A state attorney general's office is typically a part of the executive branch of the state government. Prosecuting attorneys are the voice of the people in America's courtrooms, enforcing the law and representing the duly elected government at all levels. Few states follow the federal model, where the attorney general answers to the chief executive. After the Trump Administration tried to ban immigration on the basis of religion, a number of brave AGs stood up to the federal government to defend our constitutional rights. Additionally, the Attorney General Texas must represent the state in litigation and approve bond issues present in the public. The attorney general is also a political figure, working with the governor and the Legislature to reform state drug laws, its prison system and to combat the state’s heroin epidemic. 43 states have an elected attorney general. The Pennsylvania Attorney General represents the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and all state agencies. Because they are sworn to uphold the United States' constitution and laws as well as the state's, they often decline to defend the state in federal lawsuits.[6]. The attorney general is an executive office in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., that serves as the chief legal advisor and chief law enforcement officer for the state government and is empowered to prosecute violations of state law, represent the state in legal disputes … Select your state to connect to your state attorney general's website. A State's Attorney, along with a phalanx of Assistant State's Attorneys, prosecutes criminal and civil cases for the people. While attorneys are responsible for prosecuting offenses against the United States and prosecuting or defending in proceedings in which the United States requires representation, marshals issue orders and processes under the authority of the United States. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites. Most of the modern, elected Pennsylvania attorneys general have been former prosecutors — either district attorneys or … The Attorney General represents the Unites States in all matters that are legal and offers advice to heads of the executive departments and the President of the Unites States. Originating in the mid-13th century in the office of England's "King's Attorney," the office had become, by the American Revolution, one of advisor to the Crown and to government agencies. These complaints should be written to your state Attorney General, rather than the U.S. Attorney General. An official website of the United States government. The Attorney General is responsible for protecting Florida consumers from various types of fraud and enforcing the state’s antitrust laws. Type the name of your state and “consumer protection” into a search engine. A locked padlock The Attorney General Ken Paxton is the State of Texas’s chief legal officer. 2014 marked the first year that the District of Columbia and Northern Mariana Islands held an election for the office. The current party composition of the state attorneys general is: The composition for the District of Columbia and the 5 populated territories is: Rows of the Attorney General table below are color coded indicating the political party of the office holder. The Texas Attorney General is charged the Texas constitution to defend the laws and the writings within the constitution. In June 1870 Congress enacted a law entitled “An Act to Establish the Department of Justice.” This Act established the Attorney General as head of the Department of Justice and gave the Attorney General direction and control of U.S. [4], Many states have passed term limits limiting the selection to 2 consecutive terms (9 states); 2 terms maximum (4 states), but 33 states still have no term limits. [3] In Puerto Rico, the attorney general is officially called the secretary of justice, but is commonly known as the Puerto Rico attorney general. and does not provide private legal counsel. Elections, Presidents, Vice Presidents, and First Ladies, Financial Assistance and Support Services, Disaster Financial Assistance for Workers and Small Business Owners, Disaster Financial Assistance with Food, Housing, and Bills, Financial Assistance Within Designated Natural Disaster Areas, Government Response to Coronavirus, COVID-19, Financial Help for Families and Child Support. Additionally, the Attorney General protects her constituents in cases of Medicaid fraud, defends the state in civil litigation cases and represents the people of Florida when criminals appeal their convictions in state and federal courts. To find an attorney you should contact the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service at 800-692-7375. What Attorneys General Do As chief legal officers of the states, commonwealths, District of Columbia, and territories of the United States, the role of an attorney general is to serve as counselor to state government agencies and legislatures, and as a representative of the public interest. In Alaska, Hawaii, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Wyoming, the attorney general is a gubernatorial appointee. As provided by the Texas Constitution and statutes, the main responsibilities of the Office of Attorney General are: 1. Some attorney generals are elected in statewide contests, while others are appointed by the … State Attorney General Directory . [1] In some states, the attorney general serves as the head of a state department of justice, with responsibilities similar to those of the United States Department of Justice. The position of Attorney General was created by the Judiciary Act of 1789. Attorneys and U.S. Official websites use .gov Among the chief criticisms of the office is that state attorneys general have strayed from their traditional defense-based lawyer role to assume a more proactiev and political posture, often in ways that overstep the legal authority of the office and/or what would be historically recognized as the limits of institutional etiquette. Attorneys general are the top legal officers of their state or territory. States attorney generals have many of the same duties as the federal attorney general but on a smaller statewide scale. The title of the head of Puerto Rico's Justice Department is the, State constitutional officer (United States), National Association of Attorneys General, "LePage sheds light on plan to strip Legislature of power to elect attorney general, treasurer", "Elections for Attorney General to Take Place in 30 States", "2014 State and Territorial Attorneys General Election Results", "Is it legal for North Carolina's attorney general to not defend the state's bathroom law? Attorney General Powers and Responsibilities Suella Braverman was appointed Attorney General on 13 February 2020. The specific duties of attorney general vary from state to state. Select your state to connect to your state attorney general's website. The Indiana Attorney General is the attorney for the State of Indiana. Congress passed the Judiciary Act of 1789 which, among other things, established the Office of the Attorney General. ", Listing of official State Attorney General websites, List of states and territories of the United States, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=State_attorney_general&oldid=998580585, State attorneys general in the United States, Pages using Sister project links with default search, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 6 January 2021, at 01:41. They dispense legal advice to the president and the heads of other governmental