Librarian (Law)

Woodlawn, Maryland
Sep 21, 2021
Sep 25, 2021
Full Time



Not a virtual position - selectee will be stationed at SSA-HQ in Woodlawn, MD.

Serves as Law Librarian -- provides technical guidance and expert advice on comprehensive legal and legislative reference services to the legal staff members in the Office of the General Counsel, as well as SSA's administrative research and legal staff.

See Responsibilities for other duties.

See Conditions for key information.
Learn more about this agency


  • Provides guidance, direction and oversight in a major library system; programs, e.g., cataloging, acquisitions and collections development and maintenance; reference and research; and/or Internet/Intranet services (Digital Library).
  • Provides comprehensive, reference, research, advisory, evaluative, consultative and instructional services to individuals and groups.
  • Responds to complex or difficult inquiries, including those in new or highly specialized fields of knowledge, those regarding historical materials that are difficult to identify or locate, or for information involving rapidly evolving terminology.
  • Responds orally or in writing to inquiries related to assigned field of responsibility.
  • Exercises considerable judgment and discretion when interpreting and applying guidelines, including deviating from or extending traditional methods, techniques and practices or identifying areas for improvement in established methods and procedures.
  • Plans and manages all functions of a large, diverse legal research collection.
  • Provides extensive legal and legislative reference services utilizing a variety of highly complex technical and specialized databases and other diverse sources.
  • Recommends acquisition and budget modifications by reviewing all new and renewal contracts for publications and library services, for consistency in specifications and customer requirements.

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship required.
  • Selective Service Registration: 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. See
  • Background and/or security investigation may be required.
  • Job offers are contingent on background / security investigation results.
  • Federal employees must be in good standing.
  • Federal employees must have a successful performance rating.
  • Selectees may be required to serve a 1-year probationary period.
  • All application materials must be received by the closing date.
  • Official Personnel Folders will not be reviewed.
  • Requests for copies of application documents will not be accepted.
  • All application forms submitted become the property of SSA Human Resources.
  • Position is eligible for telework consideration. Telework may be approved after all conditions for telework have been met.
  • Position is on a full-time, flex-time schedule and may be eligible for an Alternate Work Schedules (AWS).
  • Position is not authorized to be filled virtually or through outstationing.
  • Relocation expenses will not be paid.
  • Successful performance in this position will be assessed during the 1-year probationary period served by all new appointees (e.g., new to SSA and/or new to this series).
  • Use the Application Checklist at the end of the online questionnaire to ensure submission of a complete and comprehensive application.



MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS for this GS-13 Librarian position are based on:
(1) an Individual Occupational Requirement for the federal GS-1410 series AND
(2) Specialized Experience supplemented by additional experience and/or education

Basic Qualifications for a Librarian position are very specific.
Your resume must clearly support your claim and you must upload transcripts at the conclusion of this questionnaire.
Unsupported claims will cause you to lose consideration for this vacancy.

To meet the IOR for this position, you must have one of the following:

A. One (1) full academic year of graduate study in library science in an accredited college or university, in addition to completing all work required for a bachelor's degree.

B. A combination of college-level education, training and experience that totals at least 5 years. To qualify on this basis, you must establish conclusively that the education, training and experience provided a knowledge and understanding of the theories, principles and techniques of professional librarianship; a knowledge of literature resources; and the knowledge and abilities essential for providing effective library and information services.

(2) SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: You must have at least 52 weeks of Specialized Experience as described below. This experience must have been gained in a federal position at or above GS-12 OR (if your position/experience is in another federal payscale or outside of federal service) by performing duties at a level equivalent to those performed in a federal position at or above GS-12. This Specialized Experience must have provided you with the specific knowledge, skills and abilities to perform the functions of this GS-13 Librarian (Law) position.

SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE is work primarily concerned with directing the overall operation of a law library; utilizing theories and practices by which information is categorized; providing comprehensive legal reference, research and advisory services to professional staff and maintaining up-to-date information on law librarianship.

