NAO 202-299: Clearance of Employee Accountability

Issued 05/05/94; Effective 04/22/94; Reviewed Last: In Process

NAO 202-299: Clearance of Employee Accountability PDF


.01 This order establishes policy and supplemental instructions regarding employee accountability for property, records, funds, and, other matters before separating or transferring from any National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) organizational element.

.02 This Order shall be used in conjunction with Department Administrative Order (DAO) 202-299, Clearance of Employee Accountability.

.03 This Order shall alert employees to post-employment restrictions on activities and guide employees and the Clearance officials through the clearance process in order that departing employees may complete the entire process and clear all debts due to the Government before final clearance can be granted.


.01 All NOAA employees who separate from the Federal service, transfer to another Federal agency, or are permanently promoted or reassigned to another geographic location of NOAA or operating unit of the Department of Commerce (DOC) shall follow the provisions of this order in order that Government funds, property, and records be adequately protected.

.02 Supervisors shall be the primary focus for initiating the clearance process.

.03 Employees leaving NOAA must repay all money owed to the Government and return or account for all Government information and property. In addition, employees leaving Federal service by resignation, retirement, or termination must repay all advanced leave owed to the Government. Unliquidated, unearned, or advanced annual and sick leave shall not constitute a valid indebtedness in the event that the employee is separated by death, retire under disability, or when the employee is unable to return to duty because of a disability evidenced by an acceptable medical certificate.

.04 A separating employee's monetary indebtedness accruing to the Government shall be withheld from the employee's final pay check or other monies due in accordance with applicable regulations in the absence of a payment agreement approved by the DOC.

.05 Employees leaving NOAA may keep or discard non-record official materials which they have accumulated with certain exceptions. See DAO 205-3, Removal of Records and Other Documents.

.06 All ADP systems access shall be terminated.


This Section shall serve as a ready reference of forms required to clear an employee leaving NOAA.

.01 For an employee leaving by retirement, resignation, death, or termination:

  • Form CD-126, Separation Clearance Certificate
  • Form SF-52, Request for Personnel Action
  • Form AD-581, Lump Sum Leave Payment (if required)
  • Form AD-717, Leave Audit (if required)

.02 For an employee transferring to an agency outside the DOC:

  • Form CD-126, Separation Clearance
  • Form SF-52, Request for Personnel Action
  • Form AD-581, Lump Sum Leave Payment (if payment for compensatory time is needed)
  • Form AD-717, Leave Audit (if required)
  • Form CD-396, Performance Plan, Progress Review and Appraisal Record (Interim Performance Rating)

.03 For an employee transferring within the DOC:

  • Form CD-126, Separation Clearance Certificate
  • Form SF-52, Request for Personnel Action (not required for losing office)
  • Form AD-581, Lump Sum Leave Payment (if payment for compensatory time is needed)
  • Form CD-396, Performance Plan, Progress Review and Appraisal Record (Interim Performance Rating)

.04 If an employee wants final monies sent to any address other than where pay is currently being sent, the employee shall complete Form AD-349, Declaration Sheet (input) and attach it to the Form CD-126, Separation Clearance Certificate.

.05 The supervisor should begin to initiate clearance procedures as soon as practicable and preferably at least two weeks prior to separation. To obtain Form CD-126, Separation Clearance Certificate, a request for it may be faxed to (202)273-3344, or sent to the address listed below using Form CD-52OLF, Request for CD Forms and Office of the Secretary Stationery/Envelopes:

U.S. Department of Commerce

Executive Services Division, (H2858)

Washington, DC 20230

See the Attachment to this Order for a sample of Forms CD-126, and CD-52OLF.


01. The Director, Human Resources Management Office (OA2) has the overall responsibility for accountability procedures and guidelines and ensuring that they are in place and operating properly.

02. The Chief, Human Resource Services Division, Human Resources Management office, and the Chiefs, Human Resources Divisions, Administrative Support Centers (ASCs), Office of Administration, are responsible for implementing DOC and NOAA procedures and guidelines pertaining to accountability in their areas of jurisdiction and must:

  • establish specific clearance procedures as dictated by their unique service area and internal organizational structure;
  • ensure that all employees leaving the rolls of NOAA by resignation, termination, retirement, discharge, or removal are provided information about eligibility for various benefits and entitlements including unemployment compensation; and
  • ensure that all separation documents are completed and processed in a timely manner.

03. An employee leaving NOAA or transferring to a different geographic area must:

  • inform their supervisor of their departure date immediately;
  • repay all money owed to the Government and return all Government property and information prior to leaving;
  • obtain a signature, date, and telephone number of the clearance official for each item to be cleared on Form CD-126;
  • sign and date Section IV of Form CD-126 regarding removal of non-record documents, prepare a separate memorandum listing documents to be removed, if any; and
  • return Form CD-126 to the supervisor by the established due date.

If the employee's home duty station is different from their current local duty station, the employee shall clear through the local administrative officer or administrative personnel liaison who shall call the various clearance officials and receive clearances telephonically. Items collected such as credit cards and official identification shall be mailed to the home duty station supervisor or the home duty station supervisor may make arrangements for someone else to receive these items. Based on a telephone call from the administrative officer or administrative personnel liaison, the local supervisor may sign the clearance blocks. The package must still reach the servicing human resources office by the separation date. See Section 4.04c. of this Order.

