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Qualifying active duty means active duty by a covered employee pursuant to a call or order, as described in 5 U.S.C. 5538(a). (See Part 1 of Appendix D in the OPM Policy Guidance.) (Note: Under section 5538(a), active duty that qualifies for coverage under section 5538 is active duty under a provision of law referred to in 10 U.S.C. 101(a)(13)(B)—i.e., the following specific provisions in title 10 of the United States Code: sections 688, 12301(a), 12302, 12304, 12304a, 12305, and 12406 and chapter 15 (which includes sections 331, 332, and 333). Thus, qualifying active duty does not include voluntary active duty under 10 U.S.C. 12301(d) or annual training duty under 10 U.S.C. 10147 or 12301(b).)
Note: Section 12304a of title 10, United States Code, was added by section 515 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81, December 31, 2011). This new authority was effective on December 31, 2011.
Agencies can use the final military leave and earnings statement (LES) provided by the employee to determine the last paid day of military active duty. The dates covered by the LES are documented in the “Remarks” section of the LES. The final active duty date can be confirmed by the DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty). Please be advised, the DD-214 is to be considered the authoritative document should there be any discrepancy between the final LES and the DD-214. Since reservists may not receive their DD-214 for several months after their tour has ended, it is possible (but not likely) that retroactive adjustments to the final active duty date may be made should there be any discrepancies regarding that date.
Employees should contact their human resources office.
If the orders do not cite a specific authority, direct the employees back to their reserve unit to ask for orders that clearly state the authority code. Employees should also contact their reserve unit with any questions related to the authority code.
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