FERS Disability Retirement Benefits: Changing Minds

How does one person change another person’s mind?  Is it through threats, intimidation, rants and raves?  Or, does logical persuasion ever come into play?”  Does the quiet voice or tone of calm alter a person’s viewpoint?  Or must it all be rage, firestorms and pounding of fists?

Of course, most people would answer in the following manner: It depends upon the circumstances.  Certainly, context matters.  Sometimes, a passionate response is appropriate; at others, a calm, soothing tone of persuasive logic.  Threats, intimidation, acts envisioning bodily harm — these, of course, are never appropriate, and one wonders whether such tactics ever really changed another’s mind, or whether the change of heart was merely for the sake of self-preservation.

To change a mind, one must become convinced about the validity, truth and sincere superiority of the other’s position, argument, perspective, stance, decision, etc.  Passionate advocacy can certainly play a role in it; systematic and logical persuasion can sometimes be the difference; and in Federal Disability Retirement cases, application and citation of the relevant and applicable laws will always be an effective tool.

For Federal and Postal employees who are filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits from OPM, consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and see whether or not — at the outset — the OPM Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law cannot change you mind, and OPM’s in the best course of action in the preparation, formulation and filing of an effective Federal Disability Retirement application.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Disability Retirement Benefits: Descending Into

Whether into the arena of the devil’s playground or into insanity, the metaphor always seems to include a descent, and not its opposite, an ascent.  Why heaven is above and hell is below has been lost for its context and underlying meaning; the perspective of “up” as opposed to “down” must somehow be relevant, but science has certainly diminished the metaphorical significance by debunking any notions about time and place.

We now know that the sun does not “rise” and “set” in the rotational movement of the earth; that from the perspective of deep space, there is no “up” or “down”, and that our place within the universe is but a small, insignificant pinhole within the context of a greater universe.  But the human story, regardless of the cold perspective provided by science of an “objective” world, is that we descend into madness, descend into hell, and descend into chaos.

Language is a peculiar animal in this way; it uses its ordinary sense within a culturally relevant context, but when that context disappears or is no longer “alive”, the old manners of usage become an anomaly of puzzles.  Yet, even with its loss of cultural significance, “descending into” somehow maintains its appropriateness when it comes to mishaps, tragedies and difficulties.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal position, descending into greater chaos and difficulties may be mitigated by preparing and filing an application for disability retirement.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and begin the process of ascending towards another life beyond the Federal or Postal sector, thus preventing descending into a state of turmoil and possible termination.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Medical Retirement for Federal Employees: The People We Knew

Life is short; or, as Hobbes would put it, “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short”.  Of course, he was referring to Man’s “state of nature”, which constantly placed him in a war-like state with others, and in this time and era where we find ourselves contending and struggling, makes it appear as if we have re-entered such a state of nature.

This global pandemic makes it likely that, like major wars previously fought, we will know of someone, whether close or distant, who has either been infected with the corona virus, or who died from it.  The people we knew remind us of the frailty of health and the human condition.  We work all of our lives in order to meet a goal; perhaps of retirement, maybe of enjoying grandchildren; and even of slowing down a bit in order to “enjoy” the better things of life.

But like all plans, there are disruptions and interruptions, and the people we knew remind us again and again that work is not everything; it just happens to take up most of our time.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, one’s health and the importance of maintaining it becomes of paramount focus.  There can be life beyond a Federal or Postal job, and filing a FERS Disability Retirement application may be the way to achieve that life.

Consult with an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the people we knew reminds us again that no job is as important as the health that we once enjoyed, and have now lost, as this time of a global pandemic reminds us daily with the people we knew.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Medical Retirement for Federal Government Employees: Avoidance

It is a common tool of the psyche and ego; by engaging in it, one skirts around an issue, and like its cousin, procrastination, it allows for a period of calm respite.  Avoidance is a form of procrastination; both allow for the subject of their common focus to fester, to grow, to loom large in the background without attending to its causes.

Say you are standing in your bedroom; it is raining; there is a patch of discoloration in the ceiling.  You wonder if the roof is leaking.  You pass it off as bad eyesight, or some other reason, and turn away, avoiding the problem by simply ignoring it.  The next time it rains, you sneak a peek and, sure enough, the discoloration has expanded, but you say to yourself, “Well, there is no actual drip from the ceiling, so perhaps it is not a leak, after all, but merely some accumulating condensation”.

Now, whatever “some accumulating condensation” may mean, it still points to a problem that should be attended to, but instead, the obscure-sounding phrase seems to explain an otherwise clearly-growing problem, and thus the next step in the avoidance-process has begun: Explaining it away, as opposed to tackling the core of the problem itself.

Avoidance is a natural defense mechanism inherent in us all; it allows us to extend our need to limit confronting something which we do not desire to engage.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal worker from performing all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal position, avoidance of facing either the medical problem itself, or its impact upon your capacity and ability to perform your job, is often a problem which allows the issue to loom larger than necessary.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, and allow for the avoidance to be confronted by an experienced attorney, thus further avoiding direct engagement with the issues, yet allowing for the attorney to address the core issue: Preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement for Federal Employees: The Difficult Case

At the outset, all Federal and Postal employees should know that there are rarely any “easy” cases in Federal Disability Retirement Law.

Are most cases, therefore, “difficult”?  Yes.  And the reasons why they are difficult vary and are many — for, in the end, Federal Disability Retirement is not merely a matter of the nexus between the medical condition and the Federal employee’s inability to perform all of the essential elements of his or her position; rather, it is about meeting the legal criteria and passing the scrutiny of a Federal Agency — the U.S. Office of Personnel Management — in becoming approved.

