Counsel (Privacy & FOIA)

3 days left

Washington, D.C
Jan 23, 2023
Jan 31, 2023
Full Time

Major Duties and Responsibilities

General Duties

Provides legal advice and guidance on legal issues facing the agency on privacy, FOIA, and other relevant areas of law. Reviews and assists in the development and drafting of documents such as legal opinions, regulations and related documents, contracts and other agreements, correspondence, legal briefs and other documents of importance to the agency.

Contributes to the development of legal advice and determinations in matters involving the planning, discussion, and coordination of activities related to FOIA/PA

Conducts legal research to analyze and evaluate legal issues pertaining to FHFA in order to apply broad, general legal guidance and case law to issues related to one or more FHFA program areas.

Drafts legal documents and prepares presentations for senior staff and management on matters and research topics related to FOIA/PA.

Takes initiative to identify problems, develop solutions, and make recommendations by applying legal knowledge to agency functions.

Work with the Managing Associate General Counsel for Privacy/FOIA, FOIA/PA Officer and others to audit, review, and inspect the FOIA/PA program to ensure compliance with FHFA and Government-wide policies, procedures and legal requirements. Provides support for audits and reviews involving FOIA/PA and the agency's privacy program conducted by external auditors (i.e., GAO, Inspector General).

Participates in conferences, meetings, and presentations, and provides advice to attorneys and staff.

Performs other duties as assigned.

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Privacy Act:

The employee will work in support of FHFA's activities related to administering FHFA's Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act (FOIA/PA) programs.

Under the guidance of the Managing Associate General Counsel for Privacy/FOIA, the employee will be responsible for collaboratively working with the FOIA/PA Officer and others in planning, developing, and maintaining the full range of policies, procedures, tools and techniques and reports for FHFA's FOIA/PA program.

The employee will support the FOIA/PA branch as necessary by logging and analyzing coming FOIA/PA requests for compliance with policy; monitoring the FOIA/PA tracking system; communicating with requesters and staff - providing assistance when needed; conducting document searches; conducting FOIA or related reviews, identifying exemptions and applying redactions; preparing draft correspondence and documentation, including justifications for denials and exemptions and few waiver and expedited processing determinations; preparing and providing documents to end-users.


Conditions of Employment

  • Must be a U.S. Citizen or National
  • Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered for Selective Service
  • Resume and supporting documents (See How To Apply)
  • Suitable for Federal employment, as determined by background investigation
  • May be required to successfully complete a probationary period
  • Only experience and education obtained by the closing date of this announcement will be considered.
  • Bar membership required


BASIC REQUIREMENT: All applicants must possess the following:
  • J.D. or L.L.B. degree
  • Active BAR membership in good standing in any state, territory of the United States, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.
Specialized Experience:
The skills and experience listed immediately below are of particular importance to the position and applicants should provide specific detailed information in these areas, where applicable, as part of their application.

Qualifying experience for the EL/GS-12 level includes one year of specialized experience at least equivalent to the ELGS-11 which is in or directly related to the line of work of the position to be filled and which has equipped the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position.

Qualifying experience for the EL/GS-13 level includes one year of specialized experience at least equivalent to the EL/GS-12 which is in or directly related to the line of work of the position to be filled and which has equipped the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position.

Qualifying experience for the EL/GS-14 level includes one year of specialized experience at least equivalent to the EL/GS-13 which is in or directly related to the line of work of the position to be filled and which has equipped the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position.

Examples of specialized experience include the following:
  • Conducting legal research and analysis and communicating legal concepts both orally and in writing.
  • Working with legal issues pertaining to the Freedom of Information/Privacy Acts (FOIA/PA) and advising leadership and staff on their implications and applicability.
  • Planning, developing, and maintaining the full range of policies, procedures, and practices required to conduct an organization's FOIA/PA program.
  • Reviewing and analyzing FOIA/PA requests and actions, including review of documents, assessment of exclusions, and applicability of relevant laws.
Experience working with or knowledge of banking, securities, insolvency, and/or other federal financial laws described but not required.

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 volunteer experience.


ARE YOU USING YOUR EDUCATION TO QUALIFY? You MUST provide transcripts or other documentation to support your educational claims. Unless otherwise stated: (1) official or unofficial transcripts are acceptable, or (2) you may submit a list with all of your courses, grades, semester, year, and credit for the course. All materials must be submitted by the closing date of the announcement.

GRADUATE EDUCATION: One academic year of graduate education is considered to be the number of credits hours your graduate school has determined to represent one academic year of full-time study. Such study may have been performed on a full-time or part-time basis. If you cannot obtain your graduate school's definition of one year of graduate study, 18 semester hours (or 27 quarter hours) should be considered as satisfying the requirement for one year of full-time graduate study.

FOREIGN EDUCATION: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit:

Additional information

There is currently one vacancy available for this announcement. However, should additional vacancies become available within three months from the closing date of this announcement, eligible applicants for this position may be referred for consideration for the additional position(s).

FHFA may select from this announcement or any other source to fill one or more vacancies. This announcement may be used to fill like positions in other organizations within the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

Current or Former Political Appointees: The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) must authorize employment offers made to current or former political appointees. If you are currently, or have been within the last 5 years, a political Schedule A, Schedule C, Non-career SES or Presidential Appointee employee in the Executive Branch, you must disclose this information to the Human Resources Office.

Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered or exempt from Selective Service (see ).

FHFA is an Equal Opportunity Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment regardless of race, color, religion, gender (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity), national origin, disability (physical or mental), age (40 years of age or over), genetic information, parental status, marital status, prior protected EEO activity, political affiliation, or other non-merit factors.

REASONABLE ACCOMODATION:FHFA provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities, except when doing so would pose an undue hardship on the Agency. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify FHFA. The Agency's decision on granting a reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.
  • (202) 649-3963
  • 711 TTY

Ethics: FHFA employees are subject to government-wide ethical standards of conduct, financial disclosure requirements, and post-employment prohibitions. In addition, certain FHFA employees are prohibited from accepting compensation from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for a two-year period after terminating employment with FHFA. Furthermore, to avoid financial conflicts-of interest or the appearance of conflicts-of-interest, FHFA employees may need to divest or sell certain assets they, their spouse, or minor children own or control, including securities issued by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or the Federal Home Loan Banks. Employees who work on Federal Home Loan Bank issues may need to sell or divest financial interests with any of the Federal Home Loan Bank members, which may include stock in bank holding companies, insurance companies, and other financial services firms. Questions regarding these requirements and prohibitions should be directed to the Office of General Counsel at (202) 649-3088.

Noncompetitive Appointment Authorities: For more information on noncompetitive appointment authority eligibility requirements:
  • Persons with Disabilities-Schedule A
  • Special Hiring Authorities for Veterans
  • Special Hiring Authority for Certain Military Spouses
  • Other Special Appointment Authorities