This is a non-merit position with the Legislative Services Agency. Candidates must follow the instructions in the “To Apply” section.

Positions in this class are exempt from the screening and referral requirements of the Iowa Department of Administrative Services – Human Resources Enterprise.

Effective immediately, applications are being taken by the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency for the position of Legal Counsel. Applicants should send a resume and cover letter to the Director, Legislative Services Agency, State Capitol, Des Moines, Iowa 50319, online at https: www.legis.iowa.gov/careers. The Legislative Services Agency is an equal opportunity employer. Applications must be received by December 18, 2020.

Legal Counsel

The nonpartisan position involves legislative bill and amendment drafting, legislative and legal research, staffing of legislative committees, significant and ongoing consultations with legislators and governmental officials and staff, and Iowa Code publication work. The position requires excellent analytical and communication skills and the ability to develop superior drafting skills and expertise in assigned areas of the law. Ability to handle heavy workload under extremely short deadlines and to prioritize workload is essential. Overtime work is required. A law degree is required; bar admission and previous professional experience are desired. Writing sample and exercise are required of interviewees.


  • Bill drafting, which includes consulting with legislators and others in analyzing problems, identifying objectives, secondary effects, and underlying values and assumptions.
  • Assessing information and research needs.
  • Considering alternatives, and constructing statutory language, within the context of current statutes, court decisions, and administrative rules and procedures to accomplish the legislative objective.
  • Conducting legal research.
  • Preparing analyses, explanations, and summaries of legislation and court decisions.
  • Staffing and advising legislative committees on legislation, law, administrative rules, and opinions of the courts and Attorney General.
  • Performing administrative duties and preparing minutes, reports, and other work products for legislative committees.
  • Contacting technical personnel for information.
  • Providing information and assistance on the status of legislation and on specific areas of the law to other governmental agencies and to the public.
  • Assisting in the editing, preparation, and publication of the Iowa Code and Iowa Acts.
  • Progress toward and responsibility for more complex projects and independent work projects is dependent upon the Legal Counsels ability and performance.
  • Overtime is required both to accomplish the required workload and to be available as needed by the legislators and legislative committees, with partial compensatory time provided.

Beginning annual salary is $52,852.80.

Partisan political activity and legislative issue advocacy are prohibited.

  • Graduate of approved law school and strong preference for licensure in Iowa as attorney, ability to develop skill in drafting legislative bills and legal research documents, and ability to develop expertise in assigned areas of the law.
  • Knowledge of legal research sources and application of legal research methods.  Ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing, and to analyze, explain, and summarize legislation, court decisions, complex written material, detailed research documents, and administrative rules.
  • Ability to work in a nonpartisan manner in a partisan environment and provide objective information regardless of the issue or personal opinions.
  • Ability to work under pressure, to work well with others, and to meet deadlines with a minimum of supervision.

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