Major Patino addresses defendant in a courtroom scene. Major Patino addresses defendant in a courtroom scene.

Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAG)

Leverage your law degree to serve the nation and advocate for justice as a military lawyer.

An Officer in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAG) stands in uniform in a courtroom with other members of the Army in uniform in the background An Officer in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAG) stands in uniform in a courtroom with other members of the Army in uniform in the background

Join a Firm Unlike Any Other

The U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps, or JAG Corps, is a government law organization and one of the country’s largest law firms.

  • It defends the Army and its Soldiers in all military legal matters
  • It provides important legal advice to senior Army officials
  • Its licensed attorneys and judges, called Judge Advocates, fight for justice at home and around the globe

The Army Lawyer Advantage

As an Army lawyer in the JAG Corps, you’ll gain experience that you wouldn’t get at a traditional law firm.

Make an Immediate Impact

You’ll gain litigation experience early on and take on meaningful casework that would take years to get in a civilian firm. Meanwhile, you’ll hold a respected leadership position in the Army as a commissioned Officer.

Take on Diverse Casework

By receiving the unique opportunity to rotate through 10 legal disciplines every few years, you’ll always stay challenged while gaining a deeper knowledge of the law.

Continue Your Education

With access to more than 60 continuing legal education courses every year, as well as continued training and leadership development throughout your career, there are endless opportunities to grow as a legal professional in your career.

Close-up of a JAG Officer uniform. Close-up of a JAG Officer uniform.

Areas of Legal Practice

From offering legal assistance to Soldiers, to representing the United States government in civil cases, the work you do in the Army JAG Corps can change lives—and even history.

Diverse group of ROTC Cadets wearing OCP sitting inside a classroom. Diverse group of ROTC Cadets wearing OCP sitting inside a classroom.

We’ll Help Pay For Your Education

The Army will cover the cost of law school for those who are qualified and looking to make an impact. Through the Funded Legal Education Program (FLEP) and other JAG initiatives, you can achieve your dream of becoming a lawyer without the financial burden.

  • Receive student loan repayment of up to $65,000
  • Graduate law school debt-free through the FLEP scholarship
  • Gain valuable experience through the paid Summer Law Internship Program

A female JAG Officer shows documents to a seated male colleague in a courtroom. A female JAG Officer shows documents to a seated male colleague in a courtroom.

Serve Your Country Part-Time

You can keep your job at a civilian law firm and serve part-time through the Army Reserve or Army National Guard.

  • Provide legal expertise in a wide range of areas based on current need
  • Mobilize and deploy to support Army legal operations in the U.S. and abroad
  • Enjoy flexibility and train periodically, typically just one weekend per month and two weeks during the summer
  • Get paid for your service and receive many federal benefits, including low-cost medical coverage and retirement benefits

Female Officer Dietitian giving a lecture on Dietetics to a diverse group of Soldiers wearing OCP in a classroom. Female Officer Dietitian giving a lecture on Dietetics to a diverse group of Soldiers wearing OCP in a classroom.

JAG Summer Law Internship Program

Step into the role of an Army attorney and work on real cases at JAG Corps offices worldwide through the Summer Law Internship Program, a competitive 60-day internship open to qualified second-year law students.

Dive Into Military Law

Work in nearly every practice area of the JAG Corps as a second-year law student. Assist in real criminal and civil cases by conducting legal research, writing briefs, participating in investigations, and interviewing witnesses.

Learn Around the World

Complete your legal internship at one of hundreds of offices across the United States or abroad in countries including Germany, South Korea, Italy, and Japan.

Receive Valuable Mentorship

Work under experienced Judge Advocates who will provide advice, insights, and feedback as you work from start to finish on real cases.

Three JAG Officers stand in uniform, outside
 Three JAG Officers stand in uniform, outside


JAG Requirements and Next Steps

Whether you’re studying to become a lawyer, want to or are already practicing law, you’ll need to meet these requirements to become a Judge Advocate:

  • Have a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree or plan to
  • Belong to the bar of your state’s highest court or plan to
  • Be between 21 and 42 years old
  • Be eligible for a secret security clearance

Common Questions About JAG

What training do Army lawyers need to complete?

As a Judge Advocate, you won't participate in the Basic Training that enlisted Soldiers complete. Instead, you'll attend the Direct Commission Course (DCC), a six-week intensive physical, weapons, and leadership course that will prepare you to serve as an Officer.

After completing the DCC, you’ll attend the ten-and-a-half -week Judge Advocate Basic Training Course. Through a combination of classroom instruction and practical exercises, you’ll be immersed in military law and learn every aspect of the JAG Corps’ organization, function, and mission.

Do military lawyers have to pass a fitness test?

Yes, you must meet Army height and weight standards, as well as pass the Army fitness test.

What happens after JAG Officer training?

After completing the Judge Advocate Basic Training Course, JAG Officers report to one of the Army’s worldwide law offices and immediately begin practicing law.

How do I get into the JAG Corps if I’ve already attended law school and am not in the Army?

There are two things you’ll need to do as part of the JAG Corps application process: submit an application and interview with a Judge Advocate who is designated as a Field Screening Officer (FSO).

Your JAG application should contain:

  • Undergraduate, graduate, and law school transcripts
  • Resume
  • Personal statement describing why you’d like to join
  • Certificate of good standing
  • Prior military service documents, if applicable
  • Optional letters of recommendation
  • Optional writing sample

The selection board will also review your undergraduate and graduate school transcripts, LSAT score, ORB, OERs, personal statement, and years of law experience. Your moral standing and ability to display leadership will also be considered.

Will the JAG Corps pay for my law school?

Yes, through the Funded Legal Education Program (FLEP), the Army covers the cost of law school for up to 25 active-duty Officers and non-commissioned Officers every year. Participants must attend a qualifying school (normally an in-state school or school that offers military members in-state tuition) and serve in the JAG Corps upon graduation. Also, if you have already completed law school and are currently serving as an active-duty JAG Officer, you may qualify for up to $65,000 in Student Loan Repayment.