U.S. Probation Officer

Newport News, Virginia
Oct 16, 2021
Oct 24, 2021
Full Time


The U.S. Probation Office for the Eastern District of Virginia is accepting applications for the position of U.S. Probation Officer Classification 27 or 28, for the Norfolk/Newport News Division. By statute, probation officers serve in a judiciary law enforcement capacity. An incumbent hired at the CL 27 level will be eligible for promotion to the CL 28 level without further competition.

This position may be located in Norfolk or Newport News depending on office requirements.
Learn more about this agency


Key Requirements
  • Completion of a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university in a field of academic study, such as criminal justice, criminology, psychology, sociology, or public administration.
  • Two years of experience after completion of a bachelor's degree.
  • Must meet age requirements for Federal Law Enforcement officers.
  • Must undergo medical and drug screening, and a background investigation.
Major Duties

A United States Probation Officer (USPO) conducts investigations; prepares required reports; provides recommendations to the Court; and, interprets and applies U. S. Sentencing guidelines and relevant case law. A USPO supervises defendants/offenders to maximize adherence to imposed conditions and reduce risk to the community; provides treatment; detects and investigates violations and implements appropriate alternatives and sanctions; conducts preliminary interviews and other investigations as required; and, maintains a detailed written record of case activity. A USPO also performs any other related duties required.

Travel Required

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

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential
28 - CL-28, Step 61


Conditions of Employment

MAXIMUM ENTRY AGE: First-time appointees to positions covered under law enforcement officer retirement provisions must not have reached their 37th birthday at the time of appointment. Applicants 37 or over who have previous law enforcement officer experience under the Civil Service Retirement System or the Federal Employees' Retirement System and who have either a subsequent break in service or intervening service in a non-law enforcement officer position, may have their previous law enforcement officer experience subtracted from their age to determine whether they meet the maximum age requirement.

NOTE: Prior to appointment, the candidate considered for this position will undergo a medical examination and drug screening. Upon successful completion of the medical examination and drug screening, the candidate may then be appointed provisionally, pending a favorable suitability determination by the Court. In addition, as conditions of employment, the incumbent will be subject to ongoing random drug screening, updated background investigations every 5 years and, as deemed necessary by management for reasonable cause, may be subject to subsequent fitness-for-duty evaluations.

The medical requirements and the essential job functions derived from the medical guidelines for United States Probation Officers are available for public review online at https://www.uscourts.gov/ .


Basic knowledge of federal law and the criminal justice system particularly as it relates to federal pretrial services, probation and parole policies and procedures. Broad knowledge of investigative and supervision techniques. Broad knowledge of community and potential community resources. Knowledge of automated/Internet resources and systems available. Ability to evaluate and apply statutes and implement regulations. Skill in communicating orally and in writing, and in working with judges, counsel, and other law enforcement agencies.

Skill in the use of automated equipment including mobile devices, word processing, and various other types of software. Ability to interpret and analyze data from a variety of investigative databases. Ability to type 25 words per minute.

Ability to deal with violent and/or difficult people. Ability to counsel offenders/defendants in order to maintain compliance with conditions of their release. Ability to follow safety procedures. Ability to discern deception and act accordingly. Ability to exercise discretion and to work under pressure of short deadlines.


Completion of a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university in a field of academic study, such as criminal justice, criminology, psychology, sociology, or public administration, which provides evidence of the capacity to understand and apply the legal requirements and human relations skills involved in the position.

To qualify for Classification 27, the incumbent must have had 2 years specialized experience after the attainment of a bachelor's degree, including at least 1 year equivalent to work at the Classification 25 level.

To qualify for Classification 28, the incumbent must have had 3 years specialized experience after attainment of a bachelor's degree, including at least 1 year equivalent to work at the Classification 27 level.

Specialized experience includes progressively responsible experience, gained after completion of a bachelor's degree, in such fields as probation, pretrial services, parole, corrections, criminal investigations, or work in substance/addiction treatment. Experience as a police, custodial, or security officer, other than any criminal investigative experience, is not creditable.

Additional information


A minimum of 10 paid holidays per year; paid annual leave in the amount of 13 days per year for the first 3 years of service, 20 days per year after 3 years of service, and 26 days per year after 15 years of service; paid sick leave in the amount of 13 days per year; and, optional participation in the Thrift Savings Plan, Federal Employees' Health Benefits, Group Life Insurance, Flexible Benefits, Commuter Benefits, and Long Term Care Programs.

Other Information

The U.S. Probation Office reserves the right to modify the conditions of this job announcement or to withdraw the announcement, either of which may occur without prior written notice.

How You Will Be Evaluated

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

Applications will be evaluated based on applicants' eligibility and how closely the applicant meets the requirements for education and experience.

Conditions of employment:
  • Applicants must be citizens of the United States and have no criminal record.
  • Tests to determine level of automation/typing and writing skills will be given to all candidates interviewed.
  • Final candidates will undergo a local background investigation with law enforcement agencies, as well as a check of financial and credit records.
  • Employment is contingent upon outcome of a favorable OPM background investigation. The candidate selected will be hired provisionally pending the outcome of this investigation. An unsatisfactory background investigation may result in termination of employment.
  • The candidate selected may be required to reimburse the Probation Office the cost of their training should they terminate employment within 2 years.
  • Employees of the U.S. Probation Office are required to adhere to the Code of Conduct for Judicial Employees which is available to applicants for review upon request.
  • Mandatory Direct Deposit participation for payment of salary.
  • Employees of the U. S. Probation Office are covered by the Court Personnel System and are Excepted Service appointments.
  • Mandatory attendance at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Charleston, South Carolina, for 6 consecutive weeks.

  • Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance

    Drug test required

    Required Documents

    AO-78 Application for employment (may be found at: https://www.vaep.uscourts.gov/employment-opportunities ), letter of interest and resumé.

    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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