Law Student Externship

The Federal Public Defender Office for the Western District of Washington, operating under authority of the Criminal Justice Act, 18 U.S.C. 3006A, was established with the purpose of ensuring the Sixth Amendment right to effective assistance of counsel and equal access to justice in federal court.

Our summer 2023 externship is now full. We are currently accepting externship applications for Spring semester/quarter and the fall 2023 semester/quarter.  Please submit a single combined document containing: a cover letter explaining your interest in our office, a resume including three references, school transcript (unofficial is okay), and a short writing sample to: Vicki Lai, Chief Appellate Attorney/Legal Intern Supervisor at

There is a potential for the summer externship position to be paid. Legal Extern compensation will be based on the 2023 Judiciary Salary Plan (JSP) grades 5 and 6. Total compensation for a 40-hour week, 10-week summer commitment ranges from appx. $7,500 to $8,600 depending on experience. Benefits are not available and holidays are unpaid.

Thank you.

No phone calls please.