Closing Date: 20th December, 2023


Are you a motivated technical and legal expert and ready to showcase your skill set as you elevate in your career? Are you looking to work with a diverse team of highly skilled attorneys? If so, then look no further because this opportunity is waiting just for you!

The USPTO is seeking a highly motivated legal professional to join a dynamic and collaborative team in the Office of Enrollment and Discipline (OED) and we're excited to meet you!

The Office of Enrollment and Discipline (OED) is responsible for the investigation of complaints relating to attorney and agent misconduct, determining what disciplinary proceedings are appropriate, and suspending or excluding from practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) any person, attorney, or registered agent shown to be incompetent, disreputable, or found culpable of unethical, unprofessional, or gross misconduct. OED also is responsible for maintaining a roster of individuals who are registered to practice in patent matters before the USPTO, including reviewing the legal, technical, and moral character qualifications of individuals seeking recognition to practice and administers and oversees the USPTO Law School Clinic Certification Program and Patent Pro Bono Program. The incumbent reports directly to the Deputy General Counsel for Enrollment and Discipline.

As Senior Counsel for Policy and Operational Support Services, the incumbent will perform a variety of complex and sensitive assignments relating to policy and operational support services that affect the livelihood of patent and trademark attorneys and agents throughout the United States and abroad.

This career choice is perfect if you are:
Passionate about the livelihood of patent and trademark attorneys and exceptionally savvy about policy and operational support services.

A confident technical expert that can render legal and policy advice through the General Counsel to the Under Secretary and Director of the USPTO, the Deputy General Counsel for Enrollment and Discipline, and other members of the USPTO's senior staff.

A high-performing, engaged, and motivated attorney with experience in legal policy and operational matters. The incumbent may be called upon to collaborate with senior agency officials to recommend decisions and responses to USPTO and OED policies.

A dedicated organizational ambassador and effective communicator that can interact with top-level internal and external stakeholders regarding highly sensitive and complex legal issues. The incumbent's contacts with the private sector are also with top-level officials such as partners of national or international law firms. Contacts are of an unstructured nature requiring the incumbent to exercise a great degree of discretion and innovation.

This individual may represent the USPTO and OED before various committees and public and private sector groups, (e.g., the American Intellectual Property Law Association, the American Bar Association, etc.), to gain support and acceptance of OED programs and provide educational outreach as a proactive measure to protect the public by ensuring practitioners are aware of proper ethical standards; and will also serve as the liaison with other USPTO business units regarding policy and operational support services matters.

This individual serves as a legal expert for OED on policy and operational support services and in that capacity may be consulted in connection with positions that are taken by the USPTO and OED.

This position includes limited supervisory and managerial duties that will occupy less than 25% of the incumbents time.

Conditions of Employment:
  • Applicants will only be accepted from United States Citizens and Nationals.
  • Must be registered for Selective Service, if applicable ( Suitable for Federal employment.
  • If selected, you may be required to complete a two-year trial period.

To meet the minimum requirements for this position, the candidate must demonstrate their experience in the narrative responses to the Professional Technical Qualifications. This specialized experience should also be reflected within the resume. This experience must have been at a sufficiently high level of difficulty to clearly show that the candidate possesses the required professional/technical qualifications set forth below.

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.

Applicants are required to input narrative responses to the Professional/Technical Qualifications (PTQs) in the text boxes as prompted by USAJobs. Each PTQ has a 10,000-character limit (to include spaces) that must be adhered to. Do not write "see resume". Uploaded documents addressing the PTQs will not be accepted. For the following four PTQs, you are required to submit a narrative response addressing your specific knowledge, skills, and abilities that demonstrate your possession of these qualifications.

Professional Technical Qualifications:
  • Knowledge of the USPTO Ethics Rules.
  • Knowledge of policies affecting patent and trademark practitioners and clients.
  • Knowledge of the rule making process, including knowledge of the statutes and
  • regulations governing the rule making process.
  • Knowledge of intellectual property law and litigation.

The incumbent must have a law degree and membership in good standing of the Bar of any state, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, or any territorial court of the United States.

Additional Information:
If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System. If you are exempt from registration under Selective Service Law, you must provide appropriate proof of exemption. Please visit the Selective Service System website for more information.

This is a Non Bargaining Unit position.

This is a Public Trust position and has a risk level designation of "moderate".

Background Investigation - If selected for this position, you may be required to complete a Declaration for Federal Employment (OF-306), which includes a fingerprint and credit check, to determine your suitability for Federal employment and to authorize a background investigation.

The USPTO participates in E-Verify. For more information on E-Verify, please visit the Department of Homeland Security Website. (

Supervisory Probationary Period-If selected, you may be required to complete an initial one-year supervisory probationary period.

All Federal employees are required to have Federal salary payments made by direct deposit to a financial institution of their choice.

Relocation Expenses are not authorized and will not be paid.

All application materials become the property of the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

USPTO Job Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process should request accommodation(s) from the USPTO at

The United States Patent and Trademark Office is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factors. If you believe that you have been discriminated against and would like to file an EEO complaint, you must do so within 45 days of the date of the alleged discriminatory act. Claims of employment discrimination must be submitted to the attention of the USPTO's Office of Equal Employment Opportunity & Diversity via email ( or phone (571-272-8292).

