Federal Worker Disability Retirement: The Unresolved Problem

It won’t go away on its own.  We might wish it did; we might try to “will it” away; or, one might consider just ignoring it.

There are, to be sure, some problems which resolve themselves.  Children and their emotionally-fraught years of teenage problems — they often resolve themselves through age and distance; although, in this day and age where greater danger lurks in the dark web of the ethereal world, the job of the parent often is to make sure the problems don’t compound themselves into irreversible calamities.

A limp, too, might resolve itself.  And if you step in some dog-doo — yes, over time, walking with it on different surfaces will eventually scrape it all off from the soles of your shoes.  But as with children and dog-doo, it is often a good idea to take the time and initiate some action which is aggressive, positive and deliberate.

Filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS requires just such an approach, because in the end, the chronic and debilitating medical condition is one of those unresolved problems.

Contact an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, and begin the deliberative process of tackling the unresolved problem.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill
Lawyer exclusively representing Federal and Postal employees to secure their Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

 

Medical Retirement Benefits for Federal & Postal Workers: Expectations versus Reality

The dawn of the American century arrived sometime after the First World War.  America’s entrance into the world stage; its dominance in influencing culture, economics, politics and social upheavals cannot be ignored.  At home, too, kids were brought up with a view that expectations were limitless; that everyone could achieve anything and everything so long as you put your heart, mind and soul into it.

The reality, of course, is quite different.  For, the fantasy of expectations fails to take into account individual limitations, whether in the arena of creativity, intelligence, circumstances or just plain luck.

We taught our kids the false pablum that in America, everything is possible for everyone, and thus do we have the reality-check upon millennials and others that, NO, not everything is possible, and sometimes you have to accept the plain fact that reality imposes a check upon your expectations: You cannot win at everything; you cannot succeed at every crazy venture; you are not always going to come in first; and, in fact, you may not even be given a pat on the back just because you show up.

Medical conditions, likewise, provide a reality check.  We are not all of us triathletes; our bodies are, indeed, vulnerable; and though we may think we are a species which can multitask better than other specialized animals (i.e., the predator cats are good at chasing and killing; the falcon at zeroing in upon its prey, etc. — but the human animal, though not the best at any one thing, is good enough at a multitude of different tasks), there is a limit as to how much we can do before the stress and anxiety of becoming overwhelmed sets in.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition has given you the reality check against expectations of continued employment with your Federal Agency or the Postal Service, contact an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and begin the process of initiating the preparation, formulation and filing of an effective Federal Disability Retirement application — where you are finally recognizing that there is a substantive distinction to be made between expectations and reality.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Lawyer

 

OPM Medical Retirement under FERS: The Peppered Denial

Take a handful of pepper and go out into the snow (which shouldn’t be too difficult, given the snow storms of recent vintage, at least in certain areas of the nation); throw it up into the air and let it “pepper” down.

What do you see?  Pock-marks of darkness, and as it dissipates with the melting cold, a spreading of dark spots — depending upon the kind of pepper it is. Or a shotgun blast from afar — see the spread of indented imprints left where the pellets become less constrained based upon the distance of the target.

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management takes the same approach — of “peppering” you with reasons in a denial of a Federal Disability Retirement application.  X-medical report says Y; notation on the doctor’s progress note indicates Z; you didn’t have any service deficiencies; even though B says C, it doesn’t matter because OPM doesn’t believe D; and on and on.

One would think that, instead of such a meandering approach, the OPM medical specialist would present a tighter, more coherent basis for such an important issue.  The question is: Does each pepper-spot need to be cleaned with a salt-like application to answer them?  Or, can a more generalized approach be applied?  It depends.

Contact a FERS Disability Retirement Lawyer who specializes in OPM Disability Law and begin the process of responding to the peppered denial from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Lawyer

 

OPM Disability Retirement Help: Life’s Challenges

It may not seem so at the time.  Often, during encounters, we consider them as threats, annoyances, “the world is unfair” muses, and would rather avoid them and get on with the routine of our lives.  We hear people talk about “challenges” and “journeys”, and we scoff at such language games and euphemisms as being mere facades behind which lay the true nature of existence: fear, loathing and a greater sense of bitterness.  Why me?

