2021 Conference

Please read the following announcement concerning the 2021 Annual Conference

Partnering with the National Association for Public Defense    

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Public Defender Services (PDS) will not hold an annual conference again this year. Instead, anyone who would normally attend the PDS conference is encouraged to attend the upcoming WE THE DEFENDERS (WTD) national conference being held virtually by the National Association for Public Defense (NAPD) in March. As set forth below, the cost of the conference is only $50 per person and could provide all your required CLE credits.

The WTD conference is intentionally designed to include separate tracks for attorneys, social workers/mitigation specialists, investigators, paralegals and core staff, and more. There are more than 125 different sessions being offered and almost 6,000 people registered (as of 2/17/21). 

WV Update in the Law Session & CLE Credit
PDS will be hosting a specific WV Update session during the conference. PDS is extremely grateful to the WV State Bar and the CLE Commission for granting a special exception (due to COVID) so that attorneys can earn CLE credit for not only the Update in the Law session, but also for the entire conference.Attorneys can earn up to 15 live attendance credits, including 3 Ethics hours. Because your registration fee also grants you access to the recordings of the sessions, they have also approved the recorded sessions for an additional 30 credits. Since the Supreme Court recently waived the online credit limitation for the 2020-2022 reporting period due to COVID, an attorney could watch the NAPD videos and earn all of their CLE credits for the reporting period (plus 6 carryover credits – which is the maximum by CLE rule).

The CLE Commission granted this exception because PDS had to cancel its annual conference due to COVID. This has a significant impact because it means attorneys will not need to individually apply (and pay a fee) for credit for each session. You will simply need to self report which sessions you attended. Again, PDS will not be reporting your attendance--you will need to self report.

*Note: "Entire conference" refers to sessions relevant to legal practice. It excludes networking breakouts, yoga sessions, the opening virtual concert, etc.


March 18 - 20, 2021

How Much

The entire conference is only $50 per person and includes access to the recordings. Due to the extremely low cost of the conference, we highly encourage you to also register your non-lawyer staff.

How to Register

Simply click the INDIVIDUAL REGISTRATION link on the EVENT PAGE and follow the instructions: 

About NAPD
The National Association for Public Defense (NAPD) engages all public defense professionals into a clear and focused voice to address the systemic failure to provide the constitutional right to counsel, and to collaborate with diverse partners for solutions that bring meaningful access to justice for poor people. Currently, there are more than 22,000 members across the country. 

You do not need to be a member of NAPD to attend the conference. However, if you want to join, membership is only $40/year.

Disclaimer: This page should not be interpreted to require Public Defender Corporations or Panel Attorneys attend WTD or join NAPD. PDS simply arranged for a low-cost, convenient solution to obtaining your required CLE hours. PDS does not endorse any specific organization or adopt any statement by an organization. PDS partners with organizations in order to provide outstanding training opportunities for defense attorneys and staff throughout the state, such as the recent Juvenile training with the Mid-Atlantic Juvenile Defender Center (MAJDC) at the Georgetown Law Juvenile Justice Clinic or the 2019 New Attorney Training with faculty from NACDL.