Q & A Session – Rights in a Reorganization


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 work as a GS-12 for a federal department. If my immediate boss finds it necessary to demote me, even though I’m getting excellent performance ratings and through no fault of my own, what are my rights?

Would I be entitled to retain my grade for two years and my pay level indefinitely? What does it mean to retain one’s pay level?


Civil Service employees who are beyond a probationary or trial period have Merit Systems Protection Board rights if they are demoted. Your second question about saved pay does mean that you cannot earn less than your pay when demoted and are entitled to only 50 percent of annual comparability increases, if they ever occur again.


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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