New Jersey employment law provides that government employees may be fired for conviction of a crime, and for many crimes they must be fired. However, if they are exonerated they may be reinstated to their position. They may be subject to further discipline, but if they are not they may also receive back pay, seniority and benefits for the period of their suspension.
Suspension During Criminal Charges
New Jersey Civil Service Commission regulations provide that an employee’s conviction of a crime is grounds for discipline. An employee suspended while a criminal complaint or indictment is pending must be served with a Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action (known as a “PNDA”). The PNDA should include a statement that forfeiture of the employee’s position may result, and that the employee may choose to consult with an attorney. In this case representation by an attorney is always advisable. Within five days of receipt of the PNDA, the employee may request a departmental hearing. If no request is made (within five days or an agreed upon extension) the employer may issue a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action (an “FNDA”).