<b>Duties</b><br /><br /><b>Summary</b><br /><br />Legal Administrative Specialist (Public Contact Outreach Specialist) counsels veterans, their dependents, and beneficiaries regarding the full array of benefits available through the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as non-VA benefits available through other organizations concerned with veterans.<br /> Learn more about this agency <br /><br /><b>Responsibilities</b><br /><br />Legal Administrative Specialist (Public Contact Outreach Specialist) counsels veterans, their dependents, and beneficiaries regarding the full array of benefits available through the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as non-VA benefits available through other organizations concerned with veterans. The incumbent explores all avenues of assistance available to the veteran and takes positive action encourage individuals to fully utilize these benefits, assessing with the claimant the short and long circumstances which might weigh on a choice between various benefits.<br /><br />Acts as advocate for veterans and their beneficiaries in their dealings with other VA elements and organizations that affect their claims.<br /> Explains to veterans the necessary documents needed to facilitate timely processing of claims and provides assistance in obtaining and completing such documents and forms as required by the type of claim being submitted.<br /> Explains decisions made by the VA and communicates the reasons to the claimant for these decisions, orally or in writing. Advises on the right to appeals and assist claimants in making appeals.<br /> Receives and prepares replies to general correspondence regarding benefits for veterans and their dependents. Prepares and releases certificates for use by other Federal, State and local agencies.<br /><br /><strong>Promotion Potential:</strong> The selectee may be promoted to the full performance level without further competition when all regulatory, qualification, and performance requirement are met Selection at a lower grade level does not guarantee promotion to the full performance level.<br /><br /><strong>Work Schedule:</strong> 8:00 am to 4:30 pm<br /> Compressed/Flexible: Not available<br /> Telework: Not available<br /> Virtual: This is not a virtual position<br /> <strong>Position Description/ PD#</strong>Legal Administrative Specialist<br /> <strong>Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: </strong>Not authorized<br /> <strong>Financial Disclosure Report: </strong>Not required <br /><br /><b>Travel Required</b><br /><br />Occasional travel – You may be expected to travel for this position.<br /><br />Supervisory status <br /> No <br /><br />Promotion Potential <br /> 10 <br /><br /></li> <b>Requirements</b><br /><br /><b>Conditions of Employment</b><br /><br /><ul> <li>You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job</li> <li>Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959</li> <li>You may be required to serve a probationary period</li> <li>Subject to background/security investigation</li> <li>Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process</li> </ul> <br /><br /><b>Qualifications</b><br /><br />To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement, 07/09/2019.<br /><br /><strong>Time-In-Grade Requirement</strong>: Applicants who are current Federal employees and have held a GS grade any time in the past 52 weeks must also meet time-in-grade requirements.<br /><br /><strong>GS – 07</strong>: 52 weeks at the GS – 05 level.<br /> <strong>GS – 09: </strong>52 weeks at the GS – 07 level<br /> <strong>GS – 10:</strong> 52 weeks at the GS – 09 level<br /><br />AND<br /><br />Specialized Experience: Applicants must have One year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the next lower grade (GS-07: GS-05)(GS-09: GS-07)(GS-10: GS-09) in the normal line of progression for the occupation in the organization. Examples of specialized experience would typically include, but are not limited to: Experience in counseling veterans, their dependents and beneficiaries on compensation benefits, home loan eligibility, education, hospitalization, life insurance, burial benefits, vocational counseling, small or disadvantaged business utilization, general Social Security Administration benefit programs, other federal, state and local domestic relations and assistance programs.<br /><br />OR<br /><br />Applicants may substitute education for the experience required:<br /><br /><strong>GS-07: </strong>One full year of graduate level education (equivalent to nine semester hours) from an accredited institution. NOTE: YOU MUST SUBMIT COPIES OF YOUR OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS.<br /><br />OR<br /><br />Superior Academic Achievement (S.A.A.) is a means of qualifying on the basis of education, if you are within the area of consideration as stated in the "Who May Be Considered" section of this announcement (first page). S.A.A. is based on (1) class standing, (2) grade-point average, or (3) honor society membership.<br /> 1. Class standing–Applicants must be in the upper third of the graduating class in the college, university, or major subdivision, such as the College of Liberal Arts or the School of Business Administration, based on completed courses.<br /> 2. Grade-point average (G.P.A.)–Applicants must have a grade-point average of:<br /> a. 3.0 or higher out of a possible 4.0 ('B' or better) as recorded on their official transcript, or as computed based on 4 years of education, or as computed based on courses completed during the final 2 years of the curriculum; or<br /> b. 3.5 or higher out of a possible 4.0 ('B+' or better) based on the average of the required courses completed in the major field or the required courses in the major field completed during the final 2 years of the curriculum.<br /> Grade-point averages are to be rounded to one decimal place. For example, 2.95 will round to 3.0 and 2.94 will round to 2.9.<br /> 3. Election to membership in a national scholastic honor society–Applicants can be considered eligible based on membership in one of the national scholastic honor societies.<br /><br /><strong>GS-09:</strong> A Master's Degree or equivalent graduate degree or two (2) full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree or LL.B. or J.D., if related.<br /> OR<br /> Applicants may also combine education and experience to qualify. To calculate, first identify the percentage of required education you have earned. When substituting you can use graduate level education you have earned beyond a Bachelor's Degree.) Then identify the percentage of required experience you possess. Add the two percentages. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify at the GS- 07. For example, an applicant who has 9 semester hours of graduate level education (i.e. 50% of graduate education required) and 6 months of creditable specialized experience (i.e. 50% of the required experience) would equal 100% of the required experience for the position.<br /><br /><strong>GS-10:</strong> 1 1/2 full years of progressively higher-level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. or LL.M.<br /><br />OR<br /><br />Applicants may also combine education and experience to qualify. To calculate, first identify the percentage of required education you have earned. When substituting, you cannon use the first 60 semester hours that you earned, then identify the percentage of required experience you possess. Add the two percentages. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify.<br /> A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.<br /><br />Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.