In some instances, an involuntary resignation or retirement can be considered tantamount to an involuntary removal. If your work environment was so intolerable that you felt your only choice was to retire, then you may be the victim of this adverse action, known as a constructive discharge or removal. The Merit Systems Protection Board has held that to establish that a retirement was involuntary due to duress or coercion, the employee must show that:
- One side involuntarily accepted the terms of another
- The circumstances permitted no other alternative
- The circumstances were the result of coercive acts of the opposite party
An example of an action that might constitute an appealable constructive action is an unwarranted accusation of misconduct that could lead to removal. Moreover, actions taken by the agency that result in intolerable working conditions, including a retaliatory forced reassignment or transfer for an improper purpose, could result in and create an appealable action.
If you feel as though you were forced to retire —or are being forced to retire—and you believe that your work environment was, or is so intolerable that a reasonable person in your position would feel compelled to retire, then you may have a case against your agency, and may be able to regain or retain your job through appropriate legal action. Contact us to talk to one of our attorneys about the legal options available to you.