The credibility of the Applicant’s Statement of Disability (Standard Form 3112A both for FERS & CSRS employees) is crucial to obtaining an approval for a Federal Disability Retirement application. Remember, first and foremost, that the personal pronoun “I” is being used — and should be used. As such, one’s integrity and personal credibility is put to the issue.
While descriptive delineations of one’s symptoms are important, with appropriate adjectives to convey the extent of the subjective symptomatologies experienced, remember that exaggeration is the undermining element which can unravel a Federal Disability Retirement application, and ultimately reflect with harm upon one’s integrity and credibility.
Truth should always be the guiding principle; but perspectives are accepted in the conveying of such truth. Remember that Pontius Pilate asked the famous question, “What is Truth”? In asking the question, he never stopped to consider the answer; instead, he asked it in a rhetorical fashion, without regard to the truth.
Truth is important; being truthful is essential; and beyond this, correspondence of truth with the medical records and reports is the coherent package which will win in a disability retirement packet.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire
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Dear Mr. McGill,
Thank you for your time this morning. What I would like to quickly let you know are the circumstances bringing me to this point. On March 9, 2010, I tripped over a bolt that was embedded in the concrete floor of the work area where I work at Robins AFB. I was knocked unconcious for about five minutes and when I came to, our first responders were with me. I did notice severe pain in my back, knee, shoulder, head and neck. EMS arrived quickly and immobilized me on a back board and transported me to the Coliseum Hospital emergency room in Macon,Ga. where I was initially diagnosed with a concussion, fractured back, injured shoulder and sprained knee, of course none of which I had before the accident.
My supervisor incorrectly filed the CA-1 report with no witness reports, and neither his nor my signature. Long story ,my claim was denied but later approved via Reconsideration in July 2010.
I was charged with all of my approx. 300 hours of leave until my claim was approved which just happened to coincide with the last of my leave. I was told by OWCP that if I wanted my leave back I would have to buy it back which I have elected not to do at this point as I feel it should be re-instated since the Senior Claims Examiner ruled I did have sufficient evidence to prove my claim dating back to March 9.
I did hire one of the very few Federal Workers Comp Lawyers (Thomas DeBerry- Atlanta) who said we should go for a hearing (in 8-10 months). Luckily, although long after I should have, I contacted my Union office and they helped me get the Reconsideration and my claim was approved quickly, since I had time to aquire all the documentation; witness statements, Doctors statements, and corrected CA-1. Basically I wasted $600 with that Lawyer and received no help at all!
My Doctors who would only treat one condition at a time putting me in a bind time wise, as my WC Nurse, Sue Rogers, pushed for me to get back to work in some capacity before the one year mark stating that I may lose my job. As you can imagine this whole process has been very stressful and along with the pain, almost too much to bear.
As we discussed this morning I want be very careful not to sign any documents that would prevent me from gaining Federal Disability Retirement as I read on your very infomative website where I concluded that hiring you would be the wise thing to do, considering the complexity of filing and the traps which the OPM confuses people with.
Do I need to fax you any medical documents now or just wait for the packett for instructions?
I want to let you know there are no other issues such as lawsuits, grievances, etc. involved with my case and also I was performing my strenuos fast pace duties with very few absencies; I was always on time and I had very high performance evaluations.
Again, my knee doctor stated (in front of my WC nurse) that my knee is “unfixable” and my back doctor stated that my entire spine is damaged ( both permanently) . The shoulder may recover in time (about a year) I still suffer from post concussion syndrome with dizziness, constant headache, and fluid in the back of ny head (WC nurse said I should go see an ENT doctor). I plan on seeing a cardiologist as I do have aortic calcification seen in regular x-ray. I do suffer constant pain from these conditions and do not see any chance of this improving.
I am a Disabled Veteran (20%) for my right knee and the Atlanta V.A. is my provider, which I am enrolled in 100% care. They have treated me for multiple conditions which I will not bother you with at this time.
Thank you for your time and hopefully I haven’t overwhelmed you with these facts (i am sure I have not).