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Pay & Leave Claim Decisions

Washington, DC

U.S. Office of Personnel Management
Fair Labor Standards Act Decision
Under section 204(f) of title 29, United States Code

Brenda K. Anderson
Paralegal Specialist
Civil Division
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Southern District of Indiana
U.S. Department of Justice
Indianapolis, Indiana
Correction of workplace mistreatment
Denied; Lack of subject-matter jurisdiction

Robert D. Hendler
Classification and Pay Claims
Program Manager
Merit System Audit and Compliance



As provided in section 551.708 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), this decision is binding on all administrative, certifying, payroll, disbursing, and accounting officials of agencies for which the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) administers the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  There is no right of further administrative appeal.  This decision is subject to discretionary review only under conditions and time limits specified in 5 CFR 551.708 (address provided in 5 CFR 551.710).  The claimant has the right to bring action in the appropriate Federal court if dissatisfied with the decision. 


On September 14, 2011, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) Merit System Audit and Compliance received a “Complaint of Grievance - Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)” from Ms. Brenda K. Anderson.  We have accepted and decided this claim under Section 4(f) of the FLSA of 1938, as amended (29 U.S.C. § 204(f)).

In reaching our FLSA decision, we have carefully considered all information furnished by the claimant. 


The claimant asserts the FLSA was violated by her receipt of an email from a co-worker in which the co-worker “made defamatory, harassing remarks concerning a work procedure…”  As a remedy, the claimant seeks:  (1) to be assigned only bankruptcy work with minimal other duties, (2) a three-day suspension without pay for the co-worker who sent the email and that it be made a permanent record in her official personnel file, (3) a written apology from the co-worker, and (4) “damages for the maximum allowable monetary amount available for a federal employee with over 22 years of service.”

As stated in 5 CFR 551.101, the FLSA:

Provides minimum wage standards for both wages and overtime entitlements, and administrative procedures by which covered worktime must be compensated.  Included in the Act are provisions related to child labor, equal pay, and portal-to-portal activities.

Under the provisions of 29 U.S.C. § 204(f), OPM has established an administrative claims process.  Under 5 CFR 551.701(a), a claimant may file an exemption status claim (whether the claimant is nonexempt and, therefore, covered by the overtime pay and minimum wage provisions of the FLSA), a claim for minimum wage or overtime pay for work performed under the Act, or a complaint arising under the child labor law provisions of the Act.

The FLSA does not cover or provide for changing a Federal civilian employee’s job duties, suspending co-workers, demanding apologies, or awarding monetary damages other than for correcting FLSA minimum wage and overtime pay violations.  Therefore, OPM does not consider the issues raised by the claimant or the remedies the claimant seeks within the context of the FLSA claims adjudication function it performs under 29 U.S.C. § 204(f).


The claim is denied based on lack of subject-matter jurisdiction.

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