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Legal Careers

Unit Chief - Supervisory Attorney-Advisor

Hiring Organization
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
Hiring Office
Office of General Counsel (OGC)
Job ID
Job ID 41932
935 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20535 - United States
Application Deadline:
About the Office

The Civil Litigation Unit (CLU)

The Civil Litigation Units (CLUs) act as legal counsel to the FBI and its employees in regard to a wide array of civil lawsuits, administrative claims, requests for testimony and/or documents, representation matters, and related areas. The CLU units coordinate the defense of civil actions filed against the FBI and its employees under the United States Constitution and a variety of statutes including the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), and the U.S. Patriot Act. The CLU units work closely on these cases with the Civil Division of the United States Department of Justice and U.S. Attorney's Offices around the country. The CLU units' primary responsibilities include assisting FBI employees in obtaining Department of Justice representation in personal-liability suits, representing FBI employees in depositions, preparing affidavits and declarations in support of motions, and providing the full range of assistance at administrative, trial and in post-trial proceedings. The units also handle the FBI's response to civil subpoena matters and provide legal advice concerning a variety of civil litigation matters to include scope determinations and FBI potential liability for investigative operations.

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
  • Manages and directs the defense of civil actions brought against the FBI and its employees, policy development as it relates to civil litigation to ensure consistency in the FBI's legal position and maintains oversight of administrative records relating to the CLU Units. 
  • Responsible for supervising attorneys and other professionals handling matters, including assignments and other administrative tasking related to all aspects of civil litigation. 
  • Responsible for completing the full range of personnel actions for these employees, including performance appraisals, recommendations for within-grade and quality step increases, promotions and reassignments. The Unit Chief takes corrective actions to resolve grievances and complaints, supports and promotes the FBI's and DOJ's equal opportunity program. 
  • Manages the unit's resources, expected to plan, organize, lead and direct the unit's activities as well as work closely and collaboratively with the other CLU Unit Chief. The Unit Chief as appropriate will interact with and provide support to the General Counsel, the Section Chief, Litigation and Technology Management Section the Deputy General Counsel for the Litigation Branch, and other FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) officials.
  • Represents the Litigation Branch and OGC with respect to FBI and DOJ officials and representatives from other agencies.
  • Establishes and maintains effective relationships with the FBI's partners and the IC community in the civil litigation arena, including DOJ, U.S. Attorneys' Offices, and other federal agencies with an interest in civil litigation issues that may impact the government, and specifically the FBI and/or FBI information.

BASIC REQUIREMENT: All applicants must possess a law degree from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association and be an active member of the bar (any U.S. jurisdiction). 

Positive Education Requirement: This position has a specific education requirement; all applicants must verify completion of this basic requirement by submitting both proof of JD degree and proof of good standing with a bar within US jurisdiction. Please see the “Required Documents” section of this announcement for additional information. 

Education: Applicant must possess a J.D. degree from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association (or have an LL.M. degree or other graduate law school degree in addition to J.D.) and be an active member of a bar (any US jurisdiction). 

GS-15: Applicants applying for the GS-15 must have 4 or more years of post J.D. attorney experience. 

Please be advised candidates that are selected for this position, must be approved by the Department of Justice.

Please make sure your experience/requirement(s) can be identified in your resume. Your resume and supporting documentation will be used to determine whether you meet the job qualifications listed in this announcement. Applicants must meet the qualification requirements at the time of application. 

Candidates deemed most competitive will be sent to the hiring official for employment consideration. 

Required Documentation

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete application package which includes the following REQUIRED documents: 
1.    Your resume and cover letter 
2.    A writing sample, not to exceed 10 pages (preferably a legal brief or a motion demonstrating your writing ability and proficiency in legal analysis)
3.    Proof of current and active membership of a state bar or the District of Columbia
4.    Photocopy of Law School Transcripts 
5.    Current SF-50 (if external government employee) 

Please Note: FBI employees currently assigned to a General Attorney position do not need to provide Law School Transcripts or Proof of Bar Association Membership. 

Application Process

The following instructions outline our application process: Please visit to apply.

Step 1: Click the “Start” button to begin an application. You will be prompted to either Sign In to continue the application or to register with FBIJOBS if you don't already have an account.

Step 2: Follow the Step by Step process to submit an application. You will be guided through each step in the process. You are required to complete all sections of the application to successfully submit your application.

Further Evaluation of Qualified Candidates

All candidates considered for an interview, will be invited to complete the Senior Leader Leadership Selection Process (SL LSP). The SL LSP standardizes the requirements and application porcess for all candidates, improves transparency and feedback about the selection process. The program is based on the FBI Leadership Competency Model. The assessment consists of the following components:

1.    SL Leadership Skills Assessment (SL LSA)

The LSA is a standardized assessment which evaluates and measure leadership behavioral abilities and skills, ensuring leaders in all job categories meet the FBI's standards of proficiency in management and leadership. The LSA takes place via the telephone and simulates a "day-in-the-life" of a front-line leader or senior leader, with a candidate assuming a management role during the evaluation. Candidates will be presented with scenarios that require them, as the manager, to make crucial leadership decisions. Candidate will be scored on how they handle these situations and embody the FBI's Leadership Competencies. A passing LSA score allows you to continue towards becoming ready to apply to leadership positions in the FBI.

There are no specific study guides for the LSA and the behaviors assessed are not something that one can memorize. The LSA scenarios were designed to account for the various background of candidates while assessing the management or leadership competencies within a familiar environment. In the SL LSA, candidates are assessed based on how they demonstrated the 12 FBI Leadership Competencies during all of the scenarios. The best approach to take the SL LSA is to use study time wisely, relax, and be oneself during the interactions.


GS-15 Salary: $148,484 - $176,300

Number of Positions

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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 February 14, 2022