For a third time, Тhe Federal Judicial Center (FJC) and the Bulgarian Institute for Legal Initiatives under the American Judges for Bulgaria Network Initiative supported by the America for Bulgaria Foundation, offer a 1-month judicial fellowship in the FJC, Washington DC.

The FJC established its Visiting Foreign Judicial Fellows Program in 1992. The Program provides an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of U.S. judicial practice and to conduct relevant research in the area of judicial reform and rule of law. The successful applicant will be provided with the opportunity to research at the FJC database on a preliminary selected topic by him/her. The Center provides fellows with an office, computer access, assistance with their research and arranges meetings with U.S. judges, court administrators, Center staff, law professors, and others in the D.C. community with relevant expertise. Recent fellows have studied distance education, case management, sanctions in civil proceedings, judicial independence, judicial performance evaluation, and how U.S. law reconciles privacy interests and criminal investigations. As of March 2016, the Center has hosted 103 judicial fellows from 43 different countries, including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brazil, Egypt, Hungary, Japan, Kosovo, South Korea, Togo, and Turkey. PhD candidates are encouraged to apply.


Due to the emergency situation the deadline to submit applications for the fellowship is extended until April 30, 2020.
The fellowship starting date will be announced additionally. 
All applicants who have submitted their applications will be considered eligible for interview.


The Program provides a scholarship of 10 000 BGN for the applicant to cover the expenses, including travel, accommodation, insurance. It is the applicant’s responsibility to organize his/her travel and stay within the U.S. (apply for а U.S. visa, purchase airplane tickets, book a hotel/airbnb, etc.).


1-month fellowship in June 2020. There is no fixed date when the visiting fellowship begins, but the end date shall not be later then June 30 2020 timeslot. [Please, see updated information.]

! Update: The fellowship starting date will be announced additionally.

Deadline to apply:

March 31, 2020. [Please, see updated information.]

! Update: The deadline to submit applications for the fellowship is extended until April 30, 2020.


  • Applicants shall be Bulgarian citizens in good mental and physical health.
  • Applicants shall be acting judges in the state of the Republic of Bulgaria (junior judges are eligible too).  
  • Applicants must have not participated in other professional visiting programs within the U.S.
  • Applicants must have basic knowledge of the American legal and court systems.
  • Excellent command of English language is required. Evidence of English language proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS) is not necessary. Language abilities will be assessed through the written assignments and interview.
  • Applicants must have valid international passport (at least six months from the date of the start of the fellowship).

All applications will be considered with no regard to the applicant’s race, color, religion or sex.

Application procedure:

Applicants are asked to fill up and send the application form until March 31, 2020 to and In addition to the application candidates must send:

  • A resume or curriculum vitae that includes: Career and Employment History; Educational Background Professional Activities;
  • Cover letter describing education, familiarity with U.S. Legal System and court experience;
  • A summary outline for the proposed research (at least one page long) - subject, goal and desired results of the research. Include as much detail as possible about your areas of interest and, if applicable, their relevance to reform initiatives in your country.  

After completing the fellowship applicants will have the opportunity to present back home the deliverables of the research and share about their experience within the FJC. Summary of the research will be translated in Bulgarian. Candidates are notified of the status of their applications via e-mail.

Short-listed candidates will undergo a Skype interview with representatives of the Federal Judicial Center

More information about the Program can be found at the FJC official website.


When filling the application form in section Funding Source write “AJBN/BILI”. After the successful applicant is chosen by the FJC, BILI will provide the information about source of funding and the required letter from the source. Therefore, make sure to check all boxes in the Application Checklist  section of the form.

For questions regarding the program you can reach BILI at

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