In recent months, I have taken on a number of cases involving federal employees whose job was in jeopardy due to their failure to register with the Selective Service. In a previous post, I reported that OPM had ruled in favor of one client, who had lived in Africa for the better part of his life until he returned to the United States when he was 22 years of age. In that case, after considering our request for reconsideration, OPM determined that we had presented sufficient information to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the failure to register with the Selective Service was neither knowing nor willful. As a result, my client was able to keep his job with the IRS.
My most recent cases, while involving similar fact patterns (both clients also worked for the IRS), had an additional twist — my clients had initially entered the country illegally before obtaining their U.S. citizenship. Like my previous client, these individuals did not become aware of the Selective Service registration requirements until after they reached 26 years of age — by which time it was too late to register (men must register prior to attaining 26 years of age).
With the assistance of the Selective Service (contact me if you are interested in finding out how Selective Service assisted my clients), we were able to convince OPM that the failure to register was neither knowing nor willful and both of my clients were able to continue their federal employment. A just result in both cases.