Federal Disability Retirement under FERS: Spectator Sports

Psychologists and commentators in general have had a field day (yes, the bad pun is intentional — but who can avoid it?) with analyzing and providing “expert” opinions on the matter, which essentially plays with (yes, yes, another bad pun) the following question: Why are people so enamored by watching others play a game?  What is it about the concept of spectator sports that draws such a crow?  What is it about being part of a “team” that results in people acting in such bizarre ways?

It is, of course, an easy transition to other areas of one’s life — from spectator sports to the political rally; of parades and cheering crows; of legions of a cheering populace gathered to welcome the Roman troops returning from battle; of D-Day and V-J Day; of the stadiums filled for the World Cup in Soccer to the excesses of the Super Bowl; of March Madness and the tradition of Friday Football (High Schools), Saturday Football (Colleges) and Sunday Pro football games; and what the Covid-19 Pandemic reflected when everyone was shut in, but with curtailed capacity to view such spectator sports.

What does it reveal about us?  Had the Romans, with their vast coliseums, already figured out the human psychology — of the need for spectator sports — in order to satisfy the blood-thirsty need of a restless populace?

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who are needing to filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS, hiring a disability attorney who specializes in Federal Medical Retirement Law is often approached as one does a spectator sport: Who has the highest winning percentage?  What Law Firm will treat me as a “team member”?  And, the flip side is also true, concerning the perspective of the Agency: “How will my ‘team’ (the Agency) treat me?” “How will my team react?

Whether fortunate or unfortunate, the psychology of spectator sports is how everyone views things, but for the Federal or Postal employee who is ready to contact a FERS Disability Lawyer to initiate the process of OPM Disability Retirement, understand that trying to get an Federal Disability Retirement is ultimately not a spectator sport; for, it is the reality of a life endeavor, and your full participation will be needed on the “field” of the early retirement process.

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: Random Occurrences

Kant’s view is that the structures of order are imposed upon the objective world by human thought processes; thus, ultimately, the argument is that there are no such things as random occurrences, for everything is random, and therefore nothing is such.  For, if everything is X, then it is the same as saying that nothing is X, just as, If everything which is X is also Y, how can you distinguish between the two?

It is similar to David Hume’s contention concerning causality.  There is nothing in the world that tells us that the next time you hit a cueball and aim it at the 8-ball in a game of pool, that it won’t hit the target but fail to move it.  The fact that you have seen it done a hundred times before is no guarantee that it will happen the next time; for, what you saw the hundredth time gave you no new information than the first time you saw it.

Volume of incidents in identical form is no basis to argue that causality exists, if only because no “necessary nexus” is discovered whether you have witnessed something once, or a thousand times.  Yet, we crave stability and consistency; it is these random occurrences which trouble us, like a bad hair day which ruins and depletes our sense of confidence in the world we occupy.

Medical conditions have that effect upon people — that they are random occurrences which hit some, but not others.  It is when that happens when we believe the world to be unfair, and that the gods of fate somehow look with disfavor upon us.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition which prevents you from performing one or more of the essential elements of your Federal or Postal job, the search for greater consistency and stability in your life may be to prepare, formulate and file an effective FERS Disability Retirement claim, through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

For, while the objective world around you may appear to be merely a series of random occurrences, it is the affirmative act of a human being which can impost some semblance of Kantian order upon an otherwise chaotic world.  Such an affirmative act begins, for the Federal or Postal employee, but contacting a FERS Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Medical Retirement Law under FERS, to be filed with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

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: The Adversarial System

Commentators often note the proportional imbalance reflected by the number of lawyers in this country.  Is it s good thing?

One can argue (yes, the irony cannot be avoided, that we begin with an “argument” when discussing the “adversarial” system), of course, that the number of lawyers merely reflects the origin of Western Society — for, isn’t the foundation of Western Civilization based upon Greek Philosophy?  Specifically, isn’t the foundation of intellectual endeavors founded upon the “Socratic Method”, which is the precursor of legal argumentation?

The Adversarial System, at its core, is a dialectical methodology of attempting to arrive at “Truth” — or so it is supposedly intended.  In a vacuum, that is the context of the system; in truth (yes, that age-old irony, again), because there is involved human emotions, underlying subterfuges of intent, the pure “competitive” desire to sin, and the sheer motivation of simply wanting to defeat the other side — in the end, what the adversarial system lacks, in most instances, is the exact counterpoint and self-contradiction of the necessary context in order to make it work: Civility.

The Adversarial System, without the outer clothing of civility, merely becomes reduced to linguistic battle.  But that is the system which we are left with when — over decades and even centuries — the natural course of every and any legal system becomes barren with the coarseness of its skeletal foundations.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal Service workers who need to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, under FERS, don’t get fooled by the admonition that this is merely an “administrative process”, and that OPM is merely an “umpire” to make sure that you have met the statutory criteria for eligibility for Federal Disability Retirement.

To be sure — even umpires don’t just call “balls and strikes”, but get into heated arguments with the players and, similarly, OPM is just as much a part of the adversarial system as in any other legal process.

Contact a FERS Medical Retirement Lawyer, that is, a legal expert who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and make sure that you have acquired the necessary arsenal to win the battle in this adversarial system of preparing, formulating and filing an effective application for FERS Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

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.

 

OPM Disability Retirement Benefits: Word Games

Playing word games — like the New York Times Spelling Bee, or “Wordle” (a game which was just recently bought by the New York Times, and thus will likely require a fee in order to play) entails some reflection and methodology of thought.  Word games are meant for fun; they are often challenging, and prompt us to engage in an intellectual exercise devoid of reality.

There are, of course, other “word games” — ones which are played in the field of reality and the objective world.  It is how human beings engage with one another, and it is seen each day throughout the world in courtrooms and battles utilizing and applying the law.  Unlike word games where there are no real consequences in “real life”, the other kind of word games results in an impactful determination upon individual lives.

FERS Federal Disability Retirement Law is no different.  As every Federal Disability Retirement application is a paper presentation to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, it must by necessity involve a certain level of word games — of presenting the applicable case-law; of formulating the proper language; of engaging in the give-and-take of legal argumentation, etc.

Wittgenstein called it a “language game”, but in the end, they amount to the same thing: Words, as parts of a language, engaged in a “game” which must be played.  And in doing so, it is a good idea to contact a FERS Attorney who is experienced in the word game of Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the twisting tunnels of legal language lead you to the ends of the earth where a gaping hole of a denial from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management leaves you speechless in a word game of real-life consequences.

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 & Postal Disability Retirement: Failing to Act

Ours is a society of inertia.  We talk a lot; move around much papers and information; sit and post on various social media outlets; watch movies and shows; and within that flurry of seeming activity, we satisfy ourselves that we are doing things which matter.  But when it comes time to act, when action actually actuates — we so often fail miserably.

It is as Heidegger once quipped — that we have our distracting projects in life in order to avoid thinking about substantive issues and the inevitable.  There is a time to act — of initiating a course of action; of taking preparatory steps; of formulating a plan for the future.

For Federal employees and U.S.Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition no longer allows you to continue in your Federal or Postal career, the time to act is now.

Consult with a FERS Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and begin the process of reversing the usual inaction of inertia, and refute the customary approach of failing to act.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement Benefits: The Best of Plans

We do what we can with the tools we are given.  We are given a certain time-frame — say, 60 years or so, half a century, several decades, etc., in which to make our “mark” in the world, to gather our resources, accumulate what fortunes we can muster; and within that contest of living a “life”, the make the best of plans.

All plans are, as Mark Twain likely noted, made to be subsequently abandoned; for, the foibles of human folly dictate that the best laid plans must always adapt to the reality of changing circumstances.  However, we make them nonetheless.  Why do human beings have such a need, a desire, a proclivity for making plans?  Do other species engage in such extensive efforts to map out the future, or do they just “live for the moment”?

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 best of plans must by medical necessity change and become adapted to the new reality of one’s medical conditions.

Consideration yet must be given for one’s future, and preparing and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, is one of the changes within the framework of another best of plans: To consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and begin the process of restructuring the best of plans…

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement for U.S. Government Employees: Now, What?

The question or declarative can be stated in two ways — As a query for the next steps, or as an expression of exasperation directed towards a frustration of multiple things gone wrong.  Or of a third: A combination of both frustration and an effort to understand what the next steps are.

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, the declarative query, “Now, what?” is often heard throughout the process of suffering from the medical condition itself, as well as during the process of preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS.

The medical condition itself can lead to further complications, and thus the expression as stated; the Agency’s response of callous disregard can be the basis for the exasperation stated; the complexity of the administrative process of filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits can also be the origin and cause of frustration.  To minimize the trauma of the entire process, consult with an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Employee Disability Retirement Law so that the next time you need to express the sentiment, “Now, what?” — you can do so by picking up the telephone and calling your attorney.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal & Postal Disability Retirement: The Presumptuous Act

What would we say about a person who, having bought a lottery ticket, goes out and spends lavishly, quits his job and becomes indebted far beyond his means — all prior to the day when the “winning numbers” are declared?  We would consider that he or she is: Crazy; irresponsible; or, perhaps, has some “insider knowledge” that we are not privy to.

