FERS Disability Retirement from OPM: Factors Not Considered

They are the ones which delay and defeat; those factors not considered which, had consultation with an expert been considered beforehand, might have saved both time and money in accomplishing the very goals which one expected in the first place.

The factors not considered will ultimately rear their ugly heads at the most inopportune of times; for, they are the obstacles not contemplated, the impediments unforeseen, and the problems unsolicited.  It is precisely the factors not considered which are avoided and circumvented for which we pay the “experts” to predict, foresee and forestall; and that is where expertise is precisely the worth one pays for.

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, it is important to consult with a Federal Disability Retirement Lawyer in order to consider the factors not previously considered.  For, once OPM sees something — an issue not addressed, a statement unintended, a document unsolicited — you cannot put blinders on them.

It is precisely the factors not considered which must be considered; and by consulting with a Federal Disability Retirement Attorney, you will lessen the chances that those factors not considered will pass through the gates of opportunity, which can close with sudden rapidity.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Going It Alone

Perhaps the maverick wins, or dies while trying and is buried anonymously in an unmarked grave; or the soldier who leaves his platoon and attempts to go behind enemy lines to save his buddies; or in a city of millions, a lonely heart who yearns for mere company but is too shy to even try.

Going it alone is a lonely proposition; it invites a sense of isolation, separation, abandonment and irrelevance; for some, it is a mark of courage; and for others, a mere trifle of the fool.  Perhaps there are times when it is appropriate to “going it alone”; for the most part, however, in this day and age of expertise and specialization, it is necessary to consult the advice, counsel and guidance of knowledgeable sources.

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 one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, going it alone is often an unwise and inadvisable approach in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Consult with a Federal Disability Retirement Lawyer and consider whether or not investing in your future is a worthwhile endeavor, and whether “Going it Alone” is an act resulting from an intelligent decision, or a fleeting thought best left to Shakespeare’s Fool.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Postal & Federal Disability Retirement: Pragmatism

It is that branch of Philosophy which is uniquely American; and the anomaly of the unwanted cousin was clear from the outset: Philosophy by its very nature is theoretical, and most of it dabbling in the discipline of metaphysics, ceding its other branches to theology and science.  Pragmatism, on the other hand, lends to the practical — of reacting to the world in terms of present-day difficulties and problems to be solved; of shunning the theoretical and attending to the basic needs of society.

The contrast and contradiction of a philosophy based upon practical needs as against the backdrop of an academic discipline which embraces the impractical, but rather enjoys its reputation for high-minded principles (i.e., Kant, Hegel, etc.) makes for a Jamesian pragmatism to be the illegitimate cousin of a well-respected family tree.  We are all dreamers by morning’s child; more practical by midday’s youth; and pragmatists upon an adult’s late evening; for the world forces the theoretical to be squeezed, and pragmatism brings out the harsh reality of existence.

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, pragmatism may necessarily dim the dreams of yesteryear: A career in the Federal Government no longer possible, a practical approach must be taken — of preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application.

Consult with a Federal Disability Retirement lawyer, a specialist who can advise, guide and counsel throughout the process, and begin preparing for the reality of responding to an all too-pragmatic bureaucracy.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal & Postal Disability Retirement: Life After

Too often, we become embroiled within the context of present circumstances, and come to erroneously believe that what is occurring in our lives today, this minute, this year, will remain as a constancy for the rest of our lives.  Yet, like the weather, politics, and news cycles in general, what is of consequence in our lives today will likely be barely remembered a year from now.

There is always a life after.  Perhaps we are unable to see beyond today; perhaps we fail to — as the proverbial saying goes — see any “light at the end of the tunnel”; and likely the circumstances of today appear so overwhelming and weighty that it consumes our every thought and brings about an imbalance in our perspectives.

Medical conditions tend to do that — they depress us because of the degenerative and deteriorating manner in which they impact us.  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, the “life after” is to become a Federal Disability Retirement annuity.

Consult with an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, and see whether or not you might qualify for a Federal Disability Retirement annuity.  The life after, after all, need not be the same as today or yesterday, but may embrace a future yet hopeful and bright.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Disability Retirement under FERS: Perspective Matters

How we see things; whether with a “positive attitude” or one colored with a negative turn; if one believes in the cause, or not; whether one’s initial reaction is one of anger and disbelief, or of despair; for, in the end, tackling issues is not a matter of right or wrong, but of how we view them.

