I'm basically doing exactly what you're doing, and at least I get to call myself an attorney. I mean, I get to go to court, too, but I basically just sit and watch.
How are they forced to call you a law clerk?
Probably because giving me that title sets me at a specific salary/pay scale etc...
Are you doing attorney work? Are you are licensed attorney? If you so you are an attorney no matter what your employers organizational chart says.
Or are you doing like paralegal work or something?
I am a licensed attorney. I'm doing attorney work- the section I'm at actually has paralegals so I'm not required to take on any "paralegal responsibilities"- but, as a law clerk, I can't represent myself as an attorney for the U.S. So, for example- if I draft anything in writing, I can't just send it out- an attorney has to sign off on it.
These law clerk positions are fairly common in the federal government and most of them require a J.D., some even requiring a bar license.
I think you're right about me being an attorney regardless of the organizational chart, but the problem is that I'm not sure employers I'm applying to see it that way. Every job out there requires "3-4 years of litigation experience"- at this point, I'm at "2 years," but, again, because I don't hold an attorney position here, I'm not able to do certain parts of the litigation process (e.g. actually conducting a trial in court, etc...).
Have you applied to any attorney positions?
I have. Tough job market
. I'm also living in a high cost city and the current job, even though it's a law clerk position, pays very well, much higher than most small firms and many of the mid-size firms.