513 Eligibility Requirements

513.1 Application Review

A review of Form 2591 must occur no later than interview preparation in the hiring process, and must include careful attention to the eligibility requirements for applicants. These include age requirements, restrictions on employment of relatives, and a Selective Service System (SSS) requirement (for certain males). While the Postal Service’s citizenship policy requirements are addressed on Form 2591, documents pertaining to this eligibility may not be reviewed until a bona fide job offer has been extended (see 545, Selection and Extension of Job Offer).

513.2 Minimum and Maximum Age Requirements

There is no maximum age limit for appointment to positions in the Postal Service, and the general minimum age requirement is 18 at the time of appointment. The following are exceptions:

  1. Postal inspector positions. An applicant must be at least 21 years old, but not older than 36, to apply for postal inspector positions.
  2. Other positions. For high school graduates or for persons certified by local school authorities as having terminated formal education for adequate reasons, the minimum age is 16.

Note: Area vice presidents have the authority to reduce the general minimum age limit to 17 for non–high school graduates for periods that are necessary in places where recruiting difficulties make employment of persons under 18 years essential. They may also authorize employing persons 16 years old or older during the holiday season. However, any such authorizations must be in compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act. Persons under 18 years of age may not be assigned to any position that requires them to operate any of the following:

  1. A motor vehicle.
  2. A power–driven woodworking machine.
  3. A power–driven hoisting apparatus.
  4. A power–driven, circular saw, band saw, or guillotine shears, or metal forming, punching, and shearing machine.

513.3 Relatives

513.31 Policy

Postal managers and other nonbargaining employees may not be involved in or interfere in any way with the selection of their relatives to postal positions. They cannot recommend the hiring, employment, or promotion of a relative, or interfere with the selection process in any way that may benefit a relative, or show any expression of interest that may be construed as an impropriety. Postal managers may not hire, employ, assign, or promote to vacancies under their direct jurisdiction, a relative, or a relative of any nonbargaining employee, if the relative was improperly recommended to the manager in violation of these regulations.

The attempt by any postal manager or nonbargaining employee to recommend, influence, or express interest that may be construed as influence in the appointment or promotion of a relative, is prohibited. To protect public and employee confidence in the integrity of postal selection procedures, appointing and approving officials must contemplate whether the appointment or promotion of a relative is likely to create the appearance of impropriety in the eyes of the public and other postal employees. If so, an alternate selection should be made.

513.32 Applicable Definitions

The following definitions apply to the appointment of relatives to postal positions:

  1. Manager — is an employee with the vested or delegated authority to hire, employ, or promote individuals, or effectively to recommend individuals for such actions.
  2. Nonbargaining employee — is any employee permanently or temporarily employed in the executive and administrative schedule (EAS) salary schedule, or in the Postal Career Executive Service (PCES).
  3. Relative — by Postal Service definition, broadly includes the following family members by blood, marriage, or adoption:





    Half brother



    Half sister














    First cousin













Note: When applicable, a relationship is dissolved by death or divorce.

513.33 Conditions for Elevating Selection and Appointing Authority

When a manager’s relative is within reach for consideration for (1) appointment, or (2) assignment or promotion to a vacancy within the organization where the nonbargaining manager or employee exercises any jurisdiction or control, the selection and appointing authority moves to the next higher management level. The complete file (i.e., Hiring Worksheet, promotion file, all related documents, and a full description of the family relationship) must be forwarded to the next higher authority above the postal manager, according to the following criteria:

  1. If the policy (see 513.31, Policy) prohibits the appointment or promotion, the nonbargaining manager or employee forwards the complete file without a recommendation. The next higher level authority must determine whether to make the appointment or promotion.
  2. If the appointment or promotion is not prohibited (see 513.31, Policy), and a relative of a postal manager is to be appointed or promoted, the appointing official forwards the complete file with a recommendation to the next higher–level authority for review and approval. The appointing official must include in the file a statement that no improper influence in violation of 513.31 has been exerted. The action may not go into effect until the recommendation has been approved in writing.
513.34 Where Selection Restrictions Do Not Apply

The following are exceptions where the selection restrictions on relatives do not apply:

  1. Competitive External Hiring. Selection restrictions do not apply when a veterans’ preference eligible relative standing is among the top three applicants on the ranked list, if the only alternate selection would cause the preference eligible to be passed over. The selection is not moved to the next higher management level, but that higher management level must be notified of the selection. This exception would apply only if the relative is the only preference eligible among the top three applicants.
  2. Senior Qualified. Promotion or assignment of a relative to a bargaining position filled by the senior qualified bidder or applicant in accordance with the provisions of the appropriate collective bargaining agreement is permissible. Higher level notification is required.
  3. Postmaster Relief/Leave Replacement. Prohibitions regarding employment of relatives apply to noncareer postmaster relief/leave replacements at EAS–11, EAS–13, and EAS–15 post offices. This restriction does not apply to noncareer postmaster relief/leave replacements at EAS A–E offices.
  4. Emergencies. An installation head may make a temporary appointment of a relative to urgent, noncareer staff duties necessitated by an emergency that poses an immediate threat to life, mail security, postal property, or the mission of the Postal Service. Higher–level notification is required immediately in such a circumstance.
513.35 Improper Recommendation From a Nonbargaining Employee

If a postal manager receives an improper recommendation from a nonbargaining employee concerning the nonbargaining employee’s relative, the manager must forward the file to the next level of management without a recommendation from the postal manager. The next higher level manager determines whether to make the appointment or promotion.

513.36 Consequences of Violations

Any nonbargaining employee who violates these regulations, or fails to make proper disclosure, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including removal. Any personnel action brought about in violation of these regulations is subject to cancellation or other appropriate action.

513.4 Citizenship Policy

To be eligible for career or noncareer Postal Service employment, an applicant must be a United States citizen, a lawful permanent resident alien (one who possesses a “green card”), or a citizen of American Samoa or other territory owing permanent allegiance to the United States. Individuals granted only asylum status, refugee status, or conditional permanent resident status are not eligible for Postal Service employment. The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 makes it unlawful to hire unauthorized aliens, and it requires employers to verify and document the employment eligibility of all new employees. Refer to 55, Eligibility to Work in the Postal Service, to determine eligibility during screening and after a job offer has been made.

Noncitizens of the United States who have been granted lawful permanent resident alien status in the United States are eligible for appointment to all Postal Service positions, levels EAS–19 and below. Appointment of noncitizens to positions in levels EAS–20 and above can be made only with the prior approval of the area vice president.