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The County of Santa Clara’s Office of the County Counsel accepts applications from law students for spring, summer and fall internships.  Interns typically are selected to work in one or two of the practice areas (described below), based on their interests and the Office’s needs.
General Government Section attorneys provide legal advice to, and draft legal documents, on behalf of the Board of Supervisors and the County Executive as well as for core County departments and agencies, such as the Sheriff’s Office, Department of Correction, Probation Department, Department of Planning and Development, Department of Environmental Health, Registrar of Voters, Procurement Department, Parks and Recreation Department, and Roads and Airports Department.  Interns research a broad array of legal questions ranging from constitutional issues to public works and purchasing.  Interns may also help analyze and draft legislation.
Litigation Section attorneys represent the County whenever suits or claims are filed against the County, its officials or its employees.  Civil rights proceedings, challenges to local laws, tort suits and employment litigation constitute the bulk of our cases.  Interns conduct legal research, assist with ongoing litigation, and observe court hearings, depositions and other proceedings as appropriate.
Social Justice and Impact Litigation Section attorneys conduct affirmative litigation, draft new legislation, and develop policies and programs to advance the County’s goal of securing social justice for all its residents.  The Section also works to advance local, state, and national public policy reform through progressive local government action.  Interns help to develop litigation and policy initiatives, conduct legal research in support of the Section’s cases, and observe court hearings, depositions and other proceedings as appropriate. 
Health and Hospital Section attorneys work on legal issues arising out of the operation of the County’s Valley Medical Center and other departments in the County health care system.  Subject areas include medical records and confidentiality, consent to treatment, public health, mental health, health care for minors, managed care, emergency medical services, and clinical research.  Interns conduct legal research on health- and hospital-related issues.
Labor and Employment Section attorneys provide legal services on personnel and labor relations matters for the County.  Interns assist attorneys in researching a wide range of labor matters including responding to claims of discrimination and sexual harassment.  In addition, interns will have the opportunity to observe and assist with personnel board hearings, labor arbitrations and other employment-related matters.
The Child Dependency Unit handles all court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect in a child’s home, provides advice regarding children’s educational rights, and reviews the policies and procedures that guide County social workers.  Interns help prepare for and attend court proceedings, conduct legal research, and assist in policy analysis.
Internships are open to first-, second-, and third-year law school students.  Internships are unpaid, but we will work with interested applicants to arrange for public interest stipends, academic credit, or pro bono credit from their law schools if applicable.  Unpaid post-bar internships are also available. 
To apply for an internship in our office, please send an email to with (1) your resume, (2) a cover letter describing your interest in working with local government, any relevant experience, and the sections of our office that you are interested in interning with, (3) the names and telephone numbers of two references, and (4) an unofficial law school transcript.  Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.
The County of Santa Clara is an Equal Opportunity Employer
Last updated: 2/22/2018 1:35 PM