28 CFR 27.4: Corrective action and other relief; Director, Office of Attorney Recruitment and Management.
(a) If, in connection with any investigation, the Conducting Office determines that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a reprisal has been or will be taken, the Conducting Office shall report this conclusion, together with any findings and recommendations for corrective action, to the Director, Office of Attorney Recruitment and Management (the Director). If the Conducting Office's report to the Director includes a recommendation for corrective action, the Director shall provide an opportunity for comments on the report by the FBI and the Complainant. The Director, upon receipt of the Conducting Office's report, shall proceed in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section. A determination by the Conducting Office that there are reasonable grounds to believe a reprisal has been or will be taken shall not be cited or referred to in any proceeding under these regulations, without the Complainant's consent.
(b) At any time, the Conducting Office may request the Director to order a stay of any personnel action for 45 calendar days if it determines that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a reprisal has been or is to be taken. The Director shall order such stay within three business days of receiving the request for stay, unless the Director determines that, under the facts and circumstances involved, such a stay would not be appropriate. The Director may extend the period of any stay granted under this paragraph for any period that the Director considers appropriate. The Director shall allow the FBI an opportunity to comment to the Director on any proposed extension of a stay, and may request additional information as the Director deems necessary. The Director may terminate a stay at any time, except that no such termination shall occur until the Complainant and the Conducting Office shall first have had notice and an opportunity to comment.
(c)(1) The Complainant may present a request for corrective action directly to the Director within 60 calendar days of receipt of notification of termination of an investigation by the Conducting Office or at any time after 120 calendar days from the date the Complainant first notified an Investigative Office of an alleged reprisal if the Complainant has not been notified by the Conducting Office that it will seek corrective action. The Director shall notify the FBI of the receipt of the request and allow the FBI 25 calendar days to respond in writing. If the Complainant presents a request for corrective action to the Director under this paragraph, the Conducting Office may continue to seek corrective action specific to the Complainant, including the submission of a report to the Director, only with the Complainant's consent. Notwithstanding the Complainant's refusal of such consent, the Conducting Office may continue to investigate any violation of law, rule, or regulation.
(2) The Director may not direct the Conducting Office to reinstate an investigation that the Conducting Office has terminated in accordance with § 27.3(h).
(d) Where a Complainant has presented a request for corrective action to the Director under paragraph (c) of this section, the Complainant may at any time request the Director to order a stay of any personnel action allegedly taken or to be taken in reprisal for a protected disclosure. The request for a stay must be in writing, and the FBI shall have an opportunity to respond. The request shall be granted within 10 business days of the receipt of any response by the FBI if the Director determines that such a stay would be appropriate. A stay granted under this paragraph shall remain in effect for such period as the Director deems appropriate. The Director may modify or dissolve a stay under this paragraph at any time if the Director determines that such a modification or dissolution is appropriate.
(e)(1) The Director shall determine, based upon all the evidence, whether a protected disclosure was a contributing factor in a personnel action taken or to be taken. Subject to paragraph (e)(2) of this section, if the Director determines that a protected disclosure was a contributing factor in a personnel action taken or to be taken, the Director shall order corrective action as the Director deems appropriate. The Director may conclude that the disclosure was a contributing factor in the personnel action based upon circumstantial evidence, such as evidence that the employee taking the personnel action knew of the disclosure and that the personnel action occurred within a period of time such that a reasonable person could conclude that the disclosure was a contributing factor in the personnel action.
(2) Corrective action may not be ordered if the FBI demonstrates by clear and convincing evidence that it would have taken the same personnel action in the absence of such disclosure.
(3) In making the determinations required under this subsection, the Director may hold a hearing at which the Complainant may present evidence in support of his or her claim, in accordance with such procedures as the Director may adopt. The Director is hereby authorized to compel the attendance and testimony of, or the production of documentary or other evidence from, any person employed by the Department if doing so appears reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence, is not otherwise prohibited by law or regulation, and is not unduly burdensome. Any privilege available in judicial and administrative proceedings relating to the disclosure of documents or the giving of testimony shall be available before the Director. All assertions of such privileges shall be decided by the Director. The Director may, upon request, certify a ruling on an assertion of privilege for review by the Deputy Attorney General.
(f) If the Director orders corrective action, such corrective action may include: placing the Complainant, as nearly as possible, in the position he would have been in had the reprisal not taken place; reimbursement for attorneys fees, reasonable costs, medical costs incurred, and travel expenses; back pay and related benefits; and any other reasonable and foreseeable consequential damages.
(g) If the Director determines that there has not been a reprisal, the Director shall report this finding in writing to the complainant, the FBI, and the Conducting Office.
[Order No. 2264-99, 64 FR 58786, Nov. 1, 1999, as amended by Order No. 2492-2001, 66 FR 37904, July 20, 2001; Order No. 2926-2008, 73 FR 1495, Jan. 9, 2008]