Job Description

Davis Wright Tremaine LLP is seeking a part-time California real estate and land use attorney for engagement through the firm’s contract attorney and alternative staffing program, DWTSurge. This contract attorney position will work with the Firm’s Real Estate and Land Use practice group to help provide local counsel support for the firm’s California clients. Attorneys must reside and have active bar admission in California. 

This contract position will work independently to review zoning codes and land use documents, advise on land use and development matters, and provide counsel for land development strategy. Mid to senior level attorneys who are seeking reduced hours and more flexibility in their practice are encouraged to apply. In addition to flexibility, candidates can expect to work closely with DWT attorneys as part of a collaborative team, providing high-value legal services to DWT clients. 

The selected attorney may also be asked to work independently on smaller projects in California, such as driving land use diligence projects or advising on easements, covenants, or other contract matters relating to California land. This role is client facing and requires a high-level of commitment to excellent client service. Attorneys should be able to work independently and exercise good judgement, but should also collaborate easily with various stakeholders, other lawyers, and support staff to meet objectives within short deadlines. 

This contract position offers the flexibility of remote work and reduced hours. While the engagement is for an initial 6-month contract term, we anticipate the work to remain relatively steady and there is a possibility of renewal of the contract position for successful candidates. We are looking for attorneys interested in establishing a long-term working relationship with the Firm. 


The ideal candidate will have:  

  • 5+ years of land development work or transactional real estate work in the land development area.  
  • Residency and active bar admission in California. 
  • Experience in broad land use practice or representing land development clients preferred.  
  • Ability to independently review zoning codes and land use documents, advise on land use and development matters including code enforcement queries, and advise on questions related to developability of land and land development strategy.  
  • An understanding of California real estate law.  
  • Ability to perform local counsel review of real estate transactional documents, including advising on form of deeds and PSA terms in California.  
  • Availability to work 4-8 hours per week and adaptability to variability in the volume of work. 
  • Flexibility to potentially increase hours as needed. 
  • Ability to work remotely.  
  • High-level of responsiveness and client service abilities.  
  • Strong verbal, written, and interpersonal communication skills.  
  • Excellent writing skills, strong attention to detail, and ability to produce high quality work product with minimal supervision and direction. 


Please note that this is a temporary contract position managed by DWT’s flexible attorney program, DWTSurge. Compensation will be paid on an hourly basis, commensurate with experience and skill level (see below). This role is not benefitted. Due to the structure of the DWTSurge program, DWTSurge employees are not eligible for the firm’s pro bono, DEI, and other activities or opportunities outside of the above stated scope of work. We are interested in candidates electing to pursue a more flexible way of providing continuous, high-value legal services to the firm and our clients. If you are interested in a more traditional law firm position, please check the DWT careers page for lateral opportunities. 


Salary Range 

The hourly range for this position in CA is $100 to $160 per hour. Actual pay will be adjusted based on the candidate’s education, training, experience and other job-related factors permitted by law.  Part-time contract attorneys may be eligible for 401(k) and paid sick leave. 


Additional benefits include: 

  • First Stop Health Telemedicine: Speak with a licensed physician or mental health counselor 24/7, covered by the firm 
  • TELUS Health Employee Assistance Program: Receive support with mental, financial, physical, and emotional wellbeing 
  • Voluntary Pet Insurance 
  • Milk Stork: Virtual lactation consulting, breast milk shipping and nutritional testing covered by the firm 

Wellness Benefits: 

  • Peloton App 
  • Headspace App 



Paid sick leave is accrued on a biweekly basis at a rate of 1 hour per 30 hours worked. 


To apply, send your resume and cover letter to DWTSurge Recruiting Manager, Mariah Watson, at We are currently not accepting third party submissions for this opportunity. 

We are an AmLaw 100 law firm with eleven offices nationwide. We are relentlessly committed to client service and look for candidates who share that commitment. At DWT, client service means having empathy for each client’s and each lawyer’s work and personal pressures, business objectives, and legal needs; anticipating their needs; and having the capabilities and commitment to deliver what matters most to them. 

Davis Wright Tremaine LLP embraces diversity, equity and inclusion. It brings out the best of what each individual has to offer and inspires us to build strong and lasting connections with each other, our clients, and our communities. 

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are part of the fabric of Davis Wright Tremaine - central to who we are and what we do. Our vision is to foster a culture where all talented individuals - including those who are from traditionally underrepresented communities in the legal profession - can have, and can see, a path to success. We embed DEI throughout our law firm with our four-pillar framework: Community, Growth, Education, and Engagement. We invite you to learn more about our commitment to DEI at

In order to support our effort to foster a diverse, equitable, and inclusive law firm, we request that you voluntarily provide demographic data. All self-reported demographic information is stored securely in a manner that is compliant with DWT’s privacy and security policies and is only accessible by authorized members of the Talent Acquisition and HR Departments; it is not shared with any of the hiring decision-makers. 

It is our policy to hire, promote, transfer, terminate, and make all other employment-related decisions without regard to an employee’s sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical condition), race, color, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, religious creed, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, genetic information, medical condition, military or veteran status or any other basis prohibited by applicable local, state, or federal laws. To review our Anti-Harassment Policy, click on this URL,

As an equal opportunity employer, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP values the diversity of our work force and the knowledge of our personnel. Labor Condition Applications (LCAs) for specialty occupation petitions are displayed electronically in accordance with notice requirements pursuant to U.S. Department of Labor regulations, and public access files are available pursuant to regulation. See 20 CFR § 655.734, 655.760. 

Davis Wright Tremaine provides reasonable accommodations for those who need them to complete the application or recruiting process and for employees who need reasonable accommodations to perform the essential functions of their positions due to a disability or for religious reasons. If you need to request accommodation during the application or recruiting process, please email

Application Instructions

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