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Individuals, who previously held a career or career-conditional appointment with the federal government, may be eligible for reinstatement, which allows reentry to the Federal competitive service workforce without competing with the public. Reinstatement eligibles can also apply for Federal jobs open only to status or merit promotion candidates.

Eligibility Requirements

There is no time limit on eligibility for those who:

  • Are a veterans' preference eligible and served for any period of time as a career or career-conditional employee; or
  • Acquired career tenure by completing 3 years of substantially continuous creditable career-conditional service.

Non-veterans' preference eligibles who separated from civil service as a career-conditional employee may be reinstated within 3 years after the date of separation. Reinstatement eligibility may be extended by certain activities that occur during the 3-year period after separation from your last career or career-conditional appointment:

  • Federal employment under temporary, term, or similar appointments;
  • Federal employment in excepted, non-appropriated fund, or Senior Executive Service positions;
  • Federal employment in the legislative and judicial branches;
  • Active military duty terminated under honorable conditions;
  • Certain government employment or full-time training that provided valuable training and experience for the job to be filled; or
  • Periods of overseas residence as a dependent who followed a Federal military or civilian employee to an overseas post of duty.


To establish reinstatement eligibility, provide a copy of your most recent SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action, showing tenure group 1 or 2, along with your application. An SF-50 may be obtained from your former agency personnel office, if recently separated. Otherwise, send your request to the address below.

The FEDERAL RECORDS CENTER has been established as a depository for official personnel folders of persons no longer in the Federal service. Federal agencies, generally, transfer employment records to the Federal Records Center thirty days after the employee has been separated from Federal service. Requests for this information should be directed to:

Federal Records Center
National Archives and Records Administration
Civilian Personnel Records
1411 Boulder Boulevard
Valmeyer, IL 62295
(314) 801-9250
Fax: (618) 935-3014

Such inquiries should include the full name under which formerly employed, social security number, date of birth, and to the extent known, former Federal employing agencies, addresses, and dates of such employment. The Privacy Act of 1974 (5 USC 552a) and the Office of Personnel Management require a signed and dated written request for information from the Federal Records Center. No requests for information from personnel or any other type of records will be accepted by telephone or email.

This page was last modified on 21 December 2012, at 19:48.