FERS Disability Retirement Blog: Calm & Upheaval

It is the former which we seek; the latter, which inevitably comes about.  We work 90% of the time for 10% of rest, and of that 10% (if even that), most of it is taken up by chores and other matters.  Of the 90%, most of it is comprised of repetitive boredom and monotonous, mindless endeavors.  When upheavals dominate even the calm, then a crisis often develops; for, in this stress-filled world, periods of respite become all the more important and necessary.

Every crisis, we learn from historical analysis, could have been averted; and as we play the game of “if only we had done X”, we realize two things:  First, that history does indeed repeat itself in cyclical manners and Second, that our memories are short and forgetful, and thus do we repetitively keep to the first rule of cyclical repetition.

Just when we think that the newest upheaval has passed, and the calm after a violent storm has finally come upon us, that the next upheaval enters our lives.  In the end, it is perhaps fortunate that we have such short memories; otherwise, life would be one crisis and upheaval after another, without even a short respite of calm.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition has come to a crisis-point because of the impact upon one’s ability to perform all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal position, the respite of calm which is needed can only come about by preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management under FERS.

Contact a FERS Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and begin the process of extricating yourself from the upheaval of your chronic medical condition in order to reach that cyclical abyss of temporary calm.

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.

 

FERS Medical Retirement from OPM: The Altered Life

We tend to think that, at some point in our lives, there is a problem of the static — of lacking any action, movement or change.  Perhaps that is why some people engage in a life of crisis, of a second puberty or what was once termed “going through a phase” — of needing to suddenly change in an effort to grasp and hold onto one’s youth, whether misspent or not.

We see it today more and more — of old people trying to act like the foolish young; and so, why would there be any respect for age or wisdom, since everyone seems to be acting like every other young person?

There is, of course, some comfort found in the static life — as reliance and dependence upon a static world is the foundation of calm and peace.  The altered life — one of change, of new challenges and movement towards a different direction — often seems like a threatening and foreboding circumstance to avoid.

Medical conditions are like that — of an altered life, whether because one must face chronic pain, change the way one accepts a certain quality of life, or if it involves psychiatric conditions, a level of acceptance in one’s cognitive capacity.

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 altered life is consumed by the medical condition itself, and the way to counter the alteration is to combat it with another change — in the case of Federal and Postal employees, of considering filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management under FERS.

Contact a FERS Disability Lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and consider that the altered life need not remain static within an alteration you do not want to accept, but that there can be an altered life after the initial onset of the medical condition which altered your life to begin with.

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 US Government Employees: Divided, Denied

We have all heard the various phrases and mottos — of being united as opposed to divided; that a house divided cannot stand; and in infantry logistical terms, of dividing the enemy, then conquering, etc.

It is a tactical maneuver which is well-tested — of doing a spear-headed attack and cutting enemy forces into separate units, then beating them independently by outflanking the divisions; or of dividing by cutting off communications or supply lines and denying opposing forces those vital support systems, etc.

OPM uses the same tactic — of dividing, then denying.  Often, Federal and Postal employees suffer from multiple conditions, and it is the aggregate of the conditions which prevent a person from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job.  But OPM will isolate and minimize each medical condition and say, “See, that condition in and of itself does not prevent you from performing your job.”

Such a tactic is similar to denying another well-worn quantity — where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.  When a Federal or Postal worker must deal with multi-faceted health problems, don’t fall into the trap that OPM tries to set — of accepting their denial by dividing each individual medical condition into separate and divided parts.

Contact a FERS Disability Lawyer who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, and rebut an OPM denial which fails to understand the well-known truths of unity, aggregation and the greater whole.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement from the OPM: Silent Suffering

It is now an outdated concept; applied to generations past, “silent suffering” was something people once endured, often within the context of internal turmoil, domestic abuse, childhood neglect or, worse, of skeletons in the closet that haunted a damaged psyche and repressed within layers upon layers of hurt and hatred.

In modernity, people have been encouraged to express themselves, to engage in therapeutic self-revelations, etc.  To remain “silent” is deemed unhealthy; to “suffer”, unnecessary; and thus to combine the two evils and to live in “silent suffering” is to unhealthily and unnecessarily inflict damage to one’s self.

Yet, that is precisely what many Federal and Postal employees under FERS do — of engaging in silent suffering by continuing to work despite a chronic medical condition which prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job.

Such silent suffering further damages one’s case for a Federal Disability Retirement annuity by continuing to make it “appear” as if everything is fine, including receiving glowing performance reviews, leading the U.S. Office of Personnel Management to conclude: Well, if your agency believes you are doing a fine job, then how can you claim that you cannot do your job?

Consult with a Federal Disability Attorney who specializes in FERS Disability Retirement Law, and consider whether — even in modernity — you should still continue to engage in that old way of silent suffering.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement Benefits: Human Nature

There are other “natures”, of course — of a dog’s or a cat’s; or of a vulture’s, and perhaps of lower order species which we barely give notice to: of spiders (except when they crawl near to us), mice, grasshoppers and frogs.  For species we deem to be less intelligent or possessing the capacity for “free will” (i.e., making decisions and performing acts outside of a predetermined view of what they are “supposed to do”), we tend to have an opinion of, “X does Y because that is the nature of X to do Y”.

Thus, when we read about a traveler who went to a game reserve and got mauled by a lion whom the traveler thought — just a moment before —was “friendly” enough to approach and take a close-up picture of, we shake our heads at the fact that the individual ignored the clear and visible sign which read: “Caution —Do NOT leave your vehicle. Dangerous Animals” or some similar preemptive warning.

Then, of course, there is “our” nature — of Human Nature.  What is it?  We are an animal species which is able to adapt, possess the talent for a thousand things but remain mediocre in all of them.  We cannot run as fast as a cheetah, nor have the ferocity of a lion; we cannot fly like the birds, nor have the venomous bite of a snake.  Yet, we can build cars which can outrace a cheetah, create weapons that do greater damage than a lion’s claws; we can build airplanes that travel greater distances than birds and manufacture bullets that pierce flesh beyond what a snake can deliver.

Of course, we like to think of “human nature” as being, as Aristotle would put it, “rational” first, and vicious somewhere down at the bottom of the list.  But wars, the devastating trails of what we leave behind — they attest more about Human Nature than our rationality.

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 issue of Human Nature as one comprised of cruelty, retribution and back-stabbing is probably not a surprise.  As your medical conditions worsen, you may have noticed a lack of empathy and a growing sense of animosity and contentiousness from your Agency or the Postal Service.

Chalk it up to “Human Nature” and the capacity of human beings for lack of qualities which — while we may like to think of as comprising the essence of humanity — comes out at the worst of times.

Consider, at such a point, whether filing for Federal Disability Retirement might not be the best option available, and consult with a FERS Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement: Choices and Regrets

The two go hand-in-hand, although we may not necessarily see them as unalterable couplets forever ensconced and inseparable. Instead, we often make choices, then afterwards, express our regrets without having learned from the process of “choice-making”.

Choices available are often unanalyzed and nebulous; left to appear, remain inert and ignored; the “active” part of a “choice” is when we engage in the act of “choice-making” — of engaging our minds with an inactive but available “something” — a choice there, but lifeless until the activation of our choosing invigorates the inertia of indecision.

Regrets, on the other hand, are comprised by the dust of past choices made. Once settled, they remain in the hidden caverns of forgotten memories until, one day or hour, or moment of quietude when we have the time to reflect back, the unsettling of the dust collected is stirred and rises from the ashes, like the mythological Phoenix that appears with wings spread and ready for flight into our imagination and stabbing at the vulnerabilities of our inner soul.

We regret that which we have chosen; and like the past that haunts, such regrets are ever so painful when once we recall the choices available and the ones we made.

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 and position, the next steps taken — of choices being made in whether and how to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits — are important in determining whether regrets will follow.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the choices to be made will result in regrets later recalled; for in the end, it is the choices that determine the future course of success, and not the regrets that harken back the past of lost opportunities.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Disability Retirement: The Lie of Agnosticism

Bertrand Russell was famous for it (who would not be — of a tall, slender intellectual with a shock of white hair with that image of a long-stemmed pipe puffing with short bursts of tobacco smoke trailing pervasively behind between haltingly muttered sentences of profound logical confusions?); most of us are lulled into it; and the unwary may think that it is a more intellectually honest position to take, where neutrality stuck between traditionalists and the fervency of iconoclasm is preferable if only because avoidance of unpleasantries often directs of intents and motivations.

Yet, look beneath the surface: Russell certainly wrote and lectured enough against the existence of a supernatural being, as opposed to advocating on behalf of evidence supporting the existence of God.  Countless essays and arguments critical of the illogic inherent in Aquinas’ famous “5 Arguments” or Anselm’s Ontological Argument and — of more modern vintage, Kurt Godel’s formal argument (that is if we can even understand the mathematically complex propositions posited by Godel, who stands apart, along with his friend Einstein, in comprehending the mysteries of the universe) are propounded by Russell, with nary a sentence in support.

Most agnostics are atheists; they just don’t want to be bothered by being confronted with that fact.

Medical conditions are like the clinging to agnosticism: We want to avoid the direct assault and confrontation, and so we keep procrastinating, avoiding and delaying.  Filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS is like the conversion of an agnostic to the reality of atheism, or its antonym: The reality of recognizing that we can no longer avoid.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law; at a minimum, you can see whether you are truly an agnostic, or merely ensconced in the Lie of Agnosticism.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: Changing Lives

The phrase can have multiple meanings, depending upon the emphasis given to the words.  On the one hand, it can imply an affirmative, active meaning — of some individual or organization implementing steps in order to alter the course of another’s life.

In this sense, it may be that a problem has been identified — for example, higher rate of drug addiction in a community; increase in crime rates; an intersection with a greater incidence of traffic accidents, etc. As a result of an identified problem, a person, group or entity goes about “doing something” about it — i.e., petitioning the city council to put a traffic light at the intersection; forming a community-watch program to reduce the crime rate; intervening and educating the community about drug addition, etc. Thus, the phrase “changing lives” in this sense can be characterized as an “active” involvement where X is impacting upon Y.

