Law Student Volunteer

Western District of Washington
Law Student Volunteer, Academic Year
700 Stewart Street
Suite 5220
Seattle, WA 98101
United States
About the Office: 

The United States Attorney’s Office hosts externs each term during the academic year September through May, from the University of Washington School of Law and from Seattle University Law School.  Law school externs receive academic credits from their respective law schools based on the (documented) educational experience they gain from their work in the United States Attorney’s Office.  Per law school accreditation requirements, students who work in, and receive academic credits through, extern programs may not be paid for that externship.

Job Description: 

Law Student externs participate in the work of various Assistant U.S. Attorneys (AUSAs) in the Civil and Criminal Divisions under the guidance of a designated AUSA Field Supervisor.  Externs have the opportunity to work on a variety of civil and criminal cases, predominantly conducting legal research and writing.  Depending on the activities of the office at the time, externs may also participate in preparations for, and attend, depositions, hearings, mediations and trials.


Must have successfully completed at least one year of law school.  Must have superior research and writing skills, be detail oriented, be dedicated to upholding and advancing justice and human rights, and have a commitment to fairness and integrity. 

Must be a U.S. citizen.

Externships are subject to and must pass a background investigation.

Volunteer (uncompensated).
Minimum travel to other staffed or non-staffed offices in the region.
Application Process: 

Each applicant packet must include:

  1. A cover letter describing your interest in an externship with the United States Attorney’s Office;
  2. Resume;
  3. Your most recent available academic transcript; and
  4. A writing sample.


Seattle University

Seattle University students who wish to apply for the externship program should contact the Externship Coordinator at Seattle University to initiate the application process.

Applications must be received a minimum of three months prior to the school term for which the externship is to begin.


University of Washington

Information on the externship program is posted for each quarter on the UW Career Service’s website, Simplicity.  Applicants may apply for the position through Simplicity or may apply directly by emailing or mailing application materials to:

Christina Fogg, Field Supervisor

UW Externship Program

U.S. Attorney’s Office

700 Stewart Street, Suite 5220

Seattle, WA 98101


Applications must be received by the following dates: 

For the Fall Quarter - May 1st of the prior Spring

For the Winter Quarter - October 15th of the prior Fall

For the Spring Quarter - January 15th of the prior Winter.


Other Universities

If you are a law student from another school and are interested in this Office’s externship program, contact the Field Supervisor (listed above) for information about placement opportunities.

Relocation Expenses: 
Relocation expenses will not be authorized.
Number of Positions: 
2 or more
Updated June 22, 2018

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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. Congress generally prohibits agencies from employing non-citizens within the United States, except for a few narrow exceptions as set forth in the annual Appropriations Act (see, Pursuant to DOJ component policies, only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review, U.S. Trustee’s Offices, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, qualifying non-U.S. citizens meeting immigration and appropriations law criteria may apply for employment with other DOJ organizations. However, please be advised that the appointment of non-U.S. citizens is 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. All DOJ employees are subject to a residency requirement. Candidates must have lived in the United States for at least three of the past five years. The three-year period is cumulative, not necessarily consecutive. Federal or military employees, or dependents of federal or military employees serving overseas, are excepted from this requirement. This is a Department security requirement which is waived only for extreme circumstances and handled 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.