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Unnecessary Excused Absences

Instances where excused absences are not appropriate because the employee is in their official duty status include, but are not limited to:

  • Attendance at conferences, conventions or meetings in connection with and as a part of your official duties.
  • Testifying or providing sworn statements at hearings conducted by the Office of Special Counsel, the Merit Systems Protection Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or duly appointed arbitrators or grievance examiners.
  • For the presentation of, but not the preparation of, administrative grievances.
  • Pursuing your own EEO complaint against the Department, or representing other Department employees who are pursuing an EEO complaint against the Department, or providing evidence as a witness in an EEO inquiry or investigation.

However, official time will not be granted for:

  • Pursuing EEO complaints against other Federal agencies or serving as a representative in such complaints unless you are appearing under summons or called pursuant to a hearing
  • Absences for any such purpose must be charged to annual leave, accrued compensatory time, or LWOP. Leave-approving officials should consult with the HRO when granting or denying employee requests for official time to pursue EEO complaints.