The “British Rule” is that “good manners will always get you through any and every form of trouble.” The process at the Office of Personnel Management is a long and arduous one. When the disability retirement packet finally arrives at Boyers, PA, it will often sit for approximately thirty (30) days, before it is finally assigned a CSA number (for CSRS employees, it will begin with the number “4”; for FERS employees, it will begin with the number “8”). The Applicant will receive a form letter from OPM in Boyers, PA, informing you that you have been assigned a CSA number, and that it has been forwarded to the OPM office in Washington, D.C. This is when patience and good manners must come to the fore. Of course, there is nothing wrong with calling OPM and inquring about the status of your case. However, always remember to be courteous; inquire as to the time-frame that the adjudicating disability specialist is expecting; and ask if it would be okay to call periodically, and to let him/her know that if any further documentation is needed, to give you a call — or, if you are represented, to call your attorney. Whatever you do, do not get angry, and keep it professional — and courteous.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire