Full-time Paralegal #JCA-DGOPAR-051223

Office of the Sate Public Defender   Durango, CO   Full-time     Legal
Posted on May 15, 2023

State Public Defenders Career Opportunity.

Full-time Paralegal at the State Public Defender, Durango CO. Health benefits, paid leave, retirement. 

Paralegal Salary $4,025.00 Monthly

Location Durango, CO

Job Type Full Time

Job Number JCA-DGOPAR-051223

Department Office of the State Public Defender

Opening Date 05/12/2023

Closing Date 5/26/2023 11:59 PM Mountain

Colorado’s Office of the State Public Defender (OSPD) maintains a reputation as one of the top organizations in the nation specializing in the delivery of indigent criminal defense. We operate as an independent agency within the Judicial Branch of Colorado State Government with nearly 1,000 dedicated employees assigned to twenty-one Regional Trial Offices, a centralized Appellate Division, and a centralized Administrative Office. The mission of OSPD is to defend and protect the rights, liberties and dignity of those accused of crimes who cannot afford to retain counsel. We do so by providing constitutionally and statutorily mandated representation that is effective, zealous, inspired and compassionate.

We seek to hire professionals who are dedicated to furthering our mission and demonstrate compassion in their service to our clients. We are a fast paced, team-oriented environment, where self-motivation and a personal commitment to high performance are important attributes for success.

The deadline for applying is 11:59 p.m. on May 26, 2023.

Due to the high volume of applications we receive, we cannot personally respond to each submission. We will notify you by phone and/or e-mail if you are selected for an interview.


3 Health Plans- Cigna options

Basic Vision Insurance - included with medical plans

Dental Insurance

State Paid Life Insurance

State Paid Short-Term Disability

FSA – Healthcare and Dependent Care

HSA Plan with Employer Contribution

Generous Paid Time Off

11 paid holidays

Access to Mental Health and Well-Being Resources

Colorado PERA

401(k) and 457 Supplemental Retirement Plans

For more information on benefits please visit https://dhr.colorado.gov/state-employees/state-of-colorado-employee-benefits. For additional information on PERA visit www.copera.org.

Additional information about the Office of the Colorado State Public Defender can be found at: http://www.coloradodefenders.us/

Description of Job

We are recruiting to fill one Paralegal position for our Durango location. This is the first level within the paralegal series wherein employees learn and apply criminal procedures, rules and laws guiding legal practice in criminal defense; and, apply the principles and practices of a paralegal nature to support and assist with a variety of litigation needs. Positions perform duties and assume responsibility for supporting divisions, units, and clients under the specific direction, instruction and guidance of a defense attorney. Public Defender paralegals serve as part of the defense team, and as such, are bound by the Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct including rules regarding the attorney-client privilege and client confidentiality.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities:

Manages and organizes discovery. Converts electronic files to PDF and other formats. Builds trial notebooks, creates digital bookmarks and indexes for easy reference and access by the attorneys and defense team. Creates spreadsheets to manage and organize case records and information including, but not limited to, discovery, witnesses, evidence and exhibits.

Reviews and summarizes discovery, videos, and witness interviews. Identifies matters of significance and brings to the attention of the defense team. Reviews discovery with the client. Requests and reviews client records, court records and transcripts to complete case files.

Reviews client charges, pleadings, and court orders and researches legal issues as requested by the attorney such as, searching and reviewing statutes, case law, and legal articles for legal precedent, mitigation and sentencing considerations. May assist attorneys in identifying potential conflicts of interest.

Searches case-related information as requested by the attorney such as, trending media, news publications, and anything referencing the case, client, codefendants or witnesses that may assist in the preparation of the case, hearing, trial, juror selection or defense strategies.

Keeps attorneys and defense teams updated as new information is added to the case files.

Under the attorney’s direction and review, drafts routine and standard motions, briefs and legal memoranda. Proofreads and edits motions prepared by attorneys. Files pleadings and motions. Redacts documents.

Paralegals in the trial offices may prepare appellate packets and coordinate with the Appellate office to ensure timely provision of materials. Paralegals in Appellate, review appellate packets and communicate with the trial offices and other counsel about additional materials needed to timely file Notices of Appeal or complete the record.

Tracks and monitors case status and critical timelines on assigned cases to ensure court filings are processed in accordance with established criminal procedures, rules and laws. Keeps attorneys and clients apprised, as appropriate.

Provides support for hearings or trials as requested by the attorney including, but not limited to, jury selection; tracking of witnesses; tracking of exhibits; client communication; note taking and documentation of events; coordination of trial materials; and, technical assistance with audio/visual platforms for evidence and Power-Point presentations.

Drafts and responds to correspondence from clients, client family members, and representatives from collateral agencies, to obtain and exchange pertinent information in accordance with policy and procedure.

Performs a variety of administrative tasks as needed to support the defense team and client, which requires the processing of forms, documents and transactions in accordance with State Office policy and procedure.

Performs other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications, Substitutions, Conditions of Employment & Appeal Rights Education and Education:

Paralegal certificate from an ABA approved paralegal studies program or accredited institution;


One year of a combination of education, training or experience performing legal support functions such as, organizing and preparing large legal case files for review by an attorney or presentation in court; legal research; preparing drafts of legal documents; and, compiling and analyzing records and data from legal sources.

Preferred Qualifications:

A bachelor’s degree in paralegal studies or related field;

Experience conducting legal research;

Experience working with large case files; Experience in a public defender system;

Experience working with indigent populations.


English language, grammar and punctuation;

Basic understanding of legal terminology;

General understanding of court and legal processes.


Strong client service focus;

High degree of professionalism, discretion and confidentiality;

Strong attention to detail;

Research skills;

Strong organizational and time management skills;

Ability to learn and apply relevant criminal procedures, rules and laws;

Ability to complete tasks and assignments with frequent interruptions;

Strong interpersonal skills;

Ability to establish positive and respectful working relationships with clients, client families and persons of diverse backgrounds;

Ability to develop and maintain collaborative relationships with members of the Public Defense system, court personnel, witnesses, and representatives of collateral agencies;

Strong communication skills, both written and verbal;

Proficiency in standard software applications such as, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Power-Point), internet browsers, and e-mail;

Ability to learn and utilize Adobe Acrobat and audio/visual software and equipment;

Ability to process and organize large amounts of information.

Supplemental Information


The Office of the Colorado State Public Defender provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability or other protected status, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws. Consistent with this commitment, our agency will assist individuals who have a disability with any reasonable accommodation requests related to employment, including the application and selection process. If you have a disability and require reasonable accommodation, please contact Katey Tarkington at Katey.Tarkington@coloradodefenders.us