What do you do in GC for DoS, DoD, or other gov agency?

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Bluewing

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What do you do in GC for DoS, DoD, or other gov agency?

Postby Bluewing » Tue Aug 30, 2016 12:50 pm

I'm familiar with the type of work done in biglaw, but what do you do as a lawyer working for a place like the DoD or State? Is it the exact same or do you do more policy type stuff?

globetrotter659

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Re: What do you do in GC for DoS, DoD, or other gov agency?

Postby globetrotter659 » Tue Aug 30, 2016 2:48 pm

It really depends on the agency. State Department lawyers work in a division called "L" and do high level international law work such as treaties. DoD has a general counsel's office but also assigns its attorneys to the different offices of DoD (policy, procurement, health affairs, etc).

Are you asking what it's like being a federal government lawyer or working in the general counsel's office at a federal agency. If the latter, at a large agency, then you will probably be doing primarily ethics and personnel. Maybe some procurement. The GC office might also be the office responsible for handling litigation against the agency (although if your agency doesn't have independent litigation authority then DOJ will be lead). The bulk of federal agency legal work though is in one of the policy arms of the agency whether it is regulation writing or enforcement. The actual office of the general counsel for most agencies only has a small number of the total lawyers working for the agency.

Bluewing

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Re: What do you do in GC for DoS, DoD, or other gov agency?

Postby Bluewing » Tue Aug 30, 2016 3:41 pm

globetrotter659 wrote:It really depends on the agency. State Department lawyers work in a division called "L" and do high level international law work such as treaties. DoD has a general counsel's office but also assigns its attorneys to the different offices of DoD (policy, procurement, health affairs, etc).

Are you asking what it's like being a federal government lawyer or working in the general counsel's office at a federal agency. If the latter, at a large agency, then you will probably be doing primarily ethics and personnel. Maybe some procurement. The GC office might also be the office responsible for handling litigation against the agency (although if your agency doesn't have independent litigation authority then DOJ will be lead). The bulk of federal agency legal work though is in one of the policy arms of the agency whether it is regulation writing or enforcement. The actual office of the general counsel for most agencies only has a small number of the total lawyers working for the agency.


This is super helpful. Thanks! I was asking what it's like to be a federal government lawyer and just assumed they were under GC. Long term goal would be to become or work for State Policy Planning or Undersecretary of Defense for Policy and I feel like law is a better path to that than a standard MPP program so just trying to figure out what those types of jobs entail.

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zot1

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Re: What do you do in GC for DoS, DoD, or other gov agency?

Postby zot1 » Tue Aug 30, 2016 5:37 pm

check out what's your typical day. If I remember correctly, a handful of Feds posted there.

globetrotter659

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Re: What do you do in GC for DoS, DoD, or other gov agency?

Postby globetrotter659 » Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:52 pm

Bluewing wrote: This is super helpful. Thanks! I was asking what it's like to be a federal government lawyer and just assumed they were under GC. Long term goal would be to become or work for State Policy Planning or Undersecretary of Defense for Policy and I feel like law is a better path to that than a standard MPP program so just trying to figure out what those types of jobs entail.


Well the best route for that is to probably work at one of the prestigious DC firms and then lateral when your boss gets appointed to be Undersecretary.

I don't know what the career progression is like in L at State. You are not an FSO.



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