EMPLOYMENT:  Resignations from government employment in classified service

This appeal is taken from a decision of the Kentucky Personnel Board in which the COAKY Court finds that the decision of the Personnel Board was correct and therefore reverses the order of the Franklin Circuit Court.

Appellee Searcy came to the office of Warden Dailey and asked if she could rescind her resignation. The Warden considered her verbal request overnight, then informed her that he would not allow the rescission.  Appellee then appealed to the Franklin Circuit Court which reversed the order of the Personnel Board and held  KRS 18A.095 permits a Classified employee the right to rescind a resignation up to the time his or her employment terminates, and even if KRS 18A.095 did not control, a Classified employee has the right to rescind a resignation prior to acceptance. There is no showing from the record that Ms. Searcy’s resignation was accepted prior to her attempted rescission.

COAKY, however, found the lower court was incorrect since KRS 18A.095 deals with the dismissal, suspension, and penalization of classified employees. A classified employee, which Appellee was, is “an employee appointed to a position in the classified service whose appointment and continued employment are subject to the classified service provisions of this chapter.”  Nowhere within the statute is the word resignation even mentioned.

Appellee was not dismissed or penalized in any way; she resigned. Therefore, KRS  18A.095 does not apply. 

Board of Education of Wolfe County v. Rose, 147 S.W.2d 83 (Ky. 1940) held that a “resignation may not be withdrawn after its acceptance.”  This rule is stated clearly throughout Kentucky law and applies to resignations which take place immediately and those that are prospective.

Once a resignation has been accepted, it can only be withdrawn with the consent of the authority accepting, where no rights have intervened.  Once her resignation had been accepted, she lost the right to revert to her probationary position.

Digested by Michael Stevens.

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