In a basketball game, it may be necessary to play defense, but is it sufficient? For, if you prevent the opposing team from scoring, but your own team fails to score any points, you may have satisfied one necessary aspect of the game but simultaneously have failed to sufficiently satisfy another, integral aspect — that of offensive scoring of points.
Similarly, in a legal case, while you may meet the necessary formal requirements to win a case, the question remains open as to the sufficiency of the evidence to persuade a jury as to the size of a compensatory award, or whether it was persuasive enough to cast sufficient doubt in the jury’s mind.
Necessity thus becomes the minimal satisfaction whereas sufficiency is the battleground where leeway is given as to whether the quality or quantity satisfies the extent beyond the minimum criteria met.
In a Federal Disability Retirement case under the FERS system, this is the area where the U.S. Office of Personnel Management will focus upon in denying a FERS Disability Retirement case. They will make such generalized statements as, “While we do not dispute the existence of your health conditions, there was insufficient documentation to establish that you are disabled from performing the essential elements of your position.”
That is the question and area of law where it becomes an art form more than a science, and only experience and years of knowledge can discern the underlying requirement needed. There is no one “right” answer. Sometimes, faxing to OPM a voluminous amount of treatment records is the only way to meet the “sufficiency” test, but more often than not, it is the quality of a medical report prepared by the treating doctor which is the only means of satisfying the sufficiency criteria.
Thus, in responding to the question of sufficiency, you may want to contact a FERS Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and who has the experience and background in addressing the issues of sufficiency beyond mere necessity.
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.