1-3 years of experience
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Employment Type:
Full time
Job Category:
Social Service
SPECIAL AGENT - GS 1811-10 (EXTERNAL - All US Citizens)
(This job is no longer available)
Grad Date

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Job Description

Job Summary


The mission of the FBI is to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution of the United States. Special Agents enforce over 300 federal statutes and conduct criminal and national security investigations.  In a typical day, a Special Agent may be asked to utilize foreign language and interpersonal skills to interview a victim of human trafficking, computer skills to decipher malicious code, accounting skills to uncover hidden assets, or communication and collaboration skills to lead a joint agency investigation.

We’re looking for leaders across all backgrounds and all walks of life to join us and have a career like no other.



We’re looking for Special Agents with unique skills, lives, and backgrounds.  The one thing every Special Agent shares is belief in the mission of the FBI.  They have the drive to help keep our nation safe, become part of something bigger than themselves, and take pride in making a difference in the communities they serve.

You are:

  •     Driven to find solutions to all types of problems, and are willing to roll up your sleeves to get there
  •     Compassionate and respectful to everyone you meet, be it a suspect, victim, or anyone in between
  •     Adaptable to a variety of situations, and able to keep a cool head in the face of challenges
  •     Well-spoken, well-written, and enjoy meeting, speaking, and collaborating with people from different backgrounds

You also might have the following skills or experiences (though they’re not necessary to apply):

  •     Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM)
  •     Foreign Languages
  •     Law (Attorneys and others in the legal field)
  •     Emergency Medicine
  •     Certified Public Accountants (CPAs)/ Forensic Accountants
  •     Detectives
  •     Military experience (specifically Special Forces, Explosives, WMD and Intelligence Experts)
  •     Pilots (helicopter, fixed-wing)


Special Agents are the elite, and as such are expected to follow strict standards of conduct, especially maintaining honesty and integrity. As a Special Agent, you should be prepared to:

  •     Move anywhere in the country or the world on either a temporary or long-term basis
  •     Work holidays, weekends, and odd hours as needed
  •     Stay fit - Agents are tested every year on their ability to meet physical fitness requirements
  •     Carry a firearm and be willing to use deadly force, if necessary. Agents are tested every quarter on their ability to qualify with a firearm.
  •     Participate in arrests, search warrants, and other assignments which may be dangerous and pose a risk of personal bodily harm


Don't Apply To Be A Special Agent If:

  •     You are not a U.S. Citizen
  •     You are younger than 23 or older than 36 (see exceptions below)
  •     You do not meet the FBI’s Employment Eligibility Requirements
  •     You don’t meet the physical requirements https://www.fbijobs.gov/career-paths/special-agents
  •     You don’t have a Bachelor’s degree or an advanced degree from a U.S. accredited college or university (don’t apply if you haven’t yet graduated).
  •     You don’t have at least three (3) years (36 months) of full-time professional work experience
  •     You don’t have a valid driver’s license along with 6 months of driving experience



  •     Make sure you know what you’re getting into. Read about our Special Agent Selection Systemand talk to your family about becoming a Special Agent. https://www.fbijobs.gov/career-paths/special-agents
  •     Fill out the Education, Work Experience, and Profile Information sections on the application.
  •     Answer the Open-Ended Questions using a Situation, Action, Result format. Tell us what the situation was, the actions you took, and the outcomes. We use these questions to evaluate your fit with our Core Competencies: https://www.fbijobs.gov/sites/default/files/FBI_Core_Competencies_Definitions.pdf
  •     Attach your resume and unofficial college transcript(s) in the Attachments section.  Current or former federal employees should also attach their SF-50.  
  • Military veterans applying for veteran's preference should attach your DD-214 (Member 4 or Service 2 copy), VA Letter dated within one year, and/or SF-15 (optional).
  • Your application will not be processed until you have provided all of the required documentation.
  • Note: When scanning and uploading your document(s), make sure that all pages are readable and facing upright in the same direction.


  •     Attach a cover letter in the Attachments section. Instead, fill out the Education, Work Experience, and Profile Information sections on the application, and answer the Open-Ended Questions to the best of your ability.
  •     Upload any picture files (JPEG, TIFF, PNG, BMP).


    Check out our FAQs here www.fbijobs.gov/working-at-FBI/eligibility

    Download our Special Agent Information Packet.

    Email SAINFO@fbi.gov.


TECHNICAL EXPLANATIONS & EXCEPTIONS (only read if you need further explanation)

Age Requirement

FBI Special Agents must apply prior to their 36th birthday. In addition, they must be appointed and assigned to the FBI Academy no later than the month of their 37th birthday to achieve 20 years of service prior to the mandatory retirement age of 57. The FBI may disqualify applicants at any time during the process if it is determined that they will reach age 37 before appointment.

Potential Exceptions:  Applicants with prior Federal law enforcement service or preference eligible veterans may qualify for an age waiver.

    Non-Preference Eligible Candidates – Applicants with prior/current service as federal law enforcement officers do not require an age waiver if they will have amassed 20 years of service by age 57.

    Preference-Eligible Candidates – Applicants who are over the age of 36 at the time of application must have been discharged or released from active duty from the Armed Forces under honorable conditions (i.e., with an honorable or general discharge) and must be preference-eligible. Preference-eligible applicants must successfully complete all phases of the Special Agent Selection System (SASS) and pass the background investigation before requesting an age waiver. Please Note: Veterans at the rank of Major, Lieutenant Commander, or higher, are not eligible for preference in appointment unless they are disabled veterans. This does not apply to Reservists who will not begin drawing military retired pay until age 60. Click here to learn more about veteran’s preference: https://www.fedshirevets.gov/job-seekers/veterans-preference/#content

Education Requirement

For ANY foreign degree, applicants must provide a foreign equivalency certification at the time of application. No processing will take place absent that documentation.

Potential Exceptions: If a bachelor’s degree is not from a U.S. accredited college, but your advanced degree is from a U.S. accredited college, the FBI will accept the accreditation of your advanced degree and no other documentation is required.

Work Experience Requirement

For Special Agents, professional work experience is defined as having work experience in:

  •     Any occupation that requires a college degree, and may include specialized training; and/or
  •     Any position that includes managerial, supervisory, or leadership; and/or
  •     Professional Athletics such as a full-time career participating in Major League sports (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, etc.) or International Competitions (Olympics).

Summer jobs, internships, seasonal positions, temporary employment and/or volunteer work are generally not considered in the professional work experience category.

In addition to the definition above, the FBI determines if an applicant meets the professional work experience requirement based on the general requirements needed to perform Special Agent duties.

Potential Exceptions:

  •     Applicants with a master’s and/or advanced degree(s) require two years of full-time work experience at the time of application.
  •     For eligible veterans, part-time work, internships (paid or unpaid), and Reserve/Guard duty count toward total work experience. Volunteer work may be considered.
  •     For all applicants, volunteer work (such as Peace Corps) that requires full-time participation, paid full-time graduate work programs, and full-time fellowships may be considered as professional work experience.

All exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis.
Additional Information

Conditional Job Offers

If you pass the application review, testing and physical fitness tests, you may receive a conditional appointment offer. Conditional appointment offers are not guaranteed. You must successfully pass all phases of the FBI Background Investigation (including the medical exam, polygraph, and drug tests) to be considered for a final job offer.                    

Final Job Offer Declinations

Employees who decline the final job offer for an SA position will be precluded from becoming an SA for a period of 12 months from the date of the final offer. To be reconsidered for an SA position, candidates must re-apply on FBIJobs.gov.

Final Job Placement

Job placement of selected candidates will be determined based on qualifications and the needs of the FBI. Candidates must be willing to accept assignment to any location within the FBI in order to be eligible for consideration.

Salary and Compensation

New Special Agents – called New Agent Trainees, or NATs - are paid on the GL schedule for Federal Law Enforcement Officers (LEO), beginning as a GL-10, step 1, while in training at Quantico.  In addition to the base salary, NATs will also get locality pay for the Washington, D.C. area plus availability pay 25% of base and locality pay, (the calculation is 25% x (base + locality)) provided certain requirements are met.

Upon graduation from training, your salary will be adjusted according to your field office assignment and Law Enforcement Officers’ availability pay. Check out the OPM Pay Calculator to see locality pay for a specific geographic area.

Upon completion of a two year probationary period, Special Agents will transition to the General Schedule (GS) pay scale. Most Special Agents are able to achieve a GS-13 level within six (6) years. Click here for more information on the General Schedule.

See the GL and GS pay scales at www.opm.gov.

Reasonable Accommodations

The FBI provides Reasonable Accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities.  If you believe you have a disability that will require special arrangements during the hiring process, you may request a reasonable accommodation at any time by notifying your applicant coordinator.  Each test in the hiring process is evaluated differently.  Therefore, you must submit a reasonable accommodation request for each test, if needed. The decision to grant the requested accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The FBI is an Equal Opportunity Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for this vacancy. Except where otherwise provided by law, selection will be made without regard to, and there will be no discrimination because of color, race, religion, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, parental status, physical or mental disability, genetic information, age, sex, sexual orientation, membership or non-membership in an employee organization, or on the basis of personal favoritism, or any other non-merit factors.


Nepotism is the act of favoring relatives in the hiring process, and is prohibited by law. Public officials are prohibited from hiring or promoting relatives or relatives of officials in their chain of command, as well as actively or indirectly endorsing a relative’s appointment or promotion.

During the hiring process, all selected candidates and FBI hiring managers will be required to certify they are not related to anyone involved in the hiring process.



Questions regarding this posting should be addressed to SAINFO@fbi.gov.
Who May Apply


Failure to do so will result in missing information required to process your application.

This vacancy announcement is open to all qualified candidates within the United States and its territories. This posting will be used to fill multiple vacancies around the country.


About Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

From confronting the evolving threats facing our nation to acting as a role model in your community, working at the FBI is so much more than a job. The FBI is an intelligence-driven national security and law enforcement agency with more than 35,000 employees across the nation and the globe. Our mission is to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution of the United States by providing investigative expertise, intelligence, resources and training to domestic and international agencies and partners. Every day and every career path is different, whether you’re a Special Agent, an Intelligence Analyst, a Forensic Accountant or one of other specialized careers. Whatever your background, you may be suited for a career in the FBI if: - You have great problem-solving and analytical skills. - You know how to objectively evaluate information and make sound judgments. - You are detail-oriented, yet remain strategic. At the FBI, honesty and integrity are more than just words; they are the foundation of who we are. We take pride in making a difference in the communities we serve. In addition to our main downtown Washington, D.C., other headquarters locations include Quantico, VA; Winchester, VA and Clarksburg, WV. There are 56 FBI field offices in major metropolitan centers across the United States; each covers a defined geographic region and is responsible for all FBI operations in that region. Wherever our teams are located, we bring our backgrounds to the forefront to drive initiatives that impact our most important stakeholders: the American people. Our mission is simple, but our work is complex. We have a diverse culture of employees that makes us one family — OneFBI.