Termination for the Federal or Postal employee should generate an administrative personnel action reflected in an SF 50 or PS Form 50, showing the date of the action, the nature of the issuance and the reason for the administrative process which is initiated and culminated. Without it, technically no such action occurred. However, there are cases where such a form has not been produced.
Further, such a personnel initiation is rarely issued in a vacuum; for a Federal employee to be terminated, there are certain procedural hurdles which are normally provided — an issuance first of a proposed termination, and the basis for such a personnel action, and one to which the addressee has a right to respond to within a specified period of days or weeks. Thereafter, consideration must be given by the Agency in the response, whether verbal, written or both, given by the Federal or Postal employee.
Subsequently, when a termination is effectuated, an SF 50 or a PS Form 50 will be generated. From that date of termination, the Federal or Postal employee has up to one year to file for disability benefits.
If such filing occurs after 31 days of the official termination date, then the application for Federal Disability Retirement benefits must be submitted directly to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management in Boyers, PA.
If prior to 31 days, it can be processed through one’s former agency — although, such a filing should be carefully monitored, as one’s former agency may not process it with any urgency, and in the event that it is not forwarded to OPM within the other 11 months and some-odd days left, there will be a question as to whether it was timely filed at all.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire