(a) Notification regarding negotiations for or agreement of future employment or compensation. A public filer who is negotiating for or has an agreement of future employment or compensation with a non-Federal entity must file a statement notifying an agency ethics official of such negotiation or agreement within three business days after commencement of the negotiation or agreement. This notification statement must be in writing, must be signed by the public filer, and must include the name of the non-Federal entity involved in such negotiation or agreement and the date on which the negotiation or agreement commenced. When a public filer has previously complied with the notification requirement in this section regarding the commencement of negotiations, the filer need not file a separate notification statement when an agreement of future employment or compensation is reached with the previously identified non-Federal entity. There is also no requirement to file another notification when negotiations have been unsuccessful. However, employees may want to do so to facilitate the resumption of their duties.

Example 1 to paragraph (a): An employee of the Merit Systems Protection Board who is a public filer was in private practice prior to his Government service. He receives a telephone call from a partner in a law firm who inquires as to whether he would be interested in returning to private practice. During this initial telephone call with the law firm partner, the employee indicates that he is interested in resuming private practice. They discuss generally the types of issues that would need to be agreed upon if the employee were to consider a possible offer to serve as “of counsel” with the firm, such as salary, benefits, and type of work the employee would perform. The employee has begun negotiating for future employment with the law firm. Within three business days after this initial telephone call, he must file written notification of the negotiations with his agency ethics official.

Example 2 to paragraph (a): The employee in the previous example also negotiates a possible contract with a publisher to begin writing a textbook after he leaves Government service. Within three business days after commencing negotiations, the employee must file written notification with his agency ethics official documenting that he is engaged in negotiations for future compensation with the book publisher.

Terms Used In 5 CFR 2635.607

  • Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
  • Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.

(b) Notification of recusal. A public filer who files a notification statement pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section must file with an agency ethics official a notification of recusal whenever there is a conflict of interest or appearance of a conflict of interest with the non-Federal entity identified in the notification statement. The notification statement and the recusal statement may be contained in a single document or in separate documents.

(c) Advance filing of notification and recusal statements. When a public filer is seeking employment within the meaning of §2635.603(b)(1)(ii) or (iii) or is considering seeking employment, the public filer may elect to file the notification statement pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section before negotiations have commenced and before an agreement of future employment or compensation is reached. A public filer may also elect to file the recusal statement pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section before the public filer has a conflict of interest or appearance of a conflict of interest with the non-Federal entity identified in the notification statement. The public filer need not file the document again upon commencing negotiations or reaching an agreement of future employment or compensation. The advance filing of any such document is not construed as a statement that negotiations have or have not commenced or that a conflict of interest does or does not exist. Although the Office of Government Ethics encourages advance filing when a public filer anticipates a realistic possibility of negotiations or an agreement, the failure to make an advance filing does not violate this subpart or the principles of ethical conduct contained in §2635.101(b).

Example 1 to paragraph (c): An employee of the Federal Labor Relations Authority who is a public filer began negotiating for future employment with a law firm. At the time he began negotiating for future employment with the law firm, he was not participating personally and substantially in a particular matter that, to his knowledge, had a direct and predictable effect on the financial interest of the law firm. Although the employee was not required to file a recusal statement because he did not have a conflict of interest or appearance of a conflict of interest with the law firm identified in the notification statement, the Office of Government Ethics encourages the employee to submit a notification of recusal at the same time that he files the notification statement regarding the negotiations for future employment in order to ensure that the requirement of paragraph (b) of this section is satisfied if a conflict of interest or an appearance of a conflict of interest later arises. The agency ethics official should counsel the employee on applicable requirements but is under no obligation to notify the employee’s supervisor that the employee is negotiating for employment.

Example 2 to paragraph (c): An employee of the General Services Administration is contacted by a prospective employer regarding scheduling an interview for the following week to begin discussing the possibility of future employment. The employee discusses the matter with the ethics official and chooses to file a notification and recusal statement prior to the interview. The notification and recusal statement contain the identity of the prospective employer and an estimated date of when the interview will occur. The employee has complied with the notification requirement of section 17 of the STOCK Act.

(d) Agreement of future employment or compensation for the purposes of §2635.607 means any arrangement concerning employment that will commence after the termination of Government service. The term also means any arrangement to compensate in exchange for services that will commence after the termination of Government service. The term includes, among other things, an arrangement to compensate for teaching, speaking, or writing that will commence after the termination of Government service.