Q & A Session – Performance Objectives and Termination


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.


I reported to my command and received a closeout assessment. The appraisal was completed appropriately. I reported to my new command and I wasn’t provided new performance objectives for 90 days. When my final appraisal was completed, it was done under an appraisal that was set for less than 90 days. After a formal grievance process, the command determined that the period satisfied the time period requirement. Can an appraisal be backdated to be considered for the final appraisal since objectives were not set for 90 days? Do I have grounds to file an MSPB appeal?


The MSPB does not have jurisdiction for the concern you raise. If your command tried to fire you for poor performance based on the fact that you were on standards for less than 90 days, then the MSPB might have jurisdiction and look favorably on your claim. But those are not the facts you allege. You may be able to file a grievance on this issue. If you are in a bargaining unit, check with your union. If you’re not in a bargaining unit, find the procedures for an administrative grievance, but your complaint will probably be heard only in your command.

Bill Bransford is managing partner of Shaw, Bransford & Roth, PC.

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About Author

Debra Roth

Debra L. Roth is a partner at the law firm Shaw Bransford & Roth, a federal employment law firm in Washington, D.C. She is general counsel to the Senior Executives Association and the Federal Managers Association, host of the “FEDtalk” program on Federal News Radio, and a regular contributor to Federal News Radio’s “Federal Drive” morning show. Email your legal questions to lawyer@federaltimes.com.

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