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Attorney Adviser (Intellectual Property Rights)



Date Posted:

May 14, 2021



Type of Position


Education Requirement


Experience Requirement

3-5 Years

How to Apply/Contact

Apply Online via USAJOBS.GOV

Apply Now




The incumbent will serve as an Intellectual Property Attorney-Adviser (IP Attaché) in Bangkok, Thailand for the International Trade Administration/Global Markets (ITA/GM) and United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). This position reports to the Foreign Commercial Service (FCS) Senior Commercial Officer and USPTO IP Attaché Program Director, who directs the incumbent, reviews the incumbent’s performance and ensures consistency with agency and administration priorities.


As an IP Attaché, the incumbent will act as a resource on ASEAN intellectual property regimes for U.S. Government agencies and U.S. industry. This position must also coordinate with other parts of the U.S. Mission and:

  • Serves as an expert in intellectual property, as well as international trade, legislative procedures and executive branch decision making related to intellectual property.
  • Promotes high standards of intellectual property protection and enforcement in host country and/or region. In doing so, the incumbent carries out U.S. objectives to promote improvements in patent, trademark and copyright legal systems internationally for the benefit of U.S. interests.
  • The incumbent develops, in consultation with appropriate USPTO representatives, strategic plans for engaging countries in the region to improve their intellectual property regimes.
  • Serves as the USPTO representative on U.S. delegations to international meetings on intellectual property to develop international agreements, revise existing agreements or address implementation of agreements or treaties.
  • Responsible for program areas of international trade and intellectual property; and identifies and addresses impediments affecting the program areas.

Travel Required

50% or less – Frequency of travel will vary.


Conditions of Employment

  • Must be a U.S. Citizen or U.S. National.
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a Top-Secret security clearance.
  • Must pass pre-employment & post-employment random drug testing.
  • Must be registered with Selective Service System.
  • Please see “Other Information” for Conditions of Employment.

Applicants must meet all qualification and eligibility requirements by the closing date of this announcement. Please see “Other Information” for requirements and Conditions of Employment.

Any required investigations and clearances must be completed before the selectee can be placed in the position.


To qualify for the FP-905-01 (GS-15 equivalency), applicants must have a minimum of four years of general law practice and one year of experience at a level of difficulty and responsibility equivalent to that of a GS-14 in the Federal Service.

Your resume will be evaluated based on evidence of your ability to clearly demonstrate the required professional law experience, specialized experience and knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs).

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs):

  • Knowledge of foreign and domestic intellectual property laws, the effect of U.S. political relationships and positions with respect to other countries on the protection of intellectual property internationally, foreign and domestic laws affecting the
    rights of U.S. citizens and foreign nationals and/or international agreements, treaties, etc., including business or economic matters affecting the same.
  • Ability to prepare expert legal analysis on intellectual property issues developing in the host country and the region.
  • Ability to express orally and in writing complex legal issues and interrelationships of public policy interests and issues impacting agency programs.
  • Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships with high-level officials.
  • Experience supervising professional staff and managing resources in a technical or legal organization.

Professional Legal/Law Experience for all attorneys: Professional legal/law experience is experience that has equipped the applicant with the particular knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) to successfully perform the duties of the position to be filled. This experience is characterized by breadth and depth of experience in rendering professional legal advice and services with respect to questions, regulations, practices, or other matters falling within the purview of a Federal government agency, private sector, law firm, or other organization; preparing interpretative and administrative orders, rules, or regulations to give effect to the provisions of governing statutes or other requirements of law; drafting, negotiating, or examining contracts or other legal documents; drafting, preparing formal comments, or making substantive recommendations regarding proposed legislation; editing and preparing for publication statutes enacted by Congress and opinions or decisions of a court, commission, or board; drafting and reviewing decisions for consideration and adoption by an organization or official; conducting investigations to obtain facts; determining questions of law; studying, analyzing and evaluating legal precedents, to present findings. Legal work is described as extremely complex and difficult and requires a high order of original and creative legal endeavor in balancing conflicting interests; has broad or wide-scope impact on an economy, industry, private or public interests; and may involve directly or indirectly very large sums of money. Work may also involve acting as principal attorney in charge of the preparation and presentation of cases; recommending policies and developing procedures and regulations to implement new or amended legislation; and acting as legal, general or senior counsel to a major firm or organization.

Specialized experience is defined as:

  • Experience providing guidance and assistance on principles governing protection of IP (i.e. patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, etc.) and/or treaties administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to monitor and assess compliance of foreign governments’ implementation of trade agreements and international trade obligations.

TRANSCRIPTS – You must submit a copy of your College/University and Law School transcript (unofficial is acceptable) it must show school name, student’s name, credit earned, degree, and date awarded.  Education must be obtained from an accredited institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet Federal qualification requirements if you can show that your foreign education is comparable to education received in accredited educational institutions in the United States. For example, specific courses accepted for college-level credit by an accredited U.S. college or university, or foreign education evaluated by an organization recognized for accreditation by the Department of Education as education equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. college or university. It is your responsibility to provide such evidence with your application. For more information on Recognition of Foreign Qualifications, click here.

