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Cover Letter Example
[Number, Street Name]
[City, ZIP, State]
[Date, Year] (October 1, 2020)
[Corporate Hiring Manager]
[Law Firm X]
[Number, Street Name]
[City, ZIP, State]
Dear Mr. Wright,
With reference to your job posting on [Website URL] under section [‘Vacancies’], I am excited to apply for the position as attorney at the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) in New York City. I had the pleasure to speak with [Name Surname], a staff attorney in your office, who spoke at a Legal Practice Settings panel, and he suggested that I contact you about the job opening. With a master’s law degree and demonstrable experience in public interest litigation, I am confident to be a great addition to your office.
To shortly introduce myself, my name is [Jacky Rogers] and I learned about OCR through New York Law School’s public service database and law school students who have interned at OCR’s offices. Working at the OCR would allow me to continue my commitment to protect the rights of individuals and entities from unlawful discrimination on the basis of national origin, race, color, disability or sex in health and human services. Therefore, I am thrilled about the prospect to contribute to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and ensure compliance with our nation’s civil rights.
In 2019, I graduated magna cum laude (3.9 GPA) with a Master of Laws (LLM) degree in human rights at the [University] of [State]. During my last semester, I specialised in civil rights issues by volunteering with the New York chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union. I have assisted attorneys on specific civil liberty issues, and managed to develop a factual and legal premise to support dismissal of frivolous trespassing lawsuits, saving client potential damages exceeding $45,000. Furthermore, I was praised by the partners for my ability to prepare a settlement agreement to resolve a $60,000 contract case between a property owner and the state (see references).
Working at the OCR would allow me to further improve my experience advocating for specific client populations. I welcome the opportunity to discuss my candidacy and elaborate on my ambitions in public interest litigation. The attached resume includes detailed information on [subject]. If you have any questions concerning my application, you can reach me at [Phone number]. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Writing Tips For Lawyers
- Use a suitable font and font size: ‘Calibri’, ‘Verdana’, ‘Arial’ or ‘Times New Roman’ with a 10 to 12-point font size will do. Avoid using novelty style fonts like: ‘Script style’, ‘Comic-Sans’ or handwriting fonts. Also, keep a word count of around 300 to 400 words, and divide your letter into four paragraphs.
- Personalize your cover letter. There are various ways of doing so, for example: Know to whom you need to address your letter to and include the name in the salutation. Write: ‘Dear Mr. Rogers,’ or ‘Dear Ms. Rogers,’. Avoid generic openings like: ‘Dear Sir or Madam,’ ‘Dear Hiring Manager,’ and especially not: ‘To whom it may concern,’.
- Do extensive research. For example, check out the staff page, read articles or connect with people working at the law firm via LinkedIn. If you have a networking connection, you should definitely mention it early on in your cover letter. A personal connection is a great way to get your foot in the door.
- Emphasize on key skills and proficiencies for lawyers, these include for example: research, communication and detail oriented skills, or your ability to logically and reasonably draw conclusions based on limited information you receive. Key here is to make sure you link these to the job requirements.
- Go beyond your resume. Don’t simply list your personal traits and skills like you do in your resume, but provide context: “What approach did you take to tackle one of the responsibilities you’ve mentioned in your resume?”, “What were the results in numbers or rewards you’ve received?” In other terms, make it quantifiable if possible.