About Us

The Center for Appellate Litigation (CAL) is a leading holistic legal services organization dedicated to providing high-quality appellate representation to indigent New Yorkers. We are committed to ensuring that every individual has access to fair and just legal representation in the appellate courts and in a full panoply of post-conviction litigation. Our team of dedicated attorneys, paralegals, and staff work tirelessly to advocate for our clients' rights and uphold the principles of justice.

Position Overview

CAL is seeking to hire Staff Attorney Fellows to join us in September 2024. The Staff Attorney Fellow position is a bargaining-unit position.

CAL is assigned to represent New Yorkers convicted of crimes in Manhattan and the Bronx in their criminal appeals and other post-conviction proceedings. We pride ourselves on adopting dynamic approaches to serve our clients and challenge the status quo. Outside of the courtroom, we work tirelessly to center and protect our clients’ well-being through the work of our Anti-Racism Working Group, Legislative Advocacy Committee, and array of Client Support Service projects. Our clients are among society’s most disenfranchised—people who have been convicted and imprisoned--and we work hard to live up to the trust our clients place in us. Our mission is to fight injustice through exceptional advocacy and enduring compassion for each client. We envision a post-conviction process grounded in our clients’ humanity.

CAL Staff Attorney Fellows have the distinct honor of standing with, serving, and fighting for our clients. New staff attorney fellows gain extensive exposure not only to appellate practice but to all aspects of post-conviction proceedings. Concretely, this entails building relationships of trust, support, and dependability with clients; writing briefs and arguing in the Appellate Division and Appellate Term; writing motions to vacate our clients’ convictions; and appearing in trial court for post-conviction proceedings. CAL’s comprehensive and practical training program, close supervision process, varied practice, and supportive environment provide an ideal experience for a new attorney.

The fellowship openings are for three-year positions. Fellows will be considered for staff attorney positions at the conclusion of their fellowship.

Applications must be submitted before November 10, 2023. Current 3Ls, current judicial clerks, and recent graduates are welcome to apply.


All applicants must have:

  • graduated from an accredited law school;
  • a demonstrated commitment to public criminal defense;
  • excellent analytical, writing, research, and oral advocacy skills;
  • a passion for creative, persuasive, and strategic writing;
  • strong organizational skills and a diligent work ethic;
  • empathy and respect for people who have been convicted of serious offenses;
  • strong interpersonal skills, especially in the face of crisis or disagreement;
  • experience serving and/or advocating for disenfranchised communities;
  • a willingness and ability to work within the dehumanizing environments of prisons, jails, and detention facilities.

Spanish fluency is preferred, but not required.


At CAL, we embrace and value our staff’s diversity, recognizing that our differences strengthen our community and advance our mission. We strongly encourage candidates of all identities, orientations, experiences, and communities to apply. CAL is proud to be an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without unlawful discrimination on the basis of age, arrest or conviction record, caregiver status, citizenship status, color, credit history, creed,

disability, gender identity or expression, genetic information, national origin, marital status, partnership status, pregnancy, race, religion, salary history, sexual and reproductive health decisions, sexual orientation, status as a covered veteran or active military service member, or status as a victim of domestic violence, stalking, and sex offenses in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws.


The position is based at CAL’s New York City office. Currently, CAL has a hybrid remote office policy and attorneys are required to be in the office three days per week. The in-office requirement is subject to change.


Starting salary will be at least $75,000 for a 2024 graduate before admission to the bar and at least $78,800 for a 2022 graduate with relevant experience. CAL offers comprehensive medical benefits, a retirement account, and generous vacation time, holidays, personal and sick days.


Applications should be submitted by November 10, 2023, through the Google form linked here. (Applicants without a Gmail account may email their materials to jobs@cfal.org. Please do not submit via both the form and the email address).

Applications must include a resume, cover letter, and writing sample in one PDF document, with the cover letter addressed to:

Jenay Nurse Guilford
Executive Director
Center for Appellate Litigation
120 Wall Street, 28th Floor
New York, NY 10005-4003

Because of the expected high number of applications, we ask that applicants not contact the office to inquire about the status of their application. Any necessary updates to an application should be sent to jobs@cfal.org with the subject line “2024 Application Updat