TYPICAL DUTIES include planning and managing a diverse legal research collection; performing legal research; performing detailed searches of State and Federal codes, case reports, digests and indexes; developing search tools to identify a special legal point or locate a pertinent case or decision; providing legal and legislative reference services; responding to complex inquiries; and researching and monitoring legislative and regulatory issues that may affect an organization.

Specialized Experience must be supplemented by additional experience and/or education as described below:

A. Successful completion of a full course of study in an accredited college or university that meets all academic requirements for a bachelor's degree and included at least 24 semester hours in library science.

B. Successful completion of at least 24 semester hours of legal study in an accredited law school.

C. At least 4 years of library experience of such nature and level to provide a knowledge of the basic principles, theories, practices, techniques, terminology and expressions of law librarianship; an understanding of the standard methods, procedures and techniques of research and analysis of law; ability to acquire additional information about the field and related fields; and some knowledge of literature resources in the field. ***Such experience should be equivalent to that which would have been acquired through successful completion of a full 4-year curriculum in an accredited college or university with major study in library science (as specified in A above) or legal training (as specified in B above).

D. A time-equivalent combination of experience as described in C above with education as described in A above or B above.

Performance of duties that do not meet the requirements of the Specialized Experience statement (above) will result in a rating of ineligible.

Since Specialized Experience also has a time component, it must be evident that the duties you describe meet the time requirement.

Affirmative responses to the experience and eligibility questions in the online questionnaire are subject to verification.

If you are a federal contractor using prior competitive service or veteran eligibility, do not identify yourself as a current federal employee.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS (e.g., Individual Occupational Requirement and Specialized Experience) must be met by the closing date of this announcement.

If your experience was gained in a federal position, state the grade and pay scale of that position in your resume, along with the full start- and stop-dates of each position you are using towards meeting the Specialized Experience requirement.

Federal applicants seeking promotion must have 52 weeks at GS-12 (or other federal equivalent).
Time-in-grade requirement must be met by the closing date of this announcement.

Information on this job series can be found at:


This position has an Individual Occupational Requirement (IOR) in addition to the Specialized Experience requirement with supplemental education/experience. Both requirements are described under QUALIFICATIONS above

You must meet and demonstrate both requirements.

All IOR claims should be stated on your resume and supported by a copy of your relevant transcript(s).

If you are demonstrating a combination of education, training and experience, be very specific about how those items are blended to meet the full qualification.

You may submit an unofficial transcript, but it must include your name, the name of the school, the date of completion and the degree earned.

Remember to submit transcripts for ALL relevant education; e.g., your Bachelor's Degree as well as transcripts for all graduate study.

Highlight courses in library science and/or legal studies to ensure they're given appropriate consideration.

If you are claiming 52 weeks of Specialized Experience be certain to address the experience stated in the requirement and any of the typical duties' you perform.

If you are demonstrating 4 years of library experience to meet the Specialized Experience requirement, be specific about the work you've done and establish how it's equivalent to a qualifying 4-year college curriculum.

If you are demonstrating a time-equivalent combination of experience and education, be specific about the work you've done, establish how it's time-equivalent and provide relevant (highlighted) transcripts.

If selected, you may be required to provide your official college transcripts prior to the effective date of your appointment.

Foreign Education: If your transcripts show education completed in foreign colleges or universities, you must also provide documentation that 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 a conventional/accredited U.S. education program; or that full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university.

Additional information

VACANCY OPEN TO federal employees as follows:

(1) Current competitive service -- permanent OR conditional tenure

(2) Current excepted service, including:
(a) agency with competitive service compatibility (Foreign Service, US Postal Service, etc)
(b) agency with Interchange Agreement
(c) Schedule A (block 5 of APPOINTMENT action shows Reg 213.3102(u) AND you have not been converted to competitive service)
(d) time-limited veteran appointment (block 5 of APPOINTMENT action shows Reg. 316.402(b)(4) AND you have not been converted to competitive service)
(e) not described above (Attorneys, Pathways [PMFs, Recent Grads, Interns] or term appointments) who have prior competitive service OR veteran's status

(3) Former competitive service -- voluntarily separated (resigned or retired)
(a) with permanent tenure (separation at any time)
(b) with conditional tenure (separation within previous 3 years)
(c) with conditional tenure AND veterans preference (separation at any time)

(4) ICTAP/CTAP -- separated from competitive service due to RIF or received notice that you will soon be separated due to RIF - (see )


(5) Veterans -- no federal status - eligible ONLY under Veteran's Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA)

VEOA is a means of eligibility and will not result in priority selection.
VEOA cannot be used to circumvent provisions of the merit promotion process.

