General Counsel (Court Executive Service IV)

Washington, D.C
Jul 17, 2019
Jul 24, 2019
Full Time


The General Counsel serves at the pleasure of the Executive Officer and works under the general supervision of the Deputy Executive Officer. The incumbent directs and manages the Office of General Counsel.

Learn more about this agency


The incumbent is responsible for resolving complex and difficult legal issues concerning the D.C. Courts, supervises assigned staff, and performs varied legal advisory functions with independent responsibility for providing officials of the D.C. Courts with legal counsel in such broadly-defined areas as the following: appropriations, contract law, personnel, procurement and other court policy, rulemaking, tax issues, criminal and civil procedure, retirement provisions, and legal issues related to accounting.

Brief description of major duties:
  • Advises the Joint Committee on Judicial Administration, Executive Officer, Chief Judges, Associate Judges, Magistrate Judges, and management personnel on federal and District laws, regulations and cases, opinions of the Comptroller General, and agency policies as they affect court operations.
  • Directs and manages responses to oral and written requests for legal review, advice and recommendations from judicial officers and management officials on matters relating to court administration, appropriations, judicial procedures, procurement, personnel rights and benefits.
  • Directs the Office of General Counsel's answers to questions which are covered by interpretations of the Comptroller General or other legal authority and obtains guidance from the Government Accountability Office, the Office of Personnel Management, the Department of the Treasury, the Office of Management and Budget, and other agencies with respect to court issues.
  • Provides effective, creative, and strategic legal advice on questions of law or administrative policy involved in the operations of the Courts and their contacts with other agencies, private organizations, and the general public.
  • Keeps abreast of legislative changes and proposed changes affecting the Courts so as to anticipate legal issues or risks.
  • Directs and manages the preparation of legal requests and reports for submission to District or federal entities including the Government Accountability Office and the Office of Management and Budget.
  • Serves as the senior liaison between the D.C. Courts and various federal and District of Columbia agencies concerning issues involving the Courts' responsibilities to the public and its employees and litigation involving the Courts or court employees.
  • Directs the research and preparation of memoranda of law concerning the correct court procedures to follow in order to comply with statutory provisions, rules, and court decisions. Identifies areas where operations or conduct of personnel might be incompatible with statutes or regulations and proposes appropriate remedies in order to limit or mitigate the Courts' risk exposure.
  • Serves as the legal advisor to various ad hoc committees of the Court of Appeals and the Superior Court.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - Conferences and meetings

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • This position is an Excepted Service appointment.
  • Background and security investigation are required.

To qualify for this position, you must submit the following:
1. Resume

2. Completed Vacancy Questionnaire

3. Documentation /Proof of Education (e.g. copy of law degree or transcript from an accredited university or college)

4. Responses to Court Executive Service Core Qualifications

5. List of professional references

All required documentation must be received by the closing date of the announcement.



Graduation from an accredited law school and an active member of the District of Columbia Unified Bar. A minimum of ten (10) years of progressively responsible legal administrative and management experience with at least six of those years in positions of substantial management responsibility in a court, legal, or justice-related environment.
  • Broad legal knowledge
  • Knowledge of and skillfully conversant in the District of Columbia Code, the Rules of the D.C. Courts, and federal legislation affecting the Courts
  • Knowledge of the legislative history and background of statutes affecting the operation of the D.C. Courts
  • Proficient in performing extensive legal research, and the demonstrated ability to discern legal principles from leading legal treatises, federal and local case law, legislation, law review articles, legal digests, and other legal manuals
  • Demonstrated skill in writing detailed legal memoranda that convey research, analysis, and recommendations; and ability to make concise, comprehensive oral reports and presentations
  • Ability to exercise independent judgment in providing guidance on complex legal issues
  • Ability to manage and supervise employees

To qualify you must provide evidence of progressively responsible leadership experience that is indicative of senior executive level management capability and directly related to the skills and abilities outlined under Court Executive Service Core Qualifications (CESCQ) listed below. Typically, experience of this nature will have been gained at or above the GS/JS-15 grade level in the federal/DC Court service or its equivalent in the public/private sector. Candidates must possess senior level management and technical experience. Candidates' experience must have been at a high level of difficulty to show clearly that the candidate possesses the professional and technical, as well as program knowledge, skills, and abilities outline under the five CESCQ. Failure to meet the basic qualification and address the CESCQ factors automatically disqualifies an applicant.

Please note that authorization for the release of your adult criminal record revealing any convictions and forfeitures, and any criminal cases currently pending before the courts is required. If you are selected for the position, a criminal history records check will be conducted.


To qualify based on education, upload a copy of your law school transcript or degree. The transcript must show the name of the law school, your name, list of courses with credit hours, major(s), and grade-point average or class ranking.

Foreign Education: Education completed outside the United States must have been evaluated by a private U.S. organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign educational credentials, commonly called a credential evaluation service to meet the above requirements.

Additional information

This job is being filled by an alternative hiring process and is not in the competitive Federal civil service.

Please note there is a mandatory one year probationary period for all non-judicial new employees.

All required information must be received by the vacancy announcement closing date.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Upon receipt of your complete application package, a review of your application will be made to ensure that you meet the minimum qualification requirements. Answers submitted in the questionnaire must be supported on your resume.

Your resume must reflect the relevant experience and that you meet the minimum qualifications or your application will not be considered.

To preview questions please click here .

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance

Drug test required

Required Documents

1. Resume

2. Completed Vacancy Questionnaire

3. Documentation /Proof of Education (e.g. copy of law degree or transcript from an accredited law school)

4. Responses to Court Executive Service Core Qualifications

5. List of professional references

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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