The widow of an FBI employee is ruled not eligible for a FERS annuity survivor’s benefit since the length of her marriage was less than 9 months at the time of her husband’s death.
Confronted with the question which court (Federal Circuit Court of Appeals or the U.S. District Court) is the proper forum for challenging a MSPB decision dismissing a federal employee’s appeal for lack of jurisdiction in a so-called “mixed case,” the U.S. Supreme Court has stepped in and settled the matter.
A Department of Education employee removed for various misconduct reasons tried to thwart the agency’s action by pointing to his whistleblowing activity. Since he could not prove it was protected whistleblowing and the agency could prove it would fire him even if it had been, he lost out on his appeal.
The U. S. Supreme Court slapped down a decision by the Arizona state courts that held the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act did not pre-empt the Arizona family court’s order requiring that a military retiree make up for a portion of his annuity lost by his ex-wife by operation of federal law.
In an early test of the new law designed to make it easier to fire DVA senior executives and to streamline the appeals process, the appeals court has handed down a significant ruling that presents a mixed bag.
Here’s a situation where a federal employee received a “counseling memo” following what he apparently considered as a whistleblowing complaint to his agency chain of command. He tried to challenge the informal discipline as retaliation for protected whistleblowing and eventually his case went to the federal appeals court.