agencies when requested. In American Samoa, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the attorney general is appointed by the governor. In the United States, as the individual states and territories developed their own procedures, common law, constitution state government agencies and legislatures, and as representatives of the public interest. In some states, the attorney general serves as the head of a state department of justice, with responsibilities similar to those of the United States Department of Justice LEGAL DISCLAIMER The materials in this guide are provided for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice or legal opinions. Inauguration of the President of the United States. The Act also vested in the Attorney General supervisory power over the accounts of U.S. If you are taken to the attorney general’s main page, look for a link for “consumer protection.” Click on it. Secure .gov websites use HTTPS States attorneys general have many of the same duties as the federal attorney general but on a smaller statewide scale. [1] The attorney general in Tennessee is appointed by the Tennessee Supreme Court for an eight-year term. How a State's Attorney Works. They advise and represent their legislature and state agencies and act as the “People’s Lawyer” for the citizens. Use these steps to learn the path to become Attorney General. In fact, your attorney general’s office is the first place you should turn when you need the law on your side. The Attorney General is the Head of the Justice Department and the attorney for the United States in all legal matters. Jim Arbogast/ Getty Images. Please enable JavaScript in your web browser; otherwise some parts of this site might not work properly. She is the first woman of color to hold statewide office in New York and the first woman to be elected Attorney General. The primary duty of the United States Attorney General is to uphold and serve the best interest of the public within the United States’ jurisdiction. What to Do When a State Attorney General Contacts You March 15, 2013 by David Klein Almost everyone working in the Internet marketing space, whether providing marketing services or selling products, has heard the horror stories of peers and competitors (or worse yet their principals) that have been subjected to investigations or lawsuits by various states’ attorneys general. Attorneys general are the top legal officers of their state or territory. But, in writing a letter you might provide new evidence to a case the Attorney General is already building or inform him of an emerging problem. The Attorney General serves all New Yorkers in numerous matters affecting their daily lives.The Attorney General's Office is charged with the statutory and common law powers to protect consumers and investors, charitable donors, the public health and environment, civil rights, and the rights of wage-earners and businesses across the State. USAGov is the Official Guide to Government Information and Services, Government Agencies and Elected Officials, Indian Tribes and Resources for Native Americans, Commonly Requested U.S. Laws and Regulations, How Laws Are Made and How to Research Them, Personal Legal Issues, Documents, and Family History, Who Can and Can’t Vote in U.S. [1] Elected attorneys general serve a four-year term, except in Vermont, where the term is two years. Our AG also stops companies from cheating consumers and protects our State’s land, water, and air. Each state’s attorney general manages all legal representation of the state in civil and criminal matters on a state and federal level. While the office may answer questions of a general nature, most private issues require a detailed analysis of the law, and such services are outside the scope of the office’s authority. [1][2] In Maine, the attorney general is elected by the state Legislature for a two-year term. And there clearly could be dangers in making the AG do whatever the governor wants. (Last Updated On: July 6, 2017) If you think your state attorney general has better things to do than give attention to your personal legal problem, think again. The most prevalent method of selecting a state's attorney general is by popular election. The state attorney general in each of the 50 U.S. states, of the federal district, or of any of the territories is the chief legal advisor to the state government and the state's chief law enforcement officer. Do You Have to Vote for the Party You're Registered With? [5], State attorneys general enforce both state and federal laws. Green Cards and Permanent Residence in the U.S. U.S. Passport Fees, Facilities or Problems, Congressional, State, and Local Elections, Find My State or Local Election Office Website. The Attorney General is the state's top lawyer and law enforcement official, protecting and serving the people and interests of California through a broad range of duties. Attorneys and all other counsel employed on behalf of the United States. A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States. Most attorneys general manage specific assistance programs throughout the state. Most are elected, though a few are appointed by the governor. Defending the State of Texas and its duly enacted laws by providing legal representation to the State, its officials and agencies, rendering legal opinions, reviewing bonds of public security, and ensuring compliance with the Texas Public Information Act. The Attorney General’s Office is not authorized to provide advice to private citizens on personal legal matters. Most are elected, though a few are appointed by the governor. Becoming Attorney General requires a lifelong endeavor that one is constantly working toward. They advise and represent their legislature and state agencies and act as the “People’s Lawyer” for the citizens. Letitia “Tish” James is the 67th Attorney General for the State of New York. 2. Lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. The attorney general’s website for your state should come up near the top of the search results. The State's Attorney General is the head of the state's legal office and is responsible for enforcing the law. He or she is generally entrusted with the duties of prosecuting suits and proceedings involving state government and advising the governor and other administrative officers of the state government. The Office of the Indiana Attorney General helps protect the rights, freedoms, and safety you enjoy as a citizen of the Hoosier state. [1][2], The District of Columbia and two U.S. territories, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands, elect their attorneys general for a four-year term. Learn English and Attend College in the U.S. Introduction to Federal Government Contracting, The Contract Opportunities Search Tool on beta.SAM.gov, Locate Military Members, Units, and Facilities. Attorney General Curtis T. Hill Jr. and his staff are dedicated to meeting the state's legal needs, as well as the needs and interests of its … A lock ( [2], Seven states do not popularly elect an attorney general. What does the Attorney General of Texas do? The Attorney General will most likely get involved if it is question of wide public concern. In some cases, attorneys general look inward to test the bounds of their authority through involvement in state legislative matters, or by refusing to uphold state laws which they find to be in viola… With decades of work, she is an experienced attorney and public servant with a long record of accomplishments. Find your state office. 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