Employment and Internship Opportunities

Respondent Parent Counsel

Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel 2019 Application Period

Be part of the next social justice movement!  Family defense attorneys, commonly known as Respondent Parent Counsel or RPC, under the Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel represent indigent parents in court proceedings brought against them by the county child protection services agency.  RPCs work on behalf of adults threatened by state intervention with the temporary and/or permanent loss of the custody and rights to their children.  RPCs are dedicated to protecting the fundamental right to parent by advocating for parents’ due process rights, access to appropriate services, and constitutional right to parent their children.

The Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel (ORPC), a Colorado state agency, will accept applications from attorneys across the state of Colorado to represent indigent parents in dependency and neglect proceedings during our annual application period, March 1-31, 2019. The ORPC’s mission is to protect the fundamental right to parent by providing effective legal advocates for indigent parents in child welfare proceedings. This right is protected when a parent has a dedicated advocate, knowledgeable about child welfare laws and willing to hold the state to its burden.   The ORPC offers comprehensive training and litigation support; mentoring; access to Westlaw, paralegals, investigators and experts; a motions bank, and a listserv.  Start your own law firm and let the ORPC support your practice!   The ORPC pays RPCs $80 per hour on an independent contractor basis.

The application requires the online submission of a resume, writing sample consisting of a substantive motion written in the last three years, references, disciplinary history, and essay questions.

2019 ORPC Contracting and Application Process Webinar – February 19, 2019 from 12:00-1:00pm

Join the ORPC Executive Director, Melissa Thompson, for this webinar that will cover the 2019 ORPC Contracting and Application Process.  Bring your questions – the webinar will be recorded and made available for viewing online at a later date.  To register now, visit: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7897414185417424386.

Required Attachments to Prepare in Advance

You will be required to upload electronic documents to the online application form.  Required documents for new applicants are listed below.  The ORPC recommends that you upload all documents in PDF format.  You will be required to upload your documents when prompted on the online form—you may not e-mail or mail documents separately.

All new applicants must be prepared to provide:

  • A resume describing your legal experience and any related child welfare experience;
  • A list of two professional references. Please notify your references that the ORPC may be contacting them;
  • A redacted writing sample such as one substantive motion, preferably from a dependency case;
  • A brief or petition if interested in appellate representation.


For any questions regarding RPC practice or working as an independent contractor through the ORPC, please contact Melissa Thompson at mthompson@coloradoorpc.org.


The ORPC also accepts applications from law student interns, and social work interns.  If you are interested in a law internship, please email Carrie Ann Lucas at clucas@coloradoorpc.org.  If you are interested in a social work internship, please email Jill Cohen at jcohen@coloradoorpc.org.