Many Veterans are able to take advantage of what’s called "preference points" because of their service to our country. The Veteran's Preference Point program gives certain Veterans, depending on a number of criteria, an edge when applying for a civil service job with the Federal Government.
In accordance with the program, those who are disabled or who served on active duty during certain specified time periods are entitled, by law, to receive preference over non-veterans both in hiring from competitive lists of eligible hires and in retention during reductions in force.
The goal of preference isn’t to place Veterans in every vacant federal job position. Rather, it provides a uniform method to give qualified Veterans a hand up in seeking employment.
Let’s take a closer look at how Veterans can utilize preference points to get a civil service job.
To be entitled to preference, a Veteran must meet the eligibility requirements in section 2108 of title 5, United States Code.
Veterans should claim preference on their federal job application or resume. Veterans claiming a 10-point preference should complete an application for 10-point Veteran Preference or Form SF-15.
Veterans who qualify for Veterans Preference Points based on their service will receive either 5 or 10 points on their civil service examination or experience and education evaluation. These points can place you higher on the list than other applicants
Five points are added to the passing examination score or rating of a Veteran who served in any of the following:
A campaign medal holder or Gulf War Veteran who originally enlisted after September 7, 1980 (or began active duty on or after October 14, 1982 and has not previously completed 24 months of continuous active duty) must have served continuously for 24 months or the full period called or ordered to active duty.
The 24-month service requirement does not apply to 10-point preference eligibles separated for disability incurred or aggravated in the line of duty, or to veterans separated for hardship or other reasons under 10 U.S.C. 1171 or 1173.
Ten points are added to the passing examination score of the following:
After determining what point system you are eligible for, Veterans are divided into five different preference groups.
If you separated from the military with an honorable or general discharge and achieved a score of 70 or higher, you can have points added to your score.
For scientific and professional positions in grade GS-9 or higher, names of all eligible characters are listed in order of ratings, augmented by Veteran preference. For all other positions, the names of 10-point preference candidates who have a service-connected disability of 10 percent or more are placed ahead of the names of all other eligible candidates on a given register. The names of other 10-point preference candidates, 5-point candidates and non-veterans are listed in order of their numerical ratings.
Entitlement to Veterans' preference does not guarantee a job.
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