B-175144, MAR 16, 1972

B-175144: Mar 16, 1972

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IS NOT OBLIGED TO OBJECT TO CORRECTION OF THE SUBJECT LEAVE ACTION AS INDICATED. THE CLAIM IS DERIVED FROM MRS. STARKEY'S REQUEST TO HAVE A PRIOR CHARGE TO HER ANNUAL LEAVE CANCELED WITH A CONCOMITANT RECHARGE TO HER SICK LEAVE ACCOUNT. SUCH ABSENCE WAS THE RESULT OF DISABLING INJURIES SUSTAINED IN AN ACCIDENT. THESE INJURIES AND THE RESULTING INCAPACITY ULTIMATELY BECAME THE BASIS FOR THE EMPLOYEE'S DISABILITY RETIREMENT WHICH WAS APPROVED EFFECTIVE JULY 30. STARKEY ORIGINALLY REQUESTED THAT THE ADVANCED SICK LEAVE BE CHARGED TO HER ANNUAL LEAVE ACCOUNT BECAUSE SHE WAS INFORMED THAT UPON HER SEPARATION SHE WOULD BE REQUIRED TO REPAY SUCH ADVANCED LEAVE. IT IS FURTHER DISCLOSED THAT ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS FAILED TO ADVISE HER AT THIS TIME THAT REPAYMENT OF THE ADVANCED SICK LEAVE WOULD NOT BE REQUIRED IF THE RETIREMENT DISABILITY WAS GRANTED.

B-175144, MAR 16, 1972

CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE - CHARGE TO ANNUAL LEAVE - ADMINISTRATIVE ERROR DECISION ALLOWING THE CLAIM OF HELEN H. STARKEY, A FORMER EMPLOYEE OF THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, INCIDENT TO HER REQUEST THAT A PRIOR CHARGE TO HER ANNUAL LEAVE BE CANCELED AND RECHARGED TO HER SICK LEAVE ACCOUNT. IN VIEW OF THE FAILURE OF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS TO ADVISE MRS. STARKEY THAT CIVIL SERVICE REGULATIONS, REQUIRING THE REFUND OF EMPLOYEE INDEBTEDNESS FOR UNEARNED LEAVE UPON SEPARATION INCLUDE AN EXPLICIT EXCEPTION IN THE CASE OF EMPLOYEES WHO RETIRE FOR DISABILITY, THE COMP. GEN. IS NOT OBLIGED TO OBJECT TO CORRECTION OF THE SUBJECT LEAVE ACTION AS INDICATED.

TO MR. J. M. SHACKLEFORD:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 4, 1972, WITH ENCLOSURES, REFERENCE 7 BC, WHICH HAS BEEN CONSIDERED AS A REQUEST FOR ADVANCE DECISION ON THE CLAIM OF MRS. HELEN H. STARKEY, A FORMER EMPLOYEE OF THE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA.

THE CLAIM IS DERIVED FROM MRS. STARKEY'S REQUEST TO HAVE A PRIOR CHARGE TO HER ANNUAL LEAVE CANCELED WITH A CONCOMITANT RECHARGE TO HER SICK LEAVE ACCOUNT. THE LATER CHARGE WOULD ORDINARILY RESULT IN AN INDEBTEDNESS IN HER SICK LEAVE ACCOUNT BECAUSE OF AUTHORIZED ADVANCES INCIDENT TO HER PROTRACTED ABSENCE FROM DUTY. SUCH ABSENCE WAS THE RESULT OF DISABLING INJURIES SUSTAINED IN AN ACCIDENT. THESE INJURIES AND THE RESULTING INCAPACITY ULTIMATELY BECAME THE BASIS FOR THE EMPLOYEE'S DISABILITY RETIREMENT WHICH WAS APPROVED EFFECTIVE JULY 30, 1971. THE FACT OF THE APPROVED DISABILITY RETIREMENT ALTERS THE ORDINARY RESULT OF AN INDEBTEDNESS IN HER SICK LEAVE ACCOUNT SINCE CIVIL SERVICE REGULATIONS, REQUIRING THE REFUND OF EMPLOYEE INDEBTEDNESS FOR UNEARNED LEAVE UPON SEPARATION, INCLUDE AN EXPLICIT EXCEPTION IN THE CASE OF EMPLOYEES WHO RETIRE FOR DISABILITY. SEE 5 CFR 630.209, REVISED AS OF JANUARY 1, 1971, AND 33 COMP. GEN. 145 (1953).

THE RECORD INDICATES MRS. STARKEY ORIGINALLY REQUESTED THAT THE ADVANCED SICK LEAVE BE CHARGED TO HER ANNUAL LEAVE ACCOUNT BECAUSE SHE WAS INFORMED THAT UPON HER SEPARATION SHE WOULD BE REQUIRED TO REPAY SUCH ADVANCED LEAVE. SHE MADE THIS REQUEST ON THE SAME DAY THAT SHE FILED HER APPLICATION FOR DISABILITY RETIREMENT. IT IS FURTHER DISCLOSED THAT ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICIALS FAILED TO ADVISE HER AT THIS TIME THAT REPAYMENT OF THE ADVANCED SICK LEAVE WOULD NOT BE REQUIRED IF THE RETIREMENT DISABILITY WAS GRANTED. HER REQUEST FOR CHARGING THE ADVANCED SICK LEAVE TO ANNUAL LEAVE WAS CONSEQUENTLY EFFECTUATED, AND AFTER THE LAPSE OF SOME TIME THE EMPLOYEE INDEPENDENTLY DISCOVERED THE WAIVER PRIVILEGE APPLYING TO HER CIRCUMSTANCES. SHE THEN REQUESTED THAT THE LEAVE ACCOUNT BE ADJUSTED TO REFLECT A RESCISSION OF HER REQUEST FOR CONVERSION OF THE ADVANCED SICK LEAVE TO ANNUAL LEAVE. THE EFFECT OF THIS ADJUSTMENT WOULD ENTITLE THE EMPLOYEE TO AN ADDITIONAL LUMP-SUM PAYMENT FOR ANNUAL LEAVE AT THE TIME OF HER SEPARATION BY DISABILITY RETIREMENT, JULY 30, 1971.

ACCORDINGLY, UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES RELATED WE WOULD INTERPOSE NO OBJECTION TO AGENCY ACTION IN CORRECTING THE EMPLOYEE'S LEAVE ACCOUNT AS INDICATED. THE VOUCHER FORWARDED WITH YOUR SUBMISSION IS RETURNED HEREWITH AND MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ABOVE.