James Fife

James Fife
James Fife
Adjunct Professor
J.D., Thomas Jefferson School of Law, summa cum laude;
Dr. Hab., Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski;
Ph.D., Coleg Prifysgol Cymru, Aberystwyth;
C. Phil., University of California San Diego,
B.A., University of California, San Diego, magna cum laude

Following a 20-year career in theoretical and Celtic linguistics, James Fife embarked on formal study of the law at Thomas Jefferson in 2001. Since his graduation in 2004, he has worked with Federal Defenders of San Diego as an appellate attorney; he is currently the most senior, non-supervisory, appellate lawyer, with experience at writing and arguing dozens of appellate briefs in the Ninth Circuit and petitions to the Supreme Court. He has also engaged in trial and sentencing practice in the local district court.  He is one of two sentencing resource attorneys for Federal Defenders. He previously taught Appellate Advocacy at Thomas Jefferson and currently co-teaches the course in Federal Sentencing Law and Advocacy.


His legal publications include a chapter on border-crossing crimes and one on victims’ rights in the national practice manual, Defending a Federal Criminal Case (2010), and law journal articles on restarting criminal proceedings after a finding of incompetence, mental age as a bar to capital punishment, and U.S. linguistics rights law for indigenous languages groups. He has also written on reflections of traditional Welsh law in Middle Welsh narrative prose.


Courses include:

Federal Criminal Sentencing Law