A career with the U.S. government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits. (

Review our benefits (

Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

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 for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

To be considered for this position, you must (1) demonstrate in your application package that you meet the experience as defined under the "Qualifications" section, (2) answer the Professional Technical Qualifications (PTQs), (3) submit a detailed resume that supports your answers to the PTQs and specialized experience.

Your responses to the PTQs and resume will be evaluated by a Human Resources Specialist and/or a subject matter expert. Falsifying your background, education, and/or experience is cause for not hiring you or for changing your scored responses to questions you've answered, which may affect your overall final score.

Please note that a complete application is required for consideration. (Please review the "Required Documents" section of this job announcement to see what must be included in a complete application).

Please click the link below to preview the Assessment Questionnaire:

Required Documents:
A complete application consists of the following Supporting Documents:
  • A resume or any other written format you choose to describe your job-related qualifications; optional cover letter: Your resume should indicate your citizenship and should list your educational and work experience including titles, salary, employment dates, duties, experience and how it relates to the specialized experience in the job announcement.
  • Narrative responses to the PTQs: Do not write "see resume". Applicants are required to input narrative responses in the textboxes as prompted by USAJobs. Each PTQ has a 10,000-character limit (to include spaces) and must be adhered to. Uploading documents addressing the PTQs will not be accepted.
  • Transcripts: You MUST submit copies of your college transcripts for verification of the education requirements. Unofficial copies are accepted, however, if selected you will be required to furnish official transcripts. It is your responsibility to provide adequate proof that you meet the above educational requirement. Inadequate or illegible information could result in non-qualification and loss of consideration.
  • Bar Membership Documentation: You MUST submit documentation showing that you are an active member of the Bar in Good Standing of any State, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, or any Territorial Court under the U.S. Constitution. This letter and/or certificate should be dated within the last six months of the closing date of this job announcement. If you are unable to obtain this information by the closing date of this announcement, you must contact the HR Specialist listed on this announcement to make other arrangements prior to the closing date of the announcement.
  • Veterans' Preference Documentation, if applicable: Attorney positions are in the excepted service, not the competitive civil service. There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the USPTO considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor consideration in the hiring process. If you are eligible for veterans' preference in hiring, you are encouraged to include that information in your application along with the supporting documentation, e.g., SF-15, DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, or other supporting documentation. You may also find more information on positive consideration for attorney hiring. (

Note: Submit only the documents requested. Additional documents will not be reviewed by the rating panel.

You can upload your documents when you register or update your information on the Dept. of Commerce site which you access through the USAJobs site.

Your application and all required documents must be received by 11:59 pm ET on the closing date of this job announcement. NOTE: The preceding documents requirement are based on job requirements and individual applicant eligibility. Not all documents are applicable to all applicants; if you are unsure which documents apply to you, contact the HR Specialist listed on this announcement.

How to Apply:
*****If you are currently, or have been within the last five years, a political Schedule A, Schedule C, or Non-career SES employee in the Executive Branch, you must disclose this information in your application.

You MUST apply online. If you experience difficulties with the application process or do not have access to a computer, please contact the HR Specialist listed as the point of contact before the closing date of this job announcement.

If you are a new user to the USAJobs Site and have never registered for an account; you will first need to create an account profile with your basic contact information and a resume to begin applying. You must be a registered USAJobs user AND you must be signed-in to your account in order to apply for this position. For help setting up an account or for general help using USAJobs, go to USAJobs Help Page. Once you have gathered all of the required information and are ready to begin the application process, click the "APPLY" button at the right side of the page. You will then be directed away from USAJobs to the Department of Commerce application site for USPTO. You must click "Submit" at the end of the application process to send your application for consideration.

To return to your saved application, log in to your USAJOBS account at and click on "Applications." Click on the position title, then select "Update Application."

If you experience any difficulties with the application site, help is available! OPM has a Help feature on each page. Use this option when you need assistance.

All required supporting documents will be collected electronically via the USAJobs "Saved Documents" feature.

Personally Identifiable Information (PII)
Personally Identifiable Information (PII) is defined as information that can be traced back to a specific individual and potentially compromise their security or privacy. Examples of PII include: date of birth, Social Security Number, and place of birth.

Please ensure that you have removed all Personally Identifiable Information from all documents prior to submitting or uploading your applications material.

Next Steps:
Candidates are evaluated by an executive rating panel based on the degree to which they meet the PTQs, and which considers the applicant's education, work-related experience, training, awards, and professional recognition, as set forth in the materials submitted by the candidates and placed in one of the pre-defined quality categories. These categories are "Highly Qualified", "Well Qualified" and "Qualified." Candidates placed in the "highest quality category" will be identified for referral to the hiring manager and may be invited for an interview.

You will receive a notice generated by the USAJobs System when you have successfully submitted your application. You will be notified of your application status through USAJOBS at four points during the hiring process, as applicable.

The four points of notification are:You will receive notification through USAJobs at each of the following points during the application process: (1) application received, (2) applicant assessed for qualifications, (3) applicant referred or not referred, and (4) applicant selected or not selected.

You can check the status of your application by accessing the USAJOBS website at and clicking on "Track Your Online Application." You may also sign up to receive automatic emails anytime the status of your application has changed by logging in to your USAJobs account, editing your profile, and changing the "Notification Settings" to indicate that you want to be notified by email when the status changes. Information regarding the status of your application should be updated in the system within two weeks after the closing date of this job announcement.

Kindly refer to the following link for a detailed description of the job -