If you have been assigned a public defender, and do not know your attorney, please fill out this form so we may contact you.
CORONAVIRUS CLOSURES AND UPDATES
Please see Presiding Judge Elisabeth French’s August 12, 2020 Administrative Order on courtroom/courthouse procedures effective August 17, 2020, available here: Administrative Order 2020-047.
Please see Presiding Judge Elisabeth French’s July 10, 2020 Administrative Order extending suspension of non-emergency hearings until August 15, available here.
Please see Presiding Judge Elisabeth French’s June 11, 2020 Administrative Order regarding judicial proceedings, which can be found at this link.
The Tenth Judicial Circuit of Alabama has issued Administrative Order AO-2020-032 extending the suspension of non-emergency in-person hearings to June 15, 2020. Read the full .pdf Order here.
The Alabama Supreme Court has issued an Administrative Order suspending all jury trials until September 14, 2020 and continuing their previous Orders. The .pdf version is available here.
Judges Bell, Fortune, and Ross (all District Criminal Division) have temporarily suspended in-person court settings due to COVID-19 through June 15. Clients who had court settings between now and June 15 should not come to court on their original setting, but should be on the lookout for information from the Clerk’s Office and the Jefferson County Public Defender’s Office about their new court date.
The Alabama Supreme Court released an Administrative Order extending prior Orders to May 15th, 2020. PDF version is available here. rev. 5/1/2020
Please click here to see the Safer at Home Order issued by Governor Kay Ivey.
Click here for a one-page FAQ regarding the Safer at Home Order.
Please see the Administrative Order (click here for .pdf version) from the Presiding Judge of the 10th Judicial Circuit suspending jury trials for the weeks of April 20, May 4, and May 20, 2020 for the Birmingham Division and May 4, May 11, and May 20, 2020 for the Bessemer Division of Jefferson County.
The Alabama Supreme Court has extended its prior Orders through April 30, 2020. Click here for the full .pdf Order.
The Jefferson County Commission passed an emergency resolution on March 31, 2020, continuing the closing of all Jefferson County Courthouses through April 30, 2020. Download the .pdf announcement here.
In-Person proceedings in Alabama courts are suspended from March 16, 2002 to April 16, 2020 subject to the Supreme Court of Alabama’s Administrative Order (click here for .pdf). Please refer to it for exceptions, closings, hearings, and full details.
Additionally, the Office of the Public Defender is open by appointment only.
The best way to contact your attorney during this time is by email. Please see Our Team for our attorneys and their email addresses.
Please see Administrative Order 2020-026 COVID-19 Emergency Pandemic Response (.pdf document) issued March 25th, 2020 by the Honorable Elisabeth French, Presiding Circuit Judge of the 10th Judicial Circuit. The Jefferson County Courts Emergency Response Plan (.pdf document) is also available.
Special Number for Probationers and Parolees
The Alabama Bureau of Pardons and Paroles has set up a special toll-free number for probationers to call to get information about reporting requirements during the coronavirus pandemic. There are more than 20,000 people under parole and probation supervision in Alabama. For more information on probation and supervision over the next few weeks, parolees and probationers should call 1-800-269-5081. They can also email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As the largest public defender’s office in the state and the agency charged with representing indigent residents accused of crimes, the Jefferson County Public Defender is in a unique position to identify and address injustice in the policies and systems that affect the lives of individuals impacted by the criminal justice system. To ensure positive and meaningful outcomes for our clients, we identify these issues and advocate for systemic change, not just in the courtroom, but with the media, and other state and local entities.
Our current policy priorities include:
• Unbiased policing and arrest practices
• Reasonable charging of crimes
• Decriminalization of public health issues
• Risk-based pretrial determinations
• Accurate fact-finding & forensics
• Proportional punishment
• Access to appropriate treatment
• Realistic opportunities for reentry
Our goal is to provide the highest quality of representation to our clients regardless of their ability to pay for our services.
The Jefferson County Public Defender’s Office (JCPD) provides legal representation to persons charged with criminal crimes in the Birmingham Division of Jefferson County. The JCPD offers an unpaid internship program to law students throughout the State of Alabama.
Interns assist attorneys and investigators in the different stages of client representation, including, meeting with clients and witnesses, reviewing and organizing discovery materials, researching constitutional and criminal law issues, drafting motions or pleadings, and preparing cases for trial. Interns will also have opportunities to observe hearings and trials.
The program requires a commitment of at least 12 hours per week for students seeking to work either during the fall or spring semester. The summer program requires a full-time commitment.
Applications must include a cover letter and resume. Please specify when you are interested in working. Students pursuing externship credit are welcome to apply. Please direct your applications via email to email@example.com or mail package to:
Jefferson County Public Defender
950 22nd St N. Ste 1000
Birmingham, AL 35203
THE JEFFERSON COUNTY PUBLIC DEFENDER’S OFFICE IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER.
We encourage all qualified applicants to apply without regard to age, color, national origin, disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression.