The New VA Statute: What Does it Mean for You?

Debra Roth, Partner, Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C., a federal employment law firm, wrote the Ask the Lawyer article, "The New VA Statute: What Does it Mean for You?" for the January 19th edition of Federal Times. Her article also appears on the Federal Times website under their "Ask the Lawyer" blog.

 

Read an exceprt of the article below:

There are several constitutional issues raised by the new VA statute, entitled Removal of Senior Executives of the Department of Veterans Affairs for Performance or Misconduct. Here, I focus on the issue of whether the statute continues to confer a constitutional property right of employment to VA executives, and if so, what process is due them pre-termination.

The VA “scandal” provided a long awaited opportunity for some in Congress to eliminate or reduce job rights for career Executive Branch employees who may only be fired “for cause,” and instead convert Executive Branch employees to at-will status. Congress, the political branch of government, is at-will employment. That means congressional staffers have no job right and can be fired for any reason, or no reason, unlike the career employees of the Executive Branch, the non-political branch of our government, who can only be fired for cause. 

 

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News source: Federal Times