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The following is a summary of the law. For details and information specific to your circumstances, contact your local ethics official.
Conflicts of Interest
A conflict of interest is a personal interest or relationship that conflicts with the faithful performance of official duty. Under 18 U.S.C. § 208, a Federal employee is prohibited from participating personally and substantially in an official capacity in any particular matter in which, to his knowledge, he or any person whose interests are imputed to him under this statute has a financial interest, if the particular matter will have a direct and predictable effect on that interest. Interests imputed to the employee under this statute are:
Under 5 C.F.R. Part 2635, Subpart E, Federal employees are required to consider whether their impartiality would be questioned whenever their involvement in a particular matter involving specific parties might affect certain personal or business relationships. If a particular matter involving specific parties is likely to have a direct and predictable effect on the financial interests of a member of the employee's household, or if a person with whom the employee has a "covered relationship" is or represents a party to such matter, the employee must not participate if a reasonable person would question the employee's impartiality in the matter. An employee has a covered relationship with:
Depending on the situation, additional restrictions may apply; and Federal employees, whether currently in, entering, or leaving the Government, may be required to take actions to resolve or mitigate actual or the appearance of conflicts of interest. Therefore, it is imperative that employees consult with their agency ethics counselors on these issues.
Important - Political Appointees who have signed the President's Ethics Pledge may have additional restrictions.(See Other Ethics Topics under the Ethics Topics tab.)