The mission of the Washington State Office of Public Defense (OPD) is "to implement the constitutional and statutory guarantees of counsel and to ensure the effective and efficient delivery of indigent defense services funded by the state... ."  RCW 2.70.005.  Established by the Legislature in 1996, OPD is an independent agency of the judicial branch.

OPD administers indigent defense services in the following areas:

OPD cannot provide direct representation of clients, pursuant to RCW 2.70.020.The previous hyperlink exits the OPD website.

Featured News:

Juvenile Defense Training Academy

  • The next session of the 4-day Academy will be held on July 21 & 22 in Seattle.
  • The April 29, 2017 Academy materials are now available


2016 Status Report on Local Criminal Public Defense Issues

The 2016 Status Report on Public Defense in Washington State pdficon grsmall discusses recent trends in criminal public defense services, highlights annual accomplishments of OPD's Defense Improvement Program, and lists counties' and cities' statistics relating to public defense services.


Juvenile Defense Strategic Plan

OPD received grant funds from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention to develop a strategic plan to improve juvenile defense services. The resulting report, Plan to Reform Public Defense Representation in Juvenile Offender Cases: Steps to Eliminate Justice by Geography pdficon grsmall, is based on the input of public defense attorneys statewide and other key juvenile justice system stakeholders.


Recorded Webinar: A Developmental Framework for Juvenile Cases

Presented by Dr. Marty Beyer. This one-hour session addresses the impact of immaturity, disabilities, and trauma on a young person before, during and after the offense. The class also focuses on designing developmentally-sound rehabilitation services for each adolescent.  Click here to view.exitingwebsite


OPD County Clerk Payment Policy

OPD has promulgated a new policy clarifying payment policies for superior court clerk's fees.


Tools for Implementing the Supreme Court's Standards for Indigent Defense

To assist in implementation of the Supreme Court Standards for Indigent Defense, OPD has developed a series of short web tutorials, an FAQ, sample caseload calculators, and a customizable Model Misdemeanor Case Weighting Policy .   Additional questions or requests for technical assistance can be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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