When the U.S. Office of Personnel Management issues its Initial Denial of a Federal/Postal Disability Retirement application, the usual methodology of argumentation they employ is likened to a shotgun blast — with very little aim or focus.
It is a frustrating narrative to read, and all the more so because they have had an unlimited amount of time to formulate and write the denial, whereas the denied applicant is provided a very short response time. The Denial Letter can appear extensive in scope, and the initial reaction is to try and rebut each and every line of the denial letter — which is the wrong approach to take.
The “right” and most effective responsive approach to take when responding to an OPM Denial of the Initial application is to categorize the various issues into a manageable number of subcategories, and then to respond to each in a systematic manner, and as to each, to cite a supportive case law that favors your argument.
Remember always that OPM’s purpose in denying your case is two-fold — either in hopes that you will not respond in a timely manner or not at all (thereby obviating the need to do anything further because you will have lost your administrative right to proceed any further in the process); or, that the process will appear so complex that you will fail to respond adequately to the multiple points of the denial letter.
Do not get caught up in the “fairness” issues — for, the entire bureaucratic process is unfairly weighted in favor of OPM at every turn, and to become embroiled in arguing against the unfairness will only lead to endless frustration and get you nowhere.
Instead, contact an OPM Disability Attorney who is familiar with FERS Disability Retirement Law, and begin to prepare and formulate an effective response to OPM’s Shotgun Denial of your Federal Disability Application under FERS.
Robert R. McGill
FERS Lawyer exclusively representing Federal and Postal employees to secure their Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.