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Assistant United States Attorney

United States Attorneys Office -- positions to be filled in Seattle or Tacoma, Washington
700 Stewart Street, Suite 5220
Seattle, WA 98101
United States
About the Office: 

Please note the vacancy announcement number has been corrected from 17-WDWA-AUSA-01 to 17-WDWA-AUSA-02.

The United States Attorney’s Office (USAO) for the Western District of Washington is responsible for representing the federal government in virtually all litigation involving the United States in the Western District of Washington (WDWA). This includes civil lawsuits by and against a Department or agency of the United States government, representation of government officials under certain circumstances, and actions to collect judgments and restitution on behalf of victims and taxpayers. The USAO has an authorized strength of approximately 73 Assistant United States Attorneys and is divided into two litigating Divisions (Criminal and Civil). The USAO’s main office is in Seattle, Washington, with a branch office located in Tacoma, Washington.

Job Description: 

The anticipated positions will be located in the Civil Division of the Western District of Washington. AUSAs in the Civil Division are responsible for representing the United States government and its Departments, agencies and employees in civil litigation filed in the District. Principle areas of practice include defensive cases under the Federal Tort Claims Act, including medical malpractice arising from treatment at various federal medical facilities, and a variety of personal injury matters, and Title VII cases alleging discrimination in hiring and employment practices by agencies and Departments of the United States. Other areas of practice include immigration law, bankruptcy, collection of debts owed the United States or its Departments and agencies, breach of government contract, judicial review of administrative findings, injunctive proceedings, affirmative civil enforcement actions and defending federal employees accused of constitutional violations.

The Assistant United States Attorneys in the Civil Division participate in litigation at both the trial and appellate levels. They take depositions, prepare and answer interrogatories, negotiate for settlement, engage in motions practice, try cases in the United States District Court and, at times, write appellate briefs and argue before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

The attorneys hired for these positions will be assigned a variety of civil matters involving various areas of federal law. Applicants with prior experience handling one or more of the following types of matters should describe that work in their cover letter:

1.Medical malpractice defense;
2.Tort litigation;
3.Employment law; and/or
4.Bankruptcy law

All initial attorney appointments to the Department of Justice are made on a time-limited (temporary) basis. Temporary appointments may, or may not, be extended or made permanent without further competition.



The applicants must possess a J.D. Degree, be an active member of the bar (any jurisdiction), and have at least three years post-J.D. experience.  Ideal qualifications include at least five years of post-J.D. litigation experience.

Applicants must demonstrate strong analytical skills and the ability to accurately identify the critical issues in a case.  Applicants must possess superior oral and writing skills, strong research skills, and the ability to exercise good judgment.  Applicants must also possess excellent communication and courtroom skills, and exhibit the ability to work in a supportive and professional manner with other attorneys, support staff and client agencies.  Applicants must have a demonstrated capacity to function, with minimal guidance, in a highly demanding environment and in the highest ethical manner.

Applicants will be expected to do their own legal research and writing, and will be substantially self-sufficient in preparing day-to-day correspondence and pleadings.  Applicants also must demonstrate excellent computer literacy skills to include experience with automated research on the Internet, electronic court filing, and electronic e-mail and word processing systems.

Security Requirements:  Initial appointment is conditioned upon a satisfactory preemployment adjudication. This includes fingerprint and credit and tax checks, and drug testing.  In addition, continued employment is subject to a favorable adjudication of a background investigation.

Department Policies:  Assistant United States Attorneys generally must reside in the district to which he or she is appointed.  See 28 U.S.C. § 545 for district-specific information.

Assistant United States Attorneys’ pay is administratively determined based, in part, on the number of years of professional attorney experience. The range of pay with locality is $65,014 to $152,547
Occassional travel within and outside of the District
Application Process: 

Interested persons must email the following items in pdf format to the address listed below:

a. A cover letter referencing Vacancy Announcement:  17-WDWA-AUSA-01 (Civil) stating
 whether the applicant is interest in a position in the Seattle Office, the Tacoma Office, or both; 
b. A detailed resume that includes the month/year start and end dates for each position held;
c. A law school transcript for any applicant with less than five years of experience as an attorney; and
d. A writing sample meeting the criteria set forth below

Annette L. Hayes
United States Attorney
Attention: Micki Brunner
First Assistant United States Attorney
700 Stewart Street, Suite 5220
Seattle, Washington 98101

No telephone calls please

Include a sample of your legal writing, such as a portion or all of an appellate brief, memorandum of points and authorities, or opinion letter. The writing sample should be a recent example of your work and demonstrate your ability to analyze legal issues and present that analysis in written form. The sample should be predominantly your own work. If the document was edited by others, include a cover memo that briefly describes the level of editing that occurred.