.04 The supervisor must:

  • complete Section I of Form CD-126 regarding employee information and identify and initiate the preparation of other forms that are needed; (See Section 3. of this Order.)
  • identify items in Section III of Form CD-126 which require clearance. Add the "AMERICAN EXPRESS CARD" as a specific item to be cleared as well as any other clearances required including the credit union, personal computer, diagnostic tools, passwords, imprest fund close-out, wage marine identification cards, health unit, etc. The administrative officer can assist the supervisor in identifying appropriate clearance points;
  • complete the Supplement in Attachment 1; contact the offices listed for the servicing ASC/OA and record the name of the person providing the clearance and the date and,, when complete, sign and date the Supplement;
  • provide Form CD-126 along with the General Counsel memorandum regarding post-employment restrictions to the employee (see Exhibit I to DAO 202-299, Clearance of Employee Accountability);
  • have the employee complete the clearance process using Form CD-126 by a specific due date allowing the forms to arrive in the servicing human resources office no later than the date that the employee separates;
  • have the employee obtain an approving signature, date, and telephone number for each item to be cleared on Form CD-126;
  • have the employee's timekeeper prepare Form AD-581, Lump Sum Leave or Compensatory Time Payments (if required to pay lump sum annual leave and/or compensatory time) and Form AD-717, Leave Audit; (Assistance may be obtained from the appropriate Time and Attendance contact point in your organization or servicing human resources office.)
  • submit Form SF-52, Request for Personnel Action, as soon as the employee gives notice that they are leaving the DOC, if appropriate;
  • complete an interim performance rating if the employee is not separating from the Government and has been under a performance plan for 120 days or more;
  • sign and date the Form CD-126 in Section I once all signatures are obtained and all required paperwork has been completed and attached to the Form CD-126;
  • notify servicing human resources office of clearance or indebtedness by telephone if not located at the same site by the close of business on the last working day; (Expedite routing of document package to servicing human resources office so that it arrives no later than the employee's separation date. Immediately facsimile a copy of the Form CD-126 to the servicing human resources office in order to avoid adverse impact on employee. If the separation package is late, the supervisor must let the human resources office know whether or not the employee is indebted. If the employee is indebted, final payments can be withheld.)
  • call the servicing human resources office as soon as they are aware the clearance package will be late because the employee resigns without any warning or becomes ill;
  • complete the process for the employee in the event that the employee is unavailable for signature and indicate that the employee was unavailable;
  • ensure that all access rights for the employee to ADP systems are terminated; and
  • ensure that all hardware, software, peripherals, tools, etc. have been returned by the employee.

.05 In the event that an employee has not adequately accounted for an item(s) on the Form CD-126, the supervisor or clearance official responsible for the item(s) shall sign the form and:

  • notify the employee that they are indebted to the Government for the property and/or money or for an obligation not fulfilled; and
  • note the missing property or dollar value of the debt/item on the Form CD-126 above their signature.

The supervisor or clearance official shall not personally accept the repayment of any debt. The Finance Services Division (FSD) and servicing ASC/Finance Divisions shall accept repayment only after reviewing the Form CD-126 and other finance records.

.06 The Finance Services Division and the Servicing ASC Finance Divisions shall:

  • review the accounting records for outstanding travel advances, GTR's, or other debts of record on receipt of the Form CD-126, or a telephone inquiry from the administrative-officer or employee supervisor; (If the employee is indebted to the Government, Form AD-343 and documentation of the debt shall be forwarded to the Human Resources Division accompanied by Form CD-126 or a memorandum when a telephone inquiry is involved. The Human Resources Division forwards the information to the National Finance Center (NFC) in order that the NFC can deduct any debts from the employee's final payment or can bill the employee, as appropriate.)
  • review the Form CD-126 and clear the employee; (If the Form CD-126 indicates a debt for items other than negative leave or salary overpayment, the servicing FSD and ASC/Finance Divisions shall apply appropriate collection procedures and notify the Human Resources Division to hold final payments in-,an amount equal to the debt.)
  • upon receipt of documentation of an obligation not recorded in the accounting records prepare the proper billing documents in order to:
    1. record the debt in the accounting records; and
    2. serve as the official notification to the departed employee and to the Human Resources Division on the existence of the debt;
  • accept repayment from the departed employee for any debt identified in Sections 4.05 and 4.06 of this Order; and
  • apply appropriate collection procedures in accordance with applicable regulations;

03. The National Finance Center (NFC), for the types of debts it is responsible for through its payroll section, shall:

  • withhold any money owed by the departing employee;
  • issue billing documents to the indebted departing employee; and
  • collect any money owed to the Government in accordance with applicable regulations.


This Order supersedes NOAA Administrative Order (NAO) 202-299, Clearance of Employee Accountability, dated March 8, 1990.


Director, Office of Administration

Attachment: Form CD 126 - Use the current form CD-126 available at the DOC Forms Website NOAA Supplement to the CD-126 [page 1; page 2] Form CD 520LF - Use the current form CD-520LF available at the DOC Forms Website.

Office of Primary Interest:
Office of Administration
Human Resources Management Office
Human Resource Programs and Organization Analysis Division (OA22)