When appointed by the Maricopa Superior Court, the Office of the Public Advocate provides legal representation for individuals who are not able to afford the services of private lawyers.
The Office protects the fundamental rights of juveniles, parents and adults facing court evaluation and court ordered mental health treatment by providing effective legal representation for:
- indigent people facing delinquency petitions (criminal charges for minors)
- dependency/severance proceedings (loss of parental rights)
- and court evaluation and court ordered mental health treatment.
Safeguarding the Rights of Citizens in Juvenile and Mental Health Court
The Office of the Juvenile Public Defender, now called the Public Advocate, was created on July 1, 2008. Prior to the creation of the office, the office was a division of the Maricopa County Public Defender's Office.
The office is comprised of 53 attorneys and 37 support staff including:
- Initial Services Specialists
- Law Clerks
- Legal Secretaries
- Mitigation Specialists