Pro Bono Legal Specialist Program

Since 1990 more than 5,000 volunteers—judges, attorneys, law professors and legal specialists—have contributed more than $200 million in pro bono assistance to promoting the rule of law throughout the world.

Requirements

For volunteer positions abroad, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative only considers professionals with a minimum of five years of relevant experience, a high level of energy and initiative, strong interpersonal skills, and relevant substantive legal expertise. International experience and foreign language skills are preferred, but not always required.

How to Apply

E-mail resumes to jobs@americanbar.org.

Support Package

All volunteer participants serving over 90 days receive a generous support package that covers travel, housing and general living and business expenses. In-country foreign language training and medical evacuation are also included. Participants serving for shorter periods will receive a similar, but less comprehensive, package.

Legal Specialists reside in host countries for varying periods of time, and work closely with legal professionals, local governments, non-governmental organizations, law schools, and other institutions to identify legal reform priorities and implement technical assistance projects. 

Overseas Participants serving 90 days or longer receive:

Living and Housing Allowance

  • A monthly allowance to cover ordinary in-country living expenses such as meals and incidentals, falling within the U.S. State Department per diem rates;
  • Rent payments for furnished apartments;

Transportation

  • Transportation to and from overseas assignments and approved in-country business travel to regional workshops and conferences;
  • Reimbursement for excess airline baggage depending on length of term abroad;

Medical Evacuation Coverage

  • Medical evacuation to cover the cost and arrangements of transport to the nearest medical facility adequate to address the medical emergency;

Business Expenses

  •  All allowable business expenses;

Foreign Language Study

  • Reimbursement of up to $500 for language training and/or materials purchased prior to departure;
  • In-country study of the host country language with local language tutors;

Student Loans

  • Public service deferments are usually available to those serving a minimum of one year;

ABA Membership

  • Dues waivers are available to participants serving a minimum of one year;

Overseas Participants serving less than 90 days receive:

Lodging, meals and incidentals

  • Reimbursement for meals and incidentals falling within the U.S. State Department per diem rates;
  • Reimbursement for lodging;

Transportation

  • Transportation to and from overseas assignments and approved in-country business travel to regional workshops and conferences;
  • Reimbursement for excess airline baggage depending on length of term abroad (determined on a case-by-case basis);

Medical Evacuation Coverage

  • Medical evacuation to cover the cost and arrangements of transport to the nearest medical facility adequate to address the medical emergency;

Business Expenses

  •  All allowable business expenses;