Terms of Membership

Legal Advice and Representation Eligibility Screening:

Failure to explain YES answers will automatically disqualify you from legal coverage. Failure to provide accurate information will probably result in revocation of the legal advice and representational portion of your membership, and may result in the cancellation of your membership altogether regardless of previous payments made to FedDef. Dues payments made prior to cancellation of benefits and/or membership under this provision will be forfeited. You will also be responsible for paying any/all legal fees incurred as a result of your failure to provide accurate answers.   

Additional Requirements:

1. WHO CAN BECOME A MEMBER

a. FedDef provides advice and representation to Federal employees, supervisors, and managers of all agencies and employment levels including Competitive, Excepted, Senior Executive Service (SES), and Dual-Status technicians of the National Guard and Reserves.

b. An employee of the Army or Air National Guard who works for an Agency that has a current collective bargaining relationship with LIUNA Local 1776 must be a member of LIUNA Local 1776 as a condition of membership in FedDef.

2. MEMBERSHIP DUES

a. The rate for Title 38 employees of the Veterans Administration (VA) subject to Disciplinary Appeal Boards (DABs) is $300.00 per year with a minimum commitment of 1 year.

b. The rate for employees subject to the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) appeals process is $120.00 per year with a minimum commitment of 1 year.

c. The rate for employees subject to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Office of Professional Responsibility Appellate Board (OPRAB) appeals process is $120.00 per year with a minimum commitment of 1 year.

d. Members (except those affiliated with Local 1776) have the option to pay either monthly or annually.

3. ELIGIBILITY FOR REDUCED MEMBERSHIP DUES

a. Members of LIUNA Local 1776 will receive a discounted membership at a rate of $26.00 per year with a minimum commitment of 1 year.

4. CANCELLATION OF MEMBERSHIP; ATTEMPTS TO COLLECT OWED DUES AND/OR LEGAL FEES

a. Members shall have the option to cancel their first-year membership on their first anniversary. After the first anniversary, membership may only be revoked in intervals of one-year, beginning on or after the first anniversary date of the allotment. Individuals who wish to cancel their membership must notify FedDef a minimum of thirty (30) days prior to their anniversary date. Requests to cancel membership may be submitted: 1. via US Mail to PO Box 1794, Abita Springs, LA 70420; or, 2. via email to cancel@feddef.org. The request must include the member's full name, address, cell phone, personal email, membership identification number, and a clear statement requesting that the individual's membership be cancelled effective their next anniversary date.

b. Should we determine that a member failed to provide accurate information during their initial application, especially information that would have disqualified them from the legal advice and representation benefit included with FedDef, we have the option to subsequently revoke either the legal advice and representational portion of their membership only, or to process their immediate disenrollment as a member of FedDef, regardless of membership length or previous payments made to FedDef. Any membership dues payments made to FedDef prior to cancellation of benefits or membership under this provision shall be forfeited.

c. FedDef reserves the right to seek recovery of any dues owed as a result of a member's failure to remit timely payment, or to seek reimbursement for any/all legal fees that an individual would have otherwise accrued or been responsible for paying had they made a full and honest disclosure during the legal screening portion of their initial application. Attempts to seek repayment will include the use of collection agencies and/or courts of law. Members who are in dues-default, or who are determined to be responsible for the payment of legal fees, shall be notified via Certified US Mail or other verifiable means of physical or electronic letter-delivery to the individual’s physical mailing address or personal and/or work email address on file, and shall have thirty (30) days from the day they receive notice to make their account current, or to make arrangements to make their account current. Failure to make payment, or to make payment arrangements, within thirty (30) days after receiving notice shall allow FedDef to seek collection and/or legal action. The member agrees that should FedDef have to seek relief through 3rd party collection agencies and/or a court of law, that they (the member) will also be held responsible for payment of any fees or costs incurred by FedDef as a result of an attempt to collect payment.

5. COVERAGES

a. FedDef has an exclusive retainer with MINAHAN, MUTHER, KLINGER P.C., (herein referred to as "Counsel") to provide FedDef eligible members with legal advice and representation during administrative adverse actions, to include before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB); for employees of the US Department of Homeland Security, Transportation Security Administration (TSA), appeals before the Office of Professional Responsibility Appellate Board (OPRAB); and for employees of the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), during the Disciplinary Appeal Board (DAB) hearings process conducted under authorities identified by Title 38 of the United States Code.

b. Representational activities covered by this agreement include:

(i) Representation of individual FedDef members during administrative adverse actions before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB):

(1) Representation by a highly trained, conscientious, and aggressive attorney designated by Counsel throughout the entire administrative adverse action process including the employee's reply, initial appeal to an MSPB Administrative Judge (AJ), and a Petition for Review (PFR) to the full MSPB.

(2) For purposes of this agreement the term "administrative adverse action for cause" covers only suspensions of more than fourteen (14) days, demotions. and terminations resulting from misconduct or performance.

(3) Counsel's travel cost (e.g. airfare, hotel, meals, etc.) for the MSPB hearing is covered by this agreement. Any and all other travel and representational costs, such as for court reporting costs, travel for depositions, legal research database charges, copies, etc., will be borne by the FedDef member, which will be set out in an individual retainer agreement between Counsel and that individual.

(4) Once the MSPB issues a final order or decision, this agreement includes limited advice on the judicial review process, potential outcomes, and cost analyses. However, petitions for judicial review of MSPB orders or decisions to a US Court of Appeals are not covered by this retainer. On a case by case basis, Counsel may agree to represent a FedDef member in such appeals; however, the terms of such representation would be established in a separate retainer agreement between Counsel and that individual.

(ii) Representation of individual FedDef members during administrative adverse actions, before a Title 38 Disciplinary Appeals Board (DAB):

(1) Representation by a highly trained, conscientious, and aggressive attorney designated by Counsel throughout the entire administrative adverse action process including the employee's reply, initial appeal to the DAB, as well as any additional administrative enforcement or appeal options that may be necessary.

(2) For purposes of this agreement, the term "administrative adverse action for cause" covers only suspensions of more than fourteen (14) days, demotions, and terminations resulting from misconduct or performance.

(3) Counsel's travel cost (e.g. airfare, hotel, meals, etc.) for the DAB hearing are covered by this agreement. Any and all other travel and representational costs, such as for court reporting costs, travel for depositions, legal research database charges, copies, etc., will be borne by the FedDef member, which will be set out in an individual retainer agreement between Counsel and that individual.

(iii) Representation of individual FedDef  members during appeals to the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Transportation Security Administration's OPRAB:

(1) Representation by a highly trained, conscientious, and aggressive attorney designated by Counsel throughout the entire OPRAB administrative adverse action process including the employee's reply, initial appeal to the OPRAB, as well as any additional administrative reconsideration or enforcement action that may be necessary.

c. FedDef membership includes an annual one (1) hour consultation with an attorney designated by Counsel concerning Federal employment matters not covered by paragraph 5(b). This is a consultation only and does not include representation on matters falling outside of paragraph 5(b) of this retainer agreement. However, nothing in this agreement limits Counsel from entering into a separate representational agreement with a member on matters not addressed in paragraph 5(b), the terms of which would be spelled out in a separate retainer agreement between Counsel and that individual.

d. In addition to the provisions of paragraphs 5(b) and (c), FedDef members are eligible for advice concerning general Federal employment matters with an individual designated by FedDef who is knowledgeable in the subject area. For dual-status technicians, the advice includes matter related to military aspects of civilian employment. The individual designated under this paragraph may not be an attorney.

6. RESTRICTIONS

a. In order to be considered a FedDef member, individuals must be in good standing (i.e., current in dues payments) with FedDef at the time the representation is requested and must remain members of FedDef for the entire duration of any appeal Counsel undertakes on their behalf under the membership terms herein.  

b. FedDef membership does not cover any matters pending, or potentially pending, against an employee prior to joining FedDef. Employees who, at the time of joining FedDef, have been notified or should have reasonably been aware of the existence of any Agency investigations of or about them, or who are the subject of any other administrative action by the Agency into allegations of personal misconduct or performance deficiencies, are not covered by the representational provision of our membership agreement in paragraph 5(b). Furthermore, to be eligible for representation under this membership agreement, FedDef members may not have received any discipline or any unfavorable action (i.e., a letter of reprimand, suspension of any length, demotion, termination, or revocation or suspension of a security clearance) within the twelve (12) months prior of joining FedDef. Individuals who still decide to become a member of FedDef do so with the understanding that they will not be eligible for the all the protections offered by FedDef until they meet the full requirements of membership.

c. FedDef membership does not cover advice and/or representation on any other matters other than expressly identified above, including, but not limited to, any non-employment related federal or state civil and criminal matters.

7. OTHER BENEFITS

a. FED DEF partners with LIUNA Local 1776 to provide members a voice in Washington DC, as well as access to insurance products and other services.  

8. CHANGES

a. Terms of Service are subject to change without notice.

9. PAYMENT REQUIRED THROUGH PayPal

a. Regular Membership: http://www.feddef.org/paypal_title_5_title_32_TSA_employees.html

b. Local 1776 Members: http://www.feddef.org/paypal_local1776.html

c. Ttitle 38 VA Employees: http://www.feddef.org/paypal_title_38_dab.html

 

(c) Copyright 2018 by the Federal Employee Defense Fund