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Hiring Officials

Special Hiring Authorities for Military Spouses and Family Members

Military Spouse Appointing Authority

What it Provides:

This authority enables a hiring manager to non-competitively appoint a military spouse who meets certain criteria to any position in the competitive service for which he or she is qualified. There is no grade level limitation.

When to Use it:

This authority is an additional non-competitive hiring tool that agencies may use to select qualified, eligible individuals. Agencies are not required to use this hiring authority, nor does it take precedence over the use of other appointment mechanisms. Agencies may also use the military spouse appointing authority to fill temporary (not to exceed 1 year) or term (more than 1 year but not to exceed 4 years) positions.

Who is Eligible:

Military Spouse Appointing Authority applies to the following categories of military spouses.

  • Those who are relocating with their service-member spouse as a result of permanent change of station (PCS) orders,
  • Spouses of service members who incurred a 100% disability because of the service member's active duty service, and
  • Spouses of service members killed while on active duty.

How to Use it:

  • Step 1: Consider the strategic benefit in considering military spouses to fill the position.
  • Step 2: Determine recruiting strategy. Agencies are responsible for developing procedures for accepting applications and communicating those procedures to applicants through the job announcement. If the job announcement is open to "all sources" then the agency must clearly provide instructions to applicants on how the application will be received. Consider posting announcement at Family Support Centers, Veterans Transition Centers or with Veterans Service Organizations.
  • Step 3: Announce the vacancy on USAJOBS.
  • Step 4: Consider eligible military spouse appointing authority applicants. Evaluate or assess the qualifications of the candidates. Agencies have the discretion to consider military spouse applicants on a separate list of applicants specific only to the military spouse hiring authority. The agency also has the option to consider military spouse applicants along with other applicants from outside the government who are on a competitive list. If an applicant applies only under the military spouse hiring authority, the hiring agency must consider the applicant under this authority (assuming they are otherwise eligible). Applicants must provide acceptable documentation of their appointment eligibility. If the applicant applies for consideration under both the competitive process and as a military spouse, the agency must consider the applicant on both the competitive list as well as the military spouse list.
  • Step 5: Select an eligible who is qualified to perform the duties of the position. If a military spouse eligible is selected, he/she is given a career-conditional or career (as appropriate) appointment.

Benefits to the Hiring Manager:
The military spouse appointing authority allows managers to consider a new source of qualified candidates in addition to those who qualified competitively and support the policy promulgated under E.O. 13473. Veterans’ preference is not a consideration when using the military spouse authority to fill a position.

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Qs and As on the Noncompetitive Appointment of Certain Military Spouses

General Provisions View more

Definitions View more

Eligibility View more

Conditions View more

Proof of Eligibility View more

Miscellaneous View more

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Veterans Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA)

What it Provides:

This authority permits preference eligibles and certain eligible veterans' to compete for jobs that otherwise only would have been available only to status employees. In VEOA appointments, preference eligibles and veterans are not accorded preference as a factor, but they are allowed to compete for job opportunities that are not offered to other external candidates. A VEOA eligible who is selected will be given a career or career-conditional appointment.

When to Use it:

Agencies must consider VEOA eligibles who have competed under agency merit promotion announcements when they are recruiting from outside their workforce. The authority is not available when an agency is filling excepted service positions.

Who is Eligible:

VEOA eligibility applies to the following categories of veterans:

  • Preference eligibles; and
  • Service personnel separated after 3 or more years of continuous active service performed under honorable conditions.

How to Use it:

  • Step 1: Consider the strategic benefit in filling the position using veterans and transitioning service members.
  • Step 2: Determine recruiting strategy. If you are going to consider external candidates, you must permit VEOA eligibles to apply. Consider posting announcement at Veterans Transition Centers or with Veterans Service Organizations.
  • Step 3: Announce the vacancy on USAJOBS.
  • Step 4: Consider VEOA applicants with other status candidates. Applicants must provide acceptable documentation of their preference or appointment eligibility.
  • Step 5: Determine the most qualified candidates. Determine which applicants are qualified, rate them based on their qualifications, and issue a selection certificate in accordance with the agency merit promotion plan.
  • Step 6: Select a candidate. If a VEOA eligible is selected, he/she is given a career-conditional or career (as appropriate) appointment.

Benefits to the Hiring Manager:

The VEOA allows managers to consider highly qualified, non-status preference eligibles and veterans without using more burdensome competitive examination procedures.

Note: Current or former Federal employees meeting VEOA eligibility can apply. However, current employees applying under VEOA are subject to time-in- grade restrictions like any other General Schedule employee.

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