Litigation Attorney

Arlington, VA
Full Time
Litigation Attorney
Mid Level

The Institute for Justice, the national law firm for liberty, is the country’s leading public-interest law firm in the areas of economic liberty, free speech, private property rights and educational choice. Our attorneys work on cutting-edge constitutional cases, fight to end government abuses in key areas such as civil forfeiture and qualified immunity, and champion individual rights.  

We are currently looking for passionate and entrepreneurial attorneys with 3-6 years of litigation experience to join our headquarters office in Arlington, VA.

What’s it like to be an IJ attorney?

Simply put, it’s rewarding. If you are passionate about using your law degree to stop government abuses and champion individual rights, there is no better place to be. Attorneys who join us in a lateral capacity often say that IJ litigates cases that motivated them to go to law school in the first place.

Within a supportive, team-based culture, attorneys develop their own cases, direct legal strategy, take depositions and present oral argument through every stage of litigation, maintaining ownership of their cases up to and including the U.S. Supreme Court. And we maintain a sense of humor and can-do attitude throughout it all.

IJ attorneys are also active outside the courtroom, doing media writing and appearances, public speaking, grassroots activism and direct advocacy to policymakers and legislators. (And if you are a regular listener of our popular Short Circuit podcast, you know that IJ attorneys are regular contributors.) No two days are the same, and our new lateral hires jump into the action on day one.   

 What does IJ look for when hiring new attorneys?

  • Excellent writing and communication skills;
  • A desire to create real world impact and willingness to push the envelope in strategizing how to win challenging cases; 
  • At least 3 years of legal work experience with a minimum of 2 years focused on litigation;
  • A passion for limiting the size and scope of government power to ensure that all Americans have the right to control their own destinies as free and responsible members of society;
  • Judicial clerkship experience (not required, but strongly preferred).

How can I apply?

If you’re ready to join our exciting team, please submit a resume, a cover letter, and a writing sample. The writing sample should be approximately 10 pages and it should demonstrate your best legal analysis. Note that later stages of our interview process include an additional writing component. 

Can you tell me more about your culture and values?

Our culture is collaborative, intellectual, and fun.

We have a shared commitment to our mission and to our individual clients, ordinary people who want to pursue their vision of the American Dream without government interference. Each member of our staff is recognized for the integral part they play in the fulfillment of that mission.

We value employees who meet the tough legal issues we tackle with sharp legal creativity, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a can-do attitude. Together, we celebrate every win along the way and recover quickly from setbacks.

Can you tell me more about compensation, benefits, and general perks?

Compensation is commensurate with experience and exceeds other legal non-profits and government pay scales. IJ also offers superior benefits including medical, dental, vision and life insurance, generous paid leave, and retirement benefits. We also offer flexible work-day schedules, two days each week to work from home, and up to four weeks each year to work from anywhere in the world with WiFi. We’ve recently renovated and expanded our Arlington office, which features a state-of-the art moot courtroom, light filled offices, and a café space (featuring cold brew on tap, an espresso coffee machine, and free snacks and sodas).




IJ is an equal opportunity employer.

Don’t meet every single requirement? Studies have shown that women and people of color are less likely to apply to jobs unless they meet every single qualification. At IJ we value a diverse workplace, so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. You may be just the right candidate for this or other roles.

To learn more about our culture and benefits, visit our Working at IJ page.



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