LICENSURE – You must submit a copy of your Bar license for a state, territory of the United States, the District of Columbia or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

QUALIFICATIONS: All applicants must meet all eligibility and qualifications requirements criteria by the closing date of this announcement.


Applicants must possess the following by the closing date of this announcement in order to be eligible for this position:

1. Possess a Juris Doctor (JD) and/or Master of Laws (LL.M) from an accredited law school.

2. Be a current member of the Bar in good standing of any state, territory of the United States, the District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

3. Possess at least four years of professional legal/law experience; and

4. Possess at least one year of specialized experience.

You must have a graduate degree, with an LL.M. or J. D. from a full course of study in a School of Law accredited by the American Bar Association, or a State Accredited Law School.

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 (

In addition, you must and be an ACTIVE member in GOOD STANDING of a Bar Association within a State, Territory of the United States, the District of Columbia, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

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.

Additional information


  • SECURITY CLEARANCE: You must obtain and maintain a Top-Secret security clearance.
  • DRUG TESTING: Under the Department of Commerce’s Drug Free Workplace Plan, all applicants tentatively selected for this position will be required to submit to a urinalysis to screen for illegal drug use prior to appointment, and if appointed the incumbent will be subjected to random drug testing procedures.
  • TOUR OF DUTY: Initial tour of duty is two years. Extension(s) up to a maximum of 5 years is possible; however, extensions are not guaranteed, and no promise of an extension is implied.
  • AGE REQUIREMENT: Must be 21 years of age.
  • FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE: You must complete a Financial Disclosure Report within 30 days of appointment.
    Starting Foreign Service Officer Salary is commensurate with experience. Current Federal employees will be converted at their current grade level and pay shall be set at the Foreign Service salary that equals or exceeds the employee’s current pay.
  • MEDICAL CLEARANCE: You must be able to obtain a medical clearance for worldwide assignment (including dependents if applicable).
  • RE-EMPLOYMENT WITH LOSING AGENCY: An employee of any agency who accepts, with the consent of the head of that agency, a limited appointment in the Foreign Service under section 309 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 is entitled, upon the expiration of that appointment, to be reemployed in that employee’s former position or in a corresponding or higher position in that agency. Upon reemployment under this section, an employee shall be entitled to any within-grade increases in pay which the employee would have received if the employee had remained in the former position in the agency.
  • SELECTIVE SERVICE REQUIREMENT: Male applicants born after December 31, 1959 must certify at the time of appointment that they have registered with the Selective Service System or are exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law. 
  • REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS: The Department of Commerce provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the Office of Foreign Service Human Resources contact identified in this vacancy. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be on a case-by-case basis. The Department of Commerce is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer. EEO Policy Statement: Reasonable Accommodation Policy Statement: Legal and Regulatory Guidance:
  • FEDERAL STATUS: Current Federal applicants/employees will be appointed/converted at their current grade level. Upon appointment/conversion to the Foreign Service, there are no promotion opportunities. Employees will be converted/appointed in accordance with Sub Chapter 200-1 of DAO 202-900.
  • TRANSCRIPTS: You must submit a copy of your College/University and Law School transcript (unofficial is acceptable) it must show school name, student’s name, credit earned, degree, and date awarded. Education must be obtained from an accredited institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. 

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 based on a comparison of the position requirements against the quality and extent of the experience and/or related education as reflected in your resume and supporting documentation. You are encouraged to ensure work experiences clearly show possession of the specialized experience required for this position. We will compare your resume and supporting documentation to your responses on the assessment questionnaire. A complete resume in your online application is required for consideration. (To create a Federal resume, please see the “How to Apply” section of this announcement.) We encourage you to review the resume that you submit and update it to accurately reflect your current experience, providing specifics that will help us verify the responses provided to the vacancy questions. If, after reviewing your resume and any supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your application materials, your category placement may be adjusted and/or you may be excluded from consideration for this job. Only the best qualified candidates will be referred to the selecting official for further consideration. You will not be considered for the position if any part of the application is incomplete. You must provide the required user information (including your resume in the Commerce on-line automated system), as well as responses to the questions specific to the vacancy in order to receive consideration. Your resume must support your answers to the questions in the vacancy announcement. 

Candidates will be rated and ranked using Category Grouping procedures. Under Category Grouping, candidates will be rated and ranked into one of three categories:

Gold (Best Qualified): Applicants possessing experience that substantially exceeds the minimum qualifications of the position and demonstrate high proficiency in all of the critical competencies as determined by the job analysis.

Silver (Well Qualified): Applicants possessing experience that exceeds the minimum qualifications of the position and demonstrates acceptable proficiency in all of the critical competencies as determined by the job analysis.

Bronze (Qualified): Applicants possessing experience that meets the minimum qualifications of the position and demonstrate basic proficiency in most of the critical competencies as determined by the job analysis.

If after review of your resume and supporting documents found to be in the Gold (Best Qualified) category, you will be referred to the hiring manager for consideration and may be called for an interview. 


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