FBI Special Agent

Federal Bureau of Investigation
Salary: $62,556.00-$80,721.00

Industry: Protective Service

Occupational Category: Law Enforcement


Regular/Temporary: Regular

Who May Apply

This announcement is open to all qualified U.S. citizens.


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

Series & Grade: GS-1811-10

Promotional Potential: GS-13

Salary: GS- $62,556.00 – $80,721.00

Duration: Full Time/Permanent

The salary listed above applies to New Agent trainees while attending the training academy. Upon graduation, your salary will be adjusted according to field office assignment and Law Enforcement Officers availability pay.


The FBI seeks responsible, motivated, self-starters to work in a high pressure and demanding team environment. Special Agent applicants must be able to work independently, adapt to changing and sometimes dangerous situations and make logical, well-reasoned decisions based on all available facts. Applicants should have superior interpersonal abilities and be able to effectively communicate, both orally and in writing, in an organized and articulate manner.

Special Agents are responsible for enforcing over 300 federal statutes and conducting sensitive national security investigations. As a Special Agent, you may be asked to use your language skills to interview a witness who speaks only a foreign language, your IT skills to locate evidence concealed deep within a computer network, or your CPA skills to uncover hidden assets. Whether it is identifying and recruiting human sources whose information may ultimately avert a terrorist act or gathering intelligence on a foreign enemy determined to do us harm, the FBI provides the opportunity for leaders in every community to give back.

This opportunity should not be taken lightly. The FBI Special Agent position requires significant commitment and dedication from you and your family.



  1. Adhere to strict standards of conduct, foremost being honesty and integrity.
  2. Endure a rigorous background investigation, credit checks, and a polygraph in order to obtain a Top Secret Security Clearance.
  3. Pass a Physical Fitness Test (PFT) at least twice during the application process. Upon graduation, Agents will also be expected to maintain a level of fitness necessary to effectively respond to life-threatening situations on the job.
  4. Pass a medical exam which includes, but is not limited to, meeting visual and hearing standards.
  5. Successfully complete approximately 20 weeks of employment as a Special Agent trainee, while housed at the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA.
  6. Upon graduation from the FBI Academy, be available to transfer to one of the FBI's 56 field offices, including San Juan, Puerto Rico or remote resident agencies (satellite offices) to meet the needs of the FBI. Special Agents rarely return to their processing office. Applicants should ensure that their families are prepared for and support this move.
  7. Throughout your career, be available for temporary duty assignments, anywhere in the world, on either a temporary or a long-term basis.
  8.  Work a minimum of a 50-hr workweek, which may include odd hours, and be on-call 24/7, including holidays and weekends.
  9. Carry a firearm and be willing to use deadly force if necessary.
  10.  Be willing and able to participate in arrests, search warrants, raids and other dangerous assignments, all of which may pose the risk of personal bodily harm.


The following minimum qualifications are required at the time of application:

  1. Must be a U.S. citizen.
  2. Must be between 23 and 37 years of age.

Applicants should consider that the average processing time to complete all stages of the Special Agent Selection System (SASS) may take approximately one (1) year.  The FBI may disqualify applicants at any time during the process, should it be determined that they will reach age 37 before appointment to the Basic Field Training Course.

Potential Exceptions:

  • Applicants with prior Federal law enforcement service
  • Preference eligible veteran
  1. Must have a bachelor’s degree from a college or a university accredited by one of the regional or national institutional associations recognized by the United States Secretary of Education.

For ANY foreign degree, applicants must provide a foreign equivalency certification, otherwise, they cannot continue processing until this is provided.

Potential Exception:

  • Your bachelor’s degree is not from a U.S. accredited college, but your advanced degree is from a U.S. accredited college
  1. Must have three years full-time (36+ hours per week) professional work experience

Potential Exception:

  • For eligible veterans, part-time work, internships (paid and unpaid), as well as Reserve/Guard duty count toward total work experience
  • Applicants with an advanced degree (master’s and/or doctorate) must have two years of full-time professional work experience

Note:  The FBI determines professional work experience based on the general requirements needed to perform Special Agent duties.

  1. Must qualify for a Top Secret Security Clearance*
  2. Must possess a valid driver's license
  3. Must meet physical requirements
  4. Must pass all phases of the Special Agent Application process

*This position requires a Top Secret Security Clearance. Selectees must undergo and successfully complete a comprehensive background investigation as a condition of placement/retention in the position. Prior to the initiation of a background investigation, applicants will be required to pass a polygraph examination. The background investigation will include a check of your credit history and criminal record, as well as interviews with prior employers, references, co-workers, personal associates, family members, and friends. An applicant may be disqualified from selection or removed from employment as a Special Agent based on information obtained during this background investigation. Applicants must consent to a complete background investigation, urinalysis, and polygraph.

Automatic Disqualifiers

  • Applicants with a felony conviction, use of illegal drugs in violation of the FBI Employment Drug Policy, in default of a student loan insured by the U.S. Government that fail an FBI-administered urinalysis drug test, fail to register with the Selective Service System (males only).

If you are disqualified by any of the above tests, you are not eligible for employment with the FBI.

Physical Requirements

  • Special Agents must be mentally and physically prepared to perform their work.
  • The FBI requires every applicant to pass the official Physical Fitness Test (PFT), and meet all applicable physical standards.

A PFT self-evaluation is required upon application.  Please watch the PFT protocol video (required) and visit our website for more information, and be prepared to submit your results.

You MUST perform the PFT self-evaluation according to protocol and provide accurate results. Failure to do so will preclude you from further consideration.

The FBI uses a category rating system. You will be evaluated based on the competencies listed below. Please ensure that these competencies can be easily identified in your resume and provide detail on how each competency was demonstrated. Competency definitions are included on our website at www.fbijobs.gov.

  • Leadership
  • Interpersonal Ability
  • Collaboration
  • Organizing and Planning
  • Problem Solving/Judgment
  • Flexibility/Adaptability
  • Initiative
  • Communication

In order to meet minimum qualifications, applicants must pass every stage of the Special Agent Selection System (SASS), which includes:

  1. A preliminary application screening to ensure eligibility, willingness and awareness of the Special Agent position
  2. A three-hour exam consisting of Cognitive, Behavioral, and Logical Reasoning tests (Phase I)
  3. A written and oral language test (for applicants claiming a language ability)
  4. A 90-minute written exam (Phase II)
  5.  A one-hour oral panel interview (Phase II)
  6. At least two Physical Fitness Tests (PFTs)
  7. A medical exam which includes, but is not limited to, meeting visual and hearing standards
  8. Endure a rigorous background investigation, credit checks, and a polygraph

Things to Consider

  • If you are currently employed, please be aware that you may be scheduled for testing during your regular working hours (i.e. midday/midweek), and sometimes in a short timeframe.
  • If you are in the active duty service military, you must be within six months of completing your service before applying.
  • You may receive no more than a two-week notice to report to Basic Field Training Class (BFTC) and must successfully complete approximately 21 weeks of employment as a Special Agent trainee, while housed at the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA.
  • Upon graduation from the FBI Academy, you must be available to transfer to one of the FBI's 56 field offices, including San Juan, PR, Anchorage, AK, Honolulu, HI, or remote resident agencies (satellite offices).  You will be required to sign a mobility agreement, which ensures that you agree to remain available for transfer, either for permanent or temporary assignment, to meet the operational needs of the FBI. Special Agents rarely return to their processing office. Applicants should ensure that their families are prepared for and support any assignment location

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