Often, aside from having submitted insufficient medical documentation to support a Federal Disability retirement application, the Office of Personnel Management will deny a case based upon a statement submitted by the Supervisor, normally on SF 3112B (aptly entitled, “Supervisor’s Statement”). Now, in preparing a Federal Disability Retirement application, I rarely worry about what will be on a Supervisor’s Statement, primarily because the applicant rarely has any control over the contents of the statement, anyway, and therefore to focus upon that which one has little or no control over, is simply a waste of time. Instead, I focus upon obtaining an overwhelmingly convincing medical narrative report from the doctor, which then essentially makes the Supervisor’s Statement — if it is viewed somewhat as “negative evidence” by the Office of Personnel Management — a moot and irrelevant point of contention. More often than not, when the Office of Personnel Management refers to the Supervisor’s Statement as revealing some basis for denying a disability retirement application, I find that OPM has either mis-read the import of the statement, or has selectively misquoted from the Supervisor’s Statement. Remember that the law requires that the Agency provide a “reasonable accommodation”; more often than not, what the Supervisor or the Agency has provided, is neither “reasonable”, nor an “accommodation” under the law. In any event, whether by misquote, unfair and selective reasoning, misreading, “unreasonable”, or not an “accommodation” at all, I rarely find that the Supervisor’s Statement is helpful or unhelpful; and, certainly, I have never found that a Supervisor’s Statement contains any substance which would or should be the basis of a denial from the Office of Personnel Management.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire