Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

Recruitment Programs

The Washington State Attorney General’s Office (AGO) is not in a position to monetarily compensate its law clerks.  Nevertheless, we have found that many students benefit from serving in the Office in other ways:  earning credit, fulfilling public service requirements, and gaining invaluable first-hand legal training.  Accordingly, the AGO has developed a number of recruitment programs by which students can apply to serve as unpaid law clerks.  (Note, for our purposes, any law student who receives academic credit for their law clerk service is defined as an “extern,” all others are “volunteer law clerks”.)


Volunteer Law Clerk Recruitment Programs

The Attorney General’s Office is pleased to invite qualified first and second-year law students to apply for summer 2020 volunteer or externship positions.  Volunteer law clerks and externs glean worthwhile, enriching and educational experiences working for what we believe to be the best public law firm in the country

The Office’s spring recruitment program is available to any qualified first or second-year law student.  At the conclusion of this recruitment program, offers will be made.  Those who receive offers will begin their clerkship during the summer of 2020. 

Required Application Materials/Deadline:  The application deadline has passed and we are no longer accepting applications.

Students interested in participating in either of these programs can click the links below, click "apply" using the green button and submit a profile. In addition to fully completing a profile and responding to all supplemental questions, you must upload the following materials:

  • A letter of interest;
  • Resume;
  • Law School Transcript (official or unofficial); and
  • Letter of recommendation*.

* Second-year law students are required to submit one letter of recommendation.  The letter of recommendation is the only document that will be accepted separately.  The letter of recommendation can be submitted by the recommender directly to the recruitment office by e-mail (Letrice.Tobin@atg.wa.gov), mail (800 5th Avenue, Suite 2000, Seattle, WA 98104) or fax (206-389-2058).  First-year law students must submit a list of at least three references.

Additional information (e.g., writing sample, additional letters of recommendation) will be accepted, though is not required.  Incomplete applications will not be accepted or considered.


Recruitment Process:

Please be sure to indicate your division and location preferences on your application as your application material will be forwarded to the participating divisions for which you indicate an interest.  Please refer to our Annual Report for more information on specific divisions.  The divisions will determine who to interview and will directly contact students to set up interviews.  Applications of those not selected for an interview or are not selected by a division with whom they have interviewed, will be retained should additional opportunities arise.


Extern Law Clerk Recruitment Program
There are three specific processes available to those who wish to apply to serve as an extern. 

First, a qualified law student can apply in response to a specific posting.  If a division can anticipate their extern needs, the division will post an announcement on the AGO’s website and with the career services offices of targeted law schools.  To be considered for such an opportunity, one must submit the required application material by the posted deadline and make reference to that specific position in the cover letter. 

Secondly, because it is not always possible for divisions to predict their needs and recognizing that a student’s own timing may not coincide with this Office’s structured recruitment programs, we also invite students to proactively apply, timing their application so it coincides with their own needs and the needs of their school’s externship program.  Students who wish to do so must complete the online application and upload the required materials to the "Law Clerk Internship/Externship for Academic Year" posting.  Upon receipt, the application material will be reviewed and, if approved, disseminated to the divisions of interest for consideration.  It is important to note that when applying proactively, not all divisions are interested in or able to entertain candidates seeking academic credit for their service. You will want to allow the divisions sufficient time to review your application and thus you are encouraged to submit the application material well in advance of planning your academic schedule.  

Finally, it is possible that divisions seeking volunteer law clerks in the spring (see “Volunteer Law Clerk Recruitment Program” above) may be open to adapting the position’s duties and their supervisory role into an experience that is eligible for academic credit.  Accordingly, students who apply via our spring process but who wish to receive academic credit for their service should expressly state this interest in their cover letter and making it clear in ensuing interviews with divisions. 

We are confident that the experience gleaned from clerking with this office will meet or exceed the substantive experience requirement of any law school externship program.  For our part, division supervisors are committed to ensuring that as sponsors, all supervisory duties and requirements specified by the law school are met.  However, it is ultimately the responsibility of the law student to ensure mastery of and compliance with his or her law school’s specific program requirements. Law students interested in serving as an extern must complete the online application form via www.careers.wa.gov and upload a letter of interest, resume, law school transcript and one letter of recommendation to the recruiting system.  Incomplete application packets will not be considered.   The letter of recommendation is the only document that will be accepted separately. The letter of recommendation can be submitted by the recommender directly to the recruitment office by e-mail (Letrice.Tobin@atg.wa.gov), mail (800 5th Avenue, Suite 2000, Seattle, WA 98104) or fax (206-389-2058). 

Students must be enrolled in an ABA accredited law school during the duration of their service.  In addition, the AGO seeks applicants who are committed to public service as demonstrated by an applicant’s background, talents, attitude, and enthusiasm for public law practice. We also seek applicants with a diverse background in education, previous work experience, law school activities, extracurricular activities, community service and areas of interest that enhance our office.

The Attorney General's Office respects and encourages diversity in the work force

The Office of the Attorney General is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, national origin, honorably discharged veteran or military status, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability or the use of a trained service animal by a person with a disability.  Persons requiring reasonable accommodation in the application and/or interview process or requiring any information in an alternative format may contact Tracy Robinson at (360) 586-7693.  Those in need of accommodation for a hearing impairment may contact Telecommunication Relay Services, a resource for TTY users, by dialing 711 or (800) 833-6388.