Civilian positions, through the classification process, are assigned a
specific pay plan, title, series and grade. If an employee disagrees with
the classification of their position, the employee may choose to file an
appeal of the following elements: pay plan, grade, occupational series, and/or title of his or her current position (depending on the situation).
- An employee cannot appeal the:
- content or accuracy of his or her position description,
- accuracy of a classification standard,
- agency’s proposed classification decision,
- classification of a position to which he or she is not officially
- comparison to the classification of other positions, or
- classification of positions to which he or she is detailed or temporarily
- Management is responsible for assigning the duties and responsibilities
contained in the position description and verifying that the duties are
accurate. If an employee feels the position description is significantly
inaccurate he or she should try to resolve the problem with the supervisor.
If an employee is unable is resolve an issue regarding the content of his or
her position description the appropriate avenue to address the content of
the position description is either the administrative or the negotiated
grievance procedure. Normally a classification appeal will not be accepted
by either the agency (Coast Guard) or the Office of Personnel Management
(OPM) until the position description content issues have been addressed and
both management and the employee certify the description accurately
describes the major duties, responsibilities, requirements and supervisory
relationships of the position.
- A GS employee may file an appeal either to the agency (Coast Guard), or
directly to OPM but not to both at the same time. The advantage to filing
first with the Coast Guard is that if the appeal is denied, the employee may
then choose to appeal to OPM. A FWS employee must first appeal to the
- Appeal decisions by OPM, favorable or unfavorable, are binding on the
Coast Guard and the employee; there is no further appeal beyond OPM.
- The outcome of a classification appeal decision can result in the
- no change to the agency assigned pay plan, title, series, or grade level
of a position.
- an upgrade higher than the agency assigned grade.
- a downgrade lower than the agency assigned grade.
- a new series different than the agency assigned.
- a new pay plan different than the agency assigned.