Legal Officers are commissioned members of the Legal Branch of the Canadian Forces, which is commanded by the Judge Advocate General (JAG). The JAG acts as legal adviser to the Governor General, the Minister of National Defence, the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces in matters relating to military law, and has the superintendence of the administration of military justice in the Canadian Forces.
The Office of the JAG provides the military justice system with qualified personnel (military judges, prosecution and defence counsel). It also supplies Legal Officers to CF establishments across Canada and deployed missions overseas to deliver legal services in the fields of operational law, international law, training, military personnel law, and military justice.
As a Legal Officer, your primary duty will be to practise law in the military milieu, which may include any of the following tasks:
# Providing advice on international and domestic law to the commander of a deployed force
# Providing general legal advice and services to the commanding officer of a Canadian Forces Base
# Providing advice on operational legal issues at National Defence Headquarters
# Representing clients at Court Martial and appearing before the Court Martial Appeal Court
# Representing the interests of the Canadian Forces and the Department of National Defence as:
# - A member of a Canadian delegation negotiating international treaties
# - A member of the military liaison staff at an allied headquarters
# Delivering training on military law and military justice
You may also be posted to the Office of the Department of National Defence / Canadian Forces Legal Adviser, where you would work in fields such as legislative drafting, pensions, claims and administrative law. Later in your career, you could be appointed to the military bench, to serve in the independent Office of the Chief Military Judge.