Assistant District Attorney - Harris County (Houston)

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Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 3:12 pm

Assistant District Attorney - Harris County (Houston)

Postby jbp15860 » Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:23 pm

OL here, taking the LSAT in June, possibly again in September/October, and my top choice is UH in Houston. I know it's hard to say now without having been through school but I really think I'd be most interested in litigation, primarily criminal, and I'm really thinking about shooting for an ADA position with Harris county. So, I have a few questions for anyone who has worked as an ADA in Harris county, or in general really, and also anyone who just knows more about it than me. Which is, presumably every one.

Are the positions difficult to get (in Harris county)? From what I've been reading, not a lot of people go out for the positions, as most people are trying to get firm positions. I was also told by a former UH student that they weren't as concerned with grades as they were with criminal classes and clinics during law school. As this was only one person, however, who never worked for the DA, I'd appreciate some other input.

Concerning salary: the starting salary in Houston for ADA is about 65k. That's fine for a starting salary, as I''m reading that many people are hitting 90 and 100k within five years or so... and those who stick it out over ten, are well above 100. I'm wondering, though, are those raises commonplace? The office says they are merit based. So, are these just superstars who get substantial raises like that? Or if you go in, do your job, do it well, etc... can you expect a raise? I don't mind starting at 65k. But I'm not gonna be ok with making 65k for 5 years.

Lastly, I would just like to know from anyone with any experience at the Harris Co. DA's office about the culture there. How is it to work there? I'm sure it's stressful but how are the people? Hours? Any information would be helpful, even if I didn't ask for it. Thanks y'all, this forum is awesome.

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Re: Assistant District Attorney - Harris County (Houston)

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 29, 2018 3:24 pm

(Anon because I'm identifiable which could id friend)
Friend works there. We went to uh. Everyone who wanted the da (traditionally a low number, our year had a bunch though) and interned there got it after bar passage, and we even sent two pre-commits there. Key thing is interning there for your summers. Those guys generally beat out anyone trying to come in who hadn't done so. No they did not care about grades as long as dedication to the job was displayed (interning and mock trial are favorites), but bar passage matters. Raises seemed to happen each year, sometimes earlier if a metric was hit, but not necessarily this year, see below.

Culture will depend on what is going on with the the da and other political climate things. Currently, a LOT of people are fleeing because of internal issues, especially budget related problems. Raises for some areas were an issue (I'm not clear on who all was affected but some did not receive bumps for certain things). So many people have left they stopped the rotation system for a while and even more people were leaving due to getting stuck in an area way overworked. Efiling just started and growing pains on that suck. In short, your year joining may be great but things out of your control could cause it to be less than the job you imagine. However, you could always try starting at a different office if major problems are happening and go to Harris later.

And many experienced people are over on https://www. (remove spaces to get to site. Censoring in effect on tls now :evil: ) now if you feel like asking more about criminal law

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