Application Deadline: 
Friday, August 18, 2017
Relocation Expenses: 
Relocation expenses are not authorized
Number of Positions: 
Two (2) however additional positons may be filled using this announcement
Updated August 4, 2017

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Department Policies

Equal Employment Opportunity:  The U.S. Department of Justice is an Equal Opportunity/Reasonable Accommodation Employer.  Except where otherwise provided by law, there will be no discrimination because of color, race, religion, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, disability (physical or mental), age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as a parent, membership or non-membership in an employee organization, on the basis of personal favoritism, or any other non-merit factor.  The Department of Justice welcomes and encourages applications from persons with physical and mental disabilities. The Department is firmly committed to satisfying its affirmative obligations under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, to ensure that persons with disabilities have every opportunity to be hired and advanced on the basis of merit within the Department of Justice.

Reasonable Accommodations:  This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the agency.  Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Outreach and Recruitment for Qualified Applicants with Disabilities:   The Department encourages qualified applicants with disabilities, including individuals with targeted/severe disabilities to apply in response to posted vacancy announcements.  Qualified applicants with targeted/severe disabilities may be eligible for direct hire, non-competitive appointment under Schedule A (5 C.F.R. § 213.3102(u)) hiring authority.  Individuals with targeted/severe disabilities are encouraged to register for the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Shared List of People with Disabilities (the Bender Disability Employment Registry) by submitting their resume to resume@benderconsult.com and referencing "Federal Career Opportunities" in the subject line.  Additional information about the Bender Registry is available at www.benderconsult.com.  Individuals with disabilities may also contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC).  See list of DPOCs.    

Suitability and Citizenship:  It is the policy of the Department to achieve a drug-free workplace and persons selected for employment will be required to pass a drug test which screens for illegal drug use prior to final appointment.  Employment is also contingent upon the completion and satisfactory adjudication of a background investigation. Congress generally prohibits agencies from employing non-citizens within the United States, except for a few narrow exceptions as set forth in the annual Appropriations Act (see, https://www.usajobs.gov/Help/working-in-government/non-citizens/). Pursuant to DOJ component policies, only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review, U.S. Trustee’s Offices, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, qualifying non-U.S. citizens meeting immigration and appropriations law criteria may apply for employment with other DOJ organizations. However, please be advised that the appointment of non-U.S. citizens is extremely rare; such appointments would be possible only if necessary to accomplish the Department's mission and would be subject to strict security requirements. Applicants who hold dual citizenship in the U.S. and another country will be considered on a case-by-case basis. All DOJ employees are subject to a residency requirement. Candidates must have lived in the United States for at least three of the past five years. The three-year period is cumulative, not necessarily consecutive. Federal or military employees, or dependents of federal or military employees serving overseas, are excepted from this requirement. This is a Department security requirement which is waived only for extreme circumstances and handled on a case-by-case basis.

Veterans:  There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Department of Justice considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. Applicants eligible for veterans' preference must include that information in their cover letter or resume and attach supporting documentation (e.g., the DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty and other supporting documentation) to their submissions. Although the "point" system is not used, per se, applicants eligible to claim 10-point preference must submit Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, and submit the supporting documentation required for the specific type of preference claimed (visit the OPM website, www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/SF15.pdf for a copy of SF 15, which lists the types of 10-point preferences and the required supporting document(s). Applicants should note that SF 15 requires supporting documentation associated with service- connected disabilities or receipt of nonservice-connected disability pensions to be dated 1991 or later except in the case of service members submitting official statements or retirement orders from a branch of the Armed Forces showing that his  or her retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that he/she was transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).


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This and other vacancy announcements can be found under Attorney Vacancies and Volunteer Legal Internships. The Department of Justice cannot control further dissemination and/or posting of information contained in this vacancy announcement. Such posting and/or dissemination is not an endorsement by the Department of the organization or group disseminating and/or posting the information.