Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA) seeks public defender attorneys with demonstrated commitment to rural, indigent defense and exceptional advocacy skills to serve in southwest Texas.
For over a decade, TRLA indigent defense services has provided clients with complete, vertical representation from intake to resolution. Except for cases involving a conflict of interest or the death penalty, TRLA represents persons charged with crimes from initial arrest to final appeal. We deliver holistic services, both civil and criminal, including advice on the immigration consequences of a criminal conviction and trauma-informed, mental health advocacy.
Rio Grande City
TRLA currently seeks lawyers to serve in Starr County in the Rio Grande Valley - approximately 40 miles west of McAllen. Currently, we have an office in Rio Grande City that serves Starr County.
TRLA currently seeks lawyers to serve in South Central Texas -approximately 40 miles south of San Antonio. Currently, we are opening offices in Floresville and Jourdanton to serve Wilson, Frio, Atascosa, and Karnes counties.
TRLA currently seeks lawyers to serve in Bee County. Currently, we have an office in Beeville that serves Bee County.
TRLA currently seeks lawyers to serve in Lavaca County. Currently, we have an office in Hallettsville that serves Lavaca County.
With caseload controls, staff investigators, and a litigation budget, our program is deeply committed to zealous, high-quality representation in rural South Texas. Attorney benefits include law school loan repayment assistance, paid vacation, healthcare insurance, retirement plan, and training & travel stipends. Our defenders train with the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Gideon’s Promise, the National Association for Public Defense and other defender-minded associations.
- Serve as counsel of record in felony, misdemeanor, and juvenile cases; and
- Manage cases from intake to final resolution, including pretrial, trial, appeals, and additional motion practice, as it arises.
- Licensed to practice law in Texas or willing to take the next available Texas bar exam;
- One year of criminal litigation experience or comparable academic or clinical experience in criminal law;
- Courtroom experience, including contested hearings and trials;
- Appellate or legal writing experience related to contested matters at the trial level;
- Proficiency in Office365 and legal research software; and
- Professional fluency in Spanish (highly preferred).
Preferred applicants will demonstrate an interest in providing justice to those who need it most; have worked or interned in a public defender office; have strong academic credentials; and want to live and work in communities where our clients have the greatest needs. TRLA is also looking for attorneys that aspire to become leaders both within our division and in the larger public defender community.
TRLA, a poverty law firm with a national reputation for effective advocacy, is one of the largest legal services programs in the nation, employing over 200 civil attorneys across a 68-county service area in Southwest Texas.
TRLA is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to an equitable workplace.
This position requires, consistent with TRLA’s policy and subject to applicable law, a candidate to provide proof of complete COVID-19 vaccination prior to commencing employment.