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Adolescent Representation Attorney, Criminal Defense Practice

companyBrooklyn Defender Services
locationNew York, NY, USA
PublishedPublished: 6/14/2022
Full Time

Job Description

Brooklyn Defender Services (BDS) is seeking attorneys for the Criminal Practice’s Adolescent Representation Unit.

BDS is a public defense office representing low-income New Yorkers in criminal, family, immigration, and civil legal matters. Our work with clients is focused on the intersection of the legal systems that disproportionately impact Black and Brown people living below the poverty level in Brooklyn.

BDS represents thousands of people each year who have diverse, complex, and multi-faceted legal needs. In addition to a zealous legal defense, our interdisciplinary teams of attorneys, social workers and advocates provide a wide range of legal and advocacy services, including for housing, public benefits, education, and employment. BDS staff work collaboratively and across disciplines to deliver high-quality legal services that serve the people we represent, their families and communities in Brooklyn.

The Adolescent Team consists of an interdisciplinary team of attorneys and social workers who collaborate to represent young people up to the age of 18 who are arrested. The Unit represents adolescents 12-17 in both Supreme and Family Court. Team members represent young people who are arrested as follows:

  • Clients ages 14-17 charged as adults in Supreme Court
  • Clients ages 12-17 charged with misdemeanor and/or felony charges in Delinquency Proceedings and PINS petitions in Family Court
  • Clients whose cases are Removed to Family Court from Supreme Court


  • Directly represent clients in Brooklyn Family and Supreme Courts from intake through dismissal, plea/admission or trial/fact finding and, on occasion, appeal in Family Court cases.
  • Foster strong attorney/client relationship with adolescent client, including visiting detention facilities if the client is incarcerated.
  • Work collaboratively on interdisciplinary case teams with social workers, investigators, paralegals and admins.
  • Participate in a rotation to staff intake shifts in Supreme Court Youth Part and/or Family Court Intake Part
  • Collaborate with other BDS staff from our housing, immigration, family and education practices to provide comprehensive assistance to clients.
  • Meet regularly with supervisor to review caseload, discuss case strategy, and prepare for trial.
  • Meet with family members or other support networks.
  • Prepare for and litigate hearings and trials in Family and/or Supreme Courts, as well as collateral administrative tribunals.
  • Prepare and argue written motions, argue in court regarding discovery, answer legal motions filed by the District Attorney’s office or Corporation Counsel and other legal written and oral arguments in cases assigned to the attorney.
  • Negotiate plea agreements to reach the best result for the client and advise client regarding their options.
  • Additional responsibilities as assigned.


  • Juris Doctor (JD) degree.
  • Admitted in New York State or admitted in another state and able to pursue Pro Hac Vice in New York.
  • Strong litigation skills.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Experience working with adolescents.

Position Information

This is a full-time, exempt, salaried position. The normal schedule is Monday to Friday 9am-5pm. The position is based at BDS’s offices, and the courts located in Downtown Brooklyn. There is a three-day per week in-person requirement for Adolescent Representation Unit attorneys. Attorneys are also expected to handle all of their own cases in court, as well as meet with clients as needed if that results in additional days in-person.

BDS determines salary on a pay scale based on education and experience. For this position there is a base salary range of $79,000 - $154,040 depending on the applicant’s education and experience.

BDS offers comprehensive benefits including health insurance and a 403(b) retirement plan. In order to support work/life balance and family-friendly policies, BDS has generous vacation, sick, holiday, family, and medical leave policies.

Application Instructions

Click “Apply Now” to submit a cover letter and resume on our online application portal. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Brooklyn Defender Services is a proud equal opportunity employer committed to celebrating diversity and maintaining an equitable and inclusive work environment. We strongly encourage candidates of all identities, expressions, orientations, disabilities, and experiences to apply. If you require an accommodation due to a disability or another reason, please contact the Managing Director of Human Resources, Christina Wallace, at

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