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Deputy U.S. Marshal Job Description, Career as a Deputy U.S. Marshal, Salary, Employment

Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

Education and Training: Bachelor’s degree, or a minimum three years of relevant experience

Salary Median: $82,000 per year

Employment Outlook: Good

Deputy U.S. marshals are an integral part of the federal law enforcement service. They are primarily responsible for protecting the federal courts and for ensuring the smooth functioning of the judicial system. Deputy U.S. marshals provide security for federal judicial officials like judges, jurors, and attorneys; transport prisoners; investigate criminal operations; and conduct special missions. They also manage forfeited and confiscated property, and deputy U.S. marshals guarantee the safety of witnesses whose lives may be at risk.

Deputy U.S. marshals are provided training in firearms, law, first aid, driving, protective service, and defensive tactics. They also learn how to conduct surveillance and to search people, buildings, and prisoners. Deputy U.S. marshals are required to have basic knowledge of computers and courtroom procedures, and they must be in top physical condition.

Deputy U.S. marshals are employed at different levels. Inexperienced new candidates are recruited as GS-0082 series deputies at the GL-5 level or sometimes the GL-7 level. Experienced deputies move to other levels like GL-7, GL-9, GS-11, and GS-12. Deputy U.S. marshals are mostly employed in federal agencies but may also work together with the local police or sheriff’s departments.

Education and Training Requirements

Candidates interested in a federal government career should have a bachelor’s degree or at least three years of relevant experience. At times, a combination of academic qualification and experience is also considered sufficient. Interested candidates should accept a first job or internship in the fields of law enforcement, leadership or management, classroom instruction, civilian or military supervision, or correctional treatment.

Academic qualifications for deputy U.S. marshals differ in accordance with the candidate’s pay grade. For instance, those applying for the GL-5 grade should have a bachelor’s degree or at least three years of work experience. On the other hand, Deputy U.S. Marshals at the GL-7 level should have a bachelor’s degree with a GPA of at least 3.0, be a member of a national scholastic society recognized by the Association of College Honor Societies, and successfully complete graduate education in criminal justice, law, or a related discipline.

In addition to these qualifications, a candidate to be a deputy U.S. marshal should be a citizen of the United States, have a valid driver’s license, be in good physical health, complete a background investigation, and be 21 to 36 years old. Prior to appointment, candidates also need to pass a structured interview, meet medical qualifications, and complete a rigorous training program conducted by the U.S. Marshals Service Training Academy.

Getting the Job

The recruitment of deputy U.S. marshals is conducted under the Federal Career Intern Program. Interested candidates need to attend an information session where paperwork for the application process is completed. On successfully passing the interview, background investigation, and medical and physical fitness exam, and graduating from the training academy, candidates can join the federal government as deputy U.S. marshals. The U.S. Marshal District Offices provides detailed information regarding the recruitment process. Applicants can also get in touch with local recruitment officers or check the office’s Web site for employment news.

Advancement Possibilities and Employment Outlook

Deputy U.S. marshals are initially recruited at the GL-5 or GL-7 level. After a year in a particular grade, they can get promoted to the GL-7 or GL-9 level. With further experience, deputies can attain the GS-11 grade and ultimately the GS-12 level. Deputy U.S. marshals can advance to positions of greater responsibility, like supervisory deputy U.S. marshal, chief deputy U.S. marshal, and U.S. marshal.

Employment of deputy U.S. marshals is expected to grow by over 10 percent in the next decade. Opportunities will be better for candidates who meet the academic, personal, physical, and psychological criteria. Applicants who have a background in police science or who have military training are also likely to be preferred over other candidates.

Working Conditions

The work of deputy U.S. marshals frequently involves dangerous situations. During interactions with criminals, deputies need to be alert and act promptly. They might have to witness accidents and deaths, which may result in a significant amount of distress and disrupt their personal lives. Deputy U.S. marshals also travel extensively. They often work outdoors, in all kinds of climates. They may also need to relocate to other cities or states.

Deputy U.S. marshals usually work 40 hours a week. However, they need to be available at all times in cases of emergency. Deputies are also required to carry firearms with them and be prepared to exert their authority. Paid overtime is a common feature of this profession.

Where to Go for More Information

U.S. Marshals Service
Human Resources Division—Law Enforcement Recruiting
Washington, DC 20530-1000

Attorney General’s Office
California Department of Justice
Public Inquiry Unit
PO Box 944255
Sacramento, CA 94244-2550

Federal Bureau of Investigation
J. Edgar Hoover Building
935 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20535-0001

Special Agent, U.S. Deputy Marshal Treasury Enforcement Agent (Arco Civil Service Test Tutor)
By Eve P. Steinberg

Salary, Earnings and Benefits

According to statistics from November 2009, the median annual salary of deputy U.S. marshals is $82,000. The salary depends on the candidate’s level of experience and geographic location of employment. For instance, deputy U.S. marshals at the GL-5 level earn between $36,658 and $41,260 per year, while the annual salary range of those at the GL-7 level is from $41,729 to $46,969.

Deputy U.S. marshals enjoy a host of fringe benefits, including sick leaves, annual leaves, family and medical leaves, employee assistance, health and life insurance, and retirement plans.

Additional topics

Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesLaw and Public Service