Attorney Application Guidelines

Application Guidelines

The Law Department asks that applicants observe the following writing sample and reference guidelines in their applications to the Law Department.

Writing Sample Guidelines:

Each writing sample submitted should ideally be between 6 and 20 pages long.

Each writing sample should be accompanied by a cover page explaining (a) the sample's original purpose (e.g., class assignment, moot court brief, internal memorandum for employer); (b) when and for whom the sample was written; (c) the extent of editing by any third party; (d) if the writing sample is an excerpt from a larger document, the nature of such larger document; and (e) if the sample is a collaborative work, which portion of the sample was written by the applicant.

Each writing sample submitted should demonstrate the applicant's ability to analyze legal issues.

Each writing sample should ideally be written within two years of submission. The sample should indicate the date it was written.

The submission of a final judicial opinion or order as a writing sample is permitted with the consent of the judge if such opinion or order has been published.  The submission of a draft judicial opinion or order is not an appropriate writing sample.

If an applicant chooses to submit a writing sample containing confidential or privileged information, the applicant must identify and explain the steps taken to preserve the confidential or privileged nature of the document (e.g., redactions, changed names, consent obtained from client or employer).

If an applicant is unable to comply with any of the above guidelines, he or she should submit a brief explanation.

Professional Reference Guidelines:

Applicants should submit a list of 3 professional references.

The list should have the applicant's contact information at the top of page.

The name, title, phone number, and email address for each reference should be listed as well as an explanation of the context in which the reference has known the candidate, including applicable dates.

References from former or current employers are preferable to academic or character references.

The submission of letters of recommendation is not required.