Yes, yes, of course the medical condition matters; and, yes, where the impact of the medical condition upon the essential elements of one’s job can be established, a great part of the case has then been proven.  But then there are the “details” of the case; of accommodations previously requested and provided, or not provided; the input of the supervisor’s statement; the question of any misconduct; whether and for what reason a person was separated from Federal Service prior to submission of the FERS Disability Retirement application, etc.

Every case is filled with potential difficulties, and thus is it important to consult with an attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, lest the “difficult case” turn into an “impossible” one.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement: Preparing the Case for Submission

Sometimes, it only takes a matter of weeks; other times, months and months in the preparation period prior to submission of an OPM Medical Retirement package.  It is not something to be taken lightly.  Once submitted, your Human Resource Office will do their portion — of completing the Agency’s Certification of Reassignment and Accommodation, as well as the other and multiple bureaucratic processes.

Then, whether first to be routed through the finance office and then on to OPM, or if you are separated from service, directly to OPM without going through your Human Resource Office at all (except to separately secure a Supervisor’s Statement and the SF 3112D), the bureaucratic process of submitting and being reviewed for an approval or a denial from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management has begun.

“Preparing the case for submission” may have taken many months, and it is the crucial foundation in setting forth the success or failure of a FERS Disability Retirement application.

Consult with an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the preparation of such an important submission should fall short of meeting the complex criteria necessary for a successful endeavor.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Government Employee Disability Retirement: “Difficult”

It is not the same as “unable to”, or even one of “incompatibility”; rather, it merely means that here are some impediments, but if one’s performance ratings are still fully successful, then it shows that — despite being “difficult” — the Federal or Postal worker is still able to perform all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job.

To qualify for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, certain legal criteria have to be met, and the mere fact that it is becoming increasingly “difficult” to satisfy that criteria does not mean that you would qualify.  Having “difficulty” doing your job, but still being able to do it, means that you are still performing all of the essential elements of your job.

If your agency thinks that you are doing a great job by giving you “fully successful” performance reviews, then where is your argument that you are unable to perform all of the essential elements of your job?  Yes, yes, I know — the question often asked is, “Do I have to end up in a wheelchair before I can file for FERS Disability Retirement benefits”?  No, not quite; but the mere fact that you are having “difficulties” doing your job, but are still doing it, may not be enough.

There is a middle ground, a “flash point” that goes slightly beyond “difficult” but somewhat before becoming wheelchair bound, where the criteria of “incompatibility” comes into play.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and discuss the legal ramifications of where you might be in the process of preparing, formulating and filing an effective FERS Disability Retirement application.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Medical Retirement for Federal Employees: The Changing Story

Daily, we present a story.  From birth until the present moment; of chapters yet unwritten and not even known; for a past that has already been decided, a present that is alive with possibilities, and a future that is yet to be determined, life is a constancy of chapters being written — of the changing story.

We resist that change; and yet, once the occurrence presents itself, whatever the change or the sameness that happens, the next page is written, the further chapter is completed, but so long as there is still breath to be gasped, the final chapter has not yet been written.

There are many days yet ahead, and thus an epilogue to be reached; perhaps it is a long narrative, a thick book; or just a thin piece of work, a few lines, perhaps, or a verse to be told; but whether of a 10-volume compendium of a life complex with footnotes and multiple pages of bibliographical references, or a dozen-line poem or even a short haiku, the changing story is the open book for some to read, a few to chuckle at, and many to discern, learn from.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of his or her Federal or Postal job, the next chapter of life — the changing story — may require preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS.

Consult with a Federal Disability Attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, and become involved in writing the next chapter of your life outside of the Federal or Postal system, and initiate writing the changing story of a future yet to be determined.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Medical Retirement: Thursday’s Groan & Friday’s Smile

One often wonders whether or not happiness is tied to the day of the week.  Are people less happy on Thursdays because, while it is one day beyond the middle of a work week, it nevertheless looms far before the respite of the weekend?  And of Fridays — do people express greater happiness because the day is about to end and the weekend is about to begin?  Do we all, in fact, groan on Thursdays and smile on Fridays?

Is work so stress-filled that we have become a society which lives for the weekend, and why “escape entertainment” — of movies, reality television shows, fantasy novels and treks to outlying areas where the reality of one’s human condition can be — for a time, at least — replaced with the solitude of the wilderness?

Thursday’s groan and Friday’s smile tend to represent how we view the weekly rotation of life, and when a medical condition begins to creep into the mix, the groans can extend into Friday, and beyond into the weekends, making the temporary respite from an otherwise stress-filled life to be almost unbearable.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who view weekends as merely a time to recuperate in order to make it through a work week because of a medical condition that debilitates during the rotation of the middle days, it may be time to consider filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Consult with a FERS Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and begin the process of avoiding the general rhythm of Thursday’s groan & Friday’s smile.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement: The Expression of Man

Work is the expression of Man; whether as an explosion of creativity or a grimace from overdoing it, it is an extension of that which is inherent and natural.  Whether in building or deconstructing; of newness or of a renovation; perhaps as part-time or beyond a full-time schedule; the expression of men and women is to work.

We often make up sub-categories of it — of a “career” as opposed to a “job”; a “professional” or an amateur; of a “white collar” position in contradistinction to a “blue collar” worker; but in the generic aggregate, it is all “work”.  Look all around us; the product of work, of Man — men, women, old and young — engaging in the building of a society in bits and pieces, expressing themselves by manner of an activity that takes various forms, multiple hands and countless ideas.  To cease to work is tantamount to stopping that which is the natural expression of Man.

That is why, when a medical condition begins to prevent and impact a person’s ability and capacity to perform all of the essential elements his or her Federal or Postal job, it may be time to consider filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS.

Consult with an OPM Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and begin the process of extending the natural expression of Man — by allowing for such creativity and expression to present itself in another vocation outside of the Federal government.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire