General Attorney (Trade Regulation)

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


The Bureau of Consumer Protection, Enforcement Division litigates civil contempt and civil penalty actions to enforce federal court injunctions and administrative orders in FTC consumer protection cases; coordinates FTC actions with criminal law enforcement agencies through its Criminal Liaison Unit; develops, reviews, and enforces consumer protection rules; coordinates multi-pronged initiatives to address current consumer protection issues; and administers the BCP's bankruptcy program.

Learn more about this agency


As a General Attorney (Trade Regulation), you will:

- Make initial determinations as to whether matters should be investigated.

- Determine legal theories and plans for investigations and litigation and carry them out.

- Recommend whether cases should be closed, resolved informally or through administrative or federal court settlements, or litigated administratively or in federal court.

- Investigating matters and engage in all aspects of civil litigation, including preparing cases for trial by securing and preparing evidence, conferring with witnesses, deposing witnesses, drafting motions and legal briefs, drafting and responding to discovery requests, participating in pretrial conferences, examining and cross-examining witnesses, trying cases, and negotiating settlements.

- Prepare and prosecute, or assist others in the preparation and prosecution of, difficult, complex, and important cases.

- Confer with government agencies, public authorities and attorneys, business people and other members of the public, providing them with information on matters of law, Commission procedure and policy.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. citizenship requirement must be met by the closing date of this vacancy.
  • This position is subject to a background investigation.
  • Males born after December 31, 1959 must register with Selective Service.
  • Possess a J.D. or LL.B. degree from an accredited law school.
  • Member in good standing of the Bar of a state or territory - US, PR, DC.
  • Must submit a Cover Letter and Writing Sample.
  • May be required to serve a two year trial period.


Minimum Requirements

Applicants must have attained the first professional law degree (LL.B. or J.D.) from an accredited law school and be an active member in good standing of the bar of a state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, or a U.S. territory. Applicants must demonstrate excellent writing skills and be able to work effectively with other people, exercise sound judgment, and exhibit a strong interest in the work of the agency.

Additional Requirements

GS-13 Positions

For appointments to attorney positions: active member of the bar in good standing and 24 months of legal experience after graduation from law school.

GS-14 Positions
For appointments to attorney positions: active member of the bar in good standing and 42 months of legal experience after graduation from law school.

GS-15 Positions
For attorney appointments: active member of the bar in good standing and 60 months of legal experience after graduation from law school.

Note: Legal and nonlegal experience gained in the Federal Government before completing law school does not satisfy post law school experience.

Applicants must demonstrate excellent writing skills and be able to work effectively with other people, exercise sound judgment, and exhibit a strong interest in the work of the agency.

For the GS-14 level: In addition to a law degree and active bar membership, you must have 42 months of legal experience after graduation from law school. At least 18 months of your legal experience after graduation from law school must be comparable to the GS-13 level.

Qualifying experience at the GS-13 level include examples such as independently plan, organize and conduct analysis of the matters on which they are working, based on preliminary background and policy information provided by the supervisor. Their written work is expected to be technically correct and not require detailed review. At this level, attorneys are journeymen attorneys whose work entails demanding legal research and analysis; drafting and reviewing draft motions, subpoenas, complaints, orders, rule proposals, and memoranda; and, where appropriate to the office, participating in investigational hearings, negotiating sessions, and trials. They contribute to the tactical and policy decisions inherent in various matters and, where appropriate, they should be able to assist in the trial of these matters. Attorneys at this level take charge of basic matters, moderately complex and novel matters, and make substantial contributions to the most complex, novel, or significant matters.

For the GS-15 level: In addition to a law degree and active bar membership, you must have 60 months of legal experience after graduation from law school to qualify for the GS-15 level.

Qualifying experience at the GS-15 level include examples such as being an outstanding writer and highly effective oral advocate. You must also exercise sound judgement, supervise, work well with, and motivate others, and make decided contributions to the work of the office. You must function independently and their work should not require close supervision or substantive review. The supervisor must have complete confidence in their judgment. At this level, you should be recognized for their competence. They should be able to represent the agency before any group or in any setting, and to effectively manage the preparation and trial of virtually any major case, all stages in the appeal of such a case, or conduct evaluation and analysis of the most complex cases of major significance for which little if any precedent exists. Please note: Prior experience (legal and nonlegal experience) gained before completing law school cannot be used to satisfy the post law school experience requirements.

Candidates must meet time-in-grade requirements within thirty (30) days of the closing date of the announcement.


Required Documents: Resume - Cover letter - Writing sample

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


This position has an education requirement. You must submit a copy of your transcripts. Unofficial transcripts will be accepted in the application package; however, official transcripts will be required prior to receiving an official offer.

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: FOREIGN EDUCATION

Additional information

This position is in the Excepted Service (Schedule A).

Individuals applying for this announcement are required to complete and submit an online application and all supporting documentation through the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) application system, USAJOBS. Traditional rating and ranking procedures do not apply.

Only experience and education obtained by the closing date of this announcement will be considered.

How You Will Be Evaluated

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

You will be evaluated based on the overall strength of your credentials as demonstrated by your cover letter, resume, writing sample, and experience. The most qualified candidates will be selected for interviews, which will also be considered in making the final decision. Application of Veterans' Preference: There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Federal Trade Commission considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. If you are eligible for veterans' preference, you are encouraged to include that information in your cover letter or resume and attach supporting documentation (e.g., DD Form 214 or other substantiating documents) to your submission.

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Position sensitivity and risk
Moderate Risk (MR)

Trust determination process

Required Documents

To apply for this position, you must submit a complete Application Package which includes:
1. Your résumé showing work schedule, hours worked per week, dates of employment and duties performed.
2. Other supporting documents:
  • Cover Letter
  • Writing Sample
  • Copies of scientific articles published in peer-reviewed journals, optional
  • Graduate Transcript(s), if the position has an education requirement - REQUIRED
  • Veterans' Preference documentation, if applicable (e.g., DD-214 Member Copy 4 showing type of discharge/character of service, SF- 15 Form and related documentation, VA letter, etc.) Career Transition Assistance Program/Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program documentation, if applicable (e.g., Certification of Expected Separation, Reduction-In-Force Separation Notice, or Notice of Proposed Removal; SF-50 that documents the RIF separation action; and most recent performance appraisal.)

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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