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Office of the General Counsel (GC)

Office of the General Counsel

The General Counsel serves as the USITC’s chief legal advisor. The General Counsel and the staff attorneys in the office provide legal advice and support to the Commissioners and USITC staff on investigations and research studies, prepare briefs and represent the USITC in court and before dispute resolution panels and administrative tribunals, and provide assistance and advice on general administrative matters, including personnel, labor relations, and contract issues.

Mission

The mission of the Office of the General Counsel is to provide legal advice and guidance to the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) and its staff. The General Counsel reports to the Commission.

Functions

  1. Interprets statutes, Executive orders, Presidential proclamations, court decisions, and regulations applicable to the USITC and advises the Commission regarding its authority and responsibilities there under. The Office of the General Counsel does not provide legal services with respect to procurement for the benefit of the Office of the Inspector General.
  2. Interprets other general or specific statutes and Executive orders which bear upon contemplated, substantive, or administrative actions of the USITC and advises as to the legal implications of the proposed actions.
  3. Advises the Commission as to the legal sufficiency of applications, petitions, complaints, and other requests submitted to the Commission under applicable statutes and regulations.
  4. Represents the USITC in Federal courts and in proceedings before other administrative agencies and dispute resolution panels. Coordinates litigation efforts, as necessary, with the Department of Justice and other agencies.
  5. In consultation with the Office of External Relations, provides technical support to Congressional staff, USTR, and other agencies on legal matters affecting the USITC's responsibilities and actions.
  6. Reviews completed investigative reports. Drafts legal instruments necessary to effect Commission decisions when appropriate.
  7. Maintains a law library which includes indices of legal opinions, decisions of the Commission, court decisions affecting USITC procedure and jurisdiction, and a research collection of legal materials relating to international trade of the United States.
  8. Serves as the Designated Ethics Official.
  9. Certifies the closing of meetings under the Government in the Sunshine Act.
  10. Reviews and participates in drafting and revising the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure, USITC internal rules, and other policy documents related to the functions set forth in this statement.
  11. Follows and supports all agency-wide functions including EEO, ethics, audit follow-up, and property management.