It is always important to return to basics when considering the option of filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, whether under FERS or CSRS, from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.
Just as we are all well-aware of the concepts of a “return to nature”, or going “back to our roots” — such fashionable sayings remind us of the need and the necessity of embracing the foundational virtues which make up any endeavor or activity — so it is with a return to basics in a Federal Disability Retirement case.
Whether it concerns the issue of the medical condition itself; the issue of accommodations; whether “light duty” or “modified duties” have been offered; whether there are EEOC issues, work harassment, Performance Improvement Plans initiated; whether one is being presented with a Proposed Removal based upon factors other than one’s physical or psychiatric inability to perform the essential elements of one’s job — all such issues must draw a line directly to the basic component of: How does it impact the performing of the essential elements of my job? Thus is the nexus created; thus does one go back to the basic components of a Federal Disability Retirement case.
While such an approach may not return us back to nature, it will provide a framework for a successful OPM Disability Retirement application, whether under FERS or CSRS.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire