This Position Is No Longer Available
  1. Overview
  2. Duties
  3. Qualifications & Evaluations
  4. Benefits & Other Info
  5. How to Apply

Job Title:Paralegal Specialist

Agency:International Boundary and Water Commission: United States and Mexico

Job Announcement Number:IBWC-818399-MA

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$57,408.00 to $74,628.00 / Per Year


Tuesday, February 19, 2013 to Tuesday, March 05, 2013




Full Time - Permanent




Few vacancies in the following location:
El Paso, TX United StatesView Map


United States Citizens


The mission of the U.S. International Boundary & Water Commission is to provide binational solutions to issues that arise during the application of United States - Mexico treaties regarding boundary demarcation, national ownership of waters, sanitation, water quality, and flood control in the border region.

The Paralegal Specialist in this position supports the mission of the Office of the Legal Advisor, Executive Office of the Commissioner, United States Section, International Boundary and Water Commission. The Office of the Legal Advisor performs the traditional house counsel role for the agency, and advises and represents the agency in matters raised by other international organizations, Congress, federal agencies, state and local governments, and non-governmental organizations. It also provides guidance in the formulation of the agency's position on bi-national issues and interprets international law as part of the implementation of the agency's foreign policy function.


  • US citizenship is required
  • Relocation expenses are not authorized and will not be paid
  • Must submit resume and supporting documents (see "How To Apply")


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The Paralegal Specialist in this position:

  • Performs extensive legal research, summarizing and annotating materials of interest to legal advisers
  • Provides litigation support by assisting in the preparation of litigation reports and establishing and updating case files
  • Administers provisions of the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act
  • Administers federal tort claims and recommends action on submissions under various tort claim provisions
  • Provides substantive support to the agency Ethics Program


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In order to meet the minimum qualification requirements of this position, you must have one of the following:

A. At least one year of specialized experience at a level of difficulty and responsibility equivalent to at least the GS-09 level in the Federal service participating in the substantive development of legal cases. This experience may have been obtained in the private sector but it must demonstrate that it is comparable to the GS grade indicated and it must exhibit the competencies needed to perform the duties of this position. Examples of such specialized experience include: analyzing and evaluating case files against case litigation worthiness standards; noting and correcting case file deficiencies (e.g., missing documents, inconsistent material, leads not investigated) before sending the case on to the concerned trial attorney; reviewing and analyzing available precedents relevant to cases under consideration; composing reports that include narrative statements and statistical data; and interviewing employees and potential witnesses to gather information.

- OR -

B. Successfully completed a Ph.D. or equivalent graduate degree OR 3 full years (54 semester hours or equivalent) of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree OR a Masters of Laws degree (LLM). This education must have been obtained in an accredited college or university. Note: If qualifying under this option you must submit a copy of your transcript(s) prior to the closing date of this announcement.

- OR -

C. An equivalent combination of the specialized experience and the graduate education described above. To calculate if you meet this combination, first determine your total qualifying experience as a percentage of the experience required in A above; then determine your education as a percentage of the education required in B above (only graduate education beyond 2 years or 36 semester hours is creditable); then add the two percentages. The total percentage must equal 100 percent to qualify. Note: If qualifying under this option you must submit a copy of your transcript(s) prior to the closing date of this announcement.

Foreign Education: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show 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 an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit:


  • Background Investigation: You may need to successfully complete a background investigation before being appointed into the position.
  • Probationary Period: You may be required to serve a one year probationary period.


CATEGORY RATING: Your application will be evaluated and rated under Category Rating selection procedures. Once the application process is complete, a review of resume and supporting documentation will be made and compared against your responses to the assessment questionnaire to determine if you are qualified for this job. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your eligibility. Qualified candidates will be assigned to a quality category. The quality categories are: 1) Best Qualified, 2) Well Qualified and 3) Qualified.

Your qualifications will be evaluated based on your application package and the extent to which it demonstrates the following competencies:

  • Technical competence (legal): Perform legal research and provide litigation support using knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, and legal practices applicable to privacy laws, tort claims, governmental ethics, contracting, employment and/or environmental protection.
  • Legal reasoning: Analyze information and make correct inferences or draw accurate conclusions; distinguish between relevant and irrelevant information to make logical judgments; use sound judgment to generate and evaluate alternatives, and to make recommendations.
  • Writing: Communicate information in a succinct and organized manner; produce written information that is appropriate for the intended audience.
  • Oral communication: Contact others to obtain information; carry out interviews and obtain statements; show understanding, friendliness, courtesy, tact, empathy, and politeness when interacting with others.

Your rating will be based on both your entire application package as well as the responses to the assessment questionnaire. Please note that if, after reviewing your resume and or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, your category rating can and will be adjusted to more accurately reflect your abilities, or you may lose consideration for this position.

The Category Rating Process does not add veterans’ preference points or apply the “rule of three”, but protects the rights of veterans by placing them ahead of non-preference eligibles within each category. Preference eligibles who meet the minimum qualification requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 per cent must be listed in the highest quality category (except in the case of scientific or professional positions at the GS-9 level or higher).


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This link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered to Federal employees:


Males born after December 31, 1959 must be registered or exempt from Selective Service (see

Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP): For information on how to apply as an ICTAP eligible see To be well-qualified and exercise selection priority for this vacancy, displaced Federal employees must be rated Well Qualified or above on the rating criteria for this position.


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To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes the REQUIRED DOCUMENTS listed below. The complete Application Package must be submitted by 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time on Tuesday, March 05, 2013.

To begin the process, click the Apply Online button to create an account or log in to your existing USAJOBS account. Follow the prompts to complete the occupational questionnaire. Please ensure you click the Submit My Answers button at the end of the process. 

To fax supporting documents you are unable to upload, complete this cover page using the following Vacancy ID 818399. Fax your documents to 1-478-757-3144.

Note: To check the status of your application or return to a previous or incomplete application, log into your USAJOBS account, select My Applications, and click on the more information link under the application status for this position.

It is your responsibility to verify that information entered, uploaded, or faxed (i.e., resume) is received, accurate and submitted by the closing date. Uploaded documents may take up to one hour to clear the virus scan process. Faxed documents take 2-3 business days to process.

If you cannot apply online:

  1. Click the following link to view and print the occupational questionnaire: View Occupational Questionnaire
  2. Print this 1203FX form to provide your response to the occupational questionnaire and
  3. Fax the completed 1203FX form along with any supporting documents to 1-478-757-3144. Your 1203FX will serve as a cover page for your fax transmission.


The following documents are required and must be received prior to the closing date of this announcement. The application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time on Tuesday, March 05, 2013

  • Your Resume (cover letter is optional) - Note: Your resume may be submitted in any format, but we recommend using the USAJobs Resume Builder. For qualifications determinations your resume must contain beginning and ending dates of employment (must indicate month/year), hours per week, and duties performed for each job entry. Resumes that do not contain this information will be marked as incomplete and applicants may not receive consideration for this position.
  • College Transcripts (unofficial) if qualifying on the basis of education
  • Veterans Preference Documentation (if applicable) as described below

All Veterans: Provide a copy of your DD Form 214 which includes your character of service or a Statement of Service/Proof of Service which includes service dates and character of service. Below is a website for veterans to gain access to their DD214 online:

Disabled Veterans: You must also provide documentation of disability (i.e. a VA Disability Letter with overall percentage of disability or a document of disability determination from a branch of the Armed Forces which reflects a compensable service-connected disability) AND an SF-15 "Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference" ((

Other Veteran Preference Eligibles: Provide an SF-15 ( along with the documentation required by that form.

For more information on veterans’ preference see

If all required documentation is not received by the closing date your application may not be referred to the hiring manager.

Electronic submission is the quickest and easiest option.


Maria Ahmad
Phone: (210)805-3732
Agency Information:
San Antonio Services Section
Please do not mail documents
San Antonio, TX


Once the online questionnaire is received, you will receive an acknowledgement email that your submission was successful. Based upon your score, you may be referred to the hiring official. If your name is referred to the hiring official, you may be contacted directly by that office for a possible interview.

You will receive status notifications through Application Manager or via email within 4-6 weeks.

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