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Legal Fellowship Program





The U.S. Attorney’s Office has established a Legal Fellowship Program, which employs attorneys for a minimum of seven months as unpaid Special Assistant United States Attorneys, and that provides them with the opportunity to gain significant criminal prosecution experience during their tenure in the Office. The program is meant to serve both recent law school graduates and experienced attorneys who have a desire to get unparalleled criminal prosecution and litigation experience in a unique U.S. Attorney’s Office setting. Although uncompensated, Legal Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in the same training and trial experience as any new Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) in the USAO-DC.

Attorneys selected as Legal Fellows will be assigned to the Superior Court Division, the Appellate Division, or the Special Proceedings Division. Legal Fellows who are assigned to the Superior Court Division will be placed in either the Misdemeanor Unit of the General Crimes Section or in the Misdemeanor Domestic Violence Unit of the Sex Offense and Domestic Violence Section. The Misdemeanor Unit of the General Crimes Section prosecutes serious misdemeanor offenses, including drug possession, simple assault, weapon possession, and theft offenses. The Misdemeanor Domestic Violence Unit prosecutes all forms of domestic violence, including spousal abuse, and intra-family child and elder abuse. Legal Fellows placed in the Appellate Division or the Special Proceedings Division will gain significant legal research and writing experience and may have the opportunity to participate in oral arguments or post-conviction hearings.

Prior to assignement to one of the above-listed Divisions, legal Fellows, along with incoming regular AUSAs and Special AUSAs, will participate in an extensive three-week training program. Thereafter, Legal Fellows will spend six months in their assigned Divisions. Prospective applicants must be able to commit to the entire seven months of service to be considered for a position. Depending on the Office’s needs and at our discretion, a Legal Fellowship may be extended an additional five months, for a maximum term of one year.  USAO-DC does not rely on the Legal Fellowship Program as a recruitment or hiring tool for full-time AUSA positions.

Applicants to the Legal Fellowship Program must possess a J.D. degree, must be a member of the bar of any U.S. state or territory and must have at least one year of post law school experience. This is an uncompensated position, and Legal Fellows may not be employed or on a leave of absence from any legal position, or paid by any entity or educational institution, during their time at the USAO-DC. Applicants are required to be citizens of the United States, and must undergo a government background check before entering on duty.

We are now accepting applications for the April 6, 2020 class. To apply to the Legal Fellowship Program, please mail or email a cover letter, resume, brief writing sample, and a law school transcript to:

Jean Sexton
Director for Professional Development and Training
United States Attorney's Office
District of Columbia
555 4th Street, NW, Room 5814
Washington, D.C. 20530

Inquiries should be directed to Jean Sexton at 202-252-7735 or Alan Boyd at (202) 252-7269

Updated January 8, 2020

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