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Frank1965NY  
#1 Posted : Monday, May 24, 2021 1:44:34 PM(UTC)
Frank1965NY

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Does anyone know penalty for teleworking from foreign country? I agreed to accompany my gf on trip abroad which I didn't even want to go on. My boss called me on first day of telework. She was alerted that I was teleworking from foreign country. She said foreign country telework not allowed. I emailed her asking if I can take the week as annual leave. I sent her our telework agreement which doesn't reflect any foreign country prohibitions. Does anyone know penalty for teleworking from foreign country? Can I get fired? Or what's my potential penalty? Thanks
Frank Thomas
NYC, NY
Federal Employee since Oct '14
FS0201  
#2 Posted : Monday, May 24, 2021 3:24:20 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Frank1965NY Go to Quoted Post
Does anyone know penalty for teleworking from foreign country? I agreed to accompany my gf on trip abroad which I didn't even want to go on. My boss called me on first day of telework. She was alerted that I was teleworking from foreign country. She said foreign country telework not allowed. I emailed her asking if I can take the week as annual leave. I sent her our telework agreement which doesn't reflect any foreign country prohibitions. Does anyone know penalty for teleworking from foreign country? Can I get fired? Or what's my potential penalty? Thanks


Depends on a number of factors.
Many agencies have a specific policy the prohibits it.
While your telework agreement doesn’t say you can’t, it likely does have the address from which you will telework at.
The last case I saw, which was a couple of years ago, was a short suspension.
Your GFE is probably going to have to be sent in an wiped/reformatted.
The excuse of, "I read it on FederalSoup..." won't work. Please do your due diligence.
Frank1965NY  
#3 Posted : Monday, May 24, 2021 4:25:01 PM(UTC)
Frank1965NY

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FSO2... thanks for reply.... and no... our agreement is very generic... doesn't have down location we'll work from... doesn't say it will be our residence or any particular place... short suspension I could easily live with... thanks
Frank Thomas
NYC, NY
Federal Employee since Oct '14
frankgonzalez  
#4 Posted : Tuesday, May 25, 2021 2:57:21 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Frank1965NY Go to Quoted Post
FSO2... thanks for reply.... and no... our agreement is very generic... doesn't have down location we'll work from... doesn't say it will be our residence or any particular place... short suspension I could easily live with... thanks
Every agency I have been in, we were required to take some training on telework. Our agreement also referenced a policy or regulation on telework within the agency. I will lay odds, that both (for your agency) mention not being allowed to telework outside the US.

The other issue to consider is if you have a clearance. That could be placed in jeopardy depending on what your supervisor/IT/Security folks think of you using your government system outside the US. If they pull your clearance, you could be let go for failing to maintain a condition of employment. And this is hard to appeal to MSPB/EEOC/etc, as they defer to the agency when it comes to clearances.

Edited by user Tuesday, May 25, 2021 2:58:10 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
ji_  
#5 Posted : Tuesday, May 25, 2021 6:14:42 AM(UTC)
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My agency places a ban on taking agency IT equipment outside the country -- my doing so would be a violation.
frankgonzalez  
#6 Posted : Tuesday, May 25, 2021 10:02:21 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: ji_ Go to Quoted Post
My agency places a ban on taking agency IT equipment outside the country -- my doing so would be a violation.
Mine doesn't outright ban it as we have people travelling all over the world (to include Russia and China), but we have to coordinate to sign out equipment instead of our usual laptop/phone/tablet to take to ensure data security. If I took my work laptop overseas, I may be out of a job.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
Frank1965NY  
#7 Posted : Tuesday, May 25, 2021 11:38:33 AM(UTC)
Frank1965NY

Rank: Newbie

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Posts: 7
United States
Location: nyc

Thanks everyone for feedback. I looked into issue some more. Seems the foreign travel prohibition is coming from Dept of State. It's not a "legal" prohibition. If we violate the Hatch Act, that's actually a "legal" violation b/c the Hatch Act was passed by Congress and signed into law. Our 3-page tele-work agreement we signed covers all sorts of stuff like needing adequate internet and lighting, but absolutely no reference to foreign travel. The word "OPM" isn't in our policy either. There's no mention of where we can/can't telecommute from. So I've permanently signed off from work pc... texted my boss I'll just take the week as annual leave... and will see what she does with it. Also, I'm pretty sure there's no risk of data loss b/c all data in the cloud. No data on hard drive. Thanks again
Frank Thomas
NYC, NY
Federal Employee since Oct '14
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