Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Disability Retirement: Off on a Tangent

It can be done inadvertently, without malice, and often unintentionally — and so long as one remains within the insular world of language, no harm occurs in most instances, in most circumstances.

Of course, to literally go off on a tangent — if you are walking in the wilderness without a compass; out in the deep sea in a small skiff; wandering about in a neighborhood known for drive-by shootings — can be quite another thing.

But for the most part, when we say that “So-and-so often goes off on a tangent” or “Sally has a tendency to go off on tangents”, we merely mean that the focus of the conversation, the content of the primary narrative, the point of the lecture being given, etc., the central idea, theme or point of someone’s statement, discussion “talk”, etc. is being waylaid by some divergent, often irrelevant side-show.

It is like a movie badly edited — you know, those scenes which often are “extras” which were taken out because of time-constraints or creative doubt as to their relevance to the story.  Or, sometimes people go off on tangents for a reason — deliberately and with intent — as when you want to divert the focus of the narrative away from the main point, precisely because the main point is not a very strong one to begin with.

In a Federal Disability Retirement case, this can happen on both sides — from OPM’s side, going off on a tangent can mean that they do not want to focus upon the medical reports and records, but instead want to deny you based upon tangential issues of performance ratings, conducts issues, accommodation offers, etc., as opposed to focusing upon the main point of a Federal Disability Retirement application: Your medical conditions.  Or, from the perspective of the applicant — the Federal or Postal employee filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits — of irrelevant background, or on issues which may actually weaken and harm a case.

Contact an OPM Lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and make sure that you remain focused on the centrality of the multi-faceted issues presented in a Federal Disability Retirement case, and not on irrelevant issues by going off on a tangent.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill
Lawyer specializing exclusively on Federal Disability Retirement Law

 

Federal Employee Disability Retirement Process: The Extrapolated You

You have a whole life, an entire story — a “novel” of sorts, with chapters beginning with your birth, paragraphs describing your accomplishments and sentences denoting your character.  A friend, neighbor or acquaintance comes along and picks up this novel, opens it to a random page and reads one sentence.  Perhaps that sentence, or partial-sentence, reads as follows: “…and people thought that his behavior was unacceptable.”

That person walks away with this single facet, not having read the rest of the novel, or perhaps not caring, or even worse — of wanting to hold onto that singular, “out-of-context” extrapolation of an impression wrongly held.  For, in the very next sentence, the paragraph reads: “It turns out that his behavior was entirely appropriate, and everyone who had thought otherwise had to admit to this basic fact.”

Such is a parallel scenario with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management in reviewing a FERS applicant for Federal Disability Retirement benefits — for, not only does OPM only see the extrapolated you based upon your FERS Disability Retirement application, but moreover, they are looking to selectively take extrapolated portions of your narrative as a disabled person, and are glad to take things out of context and deny your claim.

How to counter this?  By arguing and applying the Law.

Contact an OPM Disability Lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and begin at the outset to rebut and preemptively reply by citing the relevant law in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal or Postal Employee Disability Retirement application and present the “you” as more than the extrapolated you.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Federal & Postal Worker Disability Retirement: Consequences

They exist and occur, for every act we engage, for every decision we make.  Some, inconsequential; others, of some limited impact; still others, of greater reverberations; and of a limited few — of impact both felt and ones by which we must live with.  Regrets result from the greater consequences we believe we could have prevented, altered, precluded or changed; those are the ones which nag and trail, follow us in haunting residue of forever regrets.

What could have changed things?  How could I have done things differently?  Why didn’t I do something at the time?

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, consider the consequences — then consult with an experienced attorney who will be able to guide you throughout the process.

Contact an OPM Disability Lawyer who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, lest the consequences of proceeding without specialized advice could result in regret and remorse.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

FERS Disability Retirement from OPM: Worries

We all have them.  For some, they become so overwhelming as to destroy a life, prevent a career, block any advancement and contain any progress.  It is the capacity of human beings to project into the future, to expect events yet to happen and to become anxious about circumstances beyond one’s control.  It is what makes human beings unique.

Perhaps it is the outgrowth from evolutionary origins which allows for the success of our species — for, to worry is to have an imagination, and it is the human imagination stemming from fear for the future that has allowed for human innovation and solutions to problems which might have otherwise ended in disaster.  But as every positive force has its negative opposite, so the worries we carry can also cancel out the positive impact that worries may incur.

We may worry about our future, and our actions may resolve such worries; we may worry about our parents or grandparents, and a solution may resolve such concerns; or we may worry about our past, and yet such worries may be unfounded.  Worries alone are not enough; they must follow with a plan, an action, an implementation of a goal derived.

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 worry for tomorrow may be a real concern, and not just your imagination taking you into flights of fearful chaos.

Consult with an OPM Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law, and allow your worries about tomorrow be allayed with facts about the Law and expertise in the field of Federal Disability Retirement benefits for the future which is hidden, yet hopeful.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

OPM Medical Retirement under FERS: Consider the Alternatives

In making any decision, it is always important that one consider the alternatives available.  It is the decision made in isolation — of contending with thoughts, fears and misinformation within a vacuum of not knowing — that often results in disastrous decisions made without consulting and considering the alternatives available.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition where that 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 choices are often stark and clear: Stay at a job or career which is no longer sustainable, and where the Agency will increasingly harass and punitively initiate actions in an effort to remove you; resign and walk away with nothing; or, in the best alternative available, file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS.

Sometimes, of course, the “unexpected” alternative can occur: For example, a person who has filed for FERS Disability Retirement benefits is offered a reassignment that is both acceptable and accommodating to one’s medical condition, and continuation in the Federal Workforce is thus possible.  In most instances, however, filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits is “The” alternative, and the only viable one available, but even such an alternative must be considered carefully in light of the existing laws, the potentiality for problems to be encountered, and the resistance met by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management for the multiple and varied reasons that OPM bases its denials upon.

Considering the alternatives is not just a matter of whether and when to file, but to be cognizant of the difficulties ahead in preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application with OPM; and in order to do that, you should consult with an attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law under FERS, through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire

 

Postal & Federal Employees Disability Retirement: The Obituaries

Why are they published, and who reads them?  Is it when a person reaches a certain age and wants a sense of security that death and age are relative issues — that there is not a necessary connection between the two?  Was mortality ever questioned?

When we come across an octogenarian’s obituary, we may merely marvel at such longevity and perhaps with some admiration declare, “At least he lived a long life”; but when we view a young person’s description on the next page, we wonder with sadness at the suddenness of it all.  Was it necessary or inevitable?  How must the parents feel —for that is the horror of every parent, is it not, to bury one’s child before one’s self?

Obituaries provide some level of comfort — of a final testament and declaration to the world that seemingly never cared; on a practical level, to provide whatever social or legal notice to surviving beneficiaries; and as a reminder to us all that life should be celebrated and not mourned — at least for those still living.

For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from ill health and where health becomes a daily reminder that there are some things in life which are not worth sacrificing, reading the obituaries should jar one into realizing that being a sacrificial lamb at the altar of a Federal Agency or the Postal Service is never a worthwhile goal.  If your health is deteriorating and you have a medical condition which prevents you from performing all of the essential elements of your Federal or Postal job, it may be time to consult with an experienced attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement benefits.

In the end, you do not want to read your own obituary and shake your head saying, “Too young, too foolish, too late.”

Sincerely,

Robert R. McGill, Esquire