Q & A Session – Career Ladder Promotion


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 got my first grade level promotion in October 2011, and the next promotion was due in October 2012. I checked with HR and they mentioned that they did not receive any paperwork from my supervisor. In October, I had my performance evaluation and it was fully satisfactory. When I asked my supervisor about my grade increase, she mentioned that it’s not automatic. Is this true?


A career ladder promotion is not automatic. You are not entitled to notice or reasons. If you believe illegal discrimination or a whistleblower reprisal is the cause of your denial of a promotion, you may file a complaint. 

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.

1 Comment

  1. The answer given is not completely accurate. For example, the AFGE Master Agreement requires both notice if not being promoted when eligible AND reasons. The agreement also requires that a career ladder plan be in place that explains the objective requirements for being promoted.

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