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Student Positions Law & Non-Legal

The NLRB offers several exciting and challenging opportunities for students, at its Washington, D.C. headquarters, and at its field offices. Click the following links to learn more about the internship and student positions that are available for both law students and non-legal students.
  • Law student positions with Board Members
  • Law student positions with the Office of General Counsel - Headquarters
  • Law and non-legal student positions at the Office of General Counsel - field offices
  • Law student positions in the Division of Judges
  • Peggy Browning law student internships
  • Non-legal student positions in headquarters
  • Appellate Court Branch, Division of Enforcement Litigation
  • Contempt Litigation & Compliance Branch, Division of Enforcement Litigation
  • Special Litigation Branch, Division of Enforcement Litigation
  • Office of Appeals Division of Enforcement Litigation
  • Honors Program


Law students who have completed their first or second year of law school may be employed to work in the Office of a Board Member. It is preferable that candidates have strong research and writing skills as well as strong academic credentials, and, although not required, that they have taken labor law courses.
Typical assignments, which will involve cases commensurate with academic knowledge, may consist of the following:
1. Performing legal research of Board and court decisions that may be applicable to a given case.
2. Analyzing assigned unfair labor practice and representation cases before the Board for adjudication.
3. Reading transcripts of hearings, Administrative Law Judge's Decisions, Hearing Officer's reports, exhibits and other evidence, as well as motions and briefs filed after a hearing. Outlining and summarizing the significant points involved, both as to the facts of the case and points of law for use in making further case analyses.
4. Presenting cases orally to the Board Members.
To inquire about availability of law student positions with Members of the Board and application procedures, contact Gary Shinners, Executive Secretary, NLRB Office of the Executive Secretary, 1099 14th St., N.W., Room 11600, Washington, D.C. 20570, (202) 273-3737. Applicants must provide the following materials: cover letter, resume, law school transcript (unofficial copy acceptable), and two unedited writing samples.


For information about the availability of law student positions with the Office of General Counsel Headquarters offices and application procedures, see the Division of Advice and the Division of Enforcement Litigation sections by clicking on the "Applying for Attorney Positions in the Office of the General Counsel, Washington, D.C. Headquarters":


For more information regarding the availability of law student and non-legal student positions in the Field offices, contact the most convenient Field office.

To be considered for Student Temporary Employment (including summer internships and law student employment), Student Volunteer, or Student Career Experience (Co-op) appointments with the NLRB in one of its Field offices, you must supply all of the information required in OPM Form OF 510, "Applying for a Federal Job," OPM Form OF 306, "Declaration for Federal Employment," as well as the specific additional information outlined below. You may submit a resume, OPM Form OF 612 "Optional Application for Federal Employment," the previously utilized Form SF 171, or any other written format you choose. If you choose to use an application format other than the OPM Form OF 612, you may find it helpful to use the form as a guide to ensure that all relevant information is available as we consider your application for student employment. In addition to the information required by OPM Form OF 510, we need the specific additional information outlined below in order to evaluate your qualifications for employment.

Student Temporary Employment (including Summer Internship and Law Student Employment) in a Field Office

Law students who have completed their first or second year of law school may be employed in a field office. It is preferable that the candidates have strong research and writing skills, as well as strong academic credentials, and, although not required, that they have taken labor law classes.

Student Volunteer in a Field Office

One of the major purposes of this program is to provide students with meaningful educationally related work experiences.

The Student Volunteer Service Program includes: Graduate Students studying Industrial Relations, Law Students, and Undergraduate Students, who are not only interested in Field Examiner work, but also those interested in Computer Specialist and Language Specialist work.

Student Career Experience (Co-op) in a Field Office

The Student Career Experience Program (Undergraduate Cooperative Education Program) provides an integration of academic study with practical work experience and on-the-job training in an organized program in which students may alternate periods of attendance at a university with periods of related employment. The employment and on-the-job training phases of the program constitute a regular, continuing, and essential element of the educational process so that the undergraduate is better prepared for professional accomplishment.

