Law Clerk (Not to Exceed 14 months)

Washington, D.C
Sep 25, 2022
Oct 01, 2022
Full Time

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) anticipates multiple law clerk vacancies in the Fall of 2023, with interviews occurring in Fall 2022. This vacancy concerns judicial law clerk positions in FERC's Office of Administrative Law Judges (OALJ).

The Office of Administrative Law Judges (OALJ) is an administrative law court located within the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). FERC regulates all interstate aspects of the national energy industry. OALJ receives its cases from FERC orders to resolve issues of material fact, and to apply those facts to relevant law, regulation, and FERC-interpreted policy to issue initial decisions. OALJ initial decisions are reviewed and voted-on by the FERC Commissioners before accruing appellate oversight of the D.C. Circuit, or other U.S. Circuit Court with jurisdiction. In formulating decisions, OALJ judges hold courtroom hearings and issue a broad range of intermediate orders on motions, sometimes after oral argument. FERC judges also serve as mediators and assist participants in settling complex disputes with large monetary impacts.

Law clerks serve for two-year terms, and are assigned to 1-2 judges, depending on office needs. Although each judge's needs may vary, the law clerk will often work closely with the assigned judge in drafting orders and decisions on complex issues in energy law, among many other matters. While clerks work with judges on foundational energy law questions, the vibrant field of energy regulation also requires clerks to gain familiarity with legal questions of all sorts, such as administrative, environmental, corporate, corporate finance, contract, tax, securities, antitrust, evidence, and much more. Law clerks will often independently conduct legal and factual research, advise the judge verbally and in-person, and prepare draft decisions, orders, or memos for the judge's review. To provide this assistance, the law clerks will sometimes work with energy industry analysts and other in-house experts to gain technical knowledge. Law clerks will also have the opportunity to sit in, and assist with, trials, oral arguments and mediations, and act as the judge's primary communicator with participants.

The FERC law clerk position requires a firm two-year commitment. This field is highly technical and requires substantial training to achieve competence. Once achieved through the clerk program, however, this competence often affords OALJ clerks highly coveted and otherwise unavailable employment opportunities. Clerks may interview for other employment after twenty-two (22) months. Recent clerks have quickly gone-on to other clerking opportunities, litigation and general counsel positions within FERC, in policy roles, and to law firms of all sizes.

Outstanding organizational, critical analysis, and legal writing skills are all essential for our law clerks.

As a Law Clerk, some of your typical work assignments may include:
  • Performing Legal Research and Analysis
  • Writing and Communicating
  • Providing Customer Service
  • Performing Case Management


Conditions of Employment

  • You must be a U.S. Citizen or National.
  • This is a bargaining unit position.
  • Generally, male applicants must be registered with the Selective Service.
  • This position has an education requirement; you must submit transcripts.
  • You may be required to divest certain energy-related securities.
  • A background investigation is required.

You must meet all eligibility and qualification (experience and/or education) requirements by the end of the Spring 2023 semester.


You must meet the following basic requirements, by the end of the Spring semester 2023: (1) hold a Juris Doctorate (J.D.) or Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) from an accredited college or university.

In addition, to the minimum requirements above, you must meet the following by the closing date of this announcement:


Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills, and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including any volunteer experience.


This position has a basic education requirement listed under the "Qualifications" section of this announcement.

Additional information

FERC remains ranked #1 in Work/Life Balance, for the 7th year in a row, among the Best Places to Work through the Partnership for Public Service! As a leader in Work/Life Balance, we are proud to offer telework flexibilities in accordance with agency policy.

The duty location of this position is in Washington, DC. Based on our current operating status, FERC employees are teleworking as opposed to coming on-site. When it is determined that our agency will be moving to the reopening phase of our Reconstitution Plan, the expectation will be to physically return to the office in Washington, DC. Telework days and any waiting period for eligibility will be determined at that time.

When promotion potential is shown, future promotions will be dependent on your ability to perform the duties at a higher level, the continuing need for an employee assigned to the higher level, and administrative approval.

If selected for this position, you will be required to:
  • Complete a Declaration for Federal Employment (OF-306) to determine your suitability for Federal employment.
  • Have your Federal salary payments made by direct deposit to a financial institution of your choice.
  • Go through a Personal Identity Verification (PIV) process that requires two forms of identification from the Form I-9. Federal law requires verification of the identity and employment eligibility of all new hires in the U.S. FERC also participates in the USCIS Electronic Employment Eligibility Verification Program (E-Verify). For more information about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, visit:
  • Attend a mandatory ethics training. We are governed by the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) Standards of Conduct, the criminal conflict of interest statutes, and FERC's supplemental ethics regulation, which specifically prohibits FERC employees from holding certain energy-related securities. To comply with these regulations and statutes, divestiture of these securities may be required after you begin employment. See 5 C.F.R. 2634-41; 18 U.S.C. 201-208; 5 C.F.R. 3401. If selected, you may also be required to file a financial disclosure statement within 30 days of appointment.
  • Receive authorization from OPM on any job offer you receive, if you are or were (within the last 5 years) a political Schedule A, Schedule C, or Non-Career SES employee in the Executive Branch.

Important note regarding Executive Order 14043 (Guidance on Enforcing COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement for Federal Employees): To ensure compliance with an applicable nationwide preliminary injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID-19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees .

Federal agencies may request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine. Any information regarding vaccination status will be maintained securely and confidentially.