Student Trainee (Legal Intern)

Washington, D.C
Oct 16, 2020
Oct 24, 2020
Full Time


These are excepted service appointments in the CFPB Pathways Intern Program. These appointments WILL NOT be eligible for conversion to a permanent position and WILL NOT be extended past 12 weeks.

The CFPB is seeking law students to work with CFPB attorneys and other staff. This is an excellent opportunity for students to be involved in, and learn about, substantive consumer-protection laws, the enforcement of those laws, and the general administrative laws of a federal agency.

Learn more about this agency


The major duties of this position include:
  • Conducting legal research and analysis on relevant legal issues, including those of administrative law and procedure, consumer financial law and financial regulation.
  • Initiating and drafting standardized legal documents routinely needed for specific legal actions, including motions, orders, answers, pleadings, subpoenas. Assisting attorneys in case preparation, assembling exhibits, affidavits and other documents. Assembling and organizing files and records for disposition or transfer to records depository.
  • Establishing, maintaining, and closing case files or systems of legal records, annotates indices and status records, compiling workload and status reports, and locating and abstracting data from files and records.
  • Assisting attorneys in researching and drafting of pleadings, briefs, and other legal documents on questions relating to routine legal matters of interest.
  • Collecting and preparing summaries of articles relating to consumer issues as requested.

The CFPB is looking for summer student interns in the following divisions (offices):
  • Legal Division
  • Office of Regulations
  • Office of Enforcement
  • Office of Supervision Policy
  • Office of Civil Rights
  • Office of Innovation

NOTE: For a brief description and some of the expected duties within each office, please refer to the "QUALIFICATIONS" section of this announcement.

Travel Required

Occasional travel - Occasional travel may be required.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • Please refer to "Conditions of Employment."
  • Click "Print Preview" to review the entire announcement before applying.
  • Public Trust Background Investigation will be required

The experience may have been gained in either the public or private sector or volunteer service . One year of experience refers to full-time work; part-time work is considered on a prorated basis. To ensure full credit for your work experience, please indicate dates of employment by month/year, and indicate number of hours worked per week on your résumé.


You must meet the following requirements within 30 days of the closing date of this announcement.

Specialized Experience for the CN-30 level: One year of specialized experience at or equivalent to the CN-22 level (equivalent to the GS-4 level) in the Federal service obtained in either the private of public sector. For this position, specialized experience is defined as: experience that demonstrates knowledge of analytical methods and techniques. Experience should include working in a support capacity for legal professionals such as in a law firm, legal division, or other similar department with a focus on legal matters.


4-year course of study leading to a bachelor's degree.

In addition to meeting one of the above requirements, applicants MUST be pursuing a course of study to obtain a Law Degree. Second year law school students are preferred however, first year law students should consider our general internship which will be posted later (in accordance with ABA - NALP Section D "Principles and Standards for Law Placement and Recruitment Activities").

Experience may have been gained in either the public or private sector. One year of experience refers to full-time work; part-time work is considered on a prorated basis.

You MUST meet the definition of a STUDENT for the duration of your appointment.

The definition of a student is: an individual accepted for enrollment or enrolled and seeking a degree (diploma, certificate, etc.) in a qualifying educational institution, on a full or half-time basis (as defined by the institution in which the student is enrolled), including awardees of the Harry S. Truman Foundation Scholarship Program under Public Law 93-842. Students need not be in actual physical attendance, so long as all other requirements are met. Students need not be enrolled in the summer as long as they are enrolled in both the preceding spring semester and subsequent fall semester. An individual who needs to complete less than the equivalent of half an academic/vocational or technical course-load immediately prior to graduating is still considered a student for purposes of this Program.

