We often forget that the quality, validity and accuracy of conclusions produced by computers will depend upon the input of information provided. Thus, predictability of future weather forecasts are contingent upon present information selected, and the computational analysis resulting in the future paradigm is founded upon current constructs, analyzed through the cumulative data previously provided, with a dash of witch’s brew and a genuflection of hope. In other words, the trash produced results from the trash collected; a rather self-evident tautology of sorts.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who are considering filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, the issue of what information to provide, the amount of documentation, the precise wording selected, and the cumulative historical and current data introduced, will determine the statistical ratio of increased chance of success versus the possibility of an initial denial.
Receiving a denial from OPM is a down heartening experience, to put it mildly. Expectations are that the subjective pain or psychiatric stresses which one experiences, will immediately be recognized and become translated into a societal benefit through a monetary annuity, especially as Federal Disability Retirement is an employment benefit offered for all FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset employees in the Federal system, and upon proof and sufficient information and documentation provided, one becomes eligible for the benefit.
The difference between preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, on the one hand, and computational analysis of information in other sectors of information processing, on the other, is that an intermediate human factor is present.
All Federal Disability Retirement applications are reviewed, scrutinized and evaluated for sufficiency by someone at OPM, and it is this very human element which remains the “X factor” in all Federal OPM Disability Retirement applications. What can be done about it? It is simply a reality which must be taken into account, processed and accounted for. While bureaucratic and ultimately a rather depersonalized process, it is nevertheless an administrative system which must be faced.
It is as old as the ageless adage of yore, attributed to Isaac Newton: What goes up must come down; or, what information is provided, is the basis of conclusions reached, and it is the quality of information in culling together a Federal Disability Retirement application which is paramount in achieving success.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire