OPM Disability Retirement Law: The Reason Why

It all began in childhood — of the question voiced; of the curiosity engendered; of the simple: Why?

It applies to everything in the world, and it confounds parents and teachers, not only because the single word-question deserves an answer, but because it tests the knowledge — and patience — of the queried one.  Age-appropriateness often determines the depth of the answer required; and the extent of curiosity uncovers the seriousness of the query itself.

Why is grass green?  Why do dogs bark?  Why does rain drop from the sky?

Some may answer every query with a nonsensical circularity just to get rid of the question, such as: “Just Because that’s the way it has always been”.  Of course, such an answer neither responds properly to the question, nor satisfies the child who asks the question, and as the child grows older, will either wither in his or her diminished enthusiasm of wonder, or go elsewhere to obtain a more satisfactory response.

If a parent does not possess the knowledge to respond, the better answer would be: “I have often asked that myself!  I don’t know the answer to that, but let’s go to a reliable source and find out, together, what the answer to that fascinating question is!”  And with that question in hand, you can go to an encyclopedia, a dictionary, or some other source — from a hard copy of a book (wow — isn’t that an outdated thought!) to an online source of dependability — and satisfy a child’s wonder of curiosity.

For, the reason why is always just the beginning to an answer beyond, which is a perpetual and never-ending process for a curious mind; and in the end, the question of “why” is merely the beginning, and never the end, and it is the process of engaging the world in acquiring knowledge which is the important “thing” to consider.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who are contemplating an end to one’s Federal or Postal career because of a chronic medical condition which prevents the Federal employee from performing all of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal position, there are going to be many “whys” throughout the process.

Why is the application insufficient to meet the legal criteria?  Why must X be submitted?  Why must Y accompany the application?

Satisfying the many “whys” of your application is important to complete the application properly.  The questioning and the reasoning given, as in the former days of your childhood when you were curious as to all of the various “whys” of the world, remain crucial in order to meet the legalities involved.

To answer your query of all of the “whys” in preparing, formulating and filing an effective FERS Disability Retirement application, contact a FERS Retirement Lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and consider why — and even how — you must apply the law in a Federal Disability Retirement application.

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.

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement: The Words We Choose

Is there a psychological study of those who choose certain words as opposed to others?  Does the choice of words reveal who we are?  Antiquated words — like “husband and wife” — as opposed to the modern usage of “partners” or “significant other”; do they merely unravel a generational divide, and has the replacement verbiage been thoroughly vetted, thought out, considered, reflected upon?

“Partners” certainly implies an equality of station, as does “significant other” (where “neutrality” of gender identification appears to be the primary purpose) — but in the end, someone has to empty the dishwasher, take out the garbage, pick up the dog poop, cut the grass, change the diapers, work to make enough money to earn and make a living, etc.; and when all is said and done, the division of labor seems to naturally work itself out such that the words we choose matter less as one grows older.

The words we choose often reveal more of the innocence of our inexperience, more than some politically meaningful apparatus of choice.  In fact, what we think we choose is often done without thought, is forced upon us, or we are hoodwinked into thinking that certain words — by merely stating them — somehow empowers us, when in fact they merely conceal our insecurities.

“Husband” is the guy who takes out the garbage and opens the door for his wife to enter; “Wife” is the woman who softens the coarseness of a still-insecure guy who fell head-over-heels to marry his wife.  “Disabled”, too, is a relative term, but in a Federal Disability Retirement case, it has a special significance which requires thoughtfulness in the words we choose when preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS.

The word-usage and choosing of words is relevant and significant; for, as the legal standard to meet for eligibility purposes in a Federal Disability Retirement application is different from other venues, the words we choose are important in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS, through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Contact a FERS Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and take care in the words which are chosen.

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 Disability Retirement Help: The Next Move

What thoughts are connoted from such a phrase?  For most, it is perhaps the penultimate game of the Western world — Chess.  Or, if you have been exposed to Eastern or Oriental influences, the game of Go.  Perhaps neither — and the phrase, “the next move”, may evoke thoughts of a basketball player or some other sport which requires a “next move”.

Back to chess — for, as it is played by slow and deliberate increments of moving pieces on a board, there is always a “next move”, until there is not.  As well, in the game of Go, white and black pieces are set upon a board, each player attempting to make a double-“eye” in order to secure their vulnerabilities, until there is no more room to protect.  Often, our lives are reflected in the metaphor of such board games, whether of chess or of Go.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits becomes a necessary next move, you may want to contact a lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law.

Whether the next move is an initial application, or a response which must be filed with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management for a Denial of your Application for Federal Disability Retirement; or, from a second “Reconsideration Denial” resulting in a need to file an appeal to the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board — contact an experienced attorney who is knowledgeable about the next move which must be taken.

For, whether in chess or a game of Go, or in filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, it is always important to make sure that the “next move” is the one which will advance your cause with a winning strategy.

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.

 

Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Disability Retirement: The Idiot

Of course, it is the title to one of Dostoevsky’s lesser known works — or one which few have read.  The author, of course, is the great Russian novelist — who wrote long and arduous depictions of psychological compendiums that only a person of great patience can read.

It is assigned in some high schools; perhaps, still in some colleges; then, after exiting the world of academia, it is quickly forgotten.  It is like many books: claimed to have been read by many, but which are actually only glanced by a very few.

There are other books similar to it: Not in plot or character, but in the fact that few read them — Tolstoy’s works; Arno Schmidt’s, Bottom’s Dream; and others.  But of The Idiot — its central character is a man who is simple and good, but it is in his simplicity and goodness by which people question his intellectual intactness.

And there is a point to that, isn’t there?  We have become so tainted with cynicism that we equate moral virtue with cautionary ineptitude.

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 — be wary of approaching your agency, your postal manager, your Human Resource Office, or even the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, with an attitude of simplicity and goodness.  For, if you do, you may end up like the character in Dostoevsky’s work, The Idiot.

Instead, contact a Federal Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law to help you maneuver through the bureaucratic morass of a Federal Disability Retirement application, lest you end up being characterized by that term in the truly pejorative sense of the word.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Lawyer

 

Federal Disability Retirement Process under FERS: Silent Despair

Despair is bad enough; silent despair, her cousin to avoid.

Sometimes, sharing the trouble, “talking it out” with someone else, complaining to a spouse or friend, or even just venting — helps to expiate the cumulative stresses which grow relentlessly within the body and mind of the individual.  Perhaps that is what social media is ultimately all about — an outlet for expression, however imperfect, which satisfies a very basic human need.  For, silent despair is that desolation of one’s spirit which has no avenue leading to human contact, and that is the worst type of despair.

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, talk to a Federal Disability Retirement Lawyer about whether or not Federal Disability Retirement benefits is an avenue for your despair.

Silent despair never leads to a solution; speaking with an expert in the field of Federal Disability Retirement Law, at the very least, allows for you to consider options which you may not have previously considered.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Medical Retirement under FERS: The Festering Problem

Is that why they came up with that name in the old Addams Family television series?  Of a problem that — over time — becomes a greater issue because it has been left and avoided, leaving the “sore” or other infection to “fester”?  The character in the Addams Family series always seemed to pop up and in out of nowhere — like the crazy uncle left locked in the basement whom no one wanted to speak about and everyone wanted to avoid.

That’s what we allow for in our lives — if not of overtly obvious wounds that we wish would simply go away; then of internal wounds, damaged psyches and anxieties left unresolved.  Things always seem to crop up much later; perhaps of slights in childhood or anxieties, fears and unhealed hurts left to fester; and then, years later, they develop into magnified “issues” which become euphemisms to mask the psychological trauma experienced.  Life is tough.  There is no getting around it.  How we deal with the stresses of daily living, of workplace conflicts, of medical conditions which develop and deteriorate; in the end, each person is left to his or her own devices, with the patience perhaps of family and friends.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the festering problem appears like old Uncle Fester from the Addams Family, it may be time to prepare an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management for consideration.  It is a long and arduous bureaucratic process that, if left to the novice, can itself become a festering problem.

Consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the problems which resulted in your current predicament becomes a greater one later on because of the festering problem of avoidance — like that Uncle Fester who will suddenly appear from nowhere to remind you of the problem that remains unavoidable.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement: The Inevitability of Change

It is a tautology; for, “inevitable” encapsulated and embraces the term “change”, and one presumes that, in applying and comprehending the word “change”, there is a sense of inevitability contained within it.

Thus do we assume certain truths which naturally follow: If you don’t like the weather, just wait a moment (for, the natural course of the universe dictates that the weather will change over time); if you are dissatisfied with your life today, ride it out (for as circumstances appear static for the moment, time will resolve many of the uncertainties faced today); and similar dictums of sagely advice.

What we are not told, however, is that which we have already accepted by experience:  That “change” is too often a negative component, and that is why we believe that things almost always change for the worse.  That is the byline for the pessimist, of course: That good things never last; everything changes for the worse.  The optimist, on the other hand, always tries to squeeze the good out of anything that worsens, and tries to see the glass as half full, instead of half empty.  Whether you are an optimist or a cynic, both accept that change is inevitable; the difference is merely in how one perceives the change.

Then, of course, there is the human element — of affirmative actions taken by an individual or a multitude of individuals in performing acts that contain or otherwise alter the course of change.

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, change is inevitable.  Whether by being placed on a “Performance Improvement Plan”, or the increasing harassment perpetrated by the Federal Agency or the Postal Service — or in the inevitability of a termination — the medical condition itself will normally and often dictate the need for change.

The “human element” is the action taken by the Federal or Postal employee in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, where the affirmative intervention of actions taken may change the ultimate outcome of life’s trials.  Yes, the inevitability of change is a given; but how that change will come about and what outcome is to be determined will depend upon the Federal or Postal employee who recognizes both the inevitability and the need for change, but moreover, of how to go about initiating the process.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Disability Retirement Benefits: Pretzels of Arguments

Anyone with a thought can argue; of a voice which is louder, more aggressive; of incoherence in an age where logic has been abandoned and rationality of methodological proof is unnecessary, but where one’s “feelings” or whether one belongs to this or that victimized class in and of itself validates the propriety of an argument’s perspective.

“Pretzels of arguments” is a concept which evokes an image — a metaphor of sorts — where one has had to engage in a series of linguistic contortions in order to get from Idea-A to Conclusion-Z.  In modernity, however, the metaphor fails to define the illogical structure of an argument, for methodological soundness is no longer applicable: That is, one need not worry about the missing “middle term” in a syllogism or a necessary nexus between sentences in propositional logic precisely because in today’s methodology (if one can identify it as such) of logical discourse, there are no rules which apply.

Yet, pretzels of arguments still confuse us.  There are those who intentionally aggregate the conflate multiple arguments in order to confound; or, others who simply cannot restrict one’s thoughts into a coherent conciseness and therefore must speak in paragraphs where a couple of sentences will do quite nicely.

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, a necessary condition in preparing, formulating and filing a FERS Disability Retirement application with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management is completion of SF 3112A — Applicant’s Statement of Disability.

Some applicants provide an abbreviated annotation to the questions on SF 3112A (which is probably not a great idea), while others provide a voluminous account in response to the questions, going on for pages upon pages in pretzels of arguments that can confuse and lead one into a morass, lost in a forest of language (also not a great idea). SF 3112A should be completed with thoughtful precision — of providing enough information for an approval of a Federal Disability Retirement application, while leaving out unnecessary and confusing information.

Leave the pretzels of arguments for friends and family when holiday gatherings need some confusing diatribes in order to avoid the two rules of pleasantries: leaving politics and religion — those two subjects where pretzels of arguments are most needed.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

 

OPM Disability Retirement: Explanation & Justification

At what point does an explanation begin to sound like a justification?  Is it when it becomes apparent that there is a personal stake involved?  Does the objectivity of an explanation lose its own justification when it becomes clear that the intended explanation crosses over into an attempt to justify the personal actions or beliefs of an individual?  Can an objective explanation justify a person’s actions without appearing as a justification; and do all justifications involve a personal stake, such that it goes beyond mere explanatory exposition?

Are all justifications “merely” an explanation with a personal stake, and are all explanations ultimately a justification for someone, somewhere, about something?  Why is it that an apparent explanation that turns into an obvious justification suddenly loses its credibility and sense of objectivity?  Is credibility itself gained if a third party provides the justification for someone else, such that there is no “personal stake” involved, and does such a third party’s explanation just as quickly lose his or her credibility if there is a “personal” relationship connected with the person for whom the explanation & justification is being made?

There is certainly a fine line between an explanation and a justification, and for Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who are suffering from a disabling 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, filing for FERS Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management may be the best option to choose from — and, when completing the questions posed on SF 3112A, Applicant’s Statement of Disability, it is well to keep in mind the distinction between “explanation” and “justification”.

Always keep in mind the words of Queen Gertrude in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, when she said, “The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”

Explanation on SF 3112A is good; explanation that begins to bleed of justification may raise some red flags.  To mitigate the distinction between the two, the Federal or Postal employee may want to consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, to lend credence to an objective approach in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Employee FERS Disability Retirement application, to be filed with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire
FERS Medical Disability Ret. Attorney

 

Filing for FERS Disability Retirement: The identity of choice

In the end, do we?  That is — do we have a choice when it comes to our identity?  Of course, in this day and age where word-play has become completely malleable, and where Truth and Falsity rarely matter except when tested against the exigencies of the objective universe (i.e., as when crossing a street and someone says, “Be careful, a bus is coming”, and you suddenly realize that the truth or falsity of such a statement can actually have real-life consequences), the question becomes: How does one define one’s use of the word, “identity”?  Is it based upon the aggregation of objective and subjective statements, beliefs, opinions and perspectives?

In other words, are we merely the compendium of cumulative voices based upon: Our birth certificate; the driver’s license in our wallets; the memories retained by our parents, grandparents and relatives; how our friends view us; what our spouses believe us to be; what the neighborhood dogs recalls from sniffing at our feet — the cumulative aggregation of all of such factors?  Is who we are — our “identity” — different from who we believe we are?  If everyone believes X to be such-and-such but X believes himself to be a secret agent working for a mysterious foreign entity, what (or who) determines the reality of our identity?  Or, is “identity” based upon the collective perspective of a community that “knows” that individual?  Can we “choose’ our identity, and if so, completely or only partially?

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition where the medical condition begins to impact one’s ability and capacity to continue to work in one’s Federal or Postal job, there is often a concomitant “identity crisis” that accompanies the medical condition.  No longer are you the stellar worker for the Federal Agency; no longer are you the reliable provider who slogs through the daily toil as a Postal employee; instead, your identity is one of having a medical condition that limits, prevents, subverts or otherwise alters the way in which you live.

Filing for FERS Disability Retirement becomes an alternative that must be chosen, and that “choice” may alter who you are and what others may think about you.  But in the end, you do have a choice: The essence of who you are remains always within; the identity of choice is not altered merely because you file for a benefit that must be pursued because of a medical condition that was incurred through no fault of your own; and anyone who thinks otherwise never knew you to begin with.  For, in the end, the identity of choice was and remains always within the purview and power within each of us; we just didn’t know it.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire