U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of the General Counsel

Please note that while Interns at HHS use PILI’s online application system and are eligible to attend all PILI programming throughout the summer, HHS Interns are not eligible to receive PILI funding. 

Spend your summer working for the federal agency that touches lives of everyone throughout America! The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the principal agency for protecting health in the United States. Join HHS to give back to your community, state, and country and help to make our country healthier and safer.

The Office of the General Counsel (OGC) is the legal team for HHS, providing quality representation and legal advice on a wide range of highly visible national issues. OGC supports the development and implementation of HHS’s programs by providing the highest quality legal services to the Secretary of HHS and the organization’s various agencies and divisions. OGC is comprised of three principal subcomponents: the Immediate Office, Headquarters Divisions, and Regional Offices. This internship posting is for the Chicago Regional Office in Region V, which covers Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin, and serves as the primary legal advisor to the Indian Health Service Bemidji Area.

The attorneys in this office provide advice and counsel to the Secretary of HHS and any agency within HHS, but most work involves the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Administration for Children and Families, the Indian Health Service, and the Office for Civil Rights. We provide litigation services, programmatic advice, and training on a wide range of legal issues involving Medicare, Medicaid, employment and personnel, Federal Tort Claims Act, the Indian Self-Determination Education and Assistance Act, the Indian Health Care Improvement Act, civil rights, HIPAA, Head Start, and requests under the Freedom of Information Act. We represent the agency in administrative and court litigation against hospitals, nursing homes, health plans, clinical laboratories, and other health care providers to enforce compliance with federal requirements; help prevent fraud and abuse and enforce regulatory requirements to ensure the health and safety of program beneficiaries; aid in the recovery of misspent Medicare, Medicaid, and federal grant funds; counsel health care providers and administrators at Indian Health Service-operated hospitals and health care facilities on a range of issues related to patient care and hospital operations; advise the Office for Civil Rights in the investigation and resolution of unauthorized uses and/or disclosures of personal health information by health care entities; and advise the agency in personnel matters and represent the agency in employment hearings before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Merit Systems Protection Board, and the National Labor Relations Board. Over the past few years, we have also provided advice and counsel on COVID-19 related matters.

OGC Region V has up to three summer internship positions available in the Chicago Regional Office, which includes approximately thirty (30) attorneys and five support staff. Interns will work on a variety of HHS programs. For example, assignments might include drafting a brief or preparing exhibits in administrative litigation; conducting research related to jurisdiction, bankruptcy, or the Federal Tort Claims Act; or writing a memo on Medicare recovery. Interns may also have an opportunity to work on advice matters for any of our clients, and on government grant and contract issues involving agencies such as the Administration for Children and Families and the Indian Health Service. Interns will work closely with the intern coordinator and with attorneys throughout the office.  In addition, interns will have the opportunity to attend local and national trainings and to meet with regional attorneys to learn about HHS specifically and about federal government and public interest work more generally. Interns may also have an opportunity to participate in case strategy sessions and meetings with program clients and observe oral arguments or administrative hearings.

The Internships will last ten weeks; start and end dates are negotiable. We accept applications from 2L and 1L students. Interns will have the opportunity to telework regularly and/or to work in our office in downtown Chicago. OGC Region V is unable to provide funding but will try to provide whatever documentation is necessary to work with your school or funding entity to assist in any way.

Please submit your resume and a cover letter with your expression of interest in the agency. We also request a legal writing sample of approximately ten pages, and your law school transcript (if available). Save these with your cover letter as one pdf file and submit the pdf through PILI’s online application system.

Please note that while Interns at HHS use PILI’s online application system and are eligible to attend all PILI programming throughout the summer, HHS Interns are not eligible to receive PILI funding.