Military Law (JAG)

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Expand view Topic review: Military Law (JAG)

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by JagBound » Sun Aug 09, 2020 3:36 pm

Does anyone have any information on how COVID-19 has changed Officer Development School or Naval Justice School?

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by xxthrill » Mon Jul 23, 2018 1:12 pm

Checking in. Im finishing up my second year in a T1 evening program. I spent the last 10 years enlisted in the Air Force (I ets a week from tomorrow) and am currently doing an internship with the Navy JAG Corps. I interview for the Navy within the week and will probably look at applying to Air Force as well. Still not entirely convinced I want to do JAG. I like the military, but OCI is the next few weeks and that will largely determine whether I even try and get back in.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by howell » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:26 pm

Just a note that some of the AF DAP board dates are changing. They'll be in September and November this fall instead of October and December. The September apps need to be in by 10 Aug.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by sartorial splendor » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:53 am

This was very insightful! Thank you for giving us your first hand account. This also gave me some confidence in my choice of JAG as a possible starting career path. Sounds like you've not only been kept busy but busy with substantive work. Thanks again.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by howell » Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:10 pm

sartorial splendor wrote:
Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:58 pm
howell wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:43 pm
Finally checking in.

I assume we have a very similar audience as the other thread, but for anyone new, I'm an active duty AF JAG entering the sweet spot for leaving active duty. Still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.
How did you find AF JAG did in exposing you to and training you in the various areas of the law? Did you get substantial court time and what was the timeline after first starting as a JAG that you started seeing court time? What exit opportunities do you feel will give you the best path forward in your career? Thank you for checking in.
I'll answer a bit out of order.

I got out of JASOC in April and was in my first court-martial in October. I narrowly missed getting my first court in June. If I had a different (read: normal) SJA, I would have done the court in June. But the October court was a sex assault, so I also got in a contentious preliminary hearing before October, and I did a discharge board or two during that time as well. From that first October until I deployed 1.5 years later, I did a total of 8 courts. If I had a different SJA, I might have had 2-3 more courts during that time. We were probably an average base as far as court tempo - in a busy year, we could have 10-12 courts, but in a slow year we could get back down to 1-2. 4 of my courts had litigated findings (the others were guilty pleas with "litigated" sentencing), and one court was relatively complex with recruiter issues, sex assault, 30+ witnesses, experts, etc. I got to do every part of a court except perhaps the main cross of the Accused, but I don't think I ever had the Accused testify besides for motions purposes.

I felt like the experience was really good. We often got put in situations in courts where no one knew the right answer and we had little oversight while trying to figure it out on our own. Sometimes we had Senior Trial Counsel on cases, and I was fortunate to have really good ones who also knew how to teach (in their own kinder and less-kind ways). I think a normal amount of courts for your first 2 years would be 5-10. You can get more at busier bases.

My best court experience came in my second assignment as an Area Defense Counsel. In about 18 months, I did 21 courts, and I certainly did the lion's share of the work on most of them. I really like working in pairs on cases, but I felt like I grew the hell up when I had to fully litigate cases on my own.

The AF JAG Corps does a really good job of exposing its people to all the areas of the law the AF covers in their first 2-4 years. Certainly there is the criminal litigation side, but we also do legal assistance (all kinds of stuff), contracts, labor, environmental, ethics, medical, FOIA/info requests, random interpretation questions, claims/torts, operational law, and more - or some mix of that. Certainly even more is available after your first assignment or two. Although you will have a title at the base legal office like "Chief of Adverse Actions," you will still be doing a little of everything your office needs to get done all the time.

When looking at getting out, I have had to get creative at figuring out what I can do. One problem is that JAGs are generally selected for and drawn to certain kinds of work, so we overwhelmingly take a few major paths. The AF trains us VERY well for federal civilian attorney positions. We learn how to support a massive federal agency, and those skills are needed by just about all federal agencies.

I'd feel comfortable applying for any kind of criminal litigation work - ADA, PD, AUSA, Fed Defender, certain private firms, etc. If AUSA/Fed Defender was my goal, I would have requested an appellate gig and then tried for a senior defense/trial counsel position.

I'm currently in a labor-heavy billet. Certainly it's in the federal sector, but after some investigation, I'd be willing to take a shot at one of the L&E firms. I know some associates at firms like that, and it's possible I could make the switch. I know of another JAG who did it, so I wouldn't be the first.

A little more contracting experience would always be helpful, but I haven't done much of that besides when I was deployed, and I wouldn't consider myself an expert from those few months.

Moving on to greater speculation: We also build skills to be helpful as in-house counsel. Certain industries would likely bode better for us, but we learn how to field a wide range of issues for a large organization and advise extremely demanding clients. It'd probably be best to get experience in an area a business needs (contracts, medical, cyber, etc.) to get in the door and then expand from there. I had a friend who works at a non-profit tell me about a sexual assault allegation between two of his employees, and he had no clue what to do. It was crazy to me that this organization was clueless and considering some extreme options. So perhaps there is a compliance/ethics/investigations angle we could work, especially in the #MeToo age.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by sartorial splendor » Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:58 pm

howell wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:43 pm
Finally checking in.

I assume we have a very similar audience as the other thread, but for anyone new, I'm an active duty AF JAG entering the sweet spot for leaving active duty. Still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.
How did you find AF JAG did in exposing you to and training you in the various areas of the law? Did you get substantial court time and what was the timeline after first starting as a JAG that you started seeing court time? What exit opportunities do you feel will give you the best path forward in your career? Thank you for checking in.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by howell » Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:43 pm

Finally checking in.

I assume we have a very similar audience as the other thread, but for anyone new, I'm an active duty AF JAG entering the sweet spot for leaving active duty. Still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by uscg26 » Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:47 pm

LSNlife wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:26 am
sartorial splendor wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:55 am
I have heard some comment that you should steer clear of the Air Force JAG GLP program. Does anyone have any insights
on why this may not be a good route to go if you are certain you want to go down the JAG path?
Also no personal experience but my understanding from reading through much of the prior military threads was that the obligations and time associates with GLP/OYCP were what caused most of the problems. The guaranteed commission and job out of law school is nice but I many participants just seemed to feel that going to ROTC with undergrads, the fact that many ROTC detachments didn’t know what GLP/OYCP was so it was difficult to get the paperwork through, and the inconvenience of summer programs and the lower pay got in the way of other summer opportunities - but if you know 100% JAG is what you want I don’t see how it could be a bad choice. You just have to be prepared for the extra work and that comes with it but that’s military life anyway.
This matches what I've heard. I think the main sticking point is being bossed around by 21yo battcomms (or whatever they call it in AFROTC), although summer field training seems like a drag as well.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by LSNlife » Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:26 am

sartorial splendor wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:55 am
I have heard some comment that you should steer clear of the Air Force JAG GLP program. Does anyone have any insights
on why this may not be a good route to go if you are certain you want to go down the JAG path?
Also no personal experience but my understanding from reading through much of the prior military threads was that the obligations and time associates with GLP/OYCP were what caused most of the problems. The guaranteed commission and job out of law school is nice but I many participants just seemed to feel that going to ROTC with undergrads, the fact that many ROTC detachments didn’t know what GLP/OYCP was so it was difficult to get the paperwork through, and the inconvenience of summer programs and the lower pay got in the way of other summer opportunities - but if you know 100% JAG is what you want I don’t see how it could be a bad choice. You just have to be prepared for the extra work and that comes with it but that’s military life anyway.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Hinez » Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:21 am

I plan on transitioning to the reserves during law school and am considering trying to go back on active duty as a JAG after I graduate. I've tried going the FLEP/ELP route the past few years and was never given a release from my career field to even apply so this is really my only route to getting picked up. Does anyone have any experience with this/have any advice? Thanks in advance.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Patrick Bateman » Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:34 pm

I'm assuming this is gathered from a few posts from the TLS thread.

I'm not GLP, so I can't weigh in personally. That said, I have never heard actual complaints from the GLP/OCYP folks that I've worked with over the years. I am sure the program is far from perfect and might cause some headaches along the way. My response to that is, welcome to the military. A GLP offer is a guaranteed commission - if JAG is your goal, anyone would be nuts to pass up an offer for GLP.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by sartorial splendor » Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:55 am

I have heard some comment that you should steer clear of the Air Force JAG GLP program. Does anyone have any insights
on why this may not be a good route to go if you are certain you want to go down the JAG path?

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Patrick Bateman » Fri Mar 23, 2018 2:55 pm

Sinoper wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:21 pm
Patrick Bateman wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:45 am
Sinoper wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:35 am
Landed an Air Force JAG Externship at my preferred base. Stoked!
Congrats! It is a great experience that can really help your odds for active duty selection down the road.
Thanks! I think I read in the original thread on TLS that you're now in the reserves. I was wondering if you would mind elaborating on what made you leave AF JAG.
Just to clarify on a small point, I didn't totally punch out - just left active duty. I've been on orders as a reservist ~20%-33% of each year since I left.

There is a lot that goes into the decision to either go reserve/guard or separate entirely. Some of it is personal - depending on where you are in your life, PCSing every 2-3 years may be a fun opportunity or a burden on your spouse/children. It also depends on professional goals - some folks want to stay in, be an SJA, and maybe make O-6. Others might hit a point where they want to pursue civilian opportunities instead. And those variables may combine in the middle of the Venn diagram.

As I addressed on my big post on this subject on TLS, a lot comes down to how assignments work as you get more senior. By the 6-8 year mark, you will (likely) get moved into a Deputy SJA or SJA position. It is at this point in your career that you start transitioning into more a manager than an actual practitioner. That has some real impact on your ability to market yourself to BigLaw/BigFed/etc if you intend to get off of active duty. So, if you end up wanting to give a civilian career a go, you more or less need to get out at this point - if your assignments have worked out, you are at peak marketability. At year 6, I had a very strong resume/record, and was in the DC area which made moving to a Federal agency much easier - it was the right time to get out, so I did. Had I taken a DSJA or a staff job for two years, it might have been harder to sell myself as all of my litigation skills would have more or less atrophied during that period.

This can all vary depending on your goals and experience. There is no one size fits all answer when it comes to this decision.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Sinoper » Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:21 pm

Patrick Bateman wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:45 am
Sinoper wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:35 am
Landed an Air Force JAG Externship at my preferred base. Stoked!
Congrats! It is a great experience that can really help your odds for active duty selection down the road.
Thanks! I think I read in the original thread on TLS that you're now in the reserves. I was wondering if you would mind elaborating on what made you leave AF JAG.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Patrick Bateman » Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:45 am

Sinoper wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:35 am
Landed an Air Force JAG Externship at my preferred base. Stoked!
Congrats! It is a great experience that can really help your odds for active duty selection down the road.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Sinoper » Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:35 am

Landed an Air Force JAG Externship at my preferred base. Stoked!

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Sinoper » Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:35 am

Houzy wrote:
Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:08 pm
Anybody else sitting for the GLP/OYCP board?
Yep, I plan on sitting for the OYCP.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Houzy » Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:08 pm

Anybody else sitting for the GLP/OYCP board?

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by UVA2B » Mon Feb 05, 2018 6:30 pm

I would say your best bet is just to include a link to the exact post on TLS along with a general description of its content (like a brief title or whatever. Try not to get too close to recreating the actual information provided in it just to be safe). You can never be wrong linking back to TLS, and it's pretty easy to link to a specific post.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by Sinoper » Mon Feb 05, 2018 5:44 pm

UVA2B wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 3:00 pm
I just wanted to chime in and say be careful taking people's posts from TLS without their express permission. Obviously if Patrick Bateman, uscg26, etc. want to have their answers posted here, that's great. But LSL doesn't want to deal with the problem of improperly posting content that they don't have a right to post here.
This is a good point. I had already asked PB's permission (and received it) at the time of posting, but I'll make sure I contact other users as more names pop up on his in the 300+ page TLS thread that I'm condensing into a Q/A. Do you have any recommendation for how I should approach users who no longer have an active presence on TLS but chimed in to answer a question or two?

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by uscg26 » Mon Feb 05, 2018 5:07 pm

Done. If anyone wants to go through and index all the various Q's and A's in there have at it and I'll add it in.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by UVA2B » Mon Feb 05, 2018 4:03 pm

I don't think the proprietors of LSL love linking back to TLS for any reason other than ridicule, but I don't really see a problem linking back to it and referring to the thread on TLS. There is a ton of valuable information there, and there's no harm in directing people to that valuable information.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by uscg26 » Mon Feb 05, 2018 4:01 pm

This is a good point. Would a link/reference to the TLS thread work? And a doc with the questions/topics, and the page/reply # of the answer?

Don't want to be sued. Also don't want to learn copyright law.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by UVA2B » Mon Feb 05, 2018 3:00 pm

I just wanted to chime in and say be careful taking people's posts from TLS without their express permission. Obviously if Patrick Bateman, uscg26, etc. want to have their answers posted here, that's great. But LSL doesn't want to deal with the problem of improperly posting content that they don't have a right to post here.

Re: Military Law (JAG)

by uscg26 » Mon Feb 05, 2018 2:52 pm

Go for it.

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