The princess says she has “heard the concerns some have with my advising the President in my personal capacity while voluntarily complying with all ethics rules, and I will instead serve as an unpaid employee in the White House Office, subject to all of the same rules as other federal employees.”
(a) For the purpose of this section —
“public official” means an officer (including the President and a Member of Congress), a member of the uniformed service, an employee and any other individual, in whom is vested the authority by law, rule, or regulation, or to whom the authority has been delegated, to appoint, employ, promote, or advance individuals, or to recommend individuals for appointment, employment, promotion, or advancement in connection with employment in an agency; and
“relative” means, with respect to a public official, an individual who is related to the public official as father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother, stepsister, half brother, or half sister.
A public official may not appoint, employ, promote, advance, or advocate for appointment, employment, promotion, or advancement, in or to a civilian position in the agency in which he is serving or over which he exercises jurisdiction or control any individual who is a relative of the public official. An individual may not be appointed, employed, promoted, or advanced in or to a civilian position in an agency if such appointment, employment, promotion, or advancement has been advocated by a public official, serving in or exercising jurisdiction or control over the agency, who is a relative of the individual.
An individual appointed, employed, promoted, or advanced in violation of this section is not entitled to pay, and money may not be paid from the Treasury as pay to an individual so appointed, employed, promoted, or advanced.
CIVILIAN POSITION — A civilian office or position (including a temporary or part-time or intermittent position), appointive or elective, in the legislative, executive, or judicial branch of the Federal Government (including each corporation owned or controlled by the Federal Government and including nonappropriated fund instrumentalities under the jurisdiction of the Armed Forces) or in the Government of the District of Columbia.
Civil penalties occupy a strange place in some legal systems — because they are not criminal penalties, the state need not meet a burden of proof that is “ balance of probabilities “; but because the action is brought by the government, and some civil penalties can run into the millions of dollars, it would be uncomfortable to subject citizens to them by a burden of proof that is merely a “ preponderance of the evidence .” Therefore, the assessment of most civil penalties requires a finding of “ clear and convincing evidence “ before a civil defendant will be held liable. A defendant may well raise excuses, justifications , affirmative defenses , and procedural defenses . An administrative law judge or hearing officer may oversee the proceedings and render a judgment . Judgment is made on the balance of probabilities. Meaning, if it is more than 50% likely that the accused is responsible then the accused shall be found guilty
In some cases, a civil penalty may be supplemented by other legal process, including administrative sanctions or even criminal charges, and their respective appeals . For example, failure to pay a fine assessed for a traffic code violation may result in administrative suspension of a driver’s license , and further driving after suspension may be a criminal offense. On the other hand, a minimal case may be “put on file”, or otherwise suspended for a period during which the defendant may be required to avoid further violations, or carry out specific duties (such as making repairs or restitution, or attending supplemental education), after which the matter is dismissed.
But doing so would risk putting their decisions on shaky legal ground, experts say.
“While it’s true that the penalty for violation of the statute is just to withhold salary or other financial remuneration from the wrongfully appointed employee, there’s also the possibility that any action taken by such a wrongfully appointed employee could be subject to legal challenge and potentially even be voidable,” said Steve Vladeck, a CNN contributor and professor of law at the University of Texas School of Law. Could Donald Trump’s kids serve in his administration?