Office of the General Counsel
- MISSION AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- ORDER OF SUCCESSION
- FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF OGC COMPONENTSs
- PRIMARY DELEGATIONS OF AUTHORITY
The General Counsel serves as principal adviser to the Secretary on all legal matters affecting Departmental programs and activities. The Office directs, coordinates, and recommends policy for activities that are designed to:
- Provide legal advice and services to the Secretary, Deputy Secretary, Principal Officers of the Department, or any other person authorized to request such advice or services.
- Prepare or review for legal form and effect public documents, rules, regulations issued by the Department, and legal instruments entered into by the Department.
- Represent the Secretary, the Department, or any of its officers or units in court or administrative litigation, except for administrative proceedings initiated by the Office for Civil Rights.
- Serve as liaison to other Federal agencies in connection with legal matters involving the Department.
- Draft legislative proposals originating in the Department and review the legal aspects of proposed or pending legislation.
- Prepare or review pleadings, briefs, memoranda, and other legal documents for proceedings involving the Department or requested by other Government agencies for use in proceedings except for administrative proceedings initiated by the Office for Civil Rights.
The Office of the General Counsel is under the supervision of the General Counsel who reports directly to the Deputy Secretary and the Secretary of Education. The Immediate Office of the General Counsel provides overall direction, coordination, and leadership to the following major elements of the Office:
- Program Service;
- Departmental Law and Postsecondary Service; and
- Ethics, Regulatory, and Legislative Service.
In the event that the General Counsel dies, resigns or is otherwise unable to perform the functions and duties of the office, and the office is thereby deemed to be vacant, the Deputy General Counsel for Departmental and Legislative Service shall temporarily perform the functions and duties of the office in an acting capacity.
In instances where the office is not vacant, but the General Counsel is absent, the following officials, in the order shown, shall perform the functions and duties of the office:
- Deputy General Counsel, Program Service
- Deputy General Counsel
- Deputy General Counsel, Ethics, Regulatory, and Legislative Service