About DoD Military Spouse Preference Program:Military Spouse Preference (MSP) derives from Public Law 99-145, “DoD Authorization Act of 1986″, Section 806, “Employment Opportunities for Military Spouses”. This section implemented measures to increase employment opportunities for spouses of members of the Armed Forces. The intent is to lessen the employment and career interruptions of spouses who relocate with their military sponsors. Military spouse preference provides worldwide employment preference for spouses of active duty military members of the U.S. Armed Forces who are relocating to accompany their military sponsor on a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move to an active duty assignment. The Military Spouse Preference Program .

  • applies to eligible spouses of active duty military members of the U.S. Armed Forces, including the U.S. Coast Guard and full-time National Guard, who are applying and referred for certain positions at DOD activities in the U.S., its territories and possessions, and in overseas areas;
  • applies only within the commuting area of the permanent duty station of the sponsor;
  • applies only if the spouse entered into the marriage with the military sponsor prior to the reporting date to the new duty assignment.
  • does not apply when the sponsor is separating or retiring.

Military Spouse Preference Program Eligibility:

  • The spouse must be rated among the best qualified applicants for the position.
  • The spouse must be located in the same geographical area as the sponsor’s (the active duty member) permanent duty station.
  • Relocation of duty station must be based on a regular Permanent Change of Station (PCS) and not for separation or retirement.
  • The marriage between the spouse and the military active duty sponsor must have taken place before the reporting date to the new duty station.
  • Military spouses must provide a copy of or original sponsor’s PCS orders during the DoD application process.
  • To be deemed among the best qualified applicants military spouses claiming eligibility must obtain a score of 80 or higher. This does not include veteran’s preference points.
  • Whenever there are violations of veteran’s regulations, or problems arising out of situations of nepotism MSP does not apply.
  • Individuals claiming preference must be spouses of active duty military members of the U.S. Armed forces including U.S. Coast Guard.
  • MSP applies only to DoD competitive service positions.

Military Spouse Preference Program Registration: Registration may be accomplished at the losing A-coded activity up to 30 days prior to the sponsor’s reporting date or, upon relocation, at any A-coded activity in the commuting area of the sponsor’s new duty station. If not currently employed by DoD, an eligible spouse may register at an A-coded activity in the gaining area or, if registration is desired in advance, at any A-coded activity in the losing area. Spouses are not eligible if their sponsor relocates in conjunction with retirement or separation. Military spouse preference applies to temporary employment when it is expected to last one year or longer.

Skills: May register for up to 5 skills provided they are well qualified. High Grade: Spouses may register at a grade no higher than that previously held on a permanent basis or if the spouse’s only Federal service was overseas under time-limited appointment, he/she may register for the highest grade held, if they have appointment eligibility under Executive Order (E.O.) 12721. Spouses who are not current Federal employees who have E.O. 12721 and reinstatement eligibility may register under either option, whichever is more beneficial.

Separation Date: No date is entered on the registration. The computer enters the date of one year from the date of registration or file maintenance.

Release Date: No date is entered on the registration. The computer enters the date of one year from the date of registration or file maintenance. (NOTE: Both the spouse and the registering activity are notified that the “S” program registration will be terminated 12 months after initial registration or the last extension/file maintenance action. Any file maintenance or extension submitted by the registering activity and processed in Dayton extends the registration for one year. If automatically terminated, the spouse may re-register if otherwise eligible.)

Area of Referral: Employee may register for any location in the commuting area of the
sponsor’s new duty location.

Registering Activity Change: To change the registering activity of an active Program “S” registration, a new registration must be submitted (all registration elements must be completed and resubmitted).

Offer Response Time: Registrants in the continental U.S. (CONUS) must accept or decline offers from CONUS activities within 2 calendar days and registrants outside CONUS must respond within 3 calendar days.