CFPB is seeking law students for the following offices:

Legal Division

The Bureau's Legal Division (LD) serves as counsel to the Bureau, advising the Director about the work and operations of the agency. Interns in LD will have the opportunity to work on projects for each of the three program offices: (1) Litigation & Oversight, (2) General Law & Ethics and (3) Law & Policy. Projects generally consist of (1) conducting substantive legal research on complex questions of law, (2) drafting memoranda, correspondence, and motions, (3) assisting attorneys with matters in active litigation or active Congressional investigations, and (4) assisting LD attorneys in the Bureau-wide review process for policy and rulemaking initiatives. Interns are also invited to attend weekly staff meetings, moots, court proceedings, and other exciting events throughout the term.

Office of Regulations

The Bureau's Office of Regulations (Regs) supports and provides strategic direction for the Bureau's rulemaking, interpretive guidance and regulatory implementation functions. Interns will be placed with a rulemaking or regulatory implementation team for the duration of their time at the Bureau. They seek candidates with a wide variety of backgrounds and interests, including candidates interested in government, public policy, regulation, administrative law, consumer protection, or consumer finance. An intern's duties may include researching and analyzing complex factual, legal, and policy issues; preparing memos addressing these issues; and presenting their work to team members and others.

Office of Enforcement :

The Office of Enforcement (ENF) is the primary litigating arm of the Bureau and enforces federal consumer financial laws by investigating cases of potential wrongdoing and taking legal action where appropriate. Interns are assigned to a case team that is in active litigation and also receive assignments in support of other investigations and cases. In addition to learning about substantive consumer protection laws, the enforcement of those laws, and the general administrative policies and procedures of a federal agency, this is an excellent opportunity to learn about the investigative process and the nuts and bolts of trial-level civil litigation. An intern's duties may include: conducting legal research and drafting internal memoranda; drafting filings for enforcement actions litigating in both federal court and administrative courts; and assisting in preparation for depositions, hearings, and negotiations with outside counsel. When possible, Interns are provided with the opportunity to observe hearings, depositions, and other proceedings.

Office of Supervision Policy

The Office of Supervision Policy (OSP) develops supervision strategy and provides subject-matter expertise to the Bureau's examination staff on legal and policy issues. OSP Interns can expect assignments such as: (1) drafting legal memos to analyze whether citations of Federal consumer financial law are appropriate in examinations in a variety of areas, (2) updating examination procedures, job aids, and training materials used by regional staff to ensure they remain up-to-date and easy to use, and (3) reviewing examination reports, supervisory letters, and other OSP documents, such as Supervisory Highlights , a public report that shares anonymized findings of the supervision program. Interns are also invited to join calls with examiners, OSP subject matter team meetings and bi-weekly staff meetings, and meetings with other regulators.

Office of Civil Rights

The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) enforces civil rights laws and works to prevent and correct any unlawful discrimination in the workplace for employees and applicants for employment. OCR processes EEO complaints filed by employees and applicants in accordance with timeframes and guidelines set forth by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and issues mandated reports. Interns in the OCR will have the opportunity to (1) observe the complete EEO adjudication process and assist in reviewing affidavits, Reports of Investigations, final agency decisions, and accept/dismiss letters for legal accuracy before issuance, (2) conduct targeted legal research in civil rights laws, employment laws, and EEOC federal regulations and write clear and concise legal memorandum on issues that arise within the EEO Complaint Process, and (3) work on special projects within OCR to support its mission, including assistance in research and drafting reports and policy, assisting with creating and presenting webinars on EEO topics, and supporting monthly educational events for the workforce.

Office of Innovation

The Office of Innovation (OI) promotes innovation, competition, and consumer access within financial services. They are responsible for the development, coordination, and implementation of Bureau efforts to spur consumer-friendly innovation. This includes implementation of the Bureau's innovation policies and coordinating with other regulators, both on a one-off basis and through participation in the American Consumer Financial Network (ACFIN) and the Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN). An intern's duties are expected to include: conducting diligence on applicants under the three innovation policies, researching and analyzing factual and legal issues raised by applications, engaging with applicants, participating in internal Bureau meetings, and interacting with external stakeholders, such as consumer advocacy groups, industry trade associations, individual companies, and government regulators. OI is particularly interested in candidates with a strong background and/or interest in FinTech.


You MUST submit transcripts or equivalent.

You must have a 4-year course of study leading to a bachelor's degree. In addition to meeting, applicants MUST be pursuing a course of study to obtain a Law Degree.

The education generally must be from an accredited (or pre-accredited) college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Additional information

- We may select from this announcement or any other source to fill one or more vacancies.
- This is a non-bargaining unit position.
- We offer opportunities for telework.
- We offer opportunities for flexible work schedules.
-Ethics: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau employees are subject to government-wide ethical standards of conduct, financial disclosure requirements, and post-employment prohibitions, which applicants may review at In addition, Bureau employees must comply with the Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (5 CFR 9401), which, among other things, prohibit an employee or the employee's spouse or minor child from owning or controlling a debt or equity interest in an entity supervised by the Bureau. Regulations also impose restrictions on the outside activities of certain Bureau employees, including examiners and attorneys. Applicants may review the Bureau ethics regulations and a summary of the regulations at Questions regarding these requirements and prohibitions should be directed to the Bureau Ethics Office at .

CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT - If selected for this position, you will be required to:
-Maintain status of student
-Must be pursuing a course of study related to the position being filled.
-During the summer internship students are only eligible for a transportation subsidy.

How You Will Be Evaluated

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

Your application includes your:

1. Resume, (REQUIRED)
2. Responses to the online questions,
3. Transcripts* - Proof of enrollment (REQUIRED), It is highly recommended that students provide a recent transcript (i.e. fall 2019) to prove their student status. Unofficial transcript or a screen shot of current classes are acceptable at the point of application.
4. Cover letter (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED).

* At the point of application, it is required that candidates provide a recent transcript(s) (official or unofficial) that indicates their current status as a student.

We use a multi-step process to evaluate and refer applicants:

1. Minimum Requirements : Your application must show that you meet all minimum qualifications as described under the Qualifications section. If your application is incomplete, you will not be considered.

2. Application Review : The hiring manager may review the application of all qualified individuals and make selection(s).

Veterans' preference is applied after applicants are assessed. Veterans awarded preference is required by law to be considered before non-preference-eligibles in the applicant pool. Qualified veterans' with a service-connected disability of 10% or more will be placed at the top of the highest quality category. For more information on veteran's preference, please click here .

3. Referral : If you are among the top qualified candidates, your application will be referred to a selecting official for consideration and possible interview.

To preview questions please click here .

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Required Documents

A complete application includes 1. A résumé, 2. Vacancy question responses, and 3. Submission of any required documents. Please note that if you do not provide all required information, as specified in this announcement, you may not be considered for this position (or may not receive the special consideration for which you may be eligible).

Please ensure all required documents, including any required work samples, narratives, or other materials as stated in this announcement, are attached to your application package. Documents can be uploaded under the category of "Cover Letter".

All applicants are required to submit a résumé either by creating one in USAJOBS or uploading one of their own choosing. (Cover letters are optional.) To receive full credit for relevant experience, please list the month/year and number of hours worked for experience listed on your résumé. We suggest that you preview the online questions, as you may need to customize your résumé to ensure that it supports your responses to these questions. Please view résumé tips.

VETERANS' PREFERENCE DOCUMENTATION: If you are claiming veterans preference, please see applicant guide for required documentation . In order to be considered for veterans preference, you must submit all required documentation as outlined in the applicant guide.

EDUCATION DOCUMENTATION: For positions with an education requirement, or if you are qualifying for this position by substituting education or training for experience, submit a copy of your transcripts or equivalent. An official transcript will be required if you are selected.

A college or university degree generally must be from an accredited (or pre-accredited) college or university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. For a list of schools which meet these criteria, please refer to Department of Education Accreditation page .

If you are qualifying based on foreign education, you must submit proof of creditability of education as evaluated by a credentialing agency. Refer to the OPM instructions .

Recommended Documents:
COVER LETTER -It is highly recommended that you submit a cover letter when applying for this vacancy.

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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