Become a PMF
To be entitled to preference, a veteran must meet the
eligibility requirements in Section 2108 of Title 5, United States
Code. For more information on veterans' preference and their
application in Federal employment refer to the U.S. Office of
Personnel Management's (OPM's) Vet Guide at
addition, veterans may visit FedsHireVets,
the one-stop resource for Federal veteran employment
During the PMF application process, applicants will be asked if
they can claim veterans' preference.
If claiming veterans' preference during the application process,
applicants should follow the instructions provided in the
announcement for submitting supporting documentation.
The PMF Program does not accept late applications
from veterans. Late applications for veterans only apply when
filling positions in the competitive service. The PMF Program
operates under the excepted service.
The following are some Frequently Asked Questions
(FAQs) regarding veterans' preference and documentation:
1. What types of supporting information can be submitted
when claiming Veterans' Preference?
Applicants must submit information which documents the veteran's
dates of military service, separation under honorable conditions
and any service connected disability (if applicable). Acceptable
forms of supporting documentation include:
Documentation of Service and Separation under Honorable
- DD-214, "Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active
- Honorable or general discharge certificate.
- Documents showing transfer to any of the reserve corps of the
- Retirement or separation orders.
- Certificate of service or release from active duty, showing
that honorable separation took place.
- Official statement from a branch of the Armed Forces showing
that honorable separation took place.
- Certification: Any written document from the armed forces
that certifies the service member is expected to be discharged or
released from active duty service in the armed forces under
honorable conditions not later than 120 days after the date
certification is signed.
- Official statement from the Military personnel records center
that official records show that that honorable separation took
Documentation of Service Connected disability -
Form (SF 15) application for 10-point Veterans'
- An official statement, dated 1991 or later, from the U.S.
Department of Veterans Affairs or branch of the Armed Forces,
certifying to the present existence of the veteran's service
- An official citation, document, or discharge certificate,
issued by a branch of the Armed Forces, showing the award to the
veteran of the Purple Heart.
- An official statement or retirement orders from a branch of the
Armed Forces, showing that the retired service member was retried
because of permanent service connected disability or was
transferred to the permanent disability retirement list.
- An official statement, dated 1991 or later, from the U.S.
Department of Veterans Affairs certifying that the veteran is
receiving a nonservice-connected disability pension.
- For spouses and mothers of disabled veterans: An official
statement, dated 1991 or later, from the U.S. Department of
Veterans Affairs or branch of the Armed Forces, certifying:
(1) the present existence of the veteran's service connected
disability; (2) the percentage and nature of the service connected
disability; and, (3) a notation as to whether or not the service
connected disability is rated as permanent and total.
2. What is a DD-214?
A DD-214, "Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty",
is issued to military members upon separation from active service.
It contains information about the veteran's dates of military
service and separation.
3. I lost my DD-214, Certificate of Release or Discharge
from Active Duty, how can I obtain a copy?
A copy of the DD-214 and other military service records can be
obtained from the National Archives. Visit http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records
for additional information.
4. What is the Standard Form (SF 15) application for
10-point Veterans' Preference?
The SF 15
is used by Federal Agencies and OPM examining offices to adjudicate
individuals' claims for veterans' preference in accordance with the
Veterans' Preference Act of 1994. The form also includes
5. Where can I find more information about Veterans'
For more information on veterans' preference and their application
in Federal employment refer to the U.S. Office of Personnel
Management's (OPM's) Vet Guide at
The Vet Guide also includes information about Service Credit for
Leave Rate Accrual and Retirement. In addition, veterans may
visit FedsHireVets, the
one-stop resource for Federal veteran employment information.
Adjudicated Veterans' Preference
NOTE: The information below is provided
as general information for veteran Finalists and Federal Agency
personnel. Each agency is responsible for applying veterans'
preference, documenting, and any pass overs. Reference to "OPM" is
referring to an agency contacting the appropriate OPM office for
pass over requests and is not referring to the PMF Program
The list of Finalists on the public PMF website will indicate
"Yes" for those Finalists whose veterans' preference claim was
favorably adjudicated. Only registered agency users can view
the preference categories for Finalists.
If a Finalist is a veteran and he/she expresses an interest in
working for an agency, that agency must apply the provisions of
section 302 of Title 5, Code of Federal Regulations (5 CFR 302),
when selecting and appointing candidates. For purposes of the
PMF Program, "expresses an interest" means that the Finalist has
applied to an agency's posted announcement for consideration for
appointment to a specific position. This does
not mean an agency must contact each veteran on the list of
Each applicant pool is unique. The applicant pool consists
of those Finalists who applied for a posted position.
If the agency selects a non-veteran Finalist over a preference
eligible veteran Finalist it must prepare a written justification
as to why the veteran Finalist did not meet the criteria for the
position. Decisions must be qualifications driven and based on the
specific requirements detailed in the position. The written
justification accomplishes two objectives:
- Veteran Finalists are entitled, upon request, to obtain a copy
of the reasons they were passed over in favor of a non-veteran
Finalist. The written justification is intended to satisfy that
obligation and thus should be written with the expectation that the
veteran Finalist who was passed over may request to review it.
- Additionally, if OPM
officials audit the agency's PMF process, the written justification
serves as documentation that veteran Finalists who was part of the
agency applicant pool for said position received proper
A preference eligible veteran, who does not
have a compensable disability of 30 percent or more, can
be eliminated from consideration only if the agency sustains the
selecting official's objection to the preference eligible for
adequate reason. These reasons, which must be recorded, include
reasons based upon the criteria for medical disqualification under
5 CFR Part 339, reasons based upon the criteria for making
suitability determinations listed at 5 CFR 731.202, or other
reasons considered by the agency. OPM must approve the
sufficiency of an agency reason to medically
disqualify or pass over a preference eligible to select a
non-preference eligible or to object to or pass over a candidate
based upon medical reasons. The preference eligible (or his or her
representative) is entitled to a copy of the agency's reason(s) for
the pass over, upon request.
The following special provisions apply to passing over a
disabled veteran with a compensable service-connected disability of
30 percent or more, for medical or non-medical reasons:
- The agency must at the same time notify, in writing, both OPM
and the disabled veteran of the reasons for its desire to pass over
the disabled veteran and of the veteran's right to respond to OPM
within 15 days of the date of the notification.
- The agency must provide evidence to OPM that the notice was
timely sent to the disabled veteran's last known address.
- OPM will determine if the request was for a proper and adequate
reason under its regulations, and the sufficiency of the evidence
presented, taking into account any additional information provided
by the veteran.
- OPM may ask the agency to submit more detailed information in
support of its request.
- If OPM sustains the pass over request, the agency may select
another qualified person from the certificate of eligibles (or
equivalent). If OPM does not sustain the request, the agency
may not pass over the veteran on the basis of the reason
- This procedure does not stop the agency from filling a position
if it has more than one position to fill from the same certificate
of eligible (or equivalent), and holds open a position that could
be filled by the individual against whom a request has been
- OPM will notify the agency and the preference eligible or
disabled veteran of its decision, with which the agency must
- OPM is prohibited by law from delegating these functions to any
Application of veterans' preference during the appointing
agency's selection process is the responsibility of the appointing
agency. All Federal Agencies are aware of veterans' preference and
must have procedures in place to consider in their selection
process. Veteran Finalists may review the
Vets Guide for more information.
For additional information, visit OPM's
Pathways FAQs webpage under the "Veterans' Preference and Pass
If a Finalist has a change in their veterans' preference (for
example, obtains supporting documentation changing their level of
disability), he/she may send such documentation via email to
firstname.lastname@example.org and request to be re-adjudicated.