FERS Disability Retirement: Thanksgiving 2021

The pandemic of 2020 yet haunts us; and while everyone would like for it to become a vestige of a past nightmare, the reality is that the virus will likely be a part of our daily lives for the next decade or more.

Still, there is much to be thankful for — not the least of which, those who have survived the pandemic can gather together and celebrate Thanksgiving 2021.  Then, of course, there is the ongoing controversy surrounding the holiday event itself — of whether or not Bradford’s depiction of the original meal is historically accurate; of America’s history of genocidal maltreatment of indiginous peoples; of ultimately what the meta-meaning of Thanksgiving will bode for the future, etc.

Through it all, Thanksgiving has become, for most, a special time and a good excuse to prepare an elaborate meal, to get together with family and friends, and to celebrate the year’s events and experiences.  For those who believe that the “traditional” story of Thanksgiving must be “conserved” at all costs, just remember that history is never a static story, but always a vibrant telling of a past which evolves with each storyteller.

This is, in fact, an exciting time where new facts are being discovered about our storied past, and whatever the “official” story of Thanksgiving is, becomes, or is fated to be, it is the telling of stories around a dinnertable exploding with conversation, injected with love and joy, which makes for the meta-Thanksgiving of 2021 — survivors all, where blessings can actually be counted.

Happy Thanksgiving, 2021.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill,
Attorney for Federal Disability Retirement

 

Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) Disability Retirement: Myth of the Unbiased

The “uninterested” or “unbiased” party — does such an entity even exist?  In parochial terms, it is to say that “X has no skin in the game” — meaning thereby that an individual has no preference, no “money placed as a bet” on either team; has never expressed any weighted opinion as to one or the other — in other words, he or she is an “unbiased” participant.

But there are other factors beyond whether or not a person expresses a preference, are there not?  Of an irrational dislike of one over the other; of a self-interested desire to “win” by picking one over the other; or perhaps of simply being bored and wanting to be a contrarian by choosing one over the other.

Thus, in a Federal Disability Retirement application before a “medical specialist” at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, to identify an OPM reviewer as someone who is unbiased or uninterested, is to miss the point.  Yes, allegedly, OPM is supposed to be unbiased and uninterested, and merely apply the law and review a Federal Disability Retirement case in an objective manner.

The reality is quite different, however, because of the complexity of the human psyche involving motives, unstated intentions and deep-seated psychological needs.  What can be done about it?  Nothing, really — other than to point out the errors, the lack of logic, and apply the law — and counter any denial or preempt a denial by submitting a legal memorandum which is truly unbiased.

Contact a disability attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and maintain a semblance of objectivity in order to enhance your chances of winning your Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS.

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.

 

Top-Rated OPM Federal Disability Lawyer: Legal Containment

We have all seen it, or even experienced it first-hand.  A party; a gathering; a group of kids; a bunch of young boys and girls; the noise, the “showing off” and the language too obscene for nascent ears; then, an adult appears and, suddenly, miraculously and without anyone saying a word, the entire character of the crowd changes.

Boys sit up straight, feel around their waists to tuck their shirts in; girls make sure that they are a decent distance from the guy they were just a moment ago sprawled all over; the language is suddenly cleaned up, with serious tones of “yes, sir” and “no, sir” and formal designations prefatory in quiet demeanors; and so the party ends.

What happened?  What changed the character of the gathering?  Why did the mere approach and presence of an adult radically alter the character of the gathering?

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition necessitates a filing of a Federal Disability Retirement application with the U.S. Offie of Personnel Management, the lesson above should be a warning: OPM will often act like the unruly bunch of kids when a Federal Disability Retirement application is filed without legal representation.

Legal containment — a reserved, appropriate and serious response — occurs when the law hovers over the behavior of OPM.

Contact a FERS Disability Retirement Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and make sure that the teenage gathering — OPM — is made to sit up straight and behave within the legal confines of the laws governing Federal Disability Retirement.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Lawyer

 

Medical Retirement for Federal Employees: Life’s Muddle

We like to think that we are competent; but much of life is a muddle, where we try and plod along acting “as if”, when the truth is that we are winging it.  For the most part, that works; and the reason why it works is because the rest of the world, as well, is simply plodding along in the same manner and fashion.  Life is a muddle, and when a significant intervening event comes into play, the muddle becomes even murkier and the division between those who are truly competent, and those who have simply been “faking it”, come to the fore and become ever more focused.

Medical conditions, likewise, tend to do that: They bring out the best of people, as well as the worst.  They sharpen the divide between people who are empathetic and those who care not a twit except for times when it might be to their advantage.  And, as Federal agencies and Postal facilities are mere microcosms of people in general, the extent of an Agency’s efforts to accommodate a Federal employee’s medical conditions reveals the underlying character of the people involved.

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 time to continue to muddle through the complex bureaucratic process of filing a Federal Disability Retirement application should be left to the “experts”.  There are times to muddle, and times not to muddle, and the latter is one of those times when filing for FERS Disability Retirement benefits with OPM.

Consult with an OPM Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and stop trying to muddle through life’s muddle.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Disability Retirement: The Unshared Responsibility

It is an oxymoron of sorts: For, by the very definition of each of the two words, the opposite should necessarily be implied.  Responsibilities, by their very nature, especially in the context of a village, a society, or a nation, are shared by all; and thus to declare the existence of an “unshared responsibility” — when responsibilities by their very nature require a shared nature — is a form of self-contradiction.  Failure to share the responsibility that is ours to engage is common where society no longer knows its own neighbors.

That is the essence of a disappearing village — where we know longer know each other, remain detached and merely retain the outer facade of being a society with common interests.  Do you know your next door neighbor?  Do you even care to?  Yet, we have thousands of “friends” on Facebook, but barely know, or care, about the person living just across the street.

The Office is no different.  One day a coworker files for Federal Disability Retirement benefits and we are “surprised”.  We didn’t know that the person even had a medical condition.  The Supervisor didn’t know.  The Human Resource Office didn’t care to know.  No one at the agency cared to know.  That is often the reality, unfortunately, and the greater — sadder — reality is that those who should have known didn’t care to take the time to know.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who need to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, and where confidentiality of the process is critical because of the unshared responsibility of the Federal Agency or the U.S. Postal Service, consult with a Federal Disability Attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, lest the unshared responsibility of confidential matters may potential leak to the uninterested ear that awaits hungrily for the gossip of unspoken mouths.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Medical Retirement for Federal Employees: The Past Upon Present

The guru dressed in flowing white garb may claim that the past is a fiction; those various “self-help” books will often declare that time is merely a continuum where we can only control that which is in the immediacy of our presence; and various philosophers have stated that the relativity of time must always be seen from the perspective of the “now”.

There is no doubt, however, that in the practical work-world, the past remains within the purview of haunting consequences.  Whether of youthful indiscretions or a darker past of substantial historical relevance more than a mere raising of one’s eyebrow, past performance is often used as an indicator of present behavior and conduct.  If a person has been convicted of embezzlement, does one consider that past in hiring practices for positions of responsibility — especially where money is involved?

Those who wave off the relevance of such considerations simply do not live in the real world.  We cannot avoid our past anymore than others will ignore it.  And so it is in Federal Disability Retirement Law, where the U.S. Office of Personnel Management will often place undue weight upon Performance Appraisals, cash bonus issues and whether there have been any deficiencies in performance, conduct or attendance in assessing and evaluating a Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS.

Consult with a FERS Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law before initiating a process where your past may not be your best friend or, even if it is, whether you may yet be stabbed in the back — metaphorically speaking, of course.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire 
FERS Disability Retirement Lawyer

  

OPM Disability Retirement under FERS: The Percentage Game

We all play it; whether in calculating the chances of success (most of us are not knowledgeable enough to be statisticians, not having paid close enough attention in high school or college to that mathematics course regarding the numerical analysis of a numbers-based algorithm), or in merely keeping an eye on interest rates in the housing market, or perhaps taking note of how likely it is to be attacked by a shark before we step into the polluted waters of the Atlantic.

OPM certainly plays the game — one needs only to look at a Denial from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management to realize that, the manner in which the Denial of a Federal Disability Retirement application is written, there will be a certain percentage of people who will read it and say, “Gee, I never stood a chance.  I might as well not even go any further.”

The Denials are often written in unequivocal terms, stating with a tone of certainty that there was never any basis for filing, and that any further efforts would be fruitless and futile.  And from that language of certainty, a certain percentage of Federal Disability Retirement applicants will simply give up and walk away.  That is what the percentage game is based upon.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who have received a Denial from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, it is wise to consult with an experienced attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law to perform an objective-based evaluation of a Federal Disability Retirement claim.  Better, yet, consult with such an attorney even before you begin the process, to ensure the best chances in this “percentage game” which OPM plays.

Sincerely,

Robert R.McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Medical Retirement for Federal Employees: Imperfect Lives

Bringing up the very concept itself implies that the opposite exists: That of “perfect” lives.  We perhaps attribute the existence of such; perhaps it is the same line of thought processes which persuades us by the Ontological argument for the existence of God: God is that than which nothing greater can be thought of; To exist is greater than not to exist; therefore, God must by necessity exist.  The corollary argument which persuades us of the existence of a “perfect” life would then be: The perfect life is a life which erases all imperfections; perfection is better than its opposite; therefore there must by necessity exist perfect lives.

Yet, does reality indicate the existence of perfect lives?  Certainly, its opposite is true: imperfect lives being all around us, including our own, we then assume that there must be other, similarly imperfect lives.  Yet, while perfection is a non-relative term (it cannot be dependent upon a comparison to other terms, but is the paragon of all things not imperfect), its antonym — imperfection — can be.  Thus, X’s life may be less perfect than Y’s, and Z’s life may be less perfect than Y’s but better than X’s.  Can we ever say that X’s life is “more perfect” than X’s or Y’s?  Doesn’t “more perfect” necessarily imply imperfection and thus cannot approach a definitional plateau of “more”?

The plain fact is that all of our lives are imperfect, and perfection is an unreachable goal, and perhaps even undefinable.  For, who can define perfection of a life which fails to ever meet such a standard, and given the sins of human frailty, can it ever be achieved?

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 position, the time may be ripe to admit and acknowledge that “perfection” is a standard which can never be met, and to try and maintain that appearance of perfection is an unrealistic goal.  Medical conditions have a way of humbling us; and as we keep struggling to maintain an appearance of perfection, what we are doing is failing to acknowledge that such a standard is a harmful, detrimental one.

Filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits is an admission of our imperfection; consulting with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law is a step towards acting upon that admission — that, try as we might, we live imperfect lives, and that’s okay; for, to err is human, and to file for FERS Disability Retirement benefits is to admit to being human.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Sufficiency Test

Sufficiency” is a funny word; like other subjective experiences, one often doesn’t know when it has been satisfied, but one nevertheless knows when it has not.  Like spectrums which reveal a range, sufficiency is a point of satisfaction which is recognized to have been met only after the point of sufficiency has been passed.

What constitutes “passing” the sufficiency test?  If someone has been kidnapped and a ransom note has been received, demanding payment for the safe return of the individual, is there an amount less than the demanded amount which would be “sufficient” to satisfy the kidnapper’s demands?  Can a platoon be “sufficiently” prepared for a combat mission, although not completely combat-ready?  Can percentages be applied which establishes meeting the criteria for sufficiency, at all times and in all instances, which can be applied as having met the sufficiency test?

Say a person says, “It is 80% done — sufficient for the purposes?”  Would this apply in painting a room, building a house or constructing a bridge?  Say that a bridge has been built 80%, and the last 20% is the part of the end where there remains a gap where suddenly the bridge ends with a missing piece where the gap exists such that a vehicle traveling would crash down a 100-foot drop to a tragic end — do we still say that the bridge was sufficiently built?

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal Workers who are intending on filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, the issue of sufficiency takes on an important role: What constitutes sufficient medical evidence and how is the unspoken sufficiency test met?

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law to make sure that the Sufficiency Test will be met. In doing so, you may prevent a leisurely drive over a bridge only 80% finished, and be provided an alternative route in order to help you arrive at your destination in a sufficiently safe and efficient manner.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Adapting to Change

Survival of the species depends upon it; the paradigm of evolutionary theory mandates it; and the human propagation for advancement thrives through it.

Change is difficult.  It was once believed that the malleability of youth allowed for greater resistance to a damaged psyche; yet, from the plethora of late-night confessions, it has become clear that divorce and family divisions left residual scars upon children no matter how “friendly” the split-up was, no matter how much love, co-parenting support and so-called theories of “if I’m happy, you’re happy” blather was pasted thick upon the self-justifying reasons given; in the end, the trauma of change, upheaval, disruption and interruption have their lasting effects upon the shaken foundations wrought by the earthquakes of human existence.

Change; how we respond to it; what adaptive measures are taken; where the vulnerabilities appear; and the manner, timing and susceptibility to reverberations of lasting consequences — they all take their toll, don’t they?

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, change is inevitable, and adapting to change — a necessity.

But, then, adapting to change has already been a reality, if one pauses and thinks about it — to the change in one’s health through the chronic and debilitating medical condition; the need to have adapted to the growing sense of urgency as the medical condition has worsened over time; these, and many more changes have already forced the Federal and Postal employee contemplating further changes to adapt at each step of the way.  But that “final step” — of preparing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application — is an important one, and to make the best of the changes that are inevitable, it is a prudent idea to consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire