I have said this many, many times: If patience is a virtue, then Federal employees must be the virtuous of all people, especially those who are filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits and waiting upon the Office of Personnel Management to make a decision. Then, even after it is approved, it is often months and months until one’s case is finalized and taken out of the “interim” pay status to final pay status; or, if the case is denied at the First Stage and you have to file a Request for Reconsideration, submit additional medical and other evidence, file a Memorandum of Law to try and convince the Second Stage Representative that, indeed, contrary to what the First Stage Representative had argued, you have been in full compliance and meet with all of the criteria for eligibility for FERS or CSRS disability retirement benefits — which can take an additional 120 – 150 days. Then, of course, if it is denied at the Reconsideration Stage of the process, you must file an appeal within thirty (30) days to the Merit Systems Protection Board, where the Administrative Judge is mandated by statute to conclude a case from the time of appeal within 120 days. The entire “process” — and this is precisely why I refer to the administrative procedure of filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS as a “process” — requires and demands patience.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire