Adverse Agency Actions

Federal government employment law is complex. The federal workforce is governed by a broad range of employment, civil rights, and personnel laws.

Murray Law welcomes the opportunity to provide dedicated and experienced counsel and representation to federal government employees. Steven Murray has successfully represented prevailing federal employees contesting disciplinary and performance-based adverse actions before the United States Merit Systems Protection Board. Steven has successfully represented federal employees in disciplinary actions before the United States Foreign Service Grievance Board, agency grievance proceedings, and employment discrimination and civil rights lawsuits before the United States District Court of Colorado.

Federal Employee Representation

Murray Law provides experienced counsel and representation to federal employees before the agency employers initiating the adverse actions, and in grievance and mediation proceedings.

Murray Law represents federal employees in litigation before federal agencies and federal courts, including the United States Merit Systems Protection Board, United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, United States District Courts, United States Circuit Courts of Appeal, including the Federal Circuit, and the numerous federal agencies determining federal employee rights and interests.

Federal Employee Defense to Adverse Agency Actions

Federal employees have the legal right to challenge adverse agency actions.

Federal employees are well served to retain counsel to assert an effective response to any proposed adverse agency action at the initial stage of the adverse action process. For example, in the event an agency proposes the discharge of a federal employee based on misconduct or for alleged performance deficiencies, the employee has the right to present an oral and written replies to the agency before the final agency decision.

Murray Law provides experienced representation to federal employees in presenting effective oral and written replies to proposed adverse agency actions.

An agency’s adverse action may be challenged in various forums, depending on the specific action, the status of the employee, and governing legal authority. For example, in general, a disciplinary suspension of 14 days or less may result in the action being contested within the available grievance procedure. Murray Law represents federal employees when individual attorney representation is available in the agency grievance process.

Murray Law provides experienced representation to federal employees concerning a wide range of adverse actions, from disciplinary actions resulting in a formal counseling, a warning or letter of reprimand, through actions resulting in reduction in grade, suspensions over 14 days, and in discharge actions based on conduct or performance.

Federal Employee Representation-U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board

Federal employment law provides employees the right to contest designated agency actions before the United States Merit Systems Protection Board [MSPB]. The Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 created the MSPB.

The MSPB has jurisdiction over a wide range of personnel actions. A federal employee is served by consulting an attorney experienced in federal government employment law in the event that he or she believes that he or she is a victim of an unlawful personnel action.

The vast majority of federal employees in the competitive service have appeal rights to the MSPB. An agency action which is not subject to determination by the MSPB may be subject to review by the Office of Personnel Management, the Office of Special Counsel, or one of many federal agencies addressing federal employment issues.

The following adverse actions are among the many personnel actions which may be challenged by federal employees before the MSPB.

  • Disciplinary Actions
    • Discharge from federal service.
    • Reductions in pay
    • Reductions in grade
    • Suspensions for more than 14 days
  • Unacceptable Performance Actions
    • Discharge from federal service.
    • Suspensions for more than 14 days
  • Denial of Within Grade Increase
  • Reductions in Force
  • “Mixed-Case”
    • A “mixed-case” is an appeal of an adverse personnel action to the MSPB, i.e. discharge, in which a federal employee asserts the personnel action was impacted by improper discrimination against the employee because of his or her protected status.
Conclusion

Murray Law welcomes the opportunity to provide legal counsel and representation to any federal employee who believes that he or she is the subject an adverse agency action presenting any form of harm to the employee’s professional interests. Please call Steven Murray at 720-600-6642

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