Medical conditions are, indeed, challenging; and whether you characterize them as “another journey”, a bother, one of “life’s challenges” or a greater annoyance which cannot be avoided — it is an existential reality which must be faced.

In facing one of life’s challenges, it is a good idea for the Federal or Postal employee who must consider filing for Federal Disability Retirement under FERS to consult with a OPM Disability lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the annoyance and one of life’s challenges turns out to be somewhat more than that — a disaster that could have been avoided.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Peace of Mind

It is a wonder how information is restricted or fails to be disseminated.  Of course, like all insurance policies, one is never interested in the details of an insurance policy unless and until it is needed.  Insurance is often likened to “peace of mind” — and that is how it is packaged and sold.

You purchase insurance not only because it is required (such as auto and home), but because of the fear of the “What if” scenario: What if I die before my children have grown up? (life insurance).  What if someone gets injured on my property? (umbrella insurance).  What if I become disabled and am unable to work? (Disability Insurance).

Yes, there are private policies, as well, but fortunately 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, there is the added benefit of Federal Disability Retirement.

You may not need to access it for now, and for that, it provides a “peace of mind” until and unless it becomes necessary.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement from OPM: The Uncooperative Doctor

Obviously, greater cooperation equals a smoother transition in every endeavor; it is the lack of cooperation which holds everything up.

In a Federal Disability Retirement case, a supportive doctor is almost always a necessary component in a successful Federal Disability Retirement application.  Yet, for the most part, doctors want to be — merely doctors.  That is, doctors generally hate the “administrative” side of practicing medicine — of the note-taking, dictation of office visits, annotating patient encounters, record-keeping; and, especially, of writing a narrative report in support of a Federal Disability Retirement application.  Why?  Simply because it is the tedious side of practicing medicine.

Sometimes, of course, depending upon the severity of the medical condition(s), a lengthy explanatory narrative is not necessary; but more often than not, an extensive, supportive narrative report is an important element in a successful Federal Disability Retirement application.  How does one “deal” with an uncooperative doctor?  There is no magical formula — but to simply attempt to garner a commitment from the treating doctor prior to initiating the complex process of preparing, formulating and filing a Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS, and to contact an OPM Disability Retirement Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Reactive Responses

By haste do we regret; by unthinking actions do we abide the fool.  Have you seen the sign often placed at the Clerk’s window at the local courthouse?  It will read something to the effect of: “Your procrastination does not create my emergency”.

Reactive responses, whether based upon a “real” emergency or one which seemingly appears so, are often the basis for later regrets and irreparable damage.  It is like the rule that everyone should follow in sending emails or posting comments on the Internet: Wait a day; sleep on it; set it aside for later consideration.

Few emergencies are rarely so; most are merely in the minds of the individual, burning like a forest fire out of control, but yet distant enough to suffer no lives.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who are considering filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS, the reactive response is often the fatal one.  Unless it is to meet a statute of limitations deadline, or to respond to an issue with a specific timeframe, most considerations which arise in a disability retirement application are rarely true emergencies and can be thoughtfully approached and resolved.

Contact a Federal Disability Lawyer who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, lest haste results in waste and the thoughtless action reverberates with unintended consequences.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement: The Venn Diagram of Life

Venn diagrams reveal the logical relationships between a finite collection of different sets.  Unlike concentric circles which all share a common center and thus fail to show their interconnectedness, Venn diagrams unravel both the connected relationships as well as the disjointed and isolated parts.  Thus, while all of X may also share in Y, some of Y may not connect with X or with Z, etc.

