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VETERANS' PREFERENCE

WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR VETERANS' PREFERENCE

DOCUMENTATION REQUIRED TO VERIFY ELIGIBILITY FOR VETERANS' PREFERENCE

VETERANS' PREFERENCE AND APPLICANT ELIGIBILITY

DOCUMENT SUBMISSION FOR VETERANS' PREFERENCE DOCUMENTS

PREFERENCE REQUIRED AT EACH STEP OF THE HIRING PROCESS

THE CITY OF MIAMI AWARDS VETERAN PREFERENCE POINTS ACCORDINGLY

PROMOTIONS AND VETERANS' PREFERENCE ELIGIBILITY FOR CITY OF MIAMI EMPLOYEES|

VETERANS' PREFERENCE FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH A SERVICE CONNECTED DISABILITY

EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE WHEN A NUMERICALLY BASED SELECTION PROCESS IS USED

EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE WHEN A NUMERICALLY BASED SELECTION PROCESS IS NOT USED

OTHER PROVISIONS REGARDING VETERANS' PREFERENCE

EXEMPT POSITIONS

REQUIRED NOTICE BY EMPLOYERS

ENFORCEMENT

VETERANS' PREFERENCE RESOURCES
 


VETERANS' PREFERENCE

Veterans' preference is awarded as a means of recognizing the sacrifices eligible of armed forces personnel who served under honorable conditions in the United States military on active duty. According to the department of Veteran Affairs, “veterans' preference” in Florida evolved at the end of World War II with the passing in 1949 of Florida State Statute 295.06 and 295.07 which gave preference in Civil Service, merit system and other competitive examinations, and preference in appointment reinstatement and reemployment, respectively. Additional sections of Chapter 295 defined exactly who would receive preference and how it was to be administered.

The City of Miami awards veterans preference to Florida residents in the initial hiring, promotion, and retention of veterans for positions in the classified service in accordance with Florida Administrative Code 55A-7, Florida State Statute 1.01 (14), F.S.S 295.07, and Chapter 2003-42 Laws of Florida. Veterans' Preference is not applicable for certain exempt classifications (please see section below titled: Exempt Positions).


WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR VETERANS' PREFERENCE

The six (6) categories of veterans' preference pursuant to FSS 295.07 are:

1) A veteran with a service-connected disability who is eligible for or receiving compensation, disability retirement, or pension under public laws administered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense.
 
a) Note – Disabled veterans claiming veterans' preference in the State of Florida need not have served during a wartime era to be awarded veterans' preference. However, the disabled veteran must have been discharged under honorable conditions.

2) The spouse of a veteran who cannot qualify for employment because of a total and permanent service-connected disability, or the spouse of a veteran missing in action, captured, or forcibly detained by a foreign power.

3) A veteran of any war who has served on active duty for one day or more during a wartime period, excluding active duty for training, and who was discharged under honorable conditions from the Armed Forces of the United States of America.

4) A veteran who served honorably in Operation Enduring Freedom or Operation Iraqi Freedom, but who has not met the criteria for the award of a campaign or expeditionary medal for service. Persons who qualify for preference within this category qualify for preference in appointment, effective July 1, 2007. The service dates are defined as follows:

• Operation Enduring Freedom October 7, 2001 to date to be determined.
 
• Operation Iraqi Freedom March 19, 2003 to date to be determined.

5) The un-remarried widow or widower of a veteran who died of a service-connected disability.

6) A veteran who has been awarded any Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, as well as the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal. To view a complete list of campaign and badge medals awarded by the United Stated Armed Forces click here: Technical Bulletin 2: Campaigns and Expeditions of the Armed Forces Since WWII Which Qualify for Veterans Preference


DOCUMENTATION REQUIRED TO BE AWARDED VETERANS' PREFERENCE

Submit legible scans and/or copies of one of the following official military documents:

• Forms DD-214  (Member 4 long form preferred; however, if short form is submitted, it must be accompanied by official documents from the United States Department of Defense or Veteran Affairs detailing military status, dates of service, and discharge type)

• Certificate of Discharge or Separation from Active Duty

• Other official documents (to include military discharge papers Or equivalent certification from the VA listing military status, dates of service, and discharge type) issued by the branch of service are required as verification of eligibility for veterans' preference.

Veterans claiming preference for a service-connected disability must submit:

• All of the documents listed above
• Official documentation from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs dated within one year, reflecting a service-connected disability and disability percentage rating

Spouse of a veteran with a total and permanent service-connected disability must submit:

• Official documentation from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs showing the member of the armed forces was released or discharged from active duty due to a permanent service-connected disability, with a disability rating of 100 percent

• Documentation verifying marriage to the member of the armed forces (i.e., a marriage license or other legal document verifying marriage)

Spouse of a veteran missing in action, captured, or forcibly detained by a foreign power must submit:

• Official documentation from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs reflecting that the service member is missing in action, captured, or forcibly detained by a foreign power while on active duty

• Documentation verifying marriage to the member of the armed forces (i.e., a marriage license or other legal documentation verifying marriage)

A widow or widower of a service member killed while on active duty must submit:

• Official documentation from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs reflecting that the service member was released or discharged from active duty due to his or her death while on active duty

• Documentation verifying marriage to the member of the armed forces (i.e., a marriage license or other legal documentation verifying marriage)

• A notarized statement certifying that he or she is the un-remarried widow or widower of the service member

NOTE: (Please do not submit originals)

These documents must be submitted by the closing date for the position for which you are applying to be awarded preference.


VETERANS' PREFERENCE AND APPLICANT ELIGIBILITY
 

Please understand that veterans' preference laws do not guarantee placement of a veteran into a position. All applicants must meet the minimum requirements, provide the necessary documentation, and complete and successfully pass all phases of the hiring process to be considered a candidate for hire.


DOCUMENT SUBMISSION FOR VETERANS' PREFERENCE DOCUMENTS

Documents for veterans' preference can be:

• Scanned or uploaded with your application as an attachment when using the City of Miami's online application process

• Submitted in-person by the applicant or a representative designated by the applicant

• Mailed (all required documents must be postmarked on or before the job posting's closing date to be considered for preference eligibility). Documents postmarked after the closing date will not be considered for preference eligibility.

Documents should be mailed to:

CITY OF MIAMI EMPLOYMENT OFFICE
444 SW 2ND AVENUE
MIAMI, FL 33130
ATTN: (NAME OF JOB POSTING) RECRUITMENT


PREFERENCE REQUIRED AT EACH STEP OF THE HIRING PROCESS

An eligible veteran is entitled to preference at each stage of the hiring process; however, the preference is not absolute.


THE CITY OF MIAMI AWARDS VETERAN PREFERENCE POINTS ACCORDINGLY

Non-disabled Veterans – 5 points on a scale of 100

Veterans' with a service-connected disability of less than 30% –10 points on a scale of 100

Veterans' with a service connected disability of 30% or more – 10 points on a scale of 100 (for positions in the classified service candidates will be placed at the top of the eligible register)

All other factors being equal, priority to veterans would be given in the following order:

• Disabled Veteran with a service-connected disability of 30% or more
• Disabled Veteran with a service-connected disability of less than 30%
• Non-disabled Veteran
• Non-Veteran


PROMOTIONS AND VETERANS' PREFERENCE ELIGIBILITY FOR CITY OF MIAMI EMPLOYEES

City of Miami employees who have a break in service specifically to serve in the armed forces on active duty and are discharged under honorable conditions will be eligible for Veterans' Preference on their first promotion when they return to the workforce after their military leave, provided that the veteran returns to the position within 1 (one) year of his/her separation from active duty.

Employees must still adhere to the same eligibility and documentation requirements to receive Veterans' Preference as detailed in the sections above.

Employees must submit all Forms DD-214 for each tour of duty or service requirement that has been completed to date.


VETERANS' PREFERENCE FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH A SERVICE CONNECTED DISABILITY

A person who was separated under honorable conditions from active duty in the Armed Forces performed at any time and who has established the present existence of a service-connected disability or is receiving compensation, disability retirement benefits, or pension by reason of public laws administered by the U.S. Department of Veterans' Affairs and the Department of Defense.

For positions for which an examination is used to determine the qualifications for entrance into employment with the City of Miami, 10 points shall be added to the earned ratings if the veteran has earned a qualifying score on the examination for the position. Additionally, all persons qualified to receive a 10-point preference whose service-connected disabilities have been rated by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs or its predecessor or the Department of Defense to be 30 percent or more shall be placed at the top of the appropriate register or employment list, in accordance with their respective augmented ratings.


EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE WHEN A NUMERICALLY BASED SELECTION PROCESS IS USED

Employment preference, where numerically based examinations are used as a device for selections, consists of adding 10 points to the score of the first category of applicants (disabled veterans and spouses of disabled or veterans Missing In Action) and five points to the score of other preference-eligible applicants.

The rules provide that where the requisite points (10 points to individuals in the first category, and five points to other preference eligible applicants) have been added to test scores, the names of all the preference-eligible applicants shall be placed on a register or employment list, beginning with those disabled veterans with disability ratings of 30 percent or more, and followed by all other preference-eligible applicants in the order of their augmented ratings.

Florida Administrative Code 55A-7.010(4), states that “appointments to positions will be made from the appropriate register or employment list in the rank order of their augmented ratings”.

For positions in the classified service in the City of Miami, utilizing a numerically based selection process, where a veteran, with all combined scores from the selection process, scores in the highest ranking band with a City employee, City resident, or non-preference eligible candidate for said position, hiring preference will be given to the veteran.


EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE WHEN A NUMERICALLY BASED SELECTION PROCESS IS NOT USED

Preference in selection must be given to protected individuals provided such persons possess the minimum qualifications necessary to the discharge of the duties involved. Florida Statute, Section 295.085(1), defines “minimum qualifications” to mean a “specification” of the kinds of experience, training, education and/or licensure or certification that provides “appropriate job-related evidence that an applicant possesses the minimum required knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to the discharge of the duties involved”.

Does Florida's veterans' preference law require that a preference-eligible veteran be appointed, when a non-preference eligible applicant is better qualified?

No. (See AGO 88-24; 55A-7.011(2) Florida Administrative Code)


OTHER PROVISIONS REGARDING VETERANS' PREFERENCE

Veterans' preference in perpetuity: A person eligible for veterans' preference in appointment (defined by s. 295.07, FS) does not forfeit employment preference eligibility once that veteran or eligible spouse of the veteran has been employed by a state agency or any political subdivision of this state. Effective July 1, 2007, Florida law restores veterans' preference in employment for all categories of protected individuals previously employed by a state agency or any political subdivision of this state. That is, persons who were previously ineligible to receive preference because they held or are currently employed by the State of Florida or any of its political subdivisions are now eligible to use their veterans' preference in employment again.

Preference in layoffs: Where a layoff is necessitated in a covered position, preference must be given to the covered employee in the retention process.

Preference in reinstatement or reemployment: When an employee in a covered position leaves employment for the purpose of serving in the armed forces, he or she is entitled to reinstatement or reemployment upon release or discharge from active military service.

Promotion preference: Promotion preference applies only to a veterans' first promotion after reinstatement or reemployment, without exception.


EXEMPT POSITIONS

Chapter 295, Florida Statutes, provides for preference in employment for certain classes of covered positions. However, there are limited exemptions (See 295.07(4)(b)).


REQUIRED NOTICE BY EMPLOYERS

Applicants claiming veterans' preference are responsible for providing required documentation at the time of making application. Required documents will not be accepted after the closing date.


ENFORCEMENT

If an applicant claiming veterans' preference for a vacant position is not selected, he/she may file a complaint with the:

Florida Department of Veterans' Affairs
Division of Benefits and Assistance - Veterans' Preference
Post Office Box 31003
St. Petersburg, FL 33731

A complaint must be filed within 21 days of the applicant receiving notice of the hiring decision made by the employing agency or within three months of the date the application is filed with the employer if no notice is given. The enforcement mechanism established by the regulations provide for an initial investigation by the Florida Department of Veterans Affairs, followed by an evidentiary proceeding before the Public Employees Relations Commission if the matter cannot be earlier resolved.


VETERANS' PREFERENCE RESOURCES

For additional information concerning veterans' preference, please contact:

The Florida Department of Veterans' Affairs:
By phone at: (727) 319-7462, Facsimile (727) 319-7780
By email: cosentinoj@fdva.state.fl.us 


State of Florida Department of Veteran Affairs

U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs

USERRA Advisor