that you serve.
Our Public Defenders have professional development opportunities, annual pay step increases, a flexible schedule and great employee benefits, including a pension plan!

As another benefit, a Public Defender I will automatically promote to a Public Defender II after one year, accompanied by a starting salary of $73,936.08. The pay range for Public Defender II goes up to a yearly salary of $98,240.40.

Please visit the City of Spokane Career Center at, for the full job specification and compensation details.


  • Prepares and conducts legal defense before the Court including representation at first appearance and arraignment.
  • Gathers evidence and conducts legal research to formulate defense against charges.
  • Interviews clients and witnesses and may work with an investigator to ascertain case facts, and handles other details in preparation for trial or case resolution.
  • Prepares legal briefs, develops strategy, arguments and testimony in preparation for presentation of the case.
  • Negotiates resolution with prosecutors on non-trial cases.
  • Represents client in court, examining and cross-examining witnesses. Summarizes case to jury.
  • Provides advice by phone to DUI arrestees who have asked for such advice of counsel during business and non-business hours.
  • Confers with colleagues with specialty in area of law to establish and verify basis for legal proceedings, such as therapeutic courts.
  • Performs related work as required.


Open Entry Requirements:
(Open-entry applicants must meet all requirements when they apply.)
  • Membership in good standing with the Washington State Bar Association, whether by exam, diploma privilege by graduation from an accredited law school, or APR 6.


Applicants must meet the minimum qualifications and pass the examination for this position to be eligible for promotion. Qualified applicants are encouraged to apply immediately.

Upon request, at time of application, the City will provide alternative accessible tests to individuals with disabilities that impair manual, sensory or speaking skills needed to take the test, unless the test is intended to measure those skills.

The examination will consist of a training and experience evaluation (T&E) with scoring weight assigned as follows:
  • T&E: 100%
The T&E examination consists of a Supplemental Questionnaire. The questions may be viewed online under the tab marked "QUESTIONS" on the job announcement page. The T&E must be submitted online at the time of application. All applicants must complete and submit a City of Spokane employment application online by 4:00 p.m. on the closing date.
  • Responses to your T&E questions should be consistent with the information given in your application details, and are subject to verification.
  • Failure to complete all of the questions or incomplete responses will result in a lower score; therefore, it is advantageous for you to provide a full and complete response to each supplemental question.
  • Resumes or questionnaires uploaded as attachments to the application will not be accepted in lieu of completing each question online.
  • "See Resume" or "See above", etc. are not qualifying responses and will not be considered.
  • Changes or corrections to your responses cannot be made once your application packet has been submitted. Duplicate applications will be disqualified
  • TIP: It may be more efficient to develop your responses in a word processing document and then paste them into the online questionnaire to be submitted.
We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity within our organization. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, marital status, familial status, genetic information, veteran/military status or disability status. As a Fair Chance employer, City of Spokane does not conduct initial background screening for non-public safety positions.

Closing Date/Time:

Remote-eligible (Remote work is a type of flexible working arrangement that allows an employee to work from remote location)


Job Address

Spokane, Washington United States View Map