It is emblematic of our personal lives — where some part of us may be shared at work, but not all; and the personal side which is “not known” at work may be a private side of us that no one ever knows, and need not know.  Medical conditions are often those sets of conditions which represent a part of Y (personal side) but which are left isolated and private, outside of the reach of knowledge, yet nevertheless a part of X (work side) precisely because we bring to work our medical conditions (because we have no choice about the matter), even though we try and hide them.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition has begun to increasingly impact one’s ability and capacity to perform all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, the Venn Diagram of Life is a familiar concept — trying to leave the impact outside of the circle of work becomes increasingly difficult, and the “work-circle” more and more notices the infringing nature of the medical condition itself through greater use and exhaustion of Sick Leave, LWOP and reduced performance efficacy.

The key, then, is to recognize the logical and real relationship between one’s medical conditions and their impact upon one’s ability and capacity to perform the essential elements of one’s job.  Once that relationship has been realized, then you can make the proper decision as to whether it is time to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

As part of that Venn Diagram of Life, you may want to look at the diagram of concentric circles, as well — where the common center of a successful disability retirement application is often in consulting with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law.

Sincerely,

Robert R.McGill, Esquire

 

FERS OPM Disability Retirement: Of Imprints in the Sand

They fade away quickly and become part of the landscape that once was; and when we try and grab a handful of sand and squeeze the collective grains within our closed fists, the finery of each pours from every crevice left open like the hourglass that counts the moments lost.  Whether by the winds that shift the dunes afar or the lapping waves which erases the imprints once boldly made, the residue of our existence by natural necessity fades and ultimately disappears.

Mortality for most is a scary thought; immortality, a dream and fantasy desired; and within the spectrum of the two extremes is the daily imprint in the sand of human existence.

During that brief moment of appearance upon the sands of our lives, we all have to make decisions both of major consequential effect and minor residual impact, on a daily basis.  Plans for the future; getting the day’s chores done; actions that may impact others; inaction that reverberates to others; and throughout each, the pause and hesitation that reflects indecision may be a further factor in the imprint upon the sand, whether of lasting impact or momentary indifference.

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 imprint in the sand that has to be considered is:  Is continuation in this job and career possible? At what point should I file for Federal Disability Retirement? How will it impact my life, my finances, my ability to get a job in the future? And of imprints in the sand — will my decision have any consequences beyond the disappearance upon the dunes, any more than being separated from Federal Service or the Postal Service?

To understand the procedure, the impact and the residual consequences, consult with a Federal Disability Attorney who specializes in FERS Law, lest the imprints in the sand of one’s life becomes a permanent and irreversible mistake that cannot be reversed like the sands that slip within the hourglass of one’s life.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Disability Retirement Benefits: The Bridge to Nowhere

It is a metaphor which evokes images of hopelessness and futility, if such images can indeed be captured at all.  Whether of an attitude, a perspective or the existential reality of one’s personal circumstances, the question is, Why was the bridge to nowhere built to begin with?  There it stands, in mid-construction, suspended but unfinished, not leading to anywhere, not going in any particular direction, not coming from any place known.

It is often how we feel in the middle of our lives.  One has only to sit in a cafe, by a window, and watch the midday rush of people coming and going, seemingly with purpose, appearing with decisiveness, until you catch the gaze of someone passing — a knowing look, a pause, a hesitation; and at that moment of illumination, the stranger and you both know that the constant, ant-like activity is merely a whirl of coming and going upon a bridge to nowhere.

The furious pace of life; of rushing to get to work, working, then rushing to get home within a factory of people uncaring and unaware.  Then, when calamity hits — a medical condition that interrupts, intercedes and imposes its existence upon you — suddenly the routine of ferocious activity finds meaning in the very meaninglessness felt the moment before.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who can no longer perform one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal job because of a medical condition, the sense that one is driving upon a bridge to nowhere is common and troubling.  Of course one’s health should be a priority; and of course work, the “mission” of the Federal agency and the harassment that is initiated without empathy or understanding — all of that stuff should be secondary and subordinated to taking care of one’s health.

Filing for FERS Disability Retirement benefits is the recognition that the bridge to nowhere will not take you anywhere, and it is in order to regain that insight of meaningfulness that it is important to prepare, formulate and file an effective Federal Disability Retirement application in order to focus upon the importance of priorities shoved aside — like one’s health.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire