Appeals Division General Information

The SPB laws and administrative regulations (rules) govern the specific requirements, such as time frames for filing appeals within the Board’s jurisdiction. Copies of the SPB laws and rules are available for review in department personnel offices, union offices, the State Library, and at the SPB. The following is to provide general information related to appeals and is not intended as legal advice.

Many disputes are resolved informally without the filing of an appeal and subsequent hearing or investigation. Employees/individuals are encouraged to consult with department and/or union staff before filing an appeal with SPB.

The SPB is a neutral body responsible for administering a merit system of civil service employment within California state government. The SPB’s authority to enforce the civil service statutes is set forth in Article VII, section 3 of the California Constitution. The Board enforces the civil service laws and SPB rules under Government Code sections 18577 and 18701.

Appeals Under SPB Jurisdiction

The following actions may be appealed to and/or heard by the SPB:

  • Adverse Action
  • Rejection During Probationary Period
  • Medical Termination/Demotion/Suspension
  • Non-Punitive Termination/Demotion/Transfer (License Registration/ Revocation)
  • Termination of Limited Examination and Appointment Program (LEAP) Appointment
  • Termination of Career Executive Assignment (CEA) Appointment
  • California State University (CSU) Appeal
  • Appeal from Counties Without Approved Merit System
  • Request to File Charges
  • Complaints of Discrimination based upon disability, medical or mental condition (including denial of reasonable accommodation)
  • Examination Appeal
  • Request to Test - Dismissed Employee
  • Whistleblower Complaint
  • Merit Issue Complaint
  • Withhold from Certification
  • Voided Appointment
  • Pre-Employment Medical/Psychological Disqualification
  • Failure of Pre-Employment Drug Test
  • Out-of-Class Claim (Examination)
  • Petition for Rehearing

Many of these appeals are heard by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Certain merit appeals are heard by a Staff Hearing Officer. Finally, designated merit appeals and lesser adverse actions under Government Code section 19576, may be investigated, with or without a hearing. The Department of Human Resources (CalHR) has jurisdiction for certain non-merit appeals. Please contact CalHR or visit their website for more information.


The SPB has broad remedial authority when it grants an appeal. Remedies may include reinstatement; back salary, benefits, and interest at 7%; change in work assignment and/or location; and assignment of an alternative or passing score. SPB may also grant compensatory damages in discrimination cases.

Other Information

The SPB also publishes other general materials which provide more specific information on the appeals process. The brochure entitled "Appeal Hearing Procedures" is sent to appellants when they file an appeal with the SPB. To obtain a copy via the mail, you must send a written request to the SPB at the address listed above.

Contact Information

Appeals Division E-mail Address

Telephone inquiries regarding appeals should be made to the SPB Appeals Division at the following numbers:

General Information Sacramento
(916) 653-0799

(916) 653-1498
*TDD is a Telecommunications Device for the Deaf and is reachable only from telephones equipped with such a device.

(916) 653-5505
(916) 654-6417

(916) 651-8949 Appeals Calendar Fax line

Transcript, Administrative Records, and Public Records Act Requests
(916) 651-8645

FAX Line
(916) 654-6055