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Law Intern Program

About the Office

An internship with the U.S. Attorney’s Office offers a unique and challenging experience for the highly motivated law student: an opportunity to work on some of the most significant, complex and visible cases being litigated today. Working with Assistant U.S. Attorneys and other staff, you will be part of a dedicated team helping to enforce Federal criminal and civil laws that protect life, liberty and property of citizens.

Our office places a high value on diversity of experiences and perspectives and encourages applications from all qualified individuals from all ethnic and racial backgrounds, veterans, LGBT individuals, and persons with disabilities.

Job Description

Typical assignments for law student interns involve all facets of case preparation including: researching legal issues; drafting/writing motions, responses, and various pleadings; providing trial support; interviewing witnesses; and assembling exhibits for trial. Interns are generally afforded extensive opportunities to attend trials, hearings, attorney conferences, meetings, and other legal proceedings.

Qualifications

First-year (second semester), second- and third-year law students. Law graduates are not eligible for Student Volunteer positions. Must be a U.S. citizen and will be subject to a background investigation due to the sensitive nature of the work performed by the office.

A minimum of 10 weeks is required.

  • 40 hours per week for Summer Internships
  • 16 hours per week for Fall and Spring Internships

Internship Location(s)

Interns are typically expected to work in Boston, MA; however, some positions may be available at branch office locations in Worcester and/or Springfield, MA.

Salary

Law student volunteers are uncompensated but may receive course credit per school policies.

Application Process

Cover letter, resume, law school transcript, legal writing sample, dates when available, and telephone number(s) where student can be reached in the day and evening. Please indicate if you have a preference for the Civil Division or the Criminal Division.

Students attending Massachusetts Law Schools must apply through the Massachusetts Law Consortium (www.maconsortium.org).

Out-of-state students applying for a Criminal Division internship must email application materials to: USAMA.Internship@usdoj.gov.

Out-of-state students applying for a Civil Division internship must email application materials to: USAMA-Civil.Internship@usdoj.gov.

Initial appointment is conditioned upon a satisfactory pre-employment adjudication. This includes fingerprint, credit and tax checks, and drug testing. In addition, continued employment is subject to a favorable adjudication of a background investigation.

Application Deadline

Applications for the fall semester must be received by March 31.
Applications for the spring semester must be received by September 15.
Applications for the summer must be received by December 11

Students should plan to spend approximately 2 – 3 hours completing the background investigation package.

The orientation and start date for internships are considered tentative and will not be guaranteed until the security investigation has been completed and the applicant has received approval

Number of Positions

20 - 30


Department Policies

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement

To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID-19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees. Therefore, to the extent a Federal job announcement includes the requirement that applicants must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 pursuant to Executive Order 14043, that requirement does not currently apply. Federal agencies may request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine.

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 race, color, religion, national origin, sex - including gender identity, sexual orientation, or pregnancy status - or because of age (over 40), physical or mental disability, protected genetic information, parental status, marital status, political affiliation, or any other non-merit based 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. For more information, please review our full EEO Statement.

Reasonable Accommodation

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 disabilities are encouraged to contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC) to express an interest in being considered for a position. 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, https://www.usajobs.gov/Help/working-in-government/non-citizens/). 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, www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/SF15.pdf 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).



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.

Updated March 9, 2022

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