Marriage, Death and Your Survivor Annuity

A federal employee who died was divorced in 1988 but never filed a form to remove his former wife as his designated beneficiary. What impact does that have on his ex-wife whom he had divorced almost 20 years ago? Where financial impact does it have on his new wife? As this case shows, actions you take (or do not take) have an impact on those you leave behind.

Using Taxpayer Records for Personal Reasons Leads to Removal

An agency has a core mission. An employee’s action in one agency may be a relatively minor problem; in another agency it may be a firing offense. The Internal Revenue Service has strict rules about accessing taxpayer records–presumably because taxpayer records are related to its core mission. When this IRS employee accessed these records for personal reasons, she was fired despite her contention a medical condition was the basis for the problem.

Temporary or Permanent: What’s In a Name?

A temporary employee applied for a permanent job and was selected–even though the announcement indicated the job was not open to temporary employees. She lost the job as a result so the employee filed an appeal contending that since she was now in a permanent job, she now had full appeal rights. The case went to federal court as the former temp tried to expand the coverage of the federal employee appeal process but the court did not buy the argument.

Court Sends Case Back to MSPB For Penalty Review

A 19-year postal employee with no prior misconduct worked at a Post Office where she supervised clerks and served as the finance supervisor. She was demoted to a part-time job. The MSPB administrative judge sustained the penalty after finding only a lesser charge had been proved. A federal court returns the case as “The agency has not yet articulated what less severe sentence should be imposed when it proved only a much less severe charge.”