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Special Appointing Authorities for Veterans
Veterans' Recruitment Appointment (VRA)
The VRA is a special authority by which agencies may, if they wish, appoint an eligible veteran without competition. The candidate does not have to be on a list of eligibles, but must meet the basic qualification requirements for the position. The VRA is a convenient method of appointment for both the agency and the veteran. However, use of the authority is entirely discretionary and no one is entitled to a VRA appointment.

VRA appointees initially are hired for a 2-year period. Successful completion of the 2-year VRA appointment leads to a permanent civil service appointment. (Please note, however, that a veteran may be employed without competition on a temporary or term appointment based on VRA eligibility. Such an appointment is not a VRA appointment and does not lead to conversion to a permanent position.)

Eligibility Requirements
The following individuals are eligible for a VRA appointment:

  • Disabled veterans;
  • Veterans who served on active duty in the Armed Forces during a war declared by Congress, or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge has been authorized.
  • Veterans who, while serving on active duty in the Armed Forces, participated in a military operation for which the Armed Forces Service Medal was awarded; and
  • Veterans separated from active duty within the past 3 years.

There is no minimum service requirement, but the individual must have served on active duty, not active duty for training.

Training Requirement
If you are selected for a VRA and have less than 15 years of education, you must agree to participate in a training or educational program.

Grade Level of Jobs That Can be Filled
Agencies can use the VRA authority to fill white collar positions up through GS-11 and equivalent jobs under other pay systems.

Conditions of Employment
VRAs are in the excepted service. After 2 years of substantially continuous service under a VRA appointment, provided your performance has been satisfactory, your appointment may be converted to the competitive service, i.e., a permanent appointment.

How to Apply
You should contact the Federal agency personnel office where you are interested in working to find out about VRA opportunities. Agencies recruit candidates and make VRAs directly.

For a list of local agency personnel offices, consult your telephone directory under "U.S. Government" for the nearest location and telephone number.

30% or more Disabled Veteran Program
Federal agencies have the authority, by law, to give noncompetitive appointments to any veteran who has a service-connected disability of 30% or more. Like the VRA, this authority is discretionary with the agency.

Who is Eligible?
To be eligible, you must be a disabled veteran who has a compensable service-connected disability of 30% or more. The disability must be officially documented by the Department of Defense or the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Grade Level of Jobs that Cannot be Filled
This authority covers all grade levels and occupations.

Conditions of Qualifications
You must meet all qualification requirements for any position to which you are appointed. This could include the requirement to achieve a passing score on a written test.

AS OF: 5-24-04

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