[photo, Office of Law, Heritage Office Complex, 2666 Riva Road, Annapolis, Maryland]


For Anne Arundel County, the Office of Law provides legal services, including advice and opinions on legal questions that affect the interests of the County. The Office reviews all deeds, bonds, contracts, and other documents concerned with County interests; and drafts local and State legislation.

Office of Law, Heritage Office Complex, 2666 Riva Road, Annapolis, Maryland, March 2017. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

Headed by the County Attorney, the Office handles civil litigation involving the County, its officers, or employees (County Charter, Art. V, secs. 525-529). The Office does not advise private citizens.


For indigent defendants in Anne Arundel County, the District Public Defender provides legal representation, including related necessary services and facilities. The District Public Defender assures effective assistance and continuity of counsel to indigent accused taken into custody and indigent defendants in criminal and juvenile proceedings before Maryland courts (Code Criminal Procedure Article, secs. 16-201 through 16-213).
[photo, Anne Arundel County Courthouse, 8 Church Circle, Annapolis, Maryland]


Starting in 1818, duties of the State's Attorney were first carried out by the District Attorney (Chapter 146, Acts of 1817). Appointed by the Governor in each judicial district, the District Attorney prosecuted cases on behalf of the State. By 1821, the District Attorney was renamed the Deputy Attorney and was appointed by the Attorney General (Chapter 126, Acts of 1821). The office of State's Attorney was first authorized in 1851 (Constitution of 1851, Art. V, secs. 1-5).

The State's Attorney prosecutes and defends, on the part of the State, all criminal cases in Anne Arundel County in which the State may be interested (Code Criminal Procedure Article, secs. 15-101 through 15-109, 15-403).

Anne Arundel County Courthouse, 8 Church Circle, Annapolis, Maryland, April 2005. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

Under the State's Attorney are two deputies and forty-four assistant prosecutors, who are assigned to the Circuit Court and the District Court in Annapolis, and the District Court in Glen Burnie.

Established in 1983 within the State's Attorney's Office, the Mediation Center offers a way to resolve certain disputes without the need for formal prosecution.

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