The Federal Public Defender, District of South Carolina, is accepting applications for the position of Assistant Federal Public Defender, based in the Columbia Office. The Federal Public Defender organization operates under authority of the Criminal Justice Act, 18 U.S.C. §3006A, to provide defense services in federal criminal cases and related matters in the federal courts.


Applicants are preferred to have at least two years of criminal trial experience and be licensed to practice in the District of South Carolina. The position may require travel throughout the district, some overnight travel, out of district training, irregular work hours, or working weekends and holidays when necessary. Applicants must have reliable transportation, a valid driver’s license, and proof of insurance. Appointment is subject to a satisfactory background investigation, including an IRS tax check and an FBI name and fingerprint check.


The Assistant Federal Public Defender represents clients charged with federal criminal offenses and clients involved in other matters covered under the Criminal Justice Act. The position requires travel for investigation, litigation, and training.  Federal public defender attorneys may not engage in the private practice of law.

Selection Criteria

The successful applicant must have an established capacity or clearly demonstrated aptitude for excellence in criminal defense practice, a commitment to the representation of indigent accused persons, and a reputation for personal and professional integrity. Applicants must also communicate effectively with clients, witnesses, colleagues, staff, and court personnel as part of employment. Applicants should possess strong litigation skills and demonstrate proficiency with the federal sentencing guidelines, federal sentencing procedures, the Bail Reform Act, the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, and the Federal Rules of Evidence. Experience in handling federal criminal cases is preferred. All qualified attorneys are encouraged to apply without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, or disabling condition.


This is a position with growth potential and is subject to the availability of funds. Salary is by direct deposit.

To Apply

Qualified persons may apply by forwarding a letter of interest, writing sample, three references and resume to:

Parks N. Small, Federal Public Defender District of South Carolina
1901 Assembly Street, Suite 200
Columbia, SC 29201

Submission by electronic PDF format may be sent to:  All emailed documents must be in PDF format.  Other electronic forms will not be considered.

Open until filled.

No telephone, fax or e-mail inquiries.