Protecting Workers’ Rights

Focusing on the Rights of Federal Employees

October 2014 Archives

Passman & Kaplan, PC, Wins Enforcement of Breached Settlement Agreement

Passman & Kaplan, PC, successfully sought enforcement by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) of a breached settlement agreement. In its October 16, 2014, decision in Complainant v. Department of the Air Force, EEOC Appeal No. 0120141465, the EEOC's Office of Federal Operations found that the Agency breached its December 4, 2013, settlement agreement with the complainant, and reversed the Agency's Final Agency Decision (FAD) on the matter. The FAD found a breach of a clause in the settlement agreement which required the complainant's supervisor to obtain authorization before communicating with the complainant's subordinates. However, the FAD failed to address any remedy for the breach. The EEOC agreed with the Agency's finding of breach, but went further to award Complainant reasonable attorney fees and costs related to the appeal and to order that the Agency comply with the settlement agreement and submit a report of compliance to the EEOC. The complainant was represented by P&K founding principal Joseph V. Kaplan

Developments at the OSC: Two Recent LGBT Cases Against the Army

Developments at the OSC:  The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) recently announced the results in two major cases involving protections for LGBT employees in the federal workforce.  OSC's jurisdiction includes enforcing the rules against prohibited personnel practices (PPPs); one of the PPPs--codified at 5 U.S.C. § 2302(b)(10)--prohibits discrimination "on the basis of conduct which does not adversely affect the performance of the employee or applicant or the performance of others," which has been interpreted to include discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

Developments at the MSPB: Final Rule on DVA SES Adverse Actions

Developments at the MSPB:  On October 22, 2014, the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) issued a Final Rule implementing procedures for handling adverse actions against Senior Executive Service (SES) employees at the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) (79 Fed.Reg. 63,031-63,032).  The Final Rule finalized the August 19, 2014, Interim Final Rule (79 Fed.Reg. 48,941-48, 946, as corrected 79 Fed.Reg. 49,423); this Interim Final Rule was previously analyzed in this blog.  The MSPB rushed to draft these regulations in order to meet a 14-day deadline specified in Section 707 of Pub.L. 113-146--the statute creating this new adverse action procedure--which was also previously analyzed in this blog.


Passman & Kaplan announces the October 2014 publication of the 3rd Edition of the Federal Employees Legal Survival Guide. This comprehensive book, first authored by Passman & Kaplan in 1999, and updated in 2004, has been called the definitive how-to guide for enforcing the rights of federal employees. The third edition of the Guide includes about 60 PAGES OF ADDITIONAL NEW MATERIAL and useful advice. New features include information on furloughs, non-critical sensitive positions, personal liability, federal employee special categories, internet research, Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), updated privacy and medical confidentiality and also updated whistleblowers protection. The Guide also includes a listing of frequently used civil service acronyms and practical appendices of sample forms, charts illustrating appeal rights, and commonly-needed deadlines. For more details or to order a copy, go to


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