The Federal Government will Become America's Model Employer for the 21st Century.
Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People.
Find out more about Federal compensation throughout your career and around the world.
Staffing to align with your agency's mission
Review the Federal Employees Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) Handbook
Answering your questions about Healthcare and Insurance
Manage your retirement online.
Human Resources and Security Specialists should use this tool to determine the correct investigation level for any covered position within the U.S. Federal Government.
OPM’s Human Resources Solutions organization can help your agency answer this critically important question.
Developing senior leaders in the U.S. Government through Leadership for a Democratic Society, Custom Programs and Interagency Courses.
Visit this federal site to search for our regulatory notices, proposed and final rules.
See the latest tweets on our Twitter feed, like our Facebook pages, watch our YouTube videos, and page through our Flickr photos.
The content available is no longer being updated and as a result you may encounter hyperlinks which no longer function. You should also bear in mind that this content may contain text and references which are no longer applicable as a result of changes in law, regulation and/or administration.
Dear Ms. [xxx]:
This replies to your December 2, 1996 request for a decision concerning the legality of a retroactive correction to an employees rate of basic pay upon promotion. We conclude the retroactive correction is not authorized.
You state that the approving official for an employees personnel actions authorized a promotion for the employee and set the rate of pay at "[t]he minimum rate under normal pay setting rules." As a result, the employees pay was set at the GS-11, step 5 rate effective January 22, 1995. However, you state that the approving official believed the minimum rate in this case to be step 6 and intended to approve that rate, rather than step 5 for the employee. You ask whether the approving officials error constitutes the type of administrative error that would permit a retroactive correction of the personnel action in order to place the employee at the step 6 rate effective January 22, 1995. The answer is no.
A clerical error or administrative error may be corrected retroactively, among other reasons, if the error prevented a personnel action from taking effect as originally intended. Michael Kostishak, B-248460, Nov. 10, 1992. However, the word "intended" does not refer to the state of mind of the approving official, but rather, refers to the personnel action that actually was approved. Thomas L. Wild, B-240781, Feb. 5, 1991. In this case, the rate of pay authorized by the approving official was step 5. If a subsequent error caused the employee to be paid at a lower step, for example, then that action could fairly be described as having prevented the personnel action from taking effect as intended. That, of course, is not the case here. Therefore, the employees rate of pay may not be corrected retroactively.
Very truly yours,
Paul Britner Senior Attorney