Most acts lack a presumptuous intent; many, merely of thoughtless motivations; and rarely but some, of such egregiously bold-faced assault upon common decency that we disbelieve and attempt to substitute some rationally-based justification to explain away the presumptuousness of such an act.  Would our opinion of such a person — the one who buys a lottery ticket, then quits his or her job and proceeds to spend lavishly while abandoning all “reasonable” displays of conventional wisdom — change if additional facts were to be posited?

How about: The doctor has given him 30 days to live, and when we ask the person about the lottery ticket, the response is: “Oh, I don’t expect to win; it is just a metaphor for my life’s prognosis”.  Would such a response change our opinion; for, no longer is the person “crazy”; perhaps somewhat “irresponsible” in that the debts left behind will still have to be paid by someone; but yes, we would likely lean towards the third option in our thought processes: that the “insider knowledge” was the very private knowledge held close to his or her heart: Mortality suddenly betrays careful living, and abandonment of conventional lifestyles is a natural consequence of having nothing left to lose.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer a similar (but perhaps not quite as devastating a scenario) situation like that of the hypothetical individual noted above, the “presumptuous act” that others may deem so may not be so outlandish as one may first assume.

Filing a Federal Disability Retirement application for the Federal or Postal employee under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset is not quite like the example above, but often, some see it as such; for, to “give up” a well-paying job, a reliable career or a secure position in the Federal System is certainly a drastic situation; and the alternative may not allow for much of a choice: To remain and suffer, and continue to deteriorate until one’s body or emotional state has been so damaged as to suffer through life for the rest of one’s allotted time on earth; to ignore that is indeed the height of presumptuousness — of taking things for granted.

Health should be a priority, and preparing, formulating and filing a Federal Disability Retirement application through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management is not a presumptuous act; rather, its opposite is what presumes too much — that your health will continue to withstand the deteriorating condition that you have all along experienced for these many years.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS & CSRS Disability Retirement: The title itself

Sometimes, it is good to go “back to the basics”.  Throughout these blogs for these past and many years, the attempt has been to relate common everyday experiences and life’s challenges to the Federal employee and U.S. Postal worker struggling daily to maintain one’s career and to extend a career in the face of a medical condition.  Yet, the primary focus has always been to try and remain informative; to give some sense of the process of filing a Federal Disability Retirement application through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset.

Sometimes, however, the title itself is sufficient, and one does not need the additional analogy, metaphor or “connectedness” to try and understand the process, and instead, all that is required is the title itself.

OPM Disability Retirement is a “medical” retirement.  It is based upon a medical condition that prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job.  Yes, it can be a very, very complicating process, especially because there are potential pitfalls throughout the multiple administrative steps.  At each step of the procedural paths, there may be legal consequences that may not be correctible once the Federal Disability Retirement application has been submitted and a case number has been assigned at Boyers, Pennsylvania – i.e., a “CSA number” that begins with the number “8” and ends with a seemingly irrelevant “0” appended as the last of series of numbers.

Aside from the inherently complex questions posed on SF 3112A, Applicant’s Statement of Disability, the initial question that one must face and answer is (A) Whether, as a practical matter, Federal Disability Retirement is worth it, and (B) Whether there is a good chance to become eligible for it.

As to the first question, the factors that must be considered are: One’s age (for, at age 62, all disability annuities are recalculated based upon the total number of years of Federal Service, including the time that one is on Federal Disability Retirement, and as it now takes at least a year to get approved by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the question needs to be asked as to how old one is, how close one is to reaching regular retirement, and whether one can last until such age of retirement and the accrual of enough service computation years of Federal employment, etc.), how many years of Federal Service, and whether the Federal agency or the Postal Service is threatening to proceed with termination or separation.  And as to the second question, issues concerning the type of medical condition, the severity, the impact upon the Federal or Postal positional duties, the extent of support, how much reliance of such support is based upon a VA disability rating, and multiple other factors.

The “title itself” is often quite simple; it is the subtexts, the parenthetical unknowns and the hidden potholes along the road to filing a Federal Disability Retirement application (here we go again with the analogies and the metaphors) that makes for a complex and complicated journey.  But, then again, hasn’t that always been the case throughout life – facing the title itself that seems simple enough, but finding out that it is a bit more difficult than first thought?

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire