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Office of General Counsel


OGC Honors Program

The Honors Attorney Program in the Office of General Counsel (OGC) at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) seeks outstanding law school graduates committed to public service. This program is designed to attract eligible individuals interested in a legal career with a federal agency practicing a wide array of legal fields, including government contracts law, real estate law, administrative law, labor/personnel law, and litigation. This program provides new attorneys with challenging legal work, professional development opportunities, and an opportunity to serve United States Veterans.

The OGC Honors Program seeks eligible individuals interested in an intellectually stimulating career serving United States Veterans. The program will select a limited number of applicants to begin working in Fall of 2023.  OGC will designate the number and location of positions based on current agency needs.  Honors attorneys will gain valuable experience in the Federal sector and benefit from OGC training in a wide variety of subject matter areas, e.g., through New Attorney Orientation and various Education and Training Committee presentations.

  • Highly qualified third-year law students expected to be awarded a J.D. prior to July of the next year.
  • Fourth-year students graduating from four-year programs, combination programs, or LL.M. programs immediately after law school from accredited schools.
  • Federal or state judicial law clerks with no more than two years of clerkship experience prior to the start date for the Honors Attorney Program.
  • Recent law school graduates who entered judicial clerkships, graduate law programs, or qualifying legal fellowships within 9 months of law school graduation.
  • Only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment in the Honors Attorney Program.

Selection Criteria:
  • Demonstrated academic excellence.
  • Top third of law school class.
  • Involvement in extra-curricular activities (law school journal, moot court, other bar/law student organizations).
  • Internship experience.
  • Commitment to public service.
Compensation and Benefits:
  • Individuals hired into a position within one year of graduation from law school are hired at the GS-11 pay grade. Attorneys hired following judicial clerkships may be considered for a GS-12 pay grade depending on the duration of the clerkship.
  • Individuals may be eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness.
  • Individuals will receive federal employee benefits including:
    • ​​​​​​​Annual and Sick Leave
    • Federal Employee Health Benefits
    • Federal Employee Life Insurance Program
    • Participation in Federal Employee Retirement System
    • Participation in Thrift Savings Plan
Application Process:
  • The application period begins March 15, 2023, and closes by 11:59 pm EST on April 15, 2023.
  • Applications may be submitted through Simplicity Recruit​​​​​​​ or emailed to
  • Applications materials must be combined as a single PDF and must include:
  1. ​​​​​​​Cover letter – no more than one page​​​​​​​​​​​​​​.
  2. Resume
  3. Law School Transcript
  4. Writing Sample – no less than 5 pages and no more than 10 pages. The writing sample must be substantially the work of the candidate.
  5. References
    1. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​No more than three references.
    2. At least one reference should be from a member of the law school staff or a current or former employer.
  • Selected applicants will be invited for interviews that may take place any time between April to May of 2023.
  • Offers will be extended on a rolling basis from April to May of 2023.
If you have any questions regarding the program or the application process, submit any and all inquiries to​​​​​​​.

Click here for an overview about OGC

Click here for an in depth overview of VA and OGC Functions


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