In another sense, it can remain inactive — as a passive onlooker who recognizes that there are alterations occurring in the lives of individuals.  Every day, changes occur in the lives of everyone about.  One may quip that such a manner of meaning is rather inconsequential, inasmuch as it is a given that lives must by necessity change and encounter adaptations every day; for, it is a tautology to include in a single breath the terms “life” and “change”, just as it is a redundancy to refer to the weather without admitting vicissitude.

Changing lives is to be presumed.  Life’s daily turmoils require it; it is an inevitability which cannot be avoided.  The greater question is: How do we respond to the changes?

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 issue about changing lives can take on a third meaning — that one’s life, career and employment status must by necessity undergo an alteration and modification.

The changes wrought are forced by an uninvited force — the medical condition — and the circumstances which mandate change cannot be controlled — of the inability to perform one or more of the essential elements of one’s position with the Federal Agency or the Postal Service.  How the Federal employee responds to this necessary change is where the relevant next step takes on greater consequences of potential harm.  What you don’t know in the changing life may harm you, and that is why consulting with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law prior to initiating those next steps in changing lives, is important.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Medical Retirement from the OPM: The person who wasn’t

It sounds somewhat like a Hitchcock film — or, is that too archaic a reference these days?  Is Hitchcock a film director whom nobody knows, anymore — another person who wasn’t?  Or, more precisely, “Isn’t” but was?  Is that the greatest fear of most people — the negation that erases, and why immortality and the existence of an afterlife is so important?

It is like Berkeley’s problem of the disappearing room — it is easy enough to imagine that when we exit one room and enter another, the first or previous one still exists in quite the same manner as when we last observed it (with the exception, perhaps, of a mouse scurrying along the baseboards or someone else entering the room while we are gone, changing the placement of the furniture, sitting down and smoking a cigar and changing the atmosphere in the room, etc.) — and the definition of “existence” as tied to our capacity to observe or perceive an object.

It is the thought of our erasure from existence that is the fodder for fear; yet, the self-contradiction of such a fear is so obvious as to logically obviate such a fear, but it doesn’t.  For the contradiction goes as follows: Our fear is based upon our thought of an event that cannot be, precisely because our erasure from the image formed by the thought cannot remain since we no longer exist; yet, it is the prevailing image of non-existence that haunts even though the image would not exist except during the pendency of our existence in formulating that image.  Existence reminds us of immortality; non-existence, of our vulnerability.

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, remember that the mere telling of one’s intention to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits may trigger a host of reactionary retributions by the Federal Agency or the Postal Service, and so one should be carefully cautioned, guided and counseled by a lawyer when considering entering the administrative arena of filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits.

It is as if the information about filing for FERS Disability Retirement benefits is a reminder of one’s mortality — that a medical condition that impacts you reminds those at the Federal Agency or the Postal Service that it could also happen to them — and thus the Federal Agency or the Postal Service moves quickly to erase such reminders by initiating adverse actions, harassing you, intimidating you, etc. — so that such reminders can quickly be erased in order to make you into the person who wasn’t.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Medical Retirement under FERS & CSRS: Persistence versus giving up

The latter should never be an option, although it is too often contemplated; and the former requires either a dull sense of reality or an in-born stubbornness that refuses to acknowledge defeat.  Both are often the result of the countermanding characteristic of the opponent who relies upon the fact that a certain percentage of the population either lacks the characteristic of persistence or otherwise will ultimately give up with nary an effort or will to fight on.

How many battles in history’s billfold of forgotten memories resulted in defeat because of a ruse portrayed by the enemy?  It is the bold pretension that tests the resolve and allows for victory or defeat; the knowledge that there will always be a certain number of people who, upon facing any resistance or adversity, will simply “give up” and surrender.  Thus is it left up to those who will persist no matter the challenge, where adversity and contention will be endured no matter the cost.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who enter the arena of a Federal Disability Retirement process, one should always expect and prepare each stage “as if” the battle at the next stage will ensue.  If a denial is issued by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management for a Federal Disability Retirement application, of course it is going to be written and conveyed “as if” the case never had a chance, “as if” none of the medical evidence had any relevance or significance, and “as if” you don’t even come near to meeting the criteria for eligibility for Federal Disability Retirement.

By sounding “as if” you never had a chance and failed miserably to meet any and all legal criteria for eligibility, OPM is banking on your lack of persistence and the concomitant reaction of simply giving up.

However, persistence is the key to success, and giving up is merely a prelude to a victory near at hand if only one steps back, takes a deep breath, and realizes that, from the very beginning, Federal Disability Retirement was never going to be an easy road to bear — but a consultation with an experienced attorney may well lift the burden of the beast where persistence is the key and not giving up is the pathway to a successful outcome at the next stage of the administrative process called “Federal Disability Retirement”.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire