For those FERS Disability Retirement annuitants who are/were concurrently receiving SSDI benefits, and have gone out to earn more income — there is good news.
In the past, if you exceeded the allowable income-ceiling, you would lose your SSDI benefits because you engaged in substantial gainful activity. With no longer receiving SSDI benefits, the FERS annuitant would go to OPM and request that the Disability Retirement annuity be “recalculated“, because he/she is no longer receiving the SSDI offset amount.
In the past, OPM has consistently (and now, wrongly, it turns out) argued that, because such an individual continues to remain “entitled” to SSDI benefits (even though he/she is not receiving any such benefits), that therefore OPM is not required to recalculate the FERS disability retirement annuity upwards for the benefit of the FERS individual.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit just issued the opinion in Stephenson v. OPM, Case #2012-3074, in which they have clearly and unequivocally stated that OPM’s interpretation of the law has been in error. When a FERS disability retirement annuitant loses his or her SSDI benefits for engaging in substantial gainful activity, OPM must recalculate the FERS disability retirement benefit.
I argued the case in early December; the Court issued its precedent-setting opinion in just over a month. This is indeed a major victory for FERS annuitants. You can now take this case and wave it at OPM and demand that your disability retirement annuity be recalculated — in your favor.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire
Filed under: Federal Disability Judge-Made Decisions Quoted, FERS Disability, OPM Disability & SSA Social Security Disability Benefits, OPM Disability Process - 5th Stage: Federal Circuit Court of Appeals | Tagged: accepting opm disability clients all across america, attorney representing federal employees, beware of opm's policies before appealing ssdi denial, CSRS disability retirement federal attorney, disability retirement for federal employees, disabled federal employees applying for ssdi, fdr and ssdi offset or interaction, federal disability law blog, federal disability retirement, federal offset disability annuitant, fers disability and social security disability insurance ssdi, FERS disability retirement, fers disability retirement usps attorney, fers retirement social security, law blog by top usps disability attorney, law firm representing clients in opm disability law all across america, legal counseling by leading usps disability lawyer, legal representation for injured federal workers, offset, offset between social security and opm disability, opm disability benefits offsets with other benefits, OPM disability retirement, opm disability retirement offsets, OPM First Stage Disability Application, opm social security, opm ssdi offset, opm's strange policies with former ssdi recipients, opm's unfair handling of former ssdi recipients, owcp opm fers disability lawyer, postal and social security disability, Postal disability, postal service disability retirement, representing federal employees from any us government agency, the latest information on the ssdi and opm disability offset, the opm's refusal to reinstate full opm disability retirement, the upsetting opm/ssdi offset, top fers disability lawyer for federal and usps employees, USPS disability retirement, what happens when you are you are no longer ssdi recipient | 10 Comments »