Trial Period

The first year of service as a Term employee is considered a trial period. The trial period is used to determine fitness for continued employment. An Agency may terminate the services of an employee if his/her work performance or conduct fails to demonstrate his/her fitness or qualifications for continued employment during the trial period.

Prior Federal civilian service (including Nonappropriated Fund service) counts toward completion of the trial period when the prior service --

  1. Is in the same agency (e.g., Dept of Army);

  2. Is in the same line of work (determined by actual duties and responsibilities); and,

  3. Contains or is followed by no more than a single break in service that does not exceed 30 calendar days.

During the trial period, the supervisor must continually evaluate the employee's job performance and work behavior, as well as his/her character, conduct, and attitude that directly affect job performance. The supervisor should document the employee's performance and conduct throughout the trial period.

An agency may terminate a Term employee at any time during the trial period. Employees who are subject to administrative actions have very limited rights to have the action reviewed by outside third parties such as arbitrator or the Merit Systems Protection Board. An employee, whose performance and/or conduct are unsatisfactory, may be removed at any time during the trial period. The supervisor does not have to wait until the end of the trial period to initiate action. When initiating action, the supervisor should consult with the CPAC early in the process.

Content last reviewed: 6/8/2006-SWL

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This page was last revised: 6/8/2006