Claim for Backpay and Other Benefits Incident to Delayed Appointment
B-201708: May 6, 1981
- Full Report:
A GAO decision was requested concerning the claim of a deputy U.S. Marshal for backpay and other benefits incident to his delayed appointment. The decision was handled as a labor relations matter. The claim stated that the applicant was tested by the Civil Service Commission and tentatively selected for appointment in 1975, but there was no documentary evidence in the record to support that contention. It appears that the Marshals Service requested that the applicant's name be removed from the the Civil Service list of eligibles because he exceeded the maximum age requirement. The Civil Service Commission refused to remove his name from the list of eligibles. The maximum entry age requirement did not apply to Deputy U.S. Marshals until 1976. The Marshals Service had no valid basis to object to candidates on the basis of age prior to that date. The applicant was again interviewed for the position and was eventually appointed on June 18, 1978. It was alleged that failure of the Marshals Service to comply with Commission directives caused a lengthy and unnecessary delay in the applicant's appointment. Several applicants who were lower on the register were hired prior to him. Backpay and other benefits were sought on behalf of the applicant which would have accrued but for the errors committed by the Marshalls Service and the Commission. Remedy was sought based on the Back Pay Act. However, this Act is applicable only to employees, not applicants for employment. GAO found no violation of a statute, regulation, or mandatory policy in this case. There was no mandate or directive from the Commission ordering corrective action or specifying the applicant's appointment on a specific date. Absent any evidence that he had a vested right to be appointed on a certain date, the applicant is not entitled to relief under the Back Pay Act. The claim for a retroactive appointment, backpay, and other benefits was denied.