Education Programs
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Staff Judge Advocate
Washington, D.C.

The Marine Corps has two law education programs, the Funded Law Education Program and the Excess Leave Program. 

Funded Law Education Program (FLEP)

Pursuant to 10 U.S.C. 2004, as implemented by DoD Directive 1322.12 and SECNAVINST 1520.7_, commissioned officers of the Marine Corps, while continuing to draw full pay and allowances, may be ordered as students at Government expense to American Bar Association (ABA) accredited law schools located in the United States for education leading to the degree of Juris Doctor or Bachelor of Law. 

Excess Leave Program (Law) (ELP(L))

Pursuant to 37 U.S.C. 502(b), commissioned officers of the Marine Corps may be permitted leave without pay and allowances in excess of that authorized by 10 U.S.C. 701(b), to attend ABA accredited law schools located in the United States at no expense to the Government for education leading to the degree of Juris Doctor.

A selection board will convene annually to consider applications from commissioned officers and will recommend and will recommend officers for participation in FLEP or ELP(L). Satisfactory completion of either FLEP or ELP(L), coupled with successful completion of the Basic Lawyer Course and the Basic Operational Law Training Course, leads to designation as a Marine Corps judge advocate (MOS 4402).


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“ATTENTION: Official photos are no longer required for the FLEP/ELP in accordance with official Marine Corps Policy.  Additionally, for individuals seeking a waiver of the GRE in place of the LSAT in accordance with paragraph 3.c.1 of Enclosure 2, SECNAVINST 15207.2G should email Major Broadmeadow at”

1. Form and Content.

Applications shall be submitted to CMC (MMOA-3) on the Administrative Action Form (NAVMC 10274) via the chain of command. See the sample on this page. All applications must be received at Headquarters Marine Corps prior to the deadline established in the MARADMIN announcing the convening of the board. Applications must contain the following:    

    a. Names of all colleges and universities attended and dates the baccalaureate and any other degrees were received. State class standing, if available.    
    b. Active duty base date (ADBD), overseas control date (OSCD) and rotation tour date (RTD) if overseas.    
    c. Statement that the applicant either holds, or has been offered and indicated an intent to accept, a regular commission.    
    d. Statement of legal education completed and any legal training or experience gained in civilian and military life.    
    e. The names of law schools accredited by the American Bar Association to which the applicant has applied to and/or been accepted, in priority order.
    f. The resident and non-resident tuition rate for each law school, if applicable.  Officers must indicate whether they are eligible for the resident tuition rate, and whether they are eligible for any scholarships.  If eligible for a scholarship, include the amount and duration of the scholarship.   
    g. The date that the LSAT was taken.    
    h. Dates that anticipated law study will begin (i.e., the date law school classes begin) and be completed, including the anticipated date of the bar examination.    
    i. A statement of where the applicant intends to reside while attending law school and a statement of whether the applicant prefers to be assigned to a Marine Corps activity nearest the law school or nearest the applicant's anticipated residence while attending law school. CMC (MMOA-1) will determine the Marine Corps activity to which selectees will be assigned.    
    j. DSN/commercial telephone number during working hours.       
    k. As enclosures:      
       (1) Copies of all college level and graduate level transcripts. An explanation of the grading system used at the institutions attended shall be included.        
       (2) Letters of acceptance or conditional acceptance from the law schools listed in the AA Form.       
       (3) A certified true copy of the LSAT score report form.       
       (4) A brief statement (500 words of less) indicating steps the applicant has taken to learn about a career as a Marine Corps judge advocate, and a statement of the reason for seeking such a career. This statement should refer to an interview with a senior judge advocate (see paragraph 2b).       
       (5) A signed and witnessed FLEP and/or ELP agreement (samples on this page) .       
    l. Except as required by paragraph 2b of this figure, letters of recommendation are not desired and, if received, will not be placed before the selection board.  

2. Endorsement.    

    a. The applicant's commanding officer shall include in the forwarding endorsement a specific recommendation concerning the applicant's future value to the Marine Corps as a judge advocate.    
    b. Where practicable, all applicants shall be interviewed by the staff judge advocate to the general officer command of which the applicant is a member. The staff judge advocate's comments and recommendations concerning the applicant shall be made an enclosure to the forwarding endorsement.  Where not practicable, a senior judge advocate of any Armed Force who is available in the area shall be requested to conduct the interview and prepare this statement. The staff judge advocate should address the probability of the applicant's success in the study of law, the applicant's motivation to become a Marine Corps judge advocate, and the applicant's full understanding of all aspects of the program applied for.  

3. Combined Application.

Officers who intend to apply for acceptance into both the FLEP and the ELP(L) should submit one combined application which satisfies the requirement of both programs.