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Federal preference points

A leg up for vets who need it

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A brief search of federal jobs available on, a site listing federal jobs, showed more than 15,000 jobs available. This number doesn't necessarily include state and local civil service jobs that can offer competitive wages and comprehensive benefits of the armed forces.

One of these jobs could have your name on it after your career in the military - especially since you qualify for preferential treatment that comes to those who have served the country.

According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management Web site at "By law, veterans who are disabled or who served on active duty in the Armed Forces during certain specified time periods or in military campaigns are entitled to preference over others in hiring from competitive lists of eligibles and also in retention during reductions in force."

What this means is that after passing the civil service test certain vets can add points to their passing test scores. The test and information about it can be found at, which also offers other exams and test guides as well as message boards and other employment information.

According to the Office of Personnel Management, five-point preference is given to the passing exam scores of veterans who served during a war; or during the period April 28, 1952, through July 1, 1955; or during the Gulf War from Aug. 2, 1990, through Jan. 2, 1992; or for more than 180 consecutive days, other than for training, any part of which occurred during the period beginning Sept. 11, 2001, and ending on the date prescribed by presidential proclamation or by law as the last day of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Also qualifying for preference are veterans who served on a campaign or expedition for which a campaign medal has been authorized, which includes any Armed Forces Expeditionary medal or campaign badge, including El Salvador, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Southwest Asia, Somalia, and Haiti.

Ten points of preference are added to the passing exam scores of veterans with service-connected disability as well as derived preference for spouses of a service member either retired, 100 percent disabled, or who has failed to qualify for a previously applied for job based on service-connected disability.

Similarly, derived preference of 10 points on a passing score can be passed on to surviving spouses as well as, to limited degrees, mothers of either deceased or disabled veterans.

More information can be found at The sites and show government job availabilities.

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