Linda Beecher - Deputy Public Defender, Civil Division
The Public Defender Agency provides parent advocacy, juvenile defense and mental health advocacy for clients. The court appoints the Public Defender Agency to clients who are below certain financial limits and who are entitled to representation. In certain limited situations advice may be provided without a formal court appointment.
Attorneys assist parents and custodians involved in the child welfare system to maintain custody of their children or reunite with their children. Attorneys are appointed by the court to advise clients who are responding to allegations of child abuse and neglect made by the Office of Children’s Services. Attorneys provide legal advice and representation in Child-in-Need-of-Aid (CINA) cases and assist parents or custodians in obtaining needed services for their families.
Attorneys represent juveniles charged with crimes. Juvenile defenders are familiar with resources and options for youth involved in the delinquency system. Attorneys who represent juveniles understand the unique challenges of representing youth and seek the best possible legal outcomes consistent with the express direction of their clients.
Attorneys represent clients when the state seeks to require hospitalization in a psychiatric facility or seeks a court order to compel the administration of psychotropic medication. Attorneys also represent mental health consumers with criminal cases being addressed in a therapeutic court.