The Merced County Public Defender’s Volunteer Lawyer Program is an opportunity for local law firms to meet their pro bono goals as well as help their new associate attorneys get needed bench and jury trial experience. This program provides an opportunity and a benefit to law firms as their new associates gain experience trying cases before juries and becoming comfortable in a courtroom setting. Participants gain training in trial skills, evidence and courtroom practice.
Local law firms are invited to assign their salaried associate attorney to the Merced County Public Defender for an eight week, twelve week, or sixteen week period on a part-time basis of approximately 10 hours per week. While the associate attorney is assigned to the Merced County Public Defender, they will continue to receive their regular salary from the private law firm while they work pro bono with the Merced County Public Defender. In the assigned time period, the firm’s associate attorney will be given a misdemeanor caseload with the opportunity to litigate pre-trial motions as well as misdemeanor bench and jury trials. In addition, the associate attorney will receive training and instruction in criminal practice and procedure that would supplement the training the associate’s firm provides.
If you would like more information please contact Chief Deputy Public Defender Vincent Andrade at his email address of: .