I have a question regarding a pending contract with the Air Force. I am a Family Physician and I just completed my active duty service commitment this month. My future plans include starting a new job out of state in July. My fiancé is also finishing up her residency training (civilian) at the same time. As a result, I needed temporary work for the next 4 months. My chain of command offered my a GS civilian position for this time. Apparently, the squadron was given Global War on Terrorism money to hire civilians on one year contracts to help combat the loss of physicians due to deployments. They have had these spots go unfilled in the past and figured that they could at least get 4 months out of me. My flight commander told me that this was a "GS position with all of the benefits"--malpractice, life/health insurance, decent vacation, etc. I was told my salary would be equivalent to a recently hired permanent GS doc. For me, this was a no brainer. I would not have to search for a temporary job (my short search yielded few takers for four months unless I wanted to do Locums), I knew the system (as disjointed and frustrating as it is), and my salary would increase substantially. So, over the past two plus months (started the process around the holidays) I waited as the bureaucracy processed my application for my anticipated start date of this week. I still hadn't gotten the word of my "official hire" until late last week. I spoke briefly to a civilian personnel liaison who said I would have to come in tomorrow and sign the paperwork so I would be "good to go" to start work. Here's the rub--In our conversation over the phone last week he mentioned that since my position is temporary (1 yr contract), I would not be eligible for life or health insurance and my leave would be 4 hrs per pay period (1 day per month). I am frustrated since it is the typical BS that happened when I was on AD.1.My flight commander obviously was wrong about the ins/outs of my contract. 2. The application/hiring process was long and drawn out and lasted until the last possible moment. 3. I still do not know what my contract says since I have not seen one. 4. My Flight commander expects that I will sign the contract tomorrow and start seeing patients on Wednesday....ugh! My questions for the group: 1. Is this sort of process typical for a government contract (not seeing a contract until shortly before my start date) ? 2. What (if any) negotiating power do I have? For example, can I negotiate a higher salary since I am not getting "all of the benefits" I was originally led to believe I would get? Can I negotiate more leave time/less patients per day/limited call? Who would I negotiate with? In the real world I know that contracts are negotiated and tweaked before they are signed. You get a lawyer to look over the contract, etc. I know my position is only temporary but I still want to get the best deal for me. Instead, I feel like I am getting pushed into starting a job this week which I still have a lot of questions about. Any advice would help.