VEOA applicants with federal status may apply using multiple eligibilities, but will be considered on federal status first and VEOA only if federal status cannot be used (e.g., former excepted service). Eligibilities must be fully documented in order to receive consideration.

If you are a federal contractor using prior competitive service or veteran eligibility, do not identify yourself as a current federal employee.


See QUALIFICATIONS and CONDITIONS for important information pertaining to this position.

See REQUIRED DOCUMENTS to ensure you submit the documents needed to support your claim.

Position is on a full-time, flex-time schedule and may be eligible for an Alternate Work Schedules (AWS).

Position is eligible for telework consideration.
Telework may be approved after all conditions for telework have been met.

Position is not authorized to be filled virtually or through outstationing.

Salary will be set in accordance with locality pay provisions. If you currently receive a higher locality pay, you will lose entitlement to the higher locality pay if selected for this position.

Relocation expenses will not be paid.

Position to be filled under the provisions of the SSA/AFGE Merit Promotion Plan.
Additional selections may be made within 6 months of the date of the initial selection.

This is a moderate risk public trust position. If selected, you may be required to complete Standard Form 85P (Questionnaire for Public Trust Positions) to have the appropriate investigation conducted.

Location of Position:
Office of the Deputy Commissioner for Budget, Finance and Management (ODCBFM)
Office of Facilities and Logistics Management (OLFM)
Office of Media and Logistics Management (OMLM)
Division of Library and Duplicating Services (DLDS)

How You Will Be Evaluated

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


Answer all questions and follow instructions. Errors or omissions may affect your evaluation. The questionnaire takes about 15 minutes. Your score will be based on your responses.

If you are among the highest-ranking applicants based on that score, your resume will be compared to your responses, which are designed to capture the required competencies for this position.

Only applicants who demonstrate the IOR will be evaluated.

To meet Specialized Experience:
Describe duties you perform that meet the Specialized Experience for this position, as well as duties that demonstrate the following Knowledge, Skills and/or Abilities as they pertain to the SpecializedExperience.

-- Ability to communicate, both orally and in writing
-- Knowledge of legal online searches (special methods of legal research)
-- Knowledge of Law Library Theories and Practices
-- Ability to plan and manage a legal research library
-- Knowledge of legislative processes and legal programs
-- Knowledge of Federal budget and acquisition process

Since Specialized Experience has a supplemental education or experience requirement, be sure to address all components of the Specialized Experience requirement.

**It is not sufficient to make claims in the questionnaire that are not supported in your resume.**

Information not specifically stated in your resume cannot be assumed. Information that is copied or restated language from the vacancy announcement or rating criteria will not be considered. If this occurs, you may be found ineligible.

If you provide a response to the online questionnaire that indicates you are not eligible, fail to provide documents to support your claim OR you are otherwise found ineligible during this part of the review, you will not receive further consideration.

Your resume must support your answers to the questionnaire. It isn't necessary to address each question individually, but you should provide a clear description of the duties you perform that pertain to the experience you claim.

If you are among the highest-ranked applicants and your resume clearly demonstrates that you meet the minimum qualifications (e.g., IOR and specialized experience) your name will be referred to the hiring office and your applicable documents will be forwarded for further review.

Your description of your knowledge, skills and abilities is subject to verification by the selecting official. You may be asked to provide specific examples or documentation or to verify a response by a practical demonstration of your claimed ability.

