Special Agent Employment Opportunities
OIG Special Agents investigate possible violations of criminal statutes using techniques such as interviews, surveillance, electronic monitoring, search warrants and subpoenas. In conducting investigations, OIG Special Agents work closely with other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, as well as with OIG auditors. In addition to a Headquarters operation, the Office of Investigation also has 15 District Offices and 34 Duty Stations throughout the United States. A Special Agent can expect to be charged with investigating areas such as bid rigging, bribery, fraud, computer related crimes, conflicts of interest, and abuse in HUD programs.
Each year, the OIG hires Special Agents from a pool of diverse and highly qualified candidates. They may be recent college graduates or experienced criminal investigators from other law enforcement agencies. Degrees vary with majors from Criminology to Business Education. The character traits that the OIG looks for in a Special Agent include initiative, ingenuity, resourcefulness, and sound judgment. These are important in order to collect, assemble and develop facts and other pertinent data. The ability to provide clear, concise, written and oral reports is also important.
Criminal Investigators, GS-1811, are hired at all levels (GS-5 thru GS-13). Applications are evaluated on the extent and quality of the applicant's education and experience. No written test is required. To qualify, applicants must have:
- For GS-5, a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university or 3 years of general experience.
- For GS-7, 1 full year of graduate level education or superior academic achievement, or 1 year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-5 level in the Federal Service.
- For GS-9, a master's or equivalent graduate degree or 2 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a LL.B. or J.D., or 1 year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-7 level in the Federal Service.
- For GS-11, a PH.D or equivalent doctoral degree or 3 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a LL.M, or 1 year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-9 level in the Federal Service.
- For GS-12 and above, one must have 1 year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the next lower grade in the Federal Service.
OIG Special Agents will also benefit from/participate in the following:
- Law Enforcement Availability Pay (LEAP) ensures the law enforcement officer's availability for duty in excess of the 40-hour administrative work week. To receive "premium pay," Special Agents must work a minimum annual average of 50 hours per week. LEAP is fixed at 25% of basic pay.
- The Law Enforcement Retirement System provides for retirement at age 50 after 20 years of service.
- Once an Agent is hired, he/she must meet the requirements of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center by successfully completing the basic criminal investigator course and meeting physical training standards.
- The 1811 series has a minimum entry age of 21, a maximum entry age of 37.
- Must be able to pass medical standards and participate in an annual fitness assessment.
- Those in the 1811 series are tested for drugs.
- Travel is required.