Your application including the information requested below should be sent to the NLRB field office nearest to you. If you have any questions concerning your application or the requirements for student employment with a Field office, please contact the Human Resources Branch at (202) 273-3980, or the Field office nearest to you.
A. Additional Personal Information Which Must Be Included in Your Application:
1. When are you available for employment?
2. Do you have a valid driver's license? (Skip if applying for a Student Volunteer position.)
3. Are you a U. S. citizen? If not, of what country are you a citizen?
4. In which field office(s) would you like to be considered for a position?
5. The following conflict of interest questions must be answered:
a. Are you related (by blood or marriage) to anyone now employed by the National Labor Relations Board? If yes, state name and relationship.
b. If a decision is made to offer you an externship, your assignment to a particular office will depend on staffing needs and on whether or not your assignment to a particular office would create an actual or apparent conflict of interest. With respect to this latter consideration, please advise us if your spouse, parents, siblings, children, in-laws, fiancé(e), and/or other person who is a member of your household is
  • Employed in the labor field;
  • Employed by an institution which regularly does business with a field office or a headquarters office; or
  • Employed in a law firm that practices labor law;
Please identify the individual, the relationship, the employer involved and the field(s) and/or headquarters office with which they deal.
B. Education
Submit copy of undergraduate, graduate, and law school transcripts (as applicable).

C. Other Qualifications
Are you fluent in a foreign language(s)? If so, indicate the language(s) and degree of oral and/or written fluency.


The NLRB administrative law judges hear and adjudicate unfair labor practice complaints issued by the General Counsel, an independent prosecutor, against unions and employers. The judges also are involved in settlement discussions in cases pending before other NLRB administrative law judges.

There are about 30 judges stationed Washington, D.C. Judges also are stationed in Atlanta, New York and San Francisco. The judges hear cases of various lengths, mostly at locations away from their home office. After the trial, the judge receives the trial transcript, exhibits, briefs of the parties, and, after studying them, and researching the applicable law the judge issues a written decision. Students primarily assist judges by performing legal research and drafting memoranda. Students hired in Washington will generally be assigned to work solely with Washington headquarters judges. They may, where necessary, be assigned to work with judges in our other offices."

For more information about the program, contact:

Malissa Lambert, Officer Manager
1099 14th Street, NW, Suite 5400 East
Washington, DC 20570-0001, (202) 501-8800.


The NLRB sponsors three law student fellowship positions through the Peggy Browning Fund in the Judges Division, Contempt Litigation & Compliance Branch and a Regional Office. The Field position rotates among the various Regional Offices. The Fund, which is not affiliated with the NLRB, is an independent, nonprofit corporation established in memory of Margaret A. Browning, a prominent labor attorney and former Member of the National Labor Relations Board. The Fund's mission is to provide law students with diverse, challenging work and educational experiences in the area of workers' rights. A salary stipend is paid by the Fund, not the NLRB. For more information contact the Fund's web site [] or 1818 Market Street, Suite 2300, Philadelphia, PA 19103, 215/665-6815. The application deadline is in mid January.


To inquire about non-legal student positions in the Headquarters offices, contact the NLRB's Human Resources Branch, 1099 14th St., N.W., Room 6000, Washington, D.C. 20570; (202) 273-3980.


The Division of Advice, located within the Office of the General Counsel in Washington, D.C., consists of three branches: The Regional Advice Branch, the Injunction Litigation Branch, and the Legal Research & Policy Planning Branch.
The Regional Advice Branch provides guidance to the General Counsel and to the Regional Offices with respect to difficult or novel legal issues arising in the processing of unfair labor practice charges. It determines whether charges have merit and, if so, what legal theories should be advanced in support. If the decision is to dismiss a charge, it sets forth the theories that support that decision. In either case, the guidance must take into account the current law and agency policies as well as an analysis of how those legal principles and policies may be evolving.
The Injunction Litigation Branch implements, in conjunction with the Regional Offices, the General Counsel's Section 10(j) program to obtain interim injunctions to restore or preserve the status quo where necessary to preserve the effectiveness of the Board's ultimate remedial order. The Branch evaluates Regional recommendations for seeking interim injunctive relief and drafts recommendations to the Board in cases in which the General Counsel recommends seeking such relief. It provides to Regional Offices resource materials and training on the investigation and litigation of Section 10(j) cases. The Branch also advises and assists Regions in the litigation of both Section 10(j) and Section 10(l) injunction cases in federal district courts, and directly handles all appellate litigation in such cases.
The Legal Research & Policy Planning Branch provides agency employees with current summaries of NLRB and related court decisions both through the publication of case digest summaries and through an electronic research database. It also processes documents for release to the public pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, develops and promulgates changes in the Board's procedural rules which are then published in the Federal Register, and provides assistance with a number of other agency programs, including processing cases arising under the Equal Access to Justice Act and development of internal and web-based electronic research tools.


Requirements for Staff Attorney positions:

Law school graduate and licensed attorney (or admission within one year of hire). Labor law course(s) and/or experience in labor relations field preferred. Strong research and writing skills.

Send Resume to:

Barry J. Kearney, Associate General Counsel
Division of Advice
NLRB Office of the General Counsel
1099 14th Street, N.W., Suite 10406
Washington, D.C. 20570



The Appellate Court Branch of the Division of Enforcement Litigation represents the Board in all cases involving enforcement or review of the Board's orders, in all federal circuit courts of appeals. Attorneys in the Branch handle all aspects of the appellate litigation, including drafting the Board's brief and presenting oral argument before the circuit court. To apply for a position in the Appellate Court Branch, send a resume to Linda J. Dreeben, Assistant General Counsel, NLRB, 1099 14th Street NW, Suite 8100, Washington, D.C. 20570. To complete the application process an applicant must submit law school and undergraduate transcripts, an unedited writing sample, and references.



The function of the Contempt Litigation and Compliance Branch is to conduct civil and criminal contempt litigation in the U.S. Courts of Appeals to coerce compliance or to punish non-compliance with judgments enforcing orders of the Board; to obtain protective orders to ensure that assets will not be dissipated in an effort to avoid the payment of backpay judgments; to institute and monitor ancillary collection proceedings; to assist the Regional Offices in bankruptcy proceedings filed by respondents; and to obtain other injunctive relief pendente lite. Contempt litigation is nation-wide in scope, affects all segments of industry and applies to all unfair labor practices proscribed by law. Through this litigation, compliance with orders of the Board that have been enforced by judgments of the U.S. Courts of Appeals and other orders of the Courts of Appeals is obtained, and the policies enunciated in the National Labor Relations Act and the orders of the courts are effectuated.
Work in the Contempt Branch is centered in four primary areas: civil contempt, criminal contempt, protective order/collection work and compliance guidance. Civil contempt actions involve, among other things, evidentiary investigations, the drafting of internal legal memoranda, the drafting of court pleadings, civil discovery (document production, requests for admissions, depositions, interrogatories), motions practice, bench trials, the drafting of appellate briefs and the presentation of appellate arguments.
Criminal contempt actions involve, in addition to much of the work detailed above, grand jury work and jury trials.
The Contempt Branch is also responsible for obtaining injunctive relief in order to ensure compliance with enforced Board orders, engaging in affirmative bankruptcy litigation and collection work, and providing guidance and assistance to the Board's Regional Offices in enforcement and compliance matters.

Currently 10 attorneys, one paralegal and one legal secretary staff the Branch. The Branch also operates a year-round law student employment program.
The mailing address of the Branch is Contempt Litigation and Compliance Branch, National Labor Relations Board, Suite 10700, 1099 14th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20570. The main telephone number for the Branch is (202) 273-3740, and the Branch facsimile number is (202) 273-4244.


The National Labor Relations Board is an independent federal agency created in 1935 to enforce the National Labor Relations Act.  The NLRB conducts secret-ballot elections to determine whether employees want union representation and investigates and remedies unfair labor practices by employers and unions.

The Division of Operations-Management assists the General Counsel in managing the Agency’s regional offices and supporting the enforcement of the National Labor Relations Act.  The NLRB’s newly formed Compliance Unit is located within the Division of Operations-Management.  The Compliance Unit works with the Agency’s Field Offices, the Division of Enforcement Litigation, and the Division of Legal Service and General Litigation, on a broad range of issues including, but not limited to, derivative liability, bankruptcy, securing settlements, and compliance with informal settlements, Board orders and Court judgments.

Position:  Student Legal Intern, Volunteer
We are looking for a law student to assist the Division’s Compliance Unit with case evaluation, legal research, settlement templates, training materials, drafting of sample pleadings, and project management.  Our student intern will work directly with the Assistant to the General Counsel and two Deputy Assistant General Counsels and will research federal and state security and collection law, draft legal memoranda and federal court pleadings, draft civil discovery subpoenas and other discovery requests, and develop training resources to advance the Agency’s Best Compliance Practices.  There will be as many opportunities for hands-on experience as the student legal intern wants to handle.  The student will also participate in the Agency’s summer intern program which involves briefings by senior officials from throughout the Agency about the NLRB on both procedural and substantive labor law issues.  Our student intern will produce written work products (useful for future employment writing samples).  The Agency will work closely with participating schools to ensure class credit where permitted.

Qualifications:  Law students who have completed their second year of law school and who have a strong interest in public sector work.  There is a strong possibility of working during the school year on a volunteer basis and for credit (if desired).

Application: Cover letter, resume, transcript and short writing sample. Deadline: Rolling

Joan A. Sullivan, Deputy Assistant General Counsel
National Labor Relations Board
Compliance Unit
Division of Operations Management
1099 14th Street, N.W. Suite 10200
Washington, D.C.  20005-3419

Trial Attorney Positions

Attorneys conduct civil and criminal contempt litigation and related litigation work, including injunction and collection proceedings, involving compliance with the provisions of the Board's Decisions and Orders and court decrees enforcing such Orders. Some of the duties include:
  • Analyzing reports from Regional Offices to determine if contempt proceedings or ancillary proceedings should be instituted, and, where necessary, obtaining additional information to assure sufficiency of evidence;
  • Preparing contempt recommendations for consideration by the Board, and upon authorization, conducting grand jury proceedings and/or preparing pleadings, affidavits, motions, supporting briefs, etc. necessary to initiate and prosecute cases;
  • Negotiating with parties to obtain compliance, if possible, without further litigation and drafting appropriate documents;
  • If civil contempt litigation is warranted, preparing motions for reference to a special master, drafting interrogatories, requests for production and requests for admissions, conducting depositions, interviewing witnesses, preparing for and conducting trials, and preparing post-trial briefs to the special master and to the Courts of Appeals.
  • If criminal contempt litigation is warranted, obtaining indictments and conducting criminal trials in conjunction with U.S. Attorney's offices;
  • Presenting oral arguments to the Courts of Appeals and other courts;
  • Obtaining protective orders to assure that assets will not be dissipated;
  • Conducting litigation involving garnishments, executions and attachments under the Federal Debt Collection Act and the Federal Debt Collection Procedures Act to collect backpay judgments, fines and attorneys fees;
  • Assisting Regions in conducting offensive litigation in bankruptcy courts in connection with all facets of collection proceedings.
Law Student Positions
The Branch administers a law student program for students who have completed at least their first year of law school. Candidates must have strong research and writing skills, and it is preferred, although not required, that they have taken the basic Labor Law and Federal Civil Procedure courses.
Law students assist the trial attorneys in investigating contempt allegations, preparing internal legal memoranda, drafting discovery documents, preparing for trial and drafting appellate briefs.
Where possible, law students will participate in discovery proceedings and assist attorneys at trial. The availability of paid positions depends on budgetary considerations. The Branch will cooperate with any university- sponsored program providing for academic credit. The program operates during the school year as well as during the summer.
The paralegal is responsible for preparing legal documents and litigation pleadings, interpreting and applying appropriate court rules, practices and procedures, and performing various research and investigative assignments. Some of the specific duties include:
  • Reviews contempt recommendation submissions received from Regions and analyzes and evaluates case files against case litigation worthiness standards before sending the case on to the assigned trial attorney;
  • Reviews and analyzes available precedents relevant to cases under consideration for use in presenting case summaries to trial attorneys;
  • Interviews witnesses;
  • Drafts requests for certified court judgments, applications for post- judgment execution and garnishment, motions for order of reference and default, and other legal documents;
  • Shepardizes cases and performs legal research through the use of a variety of legal reference materials and assembles and summarizes the information for use by Contempt Branch lawyers;
  • Assists in preparation for trial by compiling, organizing and indexing evidence;
  • Conducts corporate and asset investigations through computerized databases provided through contracts with outside vendors.
Application Process
Attorneys and paralegals who are interested in applying for a permanent position should send their resume, an unedited writing sample, and transcript (for new and recent graduates), to Stanley R. Zirkin, Assistant General Counsel, Contempt Litigation and Compliance Branch, National Labor Relations Board, Suite 10700, 1099 14th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20570.

Law students who are interested in applying for a position should send their resume, an unedited writing sample, and transcript, to Assistant General Counsel Stanley R. Zirkin at the above address. If you have any questions regarding the law student program, please call or write to Senior Trial Attorney Joan Sullivan, (202) 273-3742. A legal internship is available through the Peggy Browning Fund.



The Special Litigation Branch is primarily responsible for representing the Board or the General Counsel, as a party or amicus, in litigation in the U.S. District and Bankruptcy Courts, and the U.S. Courts of Appeals, in all cases except those arising directly from the enforcement of Board Decisions and Orders. These cases often involve politically sensitive issues and have a high public profile. While knowledge of the National Labor Relations Act is necessary, the Branch's litigation generally involves cases brought under the Equal Access to Justice Act, the Freedom of Information Act, the Bankruptcy Code, the Privacy Act, and actions brought to mandate or prohibit specific conduct by the Board, the General Counsel and other Agency personnel. The Branch's caseload also includes appellate and contempt litigation in subpoena enforcement proceedings and rulemaking litigation. It is the Special Litigation Branch which represents the Agency when it intervenes or appears in litigation in federal or state courts in which the Board feels that a question affecting its jurisdiction or processes is presented. Finally, the Branch is an advisor to the Board's Regional Offices concerning any of the above issues or statutes.
An attorney in the Special Litigation Branch will be involved in some of the most factually complex and legally difficult questions occurring in the Agency. Under the guidance of his or her supervisors, the attorney is responsible for developing the legal theories on which the case will be presented, and for the necessary research of the law and other supporting authorities. The attorney then prepares all necessary pleadings, including motions, briefs, and replies. In cases requiring Board authorization for the Agency's participation, the attorney will prepare initial recommendations to the General Counsel, and any subsequent memoranda from the General Counsel to the Board, recommending a given course of action. Finally, absent unusual circumstances, the attorney will represent the Board in the U.S. District and Bankruptcy Courts, in the U.S. Courts of Appeals, and in the state courts, to argue and defend the Board's positions and the constitutionality of the Act or its application.
The Branch also administers a law student employment program for students who have completed at least their first year of law school. Candidates must have strong research and writing skills, and it is preferred, although not required, that they have taken basic labor law or Federal Civil Procedure. The availability of paid positions depends on budgetary considerations. The Branch will cooperate with any university-sponsored program providing for academic credit. The program operates during the school year as well as the summer.
An attorney or law student interested in applying for a position with the Special Litigation Branch should submit a copy of their resume, law school transcript and an unedited writing sample to Nancy E. Kessler Platt, Supervisory Attorney, Special Litigation Branch, NLRB, Suite 8600, 1099 14th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20570



The primary function of the Office of Appeals is to review, on behalf of the General Counsel, appeals of decisions by the Regional Directors to dismiss or defer unfair labor practice charges. Procedures governing such appeals are set forth in Section 102.19 of the Board's Rules and Regulations. The General Counsel has sole authority to review and sustain or deny these appeals and the decisions in such cases are not subject to review by the National Labor Relations Board or in any court.
When an appeal is filed, the full investigatory file developed in the Regional Office is forwarded to the Office. The case is then assigned to a staff attorney for review. This attorney, in conjunction with his or her supervisor, is expected to review the facts developed in the field investigation, identify the legal issues involved, find the relevant case law; and orally and in writing analyze whether, based on case precedent, the decision of the Regional Director should be reversed. When a reversal is recommended, or where, due to the novelty of the legal issues presented or the notoriety of the case, review by the General Counsel is desirable, the attorney, with the assistance of his or her supervisor, will present the case to either the Assistant Director or Director of the Office and ultimately to the General Counsel for decision. Meetings with the General Counsel are held weekly for the purpose of discussing cases identified by the Office as deserving of General Counsel review. The Office of Appeals also reviews appeals from Regional Directors' refusals to provide information from Regional office files to requesting parties seeking documents and records under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The Office of Appeals has a tradition of innovative legal work under FOIA and has been instrumental in assisting the General Counsel in developing the policy of disclosure of records in the Agency investigative files and on e-mail under FOIA.
A newly-hired staff attorney will become quickly immersed in the leading labor law issues on a daily basis. Case assignments cover each and every section of the Act as it pertains to allegations surrounding unfair labor practice charges filed by Employers, Unions and individuals. Superior research and writing skills are a prerequisite for a staff attorney position and a familiarity with the Act as part of the applicant's law school curriculum would be an asset.
A law student intern in the Office of Appeals would be responsible with the assistance of supervision for organizing facts from the agency investigative files; ascertaining the substantive legal issues; interpreting relevant case law; interpreting and construing pertinent provisions of the Act; analyzing and presenting oral and written reports of cases at various levels of supervision including the General Counsel's agenda and preparing disposition letters and memoranda.
A legal internship is available in the Office of Appeals through cooperative education agreements with law schools whereby law students work in the Office for scholastic credit.
Inquiries regarding permanent positions or internships available in the Office of Appeals should be directed to Daniel Levitan, Supervisory Attorney, Office of Appeals, NLRB, Suite 8822, 1099-14th St. NW., Washington, D.C. 20570.

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