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Legal Careers

Attorney Advisor

Hiring Organization
Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP)
Hiring Office
Central Office, Office of General Counsel, Legal Administrative Branch, Washington, DC
Location TBD or Central Office, Office of General Counsel, Legal Administrative Branch, 320 First Street, NW
Washington, DC 20534 - United States
Application Deadline:
About the Office

The Legal Administrative Branch of the Office of General Counsel encompasses the Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act Section.  This section is responsible for processing requests for documents pursuant to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Acts, as well as FOIA related litigation.  Incumbent will provide legal guidance and advice to Bureau staff nation-wide regarding requests for documents and public information.

As the federal agency whose mission is to ensure the fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans, the Department of Justice is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive work environment. To build and retain a workforce that reflects the diverse experiences and perspectives of the American people, we welcome applicants from the many communities, identities, races, ethnicities, backgrounds, abilities, religions, and cultures of the United States who share our commitment to public service.

Job Description

The incumbent exercises discretion and independent judgment in the application of laws, executive orders, regulations, precedents and agency practices related to the Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act (FOIA/PA).  The incumbent will be expected to provide advice and guidance to all levels of staff, including members of the Executive Staff.  The incumbent will also be expected to communicate with defense attorneys, Assistant United States Attorneys, federal courts, and agency officials.  The incumbent should have knowledge of BOP policy and practice. The incumbent should have knowledge of FOIA/PA practice, procedure, and law.  Incumbent will be responsible for responding directly to complex and high profile FOIA requests, and will participate as agency counsel in FOIA-related litigation.  Incumbent will liaise with the Department of Justice's Office of Privacy and Civil Liberties on Privacy Act-related issues, which include component reporting requirements and legal requirements to create and/or maintain Systems of Records.  Incumbent will assist FOIA/PA's Supervisory Attorney in approving documents for release pursuant to non-BOP audits by the Government Accounting Office, Office of Inspector General, and pursuant to the Federal Information Security Management Act.  The incumbent will work with Central Office regional, and institution management and line staff with respect to FOIA/Privacy Act matters. 
Incumbent will liaise with the Department of Justice's Office of Information Policy on FOIA related issues. 
Please note this position has a choice of possible duty locations.  The salary range not including locality pay adjustments is GS-12 ($66,829 to $86,881), GS-13 ($79,468 to $103,309); GS-14 ($93,907 to $122,077); or GS-15 ($110,460 to $143,598).  The incumbent must indicate a preferred duty location.  The duty location will be determined at the time of selection.


Required qualifications: Applicants must have a J.D. degree, be an active member of the bar (any U.S. jurisdiction), and have at least one (1) year post-J.D. legal or other relevant experience. 
Preferred qualifications: Prior experience in Freedom of Information and Privacy Act Issues is desired.

Application Process

Applicants must submit a cover letter highlighting relevant experience, resume, and a writing sample post marked by April 5, 2021, to:
U.S. Department of Justice
Federal Bureau of Prisons
Office of General Counsel
Legal Administrative Branch
320 First Street, NW
Washington, DC  20534
Attention:  B. Kevin Cardwell, Associate General Counsel
It is preferred that you submit your application materials via e-mail to   Please include “LAB FOIA Attorney April 2021” in the subject line. No telephone call please.  The position will remain open until filled, but applications must be submitted no later than April 5, 2021. 


The salary range not including locality pay adjustments is GS-12 ($66,829 to $86,881), GS-13 ($79,468 to $103,309); GS-14 ($93,907 to $122,077); or GS-15 ($110,460 to $143,598).

Number of Positions
Limited Travel may be required.
Relocation Expenses
Not authorized.

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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 race, color, religion, national origin, sex - including gender identity, sexual orientation, or pregnancy status - or because of age (over 40), physical or mental disability, protected genetic information, parental status, marital status, political affiliation, or any other non-merit based 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. For more information, please review our full EEO Statement.

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 disabilities are encouraged to contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC) to express an interest in being considered for a position. 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, 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, 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 their retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that they were transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).

USAO Residency Requirement:  Assistant United States Attorneys must reside in the district to which appointed or within 25 miles thereof.  See 28 U.S.C. 545 for district specific information.

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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.

Updated March 19, 2021