Investigations Attorney

About the organization

The Innocence Project was founded in 1992 by Barry C. Scheck and Peter J. Neufeld at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University to assist the wrongly convicted who could be proven innocent through DNA testing. The Innocence Project’s groundbreaking use of DNA technology to free innocent people has provided irrefutable proof that wrongful convictions are not isolated or rare events but instead arise from systemic defects. Now an independent nonprofit organization closely affiliated with Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University, the Innocence Project’s mission is to free the staggering numbers of innocent people who remain incarcerated and to bring substantive reform to the system responsible for their unjust imprisonment. To learn more, please visit

Job summary

The Innocence Project’s litigation department represents individual clients around the nation seeking to prove their innocence.  The Innocence Project’s direct representation has recently expanded beyond those cases where DNA testing is capable of proving innocence to include a small docket of non-DNA innocence cases, primarily where faulty forensics contributed to the wrongful conviction.

The Innocence Project is seeking an attorney to come aboard as a 2-year Investigations Attorney to work with the litigation department to help define and establish the IP’s new non-DNA casework.  The Investigations Attorney will work with the Director of Post-Conviction Litigation to help create systems for identifying potential cases, and will mainly investigate and evaluate cases to determine whether the IP can take on representation.

The Investigations Attorney reports to and works closely with the Director of Post-Conviction Litigation as well as the department’s staff attorneys.  This position requires 40 hours per week to be performed in-office, and requires travel.  This position has been budgeted for two years.

Essential job functions

Case selection

  • Analyze case materials (transcripts, police reports, expert reports)
  • Conduct additional investigation to help determine whether the Innocence Project should accept a potential client’s case (including, speaking with clients, co-defendants, prior counsel, a wide range of forensic and other experts, alibi witnesses, investigating alternative perpetrators)
  • Crafting theories of innocence and identifying potential legal avenues for relief

Qualifications & Experience 

  • D. and admission to one or more state bars
  • 2-4 years of criminal law or related experience preferred (appellate, capital post-conviction, trial practice)
  • Knowledge of other forensic disciplines beneficial

Key competencies

  • Client-centered approach to legal representation
  • The ability to work independently in a fast-paced environment
  • Great interpersonal and verbal communication skills
  • Excellent analytic and writing skills, and ability to construct cogent arguments
  • Honed organizational skills and the ability to prioritize cases
  • Demonstrated commitment to criminal defense, and criminal justice reform.


The salary for this position is competitive and the Innocence Project offers an excellent benefits package, including health, dental and vision insurance, Flexible Spending Account, 401k plan with company-match, and paid Transitcheks.

Workforce Diversity and Equal Opportunity

The Innocence Project considers the diversity of its workforce to be vital to our organization’s success in meeting its mission.  We strongly encourage applicants from all cultures, races, educational backgrounds, life experiences, socio-economic classes, sexual orientations, age, gender, and physical abilities to apply.

As an Equal Opportunity Employer, it is our policy not to discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, familial status, marital status, predisposing genetic characteristics, actual or perceived domestic violence victim status, unemployment status, caregiver status, or any other category protected by law.

Application Instructions

To apply, please visit Paycom. Information submitted through this secure site is kept confidential. Due to the large volume of applications, we are unable to give applicant updates by phone.

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