Of course, a positive attitude alone will not necessarily get you anywhere; as reality abuts against the perspective we bring, it is often the combination of a “proper assessment” combined with our attitude and approach which makes all of the difference.  Are we seeing all of the alternatives involved?  Can a better argument be made in such a case?  Have we exhausted all of the avenues of evidentiary findings?  Have we chosen the best arguments?

G.K. Chesterton once wrote that Charles Dickens and H.W. Wells looked upon their respective fictional characters in vastly differently ways: The former, with a fondness like a father upon his children; the latter, with also a fondness — but like a butcher upon the chosen pig.  Both have a perspective of “fondness”; yet, it is an approach from very different directions.

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 one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, Federal Disability Retirement should be an option to be considered.

A medical condition often impacts upon one’s perspective, you should consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law; for, perspective does indeed matter, and the best legal representation is one which objectively evaluates all perspectives that matter.  Consult with an OPM Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and see whether or not your perspective is the “right” one.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Disability Retirement under FERS: Covid-19 Impact

The residual impact of this global pandemic is yet to be seen.  More facts; more scientific evidence; more tracing studies will have to be engaged.

Yet, for many Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers, the direct impact of the Corona Virus has already been felt.  Whether having contracted the virus and been hospitalized; whether deemed a “high risk” individual because of other underlying medical conditions or because of a suppressed and compromised immune system; these and other factors may result in a Federal or Postal employee being prevented from continuing in his or her career.

In that event, filing a Federal Disability Retirement application through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management may be the appropriate course of action.

Consult with an attorney to discuss whether or not Federal Disability Retirement is the right next step during this Pandemic that has wreaked havoc over so many lives, and which will continue to do so for years and years to come.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Medical Retirement Benefits: Words & Images

Enter a gift shop and see the generic photograph inserted within a picture-frame for sale.  Who is it? Why was the photograph taken?  Was it merely to help sell the picture-frame?  Enter an antique shop where one sometimes comes across old photographs — perhaps even a daguerreotype — often faded, normally of a stilted figure; perhaps of a young woman, an old man, a soldier in uniform; a family on an outing; of a city scene where horses and carriages fill the streets; or of a father and son smiling, a daughter and mother staring impassively at the photographer in a still-life of unknown origins and an unverified date.  Who were they?  Why was the picture taken?

For the casual visitor to the store, who merely glances at the collection of old castaways, the images mean little, if anything at all.  Yet, there is a story behind each image — one which may be forever lost.  For, why else would such photographs end up in an antique store, out of the safekeeping privacy where they once belonged, where once words and memories attached unassailably with the photographs which told a story.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition where the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from continuing in the career of one’s choice, the disjunctive between words and images becomes poignantly clear within one’s own mind: Who were we once, and do the words others use in describing you match the story between words and images?

Filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management is a step toward re-matching the image one has of one’s self — of vibrancy and accomplishment — and the words others use to describe you, as well as the words you use to describe yourself.  For the moment, however, the words used are necessary in preparing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application — one of being in a lesser, debilitated state because of one’s medical conditions — must be carefully chosen in preparing one’s Statement of Disability on SF 3112A.

Consult with a FERS Attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, and make sure that the words and images utilized in preparing a Federal Disability Retirement application accurately portrays the state of present mind experienced.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Early Medical Retirement from Federal Government Employment: Rational Discourse

In the world of academia, whether as a student or a professor, the ivory-tower atmosphere tends to de-couple and de-link reality from perception.  There is, to begin with, “the world” and its events, causations, occurrences and peoples intertwined by engaging in the politics and activities of daily living; and then, there is our “perception” of such events, which — in their aggregate — is comprised of and by our backgrounds, our beliefs, our interpretive faculties and the paradigms from which we operate.

In college, the world within which one operates is a limited, protected, self-contained universe in which ideas, books, deadlines for term papers and testing for knowledge retained are all experienced through the tunnel vision and narrow prism of a fantasy-world created for rational discourse.  The fact is that the universe is comprised of much irrationality and phenomena otherwise unknown or not capable of explanation.

