Federal Employment Attorney

Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) Attorneys

Successfully litigated against all federal agencies for 24 years, has brought cases before most circuit courts of appeals, as well as the United States Supreme Court on behalf of federal employees he has represented.

If you are a Federal Employee who has been wrongfully terminated, suspended, demoted, harassed or treated unfairly, you've come to the right place. With many years of combined experience litigating cases before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), the MSPB attorneys at Melville Johnson, P.C. are well-versed in Federal Employment Law and can provide the rigorous representation you'll need in court.

Melville Johnson, P.C. is familiar with Federal Employment and MSPB Law inside and out. Whether you are looking for assistance with a Federal Discipline case, Federal Removal or Suspension, a Reduction In Force or MSPB appeal, we can help! Being wrongfully disciplined or terminated from a federal employment position can no doubt mark a time of tension and strain in your life, and having a skilled lawyer by your side that is familiar with the MSPB process will be essential. If you are dealing with a Federal Employment Law issue, we encourage you to fill out the form to your right or call our firm today for a case evaluation. We look forward to hearing from you!

At Melville Johnson, P.C., it is our mission to ensure that every federal employee has the right to due process and a fair hearing at the Merit System Protection Board (MSPB). Any disciplinary action can lead to greater problems in the future and, in extreme cases, can result in removal and the end of an employee’s career in federal service. It is always best to consult with an attorney as soon as you know that disciplinary procedures are being instituted against you.

The attorneys at Melville Johnson, P.C. have litigated thousands of cases at the agency level, before MSPB administrative law judges, as well as before the full three-member MSPB panel. If necessary, our attorneys are also experienced and have been successful in arguing appeals of MSPB decisions before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and The Supreme Court of the United States. Our companion practices allow us to handle all federal employment EEO and Office of Personnel Management (OPM) matters.

About the Merit Systems Protection Board

The U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) is an independent, quasi-judicial agency in the Executive Branch that serves as the guardian of federal merit system principles because federal employees are not employed at will, but have distinctive constitutional property rights in their jobs.

The Board, which is made up of three members appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate, is responsible for:

  • Adverse actions over which the Board has jurisdiction, such as removals, suspensions of 15 days or more, furloughs of 30 days or less, demotions, and certain reductions in pay.
  • Administrative decisions affecting an individual’s rights or benefits under the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or the Federal Employees’ Retirement (FERS) System appealed from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM).
  • Appeals filed under the Whistleblower Protection Act, the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), and the Veterans’ Employment Opportunities Act (VEOA).
  • Cases brought by the Office of Special Counsel (OSC), including complaints of prohibited personnel practices (PPP), whistleblower actions, corrective actions, and Hatch Act violations.
  • Requests to review regulations of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) that are alleged to require or result in the commission of a prohibited personnel practice.
  • Ordering compliance with final MSPB orders and settlement agreements where appropriate.

The MSPB typically does not handle discrimination cases. This responsibility primarily belongs to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC). However, where an adverse employment action otherwise within the jurisdiction of the MSPB, for example a removal, is alleged to have been based on prohibited discrimination, the MSPB can provide full relief in that affirmation defense claim, including the award of compensatory damages. This is referred to as a mixed case appeal.

The MSPB will not provide advice or guidance on employment policies or examination of benefits. This responsibility belongs to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM).

Additionally, the MSPB will not investigate prohibited personnel practices (PPP). This is the responsibility of the Office of Special Counsel (OSC), but the MSPB will hear appeals related to PPP's. Melville Johnson, P.C., is available to represent you and to prosecute your PPP complaint before the OSC.

Types of MSPB Cases We Handle

The MSPB Attorneys at Melville Johnson, P.C. offer caring, sensitive, professional legal representation and have years of combined experience prosecuting cases in front of Administrative Judges and filing Petitions for Review to the Board. Below is a brief summary of the types of cases we handle:

Federal DisciplineFederal Discipline: As a government employee, you may be subject to federal disciplinary action if there are allegations of misconduct or lack of performance against you. The disciplinary process will begin with a federal investigation, and then continue with proceedings in federal court. When the court issues a decision, you may have the right as a federal employee to appeal the decision and disciplinary action in MSPB (Merit Systems Protection Board) court.
At Melville Johnson, P.C., our federal discipline lawyers have years of combined experience with the MSPB and can support you throughout the process.

Federal Reduction in ForceFederal Reduction in Force: A Federal Reduction In Force, referred to as an RIF, is defined as the complete elimination of a position or multiple positions at a federal agency. This can result from a lack of work, or from an agency's inability to pay employees in a specific position or who perform a certain task. A federal agency can also use Reduction In Force procedures when an employee is forced to downsize due to reorganization, transfer of function, or shortage of funds. At Melville Johnson, P.C., our attorneys are highly skilled in evaluating the evidence in an RIF case and determining how to defend you in front of an Administrative Judge.

Federal RemovalFederal Removal: A decision to remove an employee from a position at a government agency is a serious matter, but it is important to note that the decision is not necessarily final or irreversible. There are numerous rules and regulations regarding federal removal which must be adhered to, depending on the federal agency and the employee's position. We represent employees in all 50 states and government agencies, and are glad to offer legal consultations to government employees dealing with removal from their position.

Federal SuspensionFederal Suspension: Federal suspension is a severe federal disciplinary action. By law, a government agency must follow strict regulatory procedures prior to a suspension, such as giving an employee written notice of 30 days before any action is imposed. A failure to adhere to these rules could result in the suspension being overturned by the MSPB court. If you are dealing with a federal suspension, our attorneys can help.

MSPB AppealsMSPB Appeals: All federal employees have the right to appeal a decision to terminate their employment, and there are many grounds for which a federal employee may wish to file an MSPB appeal. This could be due to a Federal Reduction In Force (RIF),federal discipline, removal, suspension, discrimination, or a number of other reasons. At Melville Johnson, P.C., our attorneys assist clients with their Merit Systems Protection Board appeals from beginning to end.

"Best Around!"

I highly recommend Melville Johnson! He truly cares and he gets results. I wouldn't go anywhere else!

-Jim Reynolds, Atlanta GA

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MSPB Attorneys Review:

"Thanks Again I really appreciate these guys for doing right by me. They believed in me and protected my rights. I could have never gotten through the EEO on my own, but these guys are Pros! Thanks again for being so professional and helpful."

Reviewed on Apr 26
Rating: 5
By: Federal Employee