5 CFR § 550.703 - Definitions.

§ 550.703 Definitions.

In this subpart:

Agency means an agency as defined in 5 U.S.C. 5595(a)(1), except the government of the District of Columbia.

Commuting area means the geographic area surrounding a work site that encompasses the localities where people live and reasonably can be expected to travel back and forth daily to work, as established by the employing agency based on the generally held expectations of the local community. When an employee's residence is within the standard commuting area for a work site, the work site is within the employee's commuting area. When an employee's residence is outside the standard commuting area for a proposed new work site, the employee's commuting area is deemed to include the expanded area surrounding the employee's residence and including all destinations that can be reached via a commuting trip that is not significantly more burdensome than the current commuting trip. This excludes a commuting trip from a residence where the employee planned to stay only temporarily until he or she could find a more permanent residence closer to his or her work site. For this purpose, a commuting trip to a new work site is considered significantly more burdensome if it would compel the employee to change his or her place of residence in order to continue employment, taking into account commuting time and distance, availability of public transportation, cost, and any other relevant factors.

Comparison rate has the meaning given that term in § 536.103 of this chapter, except paragraph (2) of that definition should be used for the purpose of comparing grades or levels of work for all situations not covered by paragraph (1) of that definition.

Employed by the Government of the United States refers to employment by any part of the Government of the United States, including the United States Postal Service and similar independent entities, but excluding enlistment or activation in the armed forces (as defined in 5 U.S.C. 2101).

Employee (for the purpose of establishing initial entitlement to severance pay upon separation) means an employee as defined in 5 U.S.C. 5595(a)(2), excluding an individual employed by the government of the District of Columbia.

Note to definition of “employee”:

The term “individual employed” in 5 U.S.C. 5595(a)(2)(A) refers to an “employee” as defined in 5 U.S.C. 2105.

Immediate annuity means -

(a) A recurring benefit payable under a retirement system applicable to Federal civilian employees or members of the uniformed services that the individual is eligible to receive (disregarding any offset described in § 550.704(b)(5)) at the time of the involuntary separation from civilian service or that begins to accrue within 1 month after such separation, excluding any Social Security retirement benefit; or

(b) A benefit that meets the conditions in paragraph (a) of this definition, except that the benefit begins to accrue more than 1 month after separation solely because the employee elected a later commencing date (such as allowed under § 842.204 of this chapter).

Inefficiency means unacceptable performance or conduct that leads to a separation under part 432 or 752 of this chapter or an equivalent procedure.

Involuntary separation means a separation initiated by an agency against the employee's will and without his or her consent for reasons other than inefficiency, including a separation resulting from the expiration of a time-limited appointment effected within 3 calendar days after separation from a qualifying appointment. In addition, when an employee is separated because he or she declines to accept reassignment outside his or her commuting area, the separation is “involuntary” if the employee's position description or other written agreement does not provide for such a reassignment. However, an employee's separation is not “involuntary” if, after such a written mobility agreement is added, the employee accepts one reassignment outside his or her commuting area, but subsequently declines another such reassignment.

Nonqualifying appointment means an appointment that does not convey eligibility for severance pay under this subpart, including -

(a) An appointment at a noncovered agency;

(b) An appointment in which the employee has an intermittent work schedule;

(c) A Presidential appointment;

(d) An emergency appointment;

(e) An excepted appointment under Schedule C; a noncareer appointment in the Senior Executive Service, as defined in 5 U.S.C. 3132(a); or an equivalent appointment made for similar purposes; and

(f) A time-limited appointment (except for a time-limited appointment that is qualifying because it is made effective within 3 calendar days after separation from a qualifying appointment), including -

(1) A term appointment;

(2) An overseas limited appointment with a time limitation;

(3) A limited term or limited emergency appointment in the Senior Executive Service, as defined in 5 U.S.C. 3132(a), or an equivalent appointment made for similar purposes;

(4) A Veterans Recruitment Appointment under part 307 of this chapter; and

(5) A Presidential Management Fellows Program appointment under § 213.3402(c) of this chapter.

Qualifying appointment means -

(a) A career or career-conditional appointment in the competitive service or the equivalent in the excepted service;

(b) A career appointment in the Senior Executive Service;

(c) An excepted appointment without time limitation, except under Schedule C or an equivalent appointment made for similar purposes;

(d) An overseas limited appointment without time limitation;

(e) A status quo appointment, including one that becomes indefinite when the employee is promoted, demoted, or reassigned;

(f) A time-limited appointment in the Foreign Service, when the employee was assigned under a statutory authority that carried entitlement to reemployment in the same agency, but this right of reemployment has expired; and

(g) A time-limited appointment (including a series of time-limited appointments by the same agency without any intervening break in service) for full-time employment that takes effect within 3 calendar days after the end of one of the qualifying appointments listed in paragraphs (a) through (f) of this definition, provided the time-limited appointment is not nonqualifying on grounds other than the time-limited nature of the appointment.

Rate of basic pay means the rate of pay fixed by law or administrative action for the position held by an employee, excluding additional pay of any kind except the following, as applicable:

(1) Any locality payment under 5 CFR part 531, subpart F; special rate supplement under 5 CFR part 530, subpart C; or similar payment or supplement under other legal authority;

(2) Annual premium pay under 5 U.S.C. 5545(c) or availability pay under 5 U.S.C. 5545a;

(3) Straight-time pay for regular overtime hours for firefighters under 5 U.S.C. 5545b (as provided in § 550.1305(b));

(4) Night differential for prevailing rate employees under 5 U.S.C. 5343(f); and

(5) An overtime supplement for regularly scheduled overtime within a Border Patrol agent's regular tour of duty under 5 U.S.C. 5550 (as required by 5 U.S.C. 5550(d)(1)(A)).

Reasonable offer means the offer of a position that meets all the following conditions:

(a) The offer is in writing;

(b) The employee meets established qualification requirements; and

(c) The offered position is -

(1) In the employee's agency, including an agency to which the employee is transferred with his or her function in a transfer of functions between agencies;

(2) Within the employee's commuting area, unless geographic mobility is a condition of employment;

(3) Of equal or greater tenure and with the same work schedule (part-time or full-time); and

(4) Not lower than two grade or pay levels below the employee's current grade or pay level, without consideration of grade or pay retention under part 536 of this chapter or other authority. In movements between pay schedules or pay systems, the comparison rate of the offered position must not be lower than the comparison rate of the grade or pay level that is two grades below the grade of the current position on the same pay schedule as the current position.

Severance pay fund means the total severance pay to which an employee is entitled during a single entitlement under 5 U.S.C. 5595. It includes a basic severance pay allowance and, where applicable, an age adjustment allowance, as computed under § 550.707.

[55 FR 6593, Feb. 26, 1990, as amended at 56 FR 20342, May 3, 1991; 56 FR 23736, May 23, 1991; 57 FR 59279, Dec. 15, 1992; 58 FR 58262, Nov. 1, 1993; 59 FR 66153, Dec. 23, 1994; 61 FR 3543, Feb. 1, 1996; 63 FR 64593, Nov. 23, 1998; 64 FR 69176, Dec. 10, 1999; 70 FR 31313, May 31, 2005; 70 FR 28783, May 19, 2005; 70 FR 72068, Dec. 1, 2005; 73 FR 66156, Nov. 7, 2008; 77 FR 28223, May 11, 2012; 80 FR 58112, Sept. 25, 2015]

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