The Legal Aid Society’s Investigator Internship Program, within our Criminal Defense Practice, provides undergraduates and graduate students who are interested in law and social justice with an exciting, hands-on, in-the-field experience.

Working in teams of two, interns actually investigate real-life cases while assisting investigators and attorneys who are preparing for hearings and trials. Interns are trained to locate witnesses, conduct interviews, obtain written statements, perform background checks, canvass for video surveillance, photograph crime scenes, and conduct social media searches.

Candidates are carefully selected and interviewed. Candidates must have a sincere interest in public service and in the representation of low-income New Yorkers. The internship is a volunteer and unpaid position. Internship begins with a thorough training and orientation process that we offer during fall, spring and summer sessions. After training, interns will be assigned to one of our Trial Offices within the five boroughs of New York City for the duration of the internship. At the end of the program, Investigator Interns receive a Certificate of Accomplishment during the Certificate Ceremony and Luncheon Reception.

Fall and Spring Sessions: Part-time positions only. Interns are expected to volunteer two days a week during Monday through Friday from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm.

Summer Sessions: Full time positions only. Interns are expected to volunteer 5 days a week from Monday through Friday from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm.

Training is the key ingredient to the success of this program. Attending all of the training sessions is a mandatory requirement for admission into the internship program. Interns will experience a combination of lectures, workshops, fieldwork and hands-on computer training. The training will then be supplemented with continuing on-the-job shadowing of experienced investigators in the office and out in the field. Our goal is to ensure that each intern gains academic knowledge and a diverse, comprehensive field experience.

Training Curriculum Includes: The Path of a Criminal Case, Constitutional Law, Ethics, Theories of Defense, Criminal Defense Investigations, Interviewing Techniques, Digital Forensics 101, Social Media Intelligence Gathering, Memorializing Interviews, Case Management, Arraignments Fieldtrip, Shadowing Investigators in the Field, and much more.


Important Dates:

Fall Session: September 20, 2019 – December 13, 2019

Spring Session: January 17, 2020 – May 1, 2020

Summer Session: May 29, 2020 – August 14, 2020

Training Schedule:

Fall 2019

  • Day 1: Friday, September 20, 9:30 – 4:45

  • Day 2: September 24 or September 26, 9:30 – 4:30 (Choose a day – curriculum will be repeated)

  • Day 3: Friday, September 27, 9:30 – 4:45

  • Day 4: Week of 9/30 - Shadowing Senior Investigators in the Field (Specific date to be determined at trial office)

  • Day 5: Friday, October 4, 9:30 – 4:45

  • Day 6: Week of 10/7 - Law Manager Database Training (Specific dates to be determined)

  • Day 7: October 11, 9:30 – 4:45

  • Day 8: Report to Internship Trial Office starting the week of October 14, 2019.

Interested Candidates:

  • Intern Investigators Applicants for the Criminal Defense Practice must apply online at the LAS Recruitment Portal.

  • To apply, please compile a cover letter and résumé in one single PDF

  • We welcome applicants from a variety of educational institutions.

  • We are happy to cooperate with students and their schools to secure class credits.

  • Prospective candidates will be contacted for an interview.

  • Due to the high volume of applications and the competitive application process, we will not be able to interview all of the applicants.