Office of the General Counsel (OGC)

The General Counsel directs and coordinates the functions of the Office of the General Counsel and is directly responsible for providing all legal services within the Commission. See 39 CFR 3000.113. The General Counsel is designated by the Chairman to serve as the Commission’s Designated Agency Ethics Official (DAEO) and administers the Commission’s ethics program. See id.; § 39 CFR 3000.110(b). The General Counsel provides legal advice to each of the five Commissioners, including the Chairman, and other office directors on a wide variety of legal and policy matters that come before the Commission. The Office advises the Commission on the legal aspects of proposed legislation and rulemaking, and on general administrative legal issues including procurement, personnel, FOIA and the Privacy Act and other internal legal questions. The Office works together with the Department of Justice in litigating matters before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, the venue of the majority of Commission appeals. The Office also supports the Federal Government’s Pro Bono Program which allows Commission attorneys and support personnel to staff legal aid clinics and to represent pro bono clients, consistent with the Office’s Pro Bono Policy.

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