Judicial clerkship jobs are an excellent way for law school graduates to gain insightful and invaluable experience while working with a judge. A judicial clerk is the primary supportive person for a judge; he or she helps with many different responsibilities.
This is a highly competitive field, and is only open to people who have their juris doctorate (JD) degree. This means that you will have had to complete four years of undergraduate school for your BA and then three years of law school to earn your JD.
The benefits are great though. This is considered a very prestigious position and fantastic experience for someone who has just graduated from law school. Not only will you generate valuable experience, you will also have the opportunity to work with a very high level of the legal system: the judge. You may gain a very important mentor and guide before the ink on your degree is even dry.
The actual duties of a judicial clerk depend on the judge and the type of court. For example, a federal court will have different requirements than those of a district court. There are also opportunities for working in specialize courts, such as a federal bankruptcy court. In general, though, clerks will help conduct research, preparingopinions and proofreading the judge's written work. A clerk may also help the maintenance of a judge's dockets.
A judicial clerk has more opportunities to work directly with attorneys to help resolve disputes and conduct necessary conferences, while a clerk in an appellate court is more likely to be reviewing documents and researching laws that may apply to a specific case.
As in other branches in the legal system, salaries range wildly depending on the state you are working in as well as what type of judge you are working with. If you are working in the state level, expect a salary range from $30,000 - $50,000 and $50,000 - $70,000 on the federal level.
Judicial clerkships are relatively hard to come by, but they present an amazing opportunity and education for the right candidate.