The Role Of U.S. Attorneys

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Who Appoints U.S. Attorneys?
The U.S. Attorney is appointed by and serves at the discretion of the President of the United States for a term of four years, with appointments subject to confirmation by the Senate.


How Many U.S. Attorneys Are There?
There are 93 U.S. Attorneys stationed throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands. One U.S. Attorney is assigned to each of the judicial districts, with the exception of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands where a single U.S. Attorney serves in both districts.

Each U.S. Attorney is the chief federal law enforcement officer within his or her particular jurisdiction. U.S. Attorneys and their offices are part of the Department of Justice, and thus of the executive branch of the government. U.S. Attorneys are supported by the Justice Department's Executive Office for United States Attorneys.


What Role Do U.S. Attorney's Serve?
The U.S Attorney is both the primary representative and the administrative head of the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the district. The U.S. Attorney's Office (USAO) is the chief prosecutor for the United States in criminal law cases, and represents the United States in civil law cases as either the defendant or plaintiff, as appropriate (see generally 28 U.S.C. § 547).
The U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia has the additional responsibility of representing the District of Columbia in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, the equivalent of a municipal court for the national capital.

To Learn More About U.S. Attorneys:

• Click here for a list of current U.S. Attorneys offices.

• You can read the U.S. Attorney's Mission Statement here.

• Click here to read the U.S. Attorneys' Manual.

  • Melissa McNamara

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