Anonymous User wrote:
Patrick Bateman wrote:Responding to the dozen embedded quotes above regarding Army Honors GC:
Any General Counsel's Office job for the Feds is going to be generally transactional - there can be some civil litigation that comes up in the labor law and information litigation arenas however (and maybe others, I only have limited exposure in this area). Going from a position like that to a criminal AUSA or criminal Main Justice position would be extremely difficult. As I've noted before, the selling point JAGs bring to the table is trial experience and that is just not the type of experience you are going to get as an assistant GC - your average U.S. Attorney's Office is going to be composed of former state/local prosecutors, laterals from litigating components of Main Justice, some BigLaw laterals, and JAGs.
There are civil AUSA positions, however, that might be in reach, depending on exactly what you did for the GC. There are also areas of Main Justice that might appreciate those skills - I have had a number of JAG friends that ended up with civil specialties while on active duty and were able to sell those to the different sections within DOJ Civil Division (or ENRD, etc). While I love criminal work and that tends to be the most common path for JAGs -> DOJ/USAO, it is not the only game in town.
The point about no guarantees of criminal litigation experience in JAG is a fair point and one that should be considered. There is indeed someelement of luck in landing at busy bases where you can try courts, getting selected as an ADC, etc. That said, there is still plenty a new JAG can do to influence his/her chances for opportunities.
Is this experience (luck in landing jobs w/ crim lit) unique to AF JAG? Or do you think it applies to the other services?
May affect where I or others apply.
Short answer is no - trial experience is trial experience, regardless of what color uniform you are wearing.
The longer answer/the better question is what service will give you the opportunity to try the most cases out of the gate. I can't speak with any true expertise to how the Army/Navy/Marines staff their first and second assignment JAGs and how that impacts courtroom time. I'll let the other folks from those services weigh in.
The Air Force model is certainly conducive for getting trial experience right away. You will get to serve as a trial counsel at your first assignment, regardless if you are serving in the military justice or civil division of your base legal office. The only real limfac is if you end up at a slow base that just does not have a lot of courts going on - that, however, can be helped by volunteering to try cases at other, busier, bases (we had JAGs from other bases coming to my second assignment all the time to second chair our cases for experience) and getting to all the trial ad courses you can at AFJAGS.
You can always request a busy base as your second assignment - generally that will help you land an ADC gig by your 3rd/4th year, and that is where the real volume kicks in. For perspective, the best JAG I have ever tried cases with started at a slower Space Command base as his first assignment.
After ADC, you can go STC/SDC or diversify your skill set at our appellate shops. With this model, you have a really strong resume by year 6-7 and will have put on O-4. Prime time to punch out for a Fed gig and the Reserves.