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Legal Careers

Supervisory Trial Attorney (Assistant Branch Director)

Hiring Organization
Civil Division (CIV)
Hiring Office
Consumer Protection Branch
Washington, DC 20530 - United States
Application Deadline:
About the Office

The Consumer Protection Branch is seeking an Assistant Branch Director (ABD) who will lead attorneys in the defense of federal agencies. The ABD will manage all district court litigation throughout the country on behalf of the Food & Drug Administration and other consumer protection agencies. The work will include the nation's most high-profile drug- and device-approval cases. The ABD also will lead civil affirmative litigation to protect consumers and will advise on policy matters.

Are you interested in a rewarding and challenging career? Join the U.S. Department of Justice! Join us in serving the United States with honor and integrity!!

The Civil Division, with more than 1,000 Attorneys and 14 litigating components, represents the United States, its departments and agencies, Members of Congress, Cabinet and other Federal employees.

The Consumer Protection Branch (CPB) is seeking a Supervisory Trial Attorney serving as an Assistant Branch Director to defend federal consumer protection cases throughout the United States. CPB defends against suits in district court challenging federal regulatory actions concerning food, drugs, medical devices, tobacco, and consumer products. CPB also brings both criminal prosecutions and civil enforcement actions in matters of national importance related to complex consumer fraud schemes, prescription drug diversion, adulterated and misbranded food and drugs, deceptive trade practices, and hazardous products. The Branch's litigation regularly involves issues that attract congressional and media interest. CPB works closely with U.S. Attorneys' Offices, the Criminal Division, and federal law enforcement agencies, including the Postal Inspection Service, FBI, DEA, and Defense Criminal Investigative Service. CPB also works extensively with the Food and Drug Administration, Federal Trade Commission, and Consumer Product Safety Commission.


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 Assistant Branch Director leads work representing the United States in civil defensive litigation. Advancing the Branch's mission to safeguard Americans' health, safety, economic security, and identity integrity, the Assistant Branch Director will oversee attorneys defending the Food and Drug Administration, Federal Trade Commission, and Consumer Product Safety Commission in district courts throughout the country. This work will include cases raising challenges to the constitutionality of federal statutes and actions, attacks on significant programs, and contests to policies and determinations. The Assistant Branch Director will engage in, and direct attorneys and staff regarding, all phases of discovery and litigation, representing the United States in court and in negotiations with opposing counsel. He or she further will coordinate closely with senior leadership of the agencies the Branch represents in litigation. And the Assistant Branch Director personally will handle some of the Branch's most complex and high-profile defensive matters.

The Assistant Branch Director also will supervise the appellate and post-conviction defense of criminal convictions secured by the Branch, as well as collaborate with the Civil Appellate Staff on appeals of the Branch's civil matters.

In addition, the Assistant Branch Director hired under this announcement will lead attorneys and staff in advancing certain affirmative civil litigation matters referred by the Food and Drug Administration, Federal Trade Commission, and Consumer Product Safety Commission. This work will include preparing expert witnesses, overseeing civil discovery, motions practice, and trial litigation. It also will require working closely with U.S. Attorneys' Offices and other federal partners.

The Assistant Branch Director will be expected to review and opine on policy matters and legislative proposals related to public health and safety, and to advise U.S. Attorneys' Offices on considered actions under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and other federal laws. He or she also will direct teams reviewing evidence for privilege and handling associated litigation.

As a supervisory attorney and member of the Branch's management team, the Assistant Branch Director will help guide the Branch's initiatives and participate in developing Branch policies. The Assistant Branch Director will be responsible for managing administrative and personnel responsibilities, leading trainings, and engaging with Department leadership.


Applicants must have a J.D. degree earned through a full course of study in a School of Law accredited by the American Bar Association and be a member in good standing of the bar of a state, territory of the United States, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

Applicants must have at least four years of post J.D. experience to qualify at the GS-15 level.

You must also be a U.S. citizen.

Applicants must have excellent writing and advocacy skills, as well as superior negotiation and interpersonal skills. Successful applicants will be highly motivated, exhibit sound judgment and creativity, and have several years of active litigation experience. Judicial clerkship experience and at least seven years of post-J.D. experience is strongly preferred.

Application Process
  • Cover Letter, highlighting interest and unique qualifications
  • Resume showing relevant experience.
  • Writing Sample (not more than 10 pages in length, and written in the past 3 years)
  • DD-214 and/or veteran documentation, (if applicable).


To apply for this position, you must submit a cover letter, resume, and writing sample (not more than 10 pages in length). If you are claiming veterans preference, you must also submit your DD-214 and/or other documentation that you may have.

Applicants are encouraged to submit their materials by email to:

On the subject line, please put "CPB - Assistant Director Application."

Applicants may also send their materials by commercial courier service (FedEx or UPS) to:
Mr. Vincent Shuler
U.S. Department of Justice
Consumer Protection Branch
450 5th St., NW, Ste. 6400
Washington, D.C. 20530

No telephone calls, please.


$142,701 to $170,800 per year

Number of Positions
This position requires occassional travel.
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, 2020