Job Overview


The Library of Congress serves the Congress in fulfilling its duties and preserves and promotes knowledge and creativity for the benefit of the American people. It is the nation's oldest federal cultural institution and the world's largest library, with more than 155 million items in its physical collections (including books, manuscripts, prints, photos, film, video, and sound recordings) and over 37 million items online. Located primarily on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., the Library is the home of the U.S. Copyright Office, the Congressional Research Service (CRS), the Law Library of Congress, and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.

By law, employment at most U.S. Government agencies, including the Library of Congress, is limited to U.S. citizens. However, non-citizens may be hired provided that immigration law and other legal requirements are met, and the Library determines there are no qualified U.S. citizens available for the position.

Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U. S. Code) to the authors of “original works of authorship,” including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works. This protection is available to both published and unpublished works. The United States Copyright Office, under the direction of the Register of Copyrights, is a service unit of the Library of Congress and administers the Copyright Law, advises Congress and federal government agencies on legal and policy matters relating to copyright; represents the nation internationally on issues pertaining to copyright; administers the national copyright registration program; provides collections materials to the Library of Congress through the voluntary registration and mandatory deposit programs; records documents relating to copyright including assignments, licenses and other records relating to chain of title; administers the statutory license provisions of the Copyright Law, including collecting and distributing royalties; maintains the world’s largest database of public records relating to copyright; and, provides information and reference services to the public.

The Office of the Associate Register for Policy and International Affairs carries out certain responsibilities for administering the copyright law, with special emphasis on policy, legislative and international matters. The Office assists the Register of Copyrights with the development and presentation of Copyright Office positions and proposals, and shares with the Office of General Counsel responsibility for working with Congress and its committees on matters of domestic legislation. In addition, the Office of the Associate Register for Policy and International Affairs has primary responsibility for international aspects of copyright law and policy. It represents the Copyright Office in U.S government delegations to the World Intellectual Property Organization (Geneva, Switzerland) and other international institutions that administer copyright treaties; provides technical advice to executive branch agencies (including the United States Trade Representative, the Departments of State and Commerce, and the Patent and Trademark Office); and participates in meetings, delegations and negotiations with foreign governments. The Office is an expert on U.S. and foreign copyright laws, multilateral treaties and bi-lateral agreements relevant to the field of intellectual property.

REQUIREMENTS: Applicants MUST be a graduate from a full course of study in a School of Law accredited by the American Bar Association and be a member in good standing of the bar of a state, District of Columbia, territory of the United States, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. *Proof of education (copy of transcripts) and bar membership must be provided with the application. Scanned or faxed documents will be accepted for application review purposes only (202) 707 1454. OFFICIAL documents will be required if SELECTED.

The position description number for this position is 179620.

The salary range indicated reflects the locality pay adjustments for the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan area.

The incumbent of this position will work a flextime work schedule.

This is a non-supervisory, bargaining unit position.

Relocation expenses are not authorized for the person(s) selected under this vacancy announcement.


The Attorney-Advisor works under the supervision and general direction of the Associate Register for Policy and International Affairs, who assigns, coordinates and preliminarily reviews work. Work is generally conducted independently after the initial scope of the assignment has been decided in consultation with the Associate Register. Most work is reviewed, but the extent of the review is directly related to the difficulty of the assignment or its use outside the Office. The Attorney-Advisor may also receive and complete projects from senior staff attorneys in the Office of Policy and International Affairs.

While performing daily activities, the incumbent is responsible for ensuring proper handling and security of all Library and Copyright Office materials. The incumbent must undergo and obtain a top-secret security clearance as a condition of employment.

Performs legal analyses and locates, organizes, summarizes, and interprets legal information and other pre-existing legal materials, on complex legal and policy issues through research in an area of law where novel or significant legal methods, procedures, or approaches are needed to prepare reports, legal arguments, briefs, and/or other analytical documents.

Prepares for the Associate Register for Policy and International Affairs, the Register, Library officials, offices of Members of Congress and congressional committees, authoritative and descriptive background reports, memos, bill digests, compilations, surveys of laws, comparisons of laws and bills, and other forms of written responses on significant legal issues in the scope of the attorney's subject areas. Such reports contribute to congressional understanding of the nature of legal problems and form the basis for consideration of policy proposals.

Analyzes and devises methods to implement copyright and intellectual property policy proposals where difficult legal issues exists and studies applicable precedents in law or policy in the areas of domestic, foreign and international copyright law.

Communicates with personnel in other federal, state or local agencies, providing advice and guidance in implementing agency programs. May be the policy or legal adviser on the plans and operations of a single program or activity. May also liaison with individuals in international agencies and associations.

Undertakes other duties as assigned by the Associate Register for Policy and International Affairs.