Preview questions here:

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Position sensitivity and risk
Noncritical-Sensitive (NCS)/Moderate Risk

Trust determination process

Required Documents



ALL APPLICANTS must submit a resume. (SSA employees may use SSA-45, but must submit all other required documents as specified below.)

Applicants with federal status must also submit relevant SF-50(s).
Current federal employees must also submit a current performance appraisal.

RESUMES must describe duties you perform as they relate to the specialized experience required for this position AND duties as they relate to the specialized experience supplements. Include your employer, number of hours per week, start/stop dates (month/day/year) for each position and (if your position is or was federal) your pay scale and grade.

TRANSCRIPTS - Required to support IOR claim and supplemental Specialized Experience claim. State educational claims in your resume.

Unofficial transcripts are acceptable, but must include your name, the name of the school, the degree earned and date of completion.

SF-50s must show your grade, type of service and career-tenure. SF-50s should coincide with the information in your resume. If you are applying for noncompetitive referral based on grade, you must include the SF-50 showing your placement in a permanent GS-13 position.

PERFORMANCE APPRAISALS must be for a period ending less than a year ago, must be completed and signed and must indicate a rating of satisfactory or better. Do not substitute a 'Performance Plan. ' VEOA-applicants and Military Spouses without federal status are not required to submit a federal performance appraisal.

READ THE INFORMATION BELOW PERTAINING TO YOUR SPECIFIC ELIGIBILITY - if you claim an eligibility and don't fully support it you may cause yourself to be eliminated from consideration.

COMPETITIVE SERVICE EMPLOYEES -- (1) current SF-50 showing competitive status, grade and career tenure; (2) additional SF-50s (if necessary) to document highest grade held and/or time-in-grade, (3) performance appraisal AND (4) if applicable, a current payscale.

EXCEPTED SERVICE EMPLOYEES (USPS, Foreign Service, agencies with interchange agreements, etc) -- (1) current SF-50 showing grade and career tenure; (2) additional SF-50s (if necessary) to document highest grade held and/or time-in-grade; (3) performance appraisal; (4) (if applicable) a copy of your agency's Interchange Agreement and payscale AND (5) (if applicable) an SF-50 that documents your prior competitive service (e.g., a resignation, retirement or other separation action that shows WHEN you left the competitive service [block 4] AND if you separated with career or career-conditional tenure [block 24].

See Excepted Service Appointments with Competitive Service Compatibility for more information.

SCHEDULE A/TIME-LIMITED VETERAN -- (1) SF-50 you received when you were hired; (2) current SF-50; (3) additional SF-50 (if necessary) documenting highest grade held and/or time-in-grade, (4) performance appraisal and (5) if applicable, a current payscale.

FORMER FEDERAL EMPLOYEES -- (1) separation SF-50 showing that separation was not for performance or conduct reasons, (2) (if different) SF-50 showing highest grade and career tenure in the competitive service. You must have served in a competitive service position AND have permanent tenure OR have separated less than 3 years ago with conditional tenure (or at any time with veterans preference). You are not required to submit a federal performance appraisal.

VEOA -- (1) DD-214(s) (Member 4 ONLY) showing honorable discharge after serving 3+ years of continuous active duty OR (2) if applicable, documents demonstrating preference (such as a disability letter). If you are still on active duty, submit a recently dated official statement of service from your command. For more information visit the Vet Guide .

NOTE: Federal employees who opt to apply under VEOA are still bound by the requirements for federal employees and must still submit the appropriate SF-50s and Performance Appraisals.

CTAP / ICTAP -- for displaced (or soon to be displaced) competitive service employees (does not apply if you voluntarily left your federal position) -- must receive a rating of 80% or higher AND must provide (1) separation notice, agency certification that you cannot be placed after injury compensation has terminated, OPM notification that your disability annuity has terminated OR Military Department/National Guard Bureau notice that you are retired under 5 U.S.C. 8337(h) or 8456 OR (2) SF-50 documenting your separation. For more information visit .

If your federal payscale is not "GS" "WG" "WL" or "WS" please provide a copy of your agency's payscale.

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