Wisdom Wednesday: Earning Veteran’s Preference

There are many factors to “earning” veteran’s preference when applying for a federal or government job.

The Office of Personnel has created a “Veteran’s Guide” to help those agencies ensure they are giving veteran’s the right preferences, this guide is the all tell all on seeing if a veteran has status or not. Yes, you read that right, just because you are a veteran doesn’t mean that you automatically are able to apply for government jobs. In order to apply you have to be a veteran and stipulations apply.

First thing is first, you must be a veteran or have some other kind of veteran status. This is just one of many criteria one must meet to become eligible for veterans status. To receive preference, a veteran must have been discharged or released from active duty in the Armed Forces under honorable conditions (i.e., with an honorable or general discharge). This is crucial because, if you have a dishonorable discharge you are disqualified from veteran status.

Note: Military retirees at the rank of major, lieutenant commander, or higher are not eligible for preference in appointment unless they are disabled veterans upon being discharged or separated from the military.

The key is know what type of Veteran’s preference you have, the following explains what Veteran’s preference actually is:

5-Point Preference (TP)
Five points are added to the passing examination score or rating of a veteran who served:
During a war; or

During the period April 28, 1952 through July 1, 1955; or

For more than 180 consecutive days, other than for training, any part of which occurred after January 31, 1955, and before October 15, 1976; or

During the Gulf War from August 2, 1990, through January 2, 1992; or

For more than 180 consecutive days, other than for training, any part of which occurred during the period beginning September 11, 2001, and ending on the date prescribed by Presidential proclamation or by law as the last day of Operation Iraqi Freedom; or

In a campaign or expedition for which a campaign medal has been authorized. Any Armed Forces Expeditionary medal or campaign badge, including El Salvador, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Southwest Asia, Somalia, and Haiti, qualifies for preference.

A campaign medal holder or Gulf War veteran who originally enlisted after September 7, 1980, (or began active duty on or after October 14, 1982, and has not previously completed 24 months of continuous active duty) must have served continuously for 24 months or the full period called or ordered to active duty. The 24-month service requirement does not apply to 10-point preference eligibles separated for disability incurred or aggravated in the line of duty, or to veterans separated for hardship or other reasons under 10 U.S.C. 1171 or 1173.

When veterans with 5 point (TP) status apply for federal positions, 5 points are automatically added to their application scores. Yes, federal applications receive scores. When you complete a federal application you receive a score from 1 – 100 percent, applicant scores are tallied up once the announcement has closed. If your application did not receive a “high enough” score you should be contacted by the human resources of the position for which you applied. If you have any additional questions about your application, contact the human resources office of the agency for which you applied.

References:
Veterans Job Information: http://www.fedshirevets.gov/job/index.aspx
Veteran’s Guide: http://www.opm.gov/staffingPortal/Vetguide.asp

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