The Army law and legal department is the Judge Advocate General Corps. The Judge Advocate General Corps consists of legal assistants, judges and attorneys. As an Attorney in the Army JAG office you are a practicing attorney. You will be responsible for a wide range of responsibilities and duties in areas of criminal prosecution, international law, and military law. You will be responsible for legal assistance to military personnel both abroad and in the United States. As a JAG Attorney you might specialize in one of the following areas; Army medical law, teaching, International Law, Criminal Law, Contract Law, Legal Assistance, Administrative Military Law, Operational Law, and Civil Litigation.
Working as an Army JAG attorney you will be responsible for duties that can include supervising and training personnel in various legal functions, supplying services and legal advice to Army Reserve and Army Active duty personnel, executing service in various law fields, assigning and managing Army branch officers, and training and supervising personnel in legal functions. You will also be personal legal representative for soldiers at court trials and performing other defense related duties.
To qualify to be a JAG Attorney you have to have a law degree from an ABA school or approved law degree and be a member of the bar for the highest court in a particular state or in a federal court. Most Legal Firms have orientation for new employers and the Army is no different. New Judge advocates undergo a 12-day orientation course known as the Fort Lee phase of the Basic JAG Course. During this initial orientation course you will have some time for adjustment for finance, personnel and purchasing uniforms, and receiving instruction in military life. After the basic 12-day orientation you will attend a ten-week academic course at the JAG school in Virginia, dealing with the function, mission, organization and mission of the U.S. Army, and the U.S. Army JAG corps.
While at the academic course at the JAG school you will have a chance for an overview of the function, mission and practice of law in government contract, fiscal law, operational and international law. The last Four weeks will be the Direct Officer Commissioned course, and deals with basic soldier and officer skills. Officers who serve as JAG Attorneys may continue and eventually serve in the JAG office as a possible presiding judge or justice, and hear cases dealing with military personnel.