A state attorney office is a prestigious office to aim for, and the procedure to become an assistant state's attorney is not only based on extensive education programs and examinations but also training, demeanor, and personal background. The position is usually filled through a hiring process as opposed to the state attorney, who is an elected official. There is usually more than one assistant state's attorney, and most lawyers within the office hold the same title.
A bachelor's degree from a four year college is the necessary first step to become an assistant state's attorney and coursework should focus on pre-law studies, especially introductory forensics and criminal law. The student must take the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) in order to be accepted to law school, and most four year universities offer on-campus prep courses. During this time, the student should thoroughly research the duties, salary, and difficulty of the assistant state's attorney position, because it is an extremely demanding job and the salary can be comparatively less than other attorney salaries.
Once in law school and working towards a Juris Doctorate (J.D.) degree, he or she should begin seeking internships or learning experiences with local government offices. The coursework should include specific topics such as criminal justice, forensic science, and various procedure courses. This position often requires hands-on work with the local authorities and to become an assistant state's attorney, the student should be well-informed on police investigations, procedures, and evidence handling. After receiving a J.D., the student must pass the local bar exam in order to practice law, and the state attorney's office will review test scores in addition to the applicant's interview.
The interviewing process experience can be improved if he or she had previously volunteered or done an internship in the state's attorney's office. An application and interview process is usually followed by a detailed background check as well as a drug screening process, which varies depending on the state. The ability to work long hours and in multiple locations must be feasible in order to become an assistant state's attorney. Assistant state attorneys are often called upon by local authorities, judges, and/or the state's attorney outside of regular work hours.
Working for a government agency incorporates additional tasks to the daily workload of an attorney, including the request for arrest warrants and criminal searches. They work closely with judges and other government officials to enforce local law and prosecute criminal charges in court. In order to become an assistant state's attorney, the applicant must have a clean criminal background and be able to pass a drug screening test. An assistant state's attorney works on the side of the law, and his or her background must be in impeccable shape.