Ask The Lawyer

By Debra Roth

Q & A Session – Transfers from Another Base

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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 submitted my resume through USAJOBS for a position. I was qualified and referred. I interviewed and made it to the next level of interviews but then the job was canceled. They reopened the job two weeks later and I applied again. I was sent an email from HR stating that someone else was selected. I believe there is a policy that all supervisor positions must go through two levels of interviews.

Can they move a person into a position without following the two-level interview policy?

A:

How do you know the procedures were not violated? There may have been two interviews. Also, someone may have decided to cancel the promotion action and handle the matter as a reassignment and not a merit promotion action. If you think the selectee was offered an unfair advantage, you could file a prohibited personnel action complaint with the Office of Special Counsel and they might investigate. Based on the facts you submit, I see a number of ways for the agency to argue that the selection was lawful.

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

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