Federal employee not entitled to relief due to his resignation. Complainant, a federal employee, filed an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaint alleging discrimination on the basis of disability and reprisal. Specifically, he alleged the Agency did not provide him with a reasonable accommodation for his disability. Following the requested hearing, the Administrative Judge (AJ) held that Complainant had been subjected to discrimination after he first requested a reasonable accommodation due to his breathing difficulties. The AJ further found that the Complaint was subjected to reprisal on several accounts and Complainant was awarded $15,000 in nonpecuniary compensatory damages. The Agency fully accepted and implemented the AJ’s decision. Complainant appealed arguing that the AJ erred in not consolidating his constructive discharge claim with the instant complaint and that the damages award should have been closer to $150,000 and included the reinstatement of his position.

On appeal, the EEOC’s Office of Federal Operations (OFO) held that Complainant was not entitled to reinstatement as part of make-whole relief or consolidation of his constructive-discharge claim because the record contained substantial evidence that Complainant resigned his position due to fear of termination as a result of matters that were unrelated to the Agency’s failure to provide a reasonable accommodation.

Bernardo C. v. Dep’t of Veterans Affairs, EEOC Appeal No. 0120150213 (Feb. 16, 2017) https://www.eeoc.gov/sites/default/files/migrated_files/decisions/0120150213.txt

Kirk J. Angel is a federal employee attorney who handles EEO matters as well as EEOC hearings throughout the country. Set your free 15 minute consultation with him today.