Eligible Employment

LIPP is available for Harvard Law School JD Program graduates who work in any full-time job for a government, nonprofit [501(c)(3)] or academic organization (nonprofit only) in the USA, or in an overseas equivalent. To be eligible the position must be compensated at a fair rate; for domestic employment we use federal minimum wage as a minimal standard and for international placements we expect the compensation to meet similar local standards. Coverage is also available for individuals during periods of parental leave from a LIPP eligible position and participants working part-time in order to care for a child. Please refer to the Parental Leave section of this website for more information.

Jobs in the private sector can also qualify for LIPP, but must be full-time and law related. "Law-related" is defined as follows:

  • The distinctive intellectual skills acquired in a legal education are generally recognized as useful in the job; and
  • Of those who hold this position, it is not unusual for them to be members of the legal profession.

A legal education is a strong foundation for many different career paths. However, to be eligible for LIPP any position in the for-profit sector must rely primarily on the skills acquired in the pursuit of a JD; a position or enterprise which may require a graduate level degree (such as an MBA or PhD) but not specifically a JD has typically not met the law-relatedness requirement. We strongly encourage students and graduates who are unsure as to whether their planned employment will meet these criteria to consult with the LIPP staff and submit a formal job description. If we have any questions regarding your eligibility we will ask you to submit a statement outlining how your position meets both of the law-relatedness criteria. Graduates should not rely on LIPP support without having received prior approval. LIPP coverage is not available for periods of unemployment, job transition or volunteer employment.

  • Judicial Clerkships

    Graduates who take clerkships and intend to take a LIPP-qualifying position after the clerkship is completed are eligible for LIPP assistance under certain provisions. Beginning with students admitted during the 2009-10 admissions season (which begins in the fall of 2009), these clerkship provisions also apply to graduates in a "deferred associate" program offered by a law firm.
  • PhD Participation

    LIPP offers up to seven years of participation for graduates who are actively pursuing a PhD, subject to the certain terms.

  • Self-Employment

    Self-employment may be eligible for LIPP assistance; graduates should contact the LIPP Staff to determine their eligibility. 

  • Public Service Venture Fund Recipients

    Graduates who are recipients of support from the Public Service Venture Fund are eligible to participate in LIPP.

  • LIPP Participants at Work

    LIPP participants work in a wide range of organizations and positions. Check out this section to see where!

© 2014 The President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved.