Monthly Archives: September, 2010

Q&A Session – TDY for Travel Outside "Official Duty Station"

1

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: If I have to work a half day or more at locations that are 60 miles or greater from my normal place of work, can I be authorized for TDY? A: In order for your visits to other locations throughout the city to qualify as a TDY (and for you to gain compensatory time for travel to/from a temporary duty station), one must travel outside their “official duty station.”  Your…

Q&A Session – Veterans Preference on SF50

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: On an SF50, which veterans can check yes on box #26 (Veterans Preference)? A: Box #26 on a SF-50 may only be checked off as “yes” generally if a civilian employee is both retired from the military (your question states that you are not) and satisfies at least one of the three following conditions: The retirement was caused by an injury or disease endured directly from armed conflict or war;…

Q&A Session – Internal Policies on Adverse Actions

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: Do federal agencies have internal policies or directives on adverse actions? A: Some agencies have internal policies including tables of penalties. If an agency has a policy, it must be consistent with law and it imposes obligation on the agency to follow its stated policies. These policies should be publicly available. Disclaimer: Ask a Lawyer publishes information on this website for informational purposes only. Information on this website is intended…

Q&A Session – Non-Lawyer Representation

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: Can a non-lawyer can be a representative in an EEO case and what can’t they do that a lawyer can? A: The EEOC is not a court and a non-lawyer can represent a complainant there. If the case ends up in federal district court, the complainant can only proceed pro se (represent him or herself) or with a licensed lawyer. If a non-lawyer represents someone at the agency or at…

How to decrease the likelihood of a reduction-in-force appeal

0

We have not heard much about reductions in force (RIFs) in recent years, but expect a comeback soon as the executive branch copes with budget cutbacks, reorganizations and elimination of some programs. Employees who are separated or demoted because of a RIF have a right to file an appeal with the Merit Systems Protection Board. This column addresses the things that management can do to lose a RIF appeal. A RIF is a highly technical creature. It does not allow for much discretion. Instead, once it’s decided that a RIF is necessary, an agency must establish what are called competitive…

Q&A Session – Management Discipline

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: Can management be disciplined if cameras are in the interview area and there is a Memorandum of Understanding that specifies that cameras should not be in that area? A: It is difficult to tell the context of this question. As a general rule, a lower level employee cannot order, mandate, or insist upon the discipline of a higher level manager. The lower level employee could report what he or she…

Q&A Session – Whistleblower Protection

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: What can an employee do when they are being retaliated against by their supervisor through the performance/conduct evaluations for reporting unsafe practices? A: Reporting unsafe practices is protected by the Whistleblower Protection Act. If that is the reason for a lowered appraisal, you can report the reprisal to the Office of Special Counsel. For more information, go to www.osc.gov. Disclaimer: Ask a Lawyer publishes information on this website for informational…

Q&A Session – FMLA Abuse

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: I have an employee who was placed on Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) to care for an estranged child. However, the employee has been posting pictures on Facebook showing him with his child during activities like site-seeing and fishing. Is this an abuse of FMLA? A: A qualified employee may use up to twelve (12) workweeks of leave during any 12-month period to care for his or her son or…

Q&A Session – Retirement Pay

0

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: My brother is a federal retiree. He is currently serving time in prison for a crime he committed before he was a federal employee and the conviction was not related to his federal service. Will the felony conviction affect his retirement pay? A: Assuming your brother is already retired, the conviction will not affect retirement eligibility. Federal employees lose their retirement when convicted of offenses such as treason, espionage, sabotage…

Q&A Session – NSPS Pay Retention

1

Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience. Q: With the transition back to the General Schedule (GS) from the National Security Personnel System (NSPS), can they lower the grade level or pay of the employee? A: The conversion from NSPS back to the General Schedule has caused a great deal of confusion. Employees are supposed to be moved from their NSPS designation to a GS position with the equivalent duties and responsibilities. An employee is not supposed to…

1 2