<br /><br /><strong>Note</strong>: A full year of work is considered to be 35-40 hours of work per week. Part-time experience will be credited on the basis of time actually spent in appropriate activities. Applicants wishing to receive credit for such experience must indicate clearly the nature of their duties and responsibilities in each position and the number of hours a week spent in such employment. <br /><br /><strong>Physical Requirements: </strong>Work is mostly sedentary. However, incumbent will be required to talk for long periods of time which occasionally puts a train on the throat/vocal cords. There are no other special physical demands required to perform the work. There may be some walking, standing, and carrying of light items such as papers, books, claims folders and files from one desk to another for returning to storage. Extensive use of a computer and a telephone with a headset is required.<br /><br />For more information on these qualification standards, please visit the United States Office of Personnel Management's website at http: : www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/ . <br /><br /><b>Education</b><br /><br /><strong>A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education. </strong> <br /><br /><strong>Note: </strong>Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here: http: ope.ed.gov/accreditation/ . If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. For further information, visit: http: www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html . <br /><br /><b>Additional information</b><br /><br /><strong>Receiving Service Credit or Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave</strong>: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed.<br /><br /><strong>Special Employment Consideration:</strong> VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply, including those eligible disabled veterans with a compensable service-connected disability of 30% or more. Contact the Agency Contact for information on how to apply under this appointment authority via the Selective Placement Coordinator.<br /><br />The <strong>Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan</strong> (ICTAP) and <strong>Career Transition Assistance Plan</strong> (CTAP) provide eligible displaced Federal/VA competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. To be qualified you must submit appropriate documentation (a copy of the agency notice, your most recent performance rating, and your most recent SF-50 noting current position, grade level, and duty location) and be found well-qualified (have a final rating of 85 or more) for this vacancy. Information about ICTAP and CTAP eligibility is on OPM's Career Transition Resources website at http: www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/workforce-restructuring/employee-guide-to-career-transition/ .<br /><br /><strong>Placement Policy: </strong> The posting of this announcement does not obligate management to fill a vacancy or vacancies by promotion. The position may be filled by reassignment, change to lower grade, transfer, appointment, or reinstatement. Management may use any one or any combination of these methods to fill the position.<br /><br />It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.<br /><br />This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.<br /><br /><strong>Veterans and Transitioning Service Members</strong>: Please visit the VA for Vets site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.<br /><br />For more information on the "Who may apply" eligibility requirements, please refer to the OHRM Status Candidates and Other Candidate Definitions document.<br /><br />If you are unable to apply online view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application . <br /><br /><b>How You Will Be Evaluated</b><br /><br />You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.<br /><br /><strong>IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE WILL NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.</strong><br /> <ul> <li>Knowledge of federal, state, and local eligibility criteria and agency procedures pertaining to the full range of VA and other benefits</li> <li>Ability to interpret and apply laws, guidelines, regulations and precedent opinions to provide accurate entitlement determinations and benefit payment information</li> <li>Skill in written and oral communication to inform claimants of VA and related benefits, evidence requirements, and the reason and basis for decisions and appeal rights</li> </ul> <br /> Narrative responses are not required at this time. If you are referred for consideration, you may be asked to submit additional job related information, which may include, but not limited to; responses to the knowledge, skills and abilities; completion of a work sample, and/or contact for an interview.Your resume and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating or consideration for employment. <br /><br /><b>Background checks and security clearance</b><br /><br />Security clearance <br /> Sensitive Compartmented Information <br /><br />Drug test required <br /> No <br /><br />Position sensitivity and risk <br /> Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk <br /><br />Trust determination process <br /> Suitability/Fitness <br /><br /></li> <b>Required Documents</b><br /><br />To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:<br /> <ul><li>Resume</li></ul> <ul> </ul> <br /> Current VBA Employees : If you are seeking a reassignment/change to lower grade, you must submit a copy of your most recent SF-50 (non-award) AND the SF-50 placing you into your current position.<br /><br />The following documents are accepted, and may be required if applicable to your eligibility and/or qualifications for this position. Please use this checklist to make sure you have included other documents required for your application, such as a copy of your transcript (if using education to qualify), SF-50's (current/former Federal employees), documentation to support Veterans Preference claims, or ICTAP/CTAP documentation (for displaced Federal employees). You will not be contacted for additional information.<br /> <ul><li>Cover Letter</li><li>DD-214/ Statement of Service</li><li>Disability Letter (Schedule A)</li><li>Disability Letter (VA)</li><li>Other (2)</li><li>Other (3)</li><li>Other (4)</li><li>Other (5)</li><li>Resume</li><li>SF-50/ Notification of Personnel Action</li><li>Transcript</li></ul><br /><br /><strong>Veterans' Preference:</strong> When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference for 5pt (TP), 10pt (CP/CPS/XP), or for Sole Survivor Preference (SSP) in the questionnaire. You must provide a legible copy of your DD214(s) which shows dates and character of service (honorable, general, etc.). If you are currently serving on active duty and expect to be released or discharged within 120 days you must submit documentation related to your active duty service which reflects the dates of service, character of service (honorable, general, etc.), and dates of impending separation. Additionally, disabled veterans and others eligible for 10-point preference (such as widows or mothers of eligible Veterans) must also submit an SF-15 "Application for 10 Point Veteran Preference" with required proof as stated on the form. <strong>Documentation is required to award preference. </strong>For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit http: www.fedshirevets.gov/job/vetpref/index.aspx .<br /><br /><b>If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:</b><br /><br />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 . <br /><br />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.