Trial Attorney - Land Acquisition

Employer
USAJobs
Location
District of Columbia, D.C
Posted
Oct 08, 2019
Closes
Oct 16, 2019
Hours
Full Time
Duties

Summary

The Environment and Natural Resources Division (ENRD) of the U.S. Department of Justice is seeking experienced litigators for its Land Acquisition Section (LAS) in Washington, D.C. LAS is responsible for acquiring land and other real property on behalf of the United States through condemnation proceedings for purposes ranging from establishing national parks to creating military training centers to expanding our border security infrastructure.
Learn more about this agency

Responsibilities

Recent cases being handled by LAS include the acquisition of land to create and expand national parks and forests such as the Flight 93 National Memorial in Pennsylvania, the Baca Ranch in New Mexico and the Everglades National Park in Florida. LAS also has initiated hundreds of cases throughout the United States for military and national security reasons, including construction of border security infrastructure and land ports of entry such as the Peace Arch in Blaine, Washington, expansion of military training facilities in California, Nevada and South Carolina, and storage of the nation's Strategic Petroleum Reserve. The attorneys hired through this advertisement will focus, in part, on condemnation actions involving acquisition of land for the continued development and construction of border security infrastructure along the United States-Mexico border - a project LAS has been working on since the 1990s.

Successful applicants will litigate complex cases associated with exercise of the United States government's power of eminent domain in federal district courts throughout the country. The Section is organized into teams in an effort to promote a collaborative and supportive environment. The Section's cases typically involve significant factual and expert discovery, a substantial motions practice, settlement negotiations and trial. This position will allow the selected applicants to utilize their legal research, writing and oral advocacy skills in all aspects of their assigned cases.

The legal and factual issues involved are often complex and can include the power of the United States to condemn under specific acts of Congress, ascertainment of the market value of property with millions of dollars at stake, and applicability of zoning and land use regulations. The work of the Section is critical to the ability of the federal government to function and serve the people. LAS offers a tremendous opportunity for those interested in complex civil litigation involving discovery, motion practice, settlement negotiations, work with sophisticated experts and significant trial work. This position also offers an opportunity to work on title issues and with expert witnesses, including appraisers, land use consultants and developers.

Travel Required

25% or less - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status
No

Promotion Potential
15

Requirements

Conditions of Employment

  • You must be a U.S. citizen or national.
  • You must complete a background investigation to include pre-employment drug testing.
  • Selective Service Registration is required, as applicable.
  • You must maintain a bank account for direct deposit of salary.


Qualifications

LAS is looking for applicants with significant litigation experience, including discovery, motion practice, expert witness preparation and trial.

Successful applicants must have the following:
  • At least 4 years of litigation experience to qualify for the GS-14 grade level.
  • At least 5 years of litigation experience to qualify for the GS-15 grade level.

In addition to the above qualifications, applicants must possess a J.D. degree; be an active member of the bar (any jurisdiction); and be a U.S. citizen. Additionally, qualified applicants must demonstrate the ability to work well in a collaborative, team-oriented environment, outstanding legal writing skills, and a commitment to the highest ethical and professional standards. Experience in civil litigation involving real property and work with expert witnesses is desirable, but not necessary.

Current salary and years of experience will determine the appropriate salary level. The possible salary range is:
  • GS-14 ($117,191 - $152,352)
  • GS-15 ($137,849 - $166,500)
YOUR RESUME MUST provide specific details as to how your experience meets the specialized experience as described in the vacancy announcement if you are using experience to meet all or part of the qualification requirements. Please ensure that your resume includes the month and year that you began and ended each position held or that position will not be credited toward meeting the specialized experience requirement. Part-time employment will be prorated in crediting experience. Failure to provide details will result in an ineligible rating.

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

Education

All academic degrees and coursework must be completed at a college or university that has obtained accreditation or pre-accreditation status from an accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. For a list of schools that meet this criteria, see www.ed.gov .

Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet the above education requirements if you can show that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States. It is your responsibility to timely provide such evidence by submitting proof of creditability of education as evaluated by a credentialing agency with your application materials. More information may be found at https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html .

All documentation must be in English or include an English translation. https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html .

Additional information

Veterans Preference: If you are entitled to or claim veteran preference (VP), you should indicate the type of veteran preference (5 or 10 points) you are claiming on your resume. In order To determine your eligibility, you can find additional information at: http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/veterans-services/vet-guide/ . To verify your veteran preference entitlement, submit a copy of the Member Copy 4 of your DD-214; official statement of service from your command if you are currently on active duty; or other official documentation (e.g., documentation of receipt of a campaign badge or expeditionary medal) that shows your military service was performed under honorable conditions.

Schedule A: DOJ welcomes and encourages applications from persons with disabilities and 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. DOJ also encourages eligible Schedule A applicants to submit their resumes to resume@benderconsult.com, and reference "Federal Career Opportunities" in the subject line. Additional information is found at: www.benderconsult.com.

Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. Additional information is found at: www.sss.gov .

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. Only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review and the United States Attorneys' Offices. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, non-U.S. Citizens may apply for employment with other organizations, but should be advised that appointments of non-U.S. Citizens are 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.

Please Note : Additional candidates may be selected if more positions become available in the Division within 90 days after the announcement closes.

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 your qualifications for this position as evidenced by the experience you report relative to this position.

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, www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/SF15.pdf 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 his or her retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that he/she was transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Other

Drug test required
Yes

Position sensitivity and risk
Moderate Risk (MR)

Trust determination process
Suitability/Fitness

Required Documents

  • Resumé demonstrating relevant experience and dates the experience was obtained
  • Brief Statement of Interest
  • Writing Sample
  • OF-306, Declaration of Employment
  • DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty and other supporting documentation, if applicable.

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