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Legal Careers

Attorney Advisor

Hiring Organization
Office of Justice Programs (OJP)
Hiring Office
Office of the General Counsel
Job ID
810 7th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20531 - United States
Application Deadline:
About the Office

The Office of Justice Programs (OJP) is a federal agency that provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, assist victims and enhance the rule of law by strengthening the criminal and juvenile justice systems.  OJP's offices support state and local crime-fighting efforts, fund thousands of victim service programs, help communities manage sex offenders, address the needs of youth in the system and children in danger, and provide vital research and data.

The Office of the General Counsel (OGC) provides legal assistance and advice to OJP's program and business offices on all legal issues arising from OJP's role in providing federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, improve the criminal and juvenile justice systems, increase knowledge about crime and related issues, and assist crime victims. OGC advises on legal questions, problems and issues of nationwide concern, as well as provides legal advice and guidance on all agency operations. OGC is also responsible for administering the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Privacy Act for all OJP's program offices.

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

This position is located in the Office of the General Counsel (OGC), Office of Justice Programs (OJP). The incumbent functions as an Attorney Advisor, well-versed in statutes, orders, rules, and regulations affecting OJP and its program and business offices; and is responsible for providing legal advice to OJP on agency operations.

Duties include:

  • Provides legal advice on matters arising from the operations of OJP in the areas of grants and cooperative agreements, appropriations, contracts and procurement, privacy and disclosure, employment and labor, and other areas under the purview of OJP and its component offices.
  • Serves as legal advisor on the plans and operations of several related programs or activities.
  • Drafts and/or reviews proposed legislation, regulations, and policies.
  • Prepares written documents including legal memoranda, reports, advisory opinions, and implementation recommendations that effectively analyze the relevant factual and legal issues, explain the application of legal principles and precedents, and justify recommendations or conclusions.
  • Advises on and represents OJP in cases of noncompliance, administrative denials, and other administrative actions under the statutes administered by OJP.
  • Serves as OJP counsel with the Department of Justice litigating divisions and United States Attorneys' Offices on OJP cases in federal court.
  • Represents OJP in labor and employment matters.
  • Addresses difficult legal questions lacking clearly applicable precedents due to the newness of the program or the novelty of the issue.
  • Replies to requests for legal advice or interpretations of laws and regulations arising out of the day-to-day operations of agency programs.
  • Participates in task forces and working groups in a specialty area. Serves on inter- and intra-agency committees and attends meetings to provide legal advice related to a variety of policy matters.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Grade 14
Applicant must:

  • Possess a J.D. degree from an accredited law school.
  • Be an active member of the bar in good standing (any U.S. jurisdiction).
  • Have a minimum of 2 1/2 years of post J.D. legal experience which has equipped the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position. Experience in employment, equal employment opportunity, and/or labor management law, or federal procurement practice, preferred, but not required.

Grade 15

Applicant must:

  • Possess a J.D. degree from an accredited law school.
  • Be an active member of the bar in good standing (any U.S. jurisdiction).
  • Have a minimum of 4 years of post J.D. legal experience which has equipped the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position. Experience in employment, equal employment opportunity, and/or labor management law, or federal procurement practice, preferred, but not required.

All qualification requirements must be met by the closing date of this announcement.

Application Process

Applications must be submitted online.  Please see USAJOBS vacancy announcement for details: USAJOBS - Job Announcement


Required Documents

  1. Cover Letter
  2. Resume (must include education, including name of undergraduate and law school, degree received, and date graduated; date admitted to bar and jurisdiction; a general description of all past employment relevant to the practice of law, including dates of employment).
  3. Writing Sample (5-10 pages)
  4. Unofficial law school transcripts (degree conferred must be reflected; official transcripts will be required if selected)
  5. Proof of bar membership in good standing (any U.S. jurisdiction)
  6. Veterans' Preference Documentation (if applicable; see below for more information)

Note: Incomplete applications will not be considered.



$126,233 - $176,300 per year

Number of Positions
Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel occasionally for meetings, trainings, or conferences.
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, 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 December 19, 2022