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FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

  • Helpful Links 
  • Can the City Attorney represent private citizens?   
  • How do I find a lawyer?
  • Difference between the City Attorney and the District Attorney 

Helpful Links

Can the City Attorney Represent Private Citizens?

No. The City Attorney, Assistant City Attorney and Associate City Attorney represent the City of Bend as a governmental entity, not individual citizens. The City Attorney's office does not represent individuals in any private legal matters. They represent City departments and employees in the course of official City of Bend business.

How does one find a Lawyer?

There are many ways of finding a lawyer. Most people find lawyers through contacts – friends, acquaintances and co-workers may be willing to recommend lawyers. Legal referral services, both for-profit and not-for-profit services, are available. The Oregon State Bar has an online attorney referral system at

Difference between the City Attorney, the Municipal Court, and the District Attorney

The City Attorney is the attorney for the City of Bend, and is appointed by the City Manager. The City Attorney , Assistant City Attorney and Associate City Attorney provide legal services to the City Council, the City Manager, and all City Departments, boards and commissions. The City Attorney acts like general counsel for a corporation. The City Attorney can prosecute certain violations of the Bend Municipal Code, but not any violations of state law.

The Bend Municipal Court provides a local forum for the resolution of minor traffic infractions, parking citations and City ordinance violations issued within the city limits of Bend. The Municipal Court is the judicial branch of the city government. The Municipal Court Judge is appointed by the City Council, and oversees the Court's operations. The majority of cases heard in Municipal Court are traffic infractions.

The District Attorney is an elected official who investigates and prosecutes criminal activity (other than the Bend Municipal Code); the office is responsible for enforcing the laws of Oregon, by prosecuting criminal cases in Circuit Court.