United States Air Force Academy

Go to home page
Department of Law

EDUCATION & LEAVE PROGRAMS

ACADEMY EXCESS LEAVE PROGRAM

Reference: AFI 51-101. This program allows one Academy graduate (Legal Studies major or Mock Trial participant) one year to attend law school directly after commissioning, with a follow-on appointment and assignment as an Air Force Judge Advocate (JAG). Officers are in an excess leave status while in law school (no pay or benefits, except during internships, and law school funding is left to the participant) and incur a four-year active duty service commitment which commences after their Academy commitment. Participants continue to accrue time for promotion and retirement purposes and remain eligible for other active duty benefits, such as medical services, commissary and Base Exchange privileges. Recipients may accept private scholarships. Eligibility and application requirements are contained in AFI 51-101.

For current requirements/status, contact the Department of Law at (719) 333-3680.

FUNDED LEGAL EDUCATION PROGRAM

Reference: AFI 51-101. Active duty Air Force officers with between two and six years of active duty service (Academy time does not count toward this requirement) are eligible to apply for a fully-funded assignment to law school. Tuition is government-funded and participants are on an active duty assignment to law school. Participants incur a six-year active duty service commitment which commences after law school and after other service commitments have been fulfilled, and receive an appointment and assignment as an Air Force Judge Advocate following successful completion of the program. This program is highly competitive, and participants’ career managers must release them to be eligible (therefore rated officers, as well as other career fields, may be ineligible due to inability to procure this release). Eligibility and application requirements are contained in AFI 51-101.

EXCESS LEAVE PROGRAM

Reference: AFI 51-101. Active duty Air Force officers in the grade of O-3 or below, with between two and 10 years active duty service (Academy time does not count toward this requirement), are eligible to apply for an assignment to law school in an excess leave status (no pay and benefits except during internships, and law school funding is left to the participant). Participants incur a four-year active duty service commitment which commences after law school and after other service commitments have been fulfilled, and receive an appointment and assignment as an Air Force Judge Advocate following successful completion of the program. Eligibility and application requirements are contained in AFI 51-101.

OTHER

Reference: AFI 51-101. Active duty Air Force officers who have at least four years but no more than 10 years total active federal commissioned service may request an intraservice transfer to the Air Force JAG Corps provided they have graduated from an ABA-approved law school (usually accomplished via night school) and have been admitted to practice before any state’s highest court or a federal court. Applicants must have completed all active duty service commitments. Air Force members are also eligible to apply like civilian law school graduates via the Direct Appointment Program once off active duty. Eligibility and application requirements are contained in AFI 51-101