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Legal Careers

Attorney Advisor

Hiring Organization
National Security Division (NSD)
Hiring Office
Foreign Investment Review Section (FIRS)
Job ID
Attorney Advisor, GS-0905-14/15
Location:
Washington, DC 20530 - United States
Application Deadline:
About the Office

The mission of the National Security Division (NSD) is to coordinate the Department of Justice’s (DOJ’s) efforts in carrying out its core mission of combating terrorism and protecting national security, including protecting our national assets from state-sponsored threats to the private sector. NSD is responsible for supervising the enforcement of all federal criminal laws related to counterterrorism and counterespionage, except those specifically assigned to other divisions. NSD also serves as DOJ’s liaison to the United States Intelligence Community (USIC) and represents the government and the USIC before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. NSD advises the Attorney General regarding all matters of national security policy.

NSD’s Foreign Investment Review Section (FIRS) is responsible for DOJ’s work to protect national security in foreign investments in the United States, telecommunications, and the information and communications technology and services (ICTS) supply chain:

  • Foreign investment. FIRS serves as DOJ’s representative on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), an interagency group that reviews foreign investments in, acquisitions of, and other transactions involving U.S. companies to determine the transaction’s effects on national security.
  • Telecommunications. FIRS carries out the Attorney General’s responsibilities as Chair of the Committee for the Assessment of Foreign Participation in the United States Telecommunications Services Sector (also known as Team Telecom), an interagency group that provides recommendations to the Federal Communications Commission on whether granting particular telecommunications licenses and authorizations will pose national-security or law-enforcement risks.
  • ICTS supply chain. FIRS works closely with and supports the Department of Commerce in exercising its authority under Executive Orders 13873 and 14034 to prohibit or otherwise regulate certain transactions involving information and communications technology and services (including connected software applications) connected to foreign adversaries that pose unacceptable risks to national security. FIRS also works with other similar bodies or entities on related matters, such as the Federal Acquisition Security Council, which assesses risk in the U.S. Government’s own supply chain, and the FCC in adding entities to the Secure and Trusted Communications Act’s covered list of entities precluded from receiving FCC subsidy dollars.
  • Compliance and enforcement. FIRS develops, drafts, and negotiates National Security Agreements and Letters of Assurance to mitigate national security risks, and monitors, supervises, and enforces the transaction parties’ compliance with their National Security Agreements with DOJ.   

FIRS attorneys review and investigate transactions, identify and evaluate any national security risks, and make recommendations regarding these transactions to the Deputy Attorney General, the Assistant Attorney General for National Security, and other senior leadership, and, in some circumstances, to the President of the United States.

In addition to this case-specific work, FIRS regularly handles a wide range of broader legal and policy issues at the intersection of sophisticated technology, national security, trade and investment, and intelligence, including through representing the Department in interagency committees led by the National Security Council. Because of the heavily interagency nature of both its case-specific and its broader legal and policy work, FIRS works closely with a variety of other DOJ components (including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Civil Division, Criminal Division, and Office of Legal Counsel); the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Intelligence Community; and other agencies including the Federal Communications Commission and the Departments of the Treasury, Defense, Commerce, Homeland Security, and State.

In these capacities, FIRS supports the mission of the National Security Division, which is to coordinate the Department’s efforts in carrying out its top priority of preventing and combating terrorism and protecting the national security. NSD provides legal and policy advice on national security matters, litigates counterterrorism, counterespionage, and foreign intelligence surveillance matters, represents the government before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance

Court and other federal trial and appellate courts and conducts oversight over Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) national security investigations and foreign intelligence collection.

Under the NSD Work-Life Program Directive, NSD employees may be eligible for flexible work schedules, such as situational flexibility to work remotely through ad hoc telework, subject to supervisor approval and consistent with the needs of the office and individual roles and responsibilities.

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 Foreign Investment Review Section (FIRS) is seeking an attorney to serve as an Attorney-Advisor in its Compliance and Enforcement portfolio under the supervision of the Deputy Chief for Compliance & Enforcement. The Attorney-Advisor will be responsible for:

  • Identifying and evaluating any national security and law enforcement risks in transactions and applications (including working closely with the FBI and Intelligence Community) to include the drafting and negotiation of national security agreements and letters of assurance to mitigate the identified risks to national security;
  • Developing and negotiating national security agreements with attorneys on the FIRS CFIUS and Telecom & ICTS Supply Chain teams to address national security risks;
  • Establishing effective methods of monitoring compliance with negotiated national security agreements, including review of submitted materials, interviews, and site visits.
  • Developing factual records and basis for pursuit of penalties, injunctive relief, or other remedies such as revocation or termination for potential violations of agreements or conditions;
  • Coordinating with the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, and other CFIUS member agencies;
  • Collaborating with DOJ’s Civil Division to assess and minimize litigation risk associated with potential penalties and other enforcement actions for breaches of national security agreements;
  • Supporting FIRS participation in National Security Council (NSC)-led Interagency Policy Committee, or other interagency policy making bodies;
  • Collaborating with other FIRS attorneys, science and technology subject-matter experts, risk analysts, and other professional support staff;
  • Advising the Assistant Attorney General for National Security, Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Section Chief, Principal Deputy Chief, and other leadership on legal and policy matters; and
  • Performing other duties as assigned by the Chief, Principal Deputy Chief, or Deputy Chief for Compliance & Enforcement.

An attorney selected under this announcement may also be required to work under the supervision of the Deputy Chief for Foreign Investment or the Deputy Chief for Telecom & Supply Chain at any point during the attorney’s tenure.

Qualifications

Applicants must possess a J.D. degree, be duly licensed and authorized to practice as an attorney under the laws of a State, Territory, or the District of Columbia, and have 2.5 or more years of experience to be at the GS-14 level, and 4 or more years of experience to be at the GS-15 level. Applicants must also have superior academic credentials, and writing and analytic skills. Applicants must also be able to qualify for the highest and most sensitive security clearances.

Prior experience with litigation, corporate compliance programs including cyber or information technology, or administrative law and administrative proceedings, and strong communication skills are preferred.

Application Process

To apply, please submit a cover letter (highlighting your interest and relevant experience), resume, a writing sample that exhibits your own written advocacy skills, and a copy of your most recent performance appraisal (if available) via email to: FIRS.Application@usdoj.gov with the subject line “C&E Attorney Advisor Vacancy.” No telephone calls please.

Salary

GS-14: $126,233 - $164,102 (per annum), GS-15: $148,484 - $176,300 (per annum)

Number of Positions
1 or more
Travel
Periodic travel will be required.
Relocation Expenses
Relocation expenses will not be 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, 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 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 August 26, 2022