Law Student Volunteer, Academic Year

Law Student Volunteer, Academic Year
260 W. Vine Street, Suite 300
Lexington, KY 40507
United States
About the Office: 

The USAO for the Eastern District of Kentucky is charged with prosecuting federal crimes from acts of terrorism to public corruption, white-collar crime, organized crime, internet-related crimes, and many other criminal acts. Through its Civil Division, the office is charged with defending agencies of the United States, enforcing regulatory agencies authority, and recovering funds from violators of criminal, regulatory, and civil laws. The Appellate Division is responsible for handling the office appeals with the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Job Description: 

Interns will be assigned to one of three divisions in Lexington: criminal, civil, or appellate. Interns in Ft. Mitchell and London offices will be assigned criminal work. Usual assignments will include legal research, drafting pleadings and responses and appellate briefs. Interns will also assist attorneys in all phases of criminal prosecution, civil litigation and appellate litigation: including discovery, depositions, pretrial hearings, trials, sentencing hearings, and federal habeas corpus actions. They will have the opportunity to observe hearings and trials on which they are working or in which they are interested. Interns are also encouraged to attend office training on current legal issues.

Internship Locations:  Lexington (4); Ft. Mitchell (1); London (1)

Minimum Weeks Required:  8-10 weeks. Prefer 12-20 hours a week during the Fall and Spring semester.

Web Site:


Rising second and third year law students may apply. Students who will graduate prior to or during the course of the clerkship are not eligible. Must be a U.S. citizen. There is a required background check because of the sensitive nature of the work performed by the USAO. This background check requires substantial input from the candidate, and it is imperative that all security forms be completed and returned in a timely fashion as applicants selected may not begin volunteer work until background check has been favorably completed (which may take up to 8 weeks).

Application Process: 

Applications should include the following materials, all in one consolidated PDF file: (1) Cover letter (please note preferred internship location (Lexington - Criminal or Civil or Appellate; Ft. Mitchell; London), in bold, on upper left corner); (2) resume; (3) law school transcript with GPA; (4) one legal writing sample; (5) date available; and (6) telephone number(s) where a student can be reached in the day and evening.

USAO Eastern District of Kentucky
260 W. Vine Street, Suite 300
Lexington, KY 40507-1612

ATTN:  Human Resources Officer
Telephone:  (859) 685-4929
Fax:  (859) 233-2498
Email: Applications by e-mail preferred. Applications should include the materials requested below, all in one consolidated PDF file.

Application Deadlines:  Fall: June 1     Spring: October 1

Number of Positions: 
Updated July 3, 2014

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Department Policies

Equal Employment Opportunity:  The U.S. Department of Justice is an Equal Opportunity/Reasonable Accommodation Employer.  Except where otherwise provided by law, there will be no discrimination because of color, race, religion, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, disability (physical or mental), age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as a parent, membership or non-membership in an employee organization, on the basis of personal favoritism, or any other non-merit factor.  The Department of Justice welcomes and encourages applications from persons with physical and mental disabilities. The Department is firmly committed to satisfying its affirmative obligations under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, to ensure that persons with disabilities have every opportunity to be hired and advanced on the basis of merit within the Department of Justice.

Reasonable Accommodations:  This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the agency.  Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Outreach and Recruitment for Qualified Applicants with Disabilities:   The Department encourages qualified applicants with disabilities, including individuals with targeted/severe disabilities to apply in response to posted vacancy announcements.  Qualified applicants with targeted/severe disabilities may be eligible for direct hire, non-competitive appointment under Schedule A (5 C.F.R. § 213.3102(u)) hiring authority.  Individuals with targeted/severe disabilities are encouraged to register for the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Shared List of People with Disabilities (the Bender Disability Employment Registry) by submitting their resume to and referencing "Federal Career Opportunities" in the subject line.  Additional information about the Bender Registry is available at  Individuals with disabilities may also contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC).  See list of DPOCs.    

Suitability and Citizenship:  It is the policy of the Department to achieve a drug-free workplace and persons selected for employment will be required to pass a drug test which screens for illegal drug use prior to final appointment.  Employment is also contingent upon the completion and satisfactory adjudication of a background investigation. Only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review and the United States Attorneys' Offices. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, non-U.S. Citizens may apply for employment with other organizations, but should be advised that appointments of non-U.S. Citizens are extremely rare; such appointments would be possible only if necessary to accomplish the Department's mission and would be subject to strict security requirements.  Applicants who hold dual citizenship in the U.S. and another country will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Veterans:  There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Department of Justice considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. Applicants eligible for veterans' preference must include that information in their cover letter or resume and attach supporting documentation (e.g., the DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty and other supporting documentation) to their submissions. Although the "point" system is not used, per se, applicants eligible to claim 10-point preference must submit Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, and submit the supporting documentation required for the specific type of preference claimed (visit the OPM website, for a copy of SF 15, which lists the types of 10-point preferences and the required supporting document(s). Applicants should note that SF 15 requires supporting documentation associated with service- connected disabilities or receipt of nonservice-connected disability pensions to be dated 1991 or later except in the case of service members submitting official statements or retirement orders from a branch of the Armed Forces showing that his  or her retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that he/she was transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).


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This and other vacancy announcements can be found under Attorney Vacancies and Volunteer Legal Internships. The Department of Justice cannot control further dissemination and/or posting of information contained in this vacancy announcement. Such posting and/or dissemination is not an endorsement by the Department of the organization or group disseminating and/or posting the information.