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Careers at the PDS

Find out about careers at the Public Defender Service and see our current vacancies.

Putting people first

Play a vital role in the justice system and ensure continuous access to justice.

At the Public Defender Service, you will defend people from all walks of life who qualify for criminal legal aid, and ensure they receive the first class defence their case deserves.

Civil Service benefits

  • 25 days of annual holiday (rising to 30 days after 5 years’ service)
  • pension schemes of up to 20% of your salary
  • childcare vouchers, cycle to work scheme, travel loans and other benefits

We welcome people from all backgrounds

We are committed to diversity and inclusion and we positively promote flexible working, including job shares.

We will consider all applications on merit regardless of age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic background, religion, ethnicity, preferred working pattern and except for exceptional circumstances your working location.

The PDS is accredited as a Disability Confident employer

As a Disability Confident organisation, we will offer a guaranteed interview to candidates with a disability who meet the essential criteria for this role.

Under the Equality Act 2010, a disability is defined as a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on your ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities which has lasted, or is expected to last, at least 12 months.

If you would like to be considered under the guaranteed interview, please ensure that you attach the Disability Confident Scheme Form when you return your application. You can use the same form to let the recruiting manager know of any reasonable adjustments you may require during the sift or later selection processes.

See our equality and diversity policy

Solicitor, Cheltenham
(£36,049 – £41,095)

You will provide advice, assistance and representation to individuals subject to investigation or prosecution of a criminal offence.

Key responsibilities:

Provide a high volume of advice, assistance and representation to individuals subject to the investigation or prosecution of a criminal offence.

Be an effective team member who supports colleagues.

Contribute personally to the continuous improvement of PDS service and the development of PDS as a great place to work.

Provide expert input, as and when required, to various projects within the Agency and wider Government.

See details & apply

Accredited Police Station Representative, Cheltenham
(£30,451 – £34,105)

You will be passionate about criminal law, have experience in providing advice and representation in police stations and be able to run a varied caseload with minimal supervision.

Key responsibilities:

  • Provide a high volume of advice, assistance and representation to individuals subject to the investigation or prosecution of a criminal offence.
  • Provide correct, appropriate and timely advice to clients by telephone and face-to-face (at the police station, courts and office) and following up in writing as appropriate.
  • Preparation of Crown Court cases – from allocation through to trial or sentence and briefing of appropriate counsel.
  • Be an effective team member who supports colleagues.
  • Contribute personally to the continuous improvement of the PDS service and the development of PDS as a great place to work.
  • Provide expert input, as and when required, to various projects within the Agency and wider Government.

Crown Court Advocate – Counsel and HCAs
multiple locations
(£50,427 – £63,500)

You will conduct criminal cases before courts at all levels throughout England and Wales to the highest professional standards.

Key responsibilities:

Act as sole Advocate or be led as Junior Advocate in relation to a range of hearings before the Crown Court, High Court, Court of Appeal or Supreme Court) including complex, serious, and sensitive cases.

Maintain and employ a high level of up-to-date knowledge of criminal law and procedure in the conduct of your cases.

Upon reviewing prosecution evidence and receiving instructions from clients, conduct analysis and decide on case management strategies, including defence tactics, procurement of defence evidence – including expert witnesses – and the provision of plea and defence advice to defendants.

Provide leadership in tactic and case planning as part of a defence litigation team.

See details & apply