Question About DA (Specifically LA)

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salad.law
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Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby salad.law » Wed Dec 17, 2014 6:50 pm

Hello all,

I had a few questions about the DA's Office (specifically LA). I have no doubt in my mind I want to be an ADA (interned there before, my background, etc). I am currently a 1L at a LA law school, and I was planning on interning at the LA DA's Office for both my summers, and during my 2L and 3L years. However, I know the job market is tough, especially for the LA DA's Office (where I ultimately want to work at).

First question: should I do both my summers at the LA DA's Office (in various divisions in the office)? Or should I have a back-up plan? (do a summer at a small firm, etc.)

Second question: those that wanna do DA work, what do people usually do if they do not get the DA job right out of law school? (small firm, other DA offices in other counties?)

If you work for DA offices in other counties, how does the transfer from one DA county office to another work? Also, how hard is it to get DA jobs in other counties (in SoCal or NorCal)?

If you do work at a small firm (or something else), how hard is it to get hired if I do both my summers at the DA's?

Thank you!

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salad.law
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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby salad.law » Wed Dec 17, 2014 6:52 pm

Forgot to add. What about other prosecution offices? I prefer DA's, but I wouldn't mind working at say the City Attorney's Office (but ultimately I would want to transfer into the DA's)

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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Dec 18, 2014 5:16 am

As someone who did both summers at LA, and had an awesome experience both summers, I can say it's a great office with great people. That being said, it's very competitive to be hired as a DDA and the hiring process is long, long, long. Diversifying your experience will help cover your bases and give you opportunity to branch out. The downside is that you're not at LA.

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salad.law
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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby salad.law » Thu Dec 18, 2014 8:42 pm

Thank you. What do you mean diversifying my experiences (for the summer, do different jobs, different areas at the LADA's Office, or do different DA offices?)

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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 19, 2014 1:58 pm

Jackie Lacey suggested doing both summers at a DA's office to be considered for a DDA position in LA, which is ultra-competitive. I'm at an LA law school too and it didn't seem like my friends had trouble finding a summer clerk position at LA DA's office. Lots of people worked at Orange County DA's office too. Try LA City Attorney's Office too - I know they have plenty of positions for law students and I'm sure they have connections to DA's. I think AG or US Attorney's offices might be harder to get but both are also in downtown LA. Prosecution experience from anywhere couldn't hurt.

achewood
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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby achewood » Fri Dec 19, 2014 11:30 pm

If your grades are good, you should think about applying for DoJ SLIP. Still extremely competitive though

adonai
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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby adonai » Thu Dec 25, 2014 4:06 pm

salad.law wrote:Hello all,

I had a few questions about the DA's Office (specifically LA). I have no doubt in my mind I want to be an ADA (interned there before, my background, etc). I am currently a 1L at a LA law school, and I was planning on interning at the LA DA's Office for both my summers, and during my 2L and 3L years. However, I know the job market is tough, especially for the LA DA's Office (where I ultimately want to work at).

First question: should I do both my summers at the LA DA's Office (in various divisions in the office)? Or should I have a back-up plan? (do a summer at a small firm, etc.)

Second question: those that wanna do DA work, what do people usually do if they do not get the DA job right out of law school? (small firm, other DA offices in other counties?)

If you work for DA offices in other counties, how does the transfer from one DA county office to another work? Also, how hard is it to get DA jobs in other counties (in SoCal or NorCal)?

If you do work at a small firm (or something else), how hard is it to get hired if I do both my summers at the DA's?

Thank you!

I say this in the nicest way possible because I was in your position and had no one to tell me anything. But I went through the experience and saw others who did and can offer some of my observations.

Don't bank on the LADA.

I've had numerous friends who interned all three years at LADA, only to be soul-crushed when they didn't make it past the first/second rounds of hiring. The hiring process is very, very politically motivated. Now while it is a great place to work at and gain experience at, you shouldn't limit yourself to that office. My friends told themselves that they probably had a good chance going into the interviews because they were 100% dedicated to the office. They did not apply/look into other offices and areas of law, and are unfortunately paying for it to this day.

It is extremely hard to get a DA position anywhere in California. The "easiest" places to get one is in counties in the Central Valley that no one has ever heard of. Even then, it is quite hard. Many people go through a circuit to ultimately get back to LA (Central Valley->closer So Cal county->LA). It may take multiple attempts and many years. Others volunteer as a volunteer prosecutor at the LA/LB city attorney to get trial experience in hopes of making a jump somewhere. People who cannot afford to volunteer go into civil temporarily until they can get a DA spot somewhere.

In my opinion, it's not worth doing more than one internship at LA. Do one there to establish a network/roots, then branch out to other counties that actually give their interns a good chance of hiring you for your dedication (e.g. OC, Riverside, San Bernardino).

Most importantly, do in court work as a certified law clerk. Do prelims, argue motions, and try to do a jury trial. Do as many as you can for as long as you can. You really need those to stay competitive. First thing most people will ask you at a DA interview, "So, how many prelims have you done?"

Of course, you might just be a super amazing person who has political ties and none of this may apply to you. :lol:
Best of luck and PM me if you need any help.

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Re: Question About DA (Specifically LA)

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 31, 2014 5:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Jackie Lacey suggested doing both summers at a DA's office to be considered for a DDA position in LA, which is ultra-competitive. I'm at an LA law school too and it didn't seem like my friends had trouble finding a summer clerk position at LA DA's office. Lots of people worked at Orange County DA's office too. Try LA City Attorney's Office too - I know they have plenty of positions for law students and I'm sure they have connections to DA's. I think AG or US Attorney's offices might be harder to get but both are also in downtown LA. Prosecution experience from anywhere couldn't hurt.


Thank you. Are a lot of people hired right out of law school? Or is that a rarity?




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