The captain of a ship docked in a harbor knows three things: Where the ship came from; where it is; where it will be going next. If any of the three are missing from the thought-processes of the one who intends to navigate the waters, the ship should remain where it is. For, it is the orientation and coalescence of the past, the present, and the future course of action which should determine the efficacy of whether to act now, or delay for the future.
Unfortunately, in a Federal Disability Retirement case, whether under FERS or CSRS, because of the exigent circumstances which often surrounds the debilitating nature of a medical condition, the emergency situation of the present state of affairs will often dictate, without guidance, the future course of events.
The future cannot be thought of or contemplated with any sense of purpose, because the exigency of the “now” makes all else irrelevant. But how we formulate the “now” may well determine the future course of events. As such, in preparing, formulating and filing for OPM Disability Retirement benefits from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, it is important to approach the administrative process and procedure in a systematic, logical manner, if only to ensure the best chances of success at the First Stage of the process.
Culling together a disjointed disability retirement packet just to get it filed immediately (unless, of course, the Statute of Limitations is about to come upon one) is normally not a plan for a captain’s log for charting a ship’s future course; especially when one becomes aware of the stormy seas ahead.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire