The agency removed this employee for what amounted to 5 hours of AWOL. See how his appeals came out.
OPM has provided answers to some frequently asked questions regarding benefits and time off during the ongoing partial government shutdown.
How many hours of being away from with with an unapproved absence is sufficient to justify firing a federal employee? Apparently 101 hours in three weeks is enough although, in this case, the employee took the case to federal court before the issue was resolved.
A Department of Education employee was transferred but apparently kept using the travel card after her travel authorization expired. She also didn’t report for work at the new location. She was fired and filed an appeal arguing she was a whistleblower. Neither the Court nor the MSPB found that argument convincing.
Absence without leave (AWOL) can be a successful way to fire a federal employee–often because it is easier to prove than other charges. In this case, the employee offered various reasons why she should not be fired for being AWOL but the MSPB and court did not buy into her rationale.