In a Kantian manner (uh-oh, here we go with the rational discourse prism), we bring to the world the belief that everything must have an explanation, all events must be able to be explained by a rational discourse — but reality hits us hard in the face, or upon the backside, whichever metaphor you prefer.  Perhaps that is what is meant by “growing up”.  For the cynic, the universe has become a jumble of irrationality; for the proverbial optimist, everything yet to be explained can simply be set aside for future revelation.  Somewhere in the middle is where most of us belong.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer form a medical condition, and where that medical condition betrays the fond memories of our youth when health was taken for granted and mortality was never even considered, filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits may seem like an ugly choice.  In a world where rational discourse should prevail, the irrationality of a chronic medical condition seems to be an unfair event that requires explanation — or, at least a good defense.  We can question and puzzle; we can fret and worry; but in the end, the stark choices are there before us.  Whether, ultimately, there is a rational discourse that can adequately explain the medical conditions by which a person suffers — or not — is often besides the point.

Consult with an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS and begin the process of obtaining a Federal Disability Retirement annuity, and let the questions concerning rational discourse remain a mystery to be solved in some unknown days ahead.  Life is difficult enough to maneuver without worrying about one’s future, and getting a Federal Disability Retirement annuity at least softens the blow in a universe that often seems impervious to the private hells of individual troubles.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement: The Performance Appraisal

It is the system that we have created, a monster which cannot be slain, and the machine that cannot be turned off.  We learn it from an early age — good grades are the foundation for a successful future, and if a teacher has the audacity to give you a lesser grade than what you believe you deserve, call that teacher — harass him or her; file a complaint; heck, file a lawsuit.

In the Federal employment system, performance reviews are often given out like candies — and such reviews can come back to make it appear as if there is nothing wrong.  Managers and supervisors are reluctant to give a “less than fully successful” rating, lest a grievance be filed or a headache ensues; but for the person whose performance has been suffering because of a medical condition which has begun to impact a person’s ability and capacity to perform all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, the reflection upon the record when a Federal Disability Retirement application has been filed may have to be dealt with.

The Office of Personnel Management tends to rely heavily — and unfairly — upon performance appraisals, but there is another legal standard which can be applied — that of incompatibility between one’s medical conditions and the positional elements of one’s job.

Consult with a Federal Disability Lawyer who specializes in FERS Medical Retirement Law and discuss the impact of one’s performance appraisal within the complex administrative procedure of preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal & Postal Disability Retirement under FERS: Performance, Conduct or Attendance

Those are the 3 areas which the U.S. Office of Personnel Management looks closely at when evaluating a Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS — “performance”, “conduct” and “attendance”.  There is a 4th criteria — that of “incompatibility” — but that issue is normally applied when a medical condition manifests itself as being inconsistent with the positional requirements of a job.

Performance” is determined objectively by whether one has fully met annual performance evaluations/ratings; “conduct” concerns any record of adverse proceedings initiated by the Agency or the Postal Service, including written warnings, reprimands, on or off-duty allegations of misconduct, charges and/or convictions; and “attendance” deficiencies are determined by the remaining level of accrued leave, whether of SL, AL or use of LWOP and the exhaustion of accrual.

These — OPM has determined — comprise a more “objective” basis upon which a Federal Disability Retirement application is determined.  Of course, one’s medical condition is further evaluated based upon the severity, type and category of the medical condition itself, as well.

When considering filing for FERS Disability Retirement benefits, ask yourself the question, “Do I have any deficiencies in performance, conduct or attendance?”  Next, Are there objective factors that can show definitively that I am no longer able to perform one or more of the essential elements of my job?

Having a supportive doctor is crucial in a Federal Disability Retirement case, but other indicators as well can be used in arguing in favor of one’s case, and objective indicators can make the difference between success or failure in all cases reviewed and evaluated by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Consult with an experienced Attorney who specializes in Federal & Postal Disability Retirement Law to determine the viability of your case; for, in the end, it is the presentation of objective factors which will win your case, and not your “feelings” as to whether you can do your job or not.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire