The older generation often refers to the importance of “first impressions” — of the firmness of one’s handshake; of whether eye contact is made to betray secretiveness; the clothes one wears; tattoos and the number of body piercings; all are evidence of first impressions left for future judgment.
While such initial encounters may not reveal the true “inner” person, they nevertheless leave an indelible and lasting imprimatur upon those who rely upon such an approach. Whether one likes it or not is besides the point; first impressions are psychological realities which one must deal with in this harsh world.
For those who prepare, formulate and file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether under FERS or CSRS, the Federal or Postal applicant must understanding that one’s formulation of one’s case is merely one of thousands, and the Case Worker who is assigned to the case, upon an initial review and analysis, will be left with such a first impression.
The methodology of evidentiary presentation; the conciseness of the Statement of Disability; the coordination and support of the medical evidence; all will depend upon the manner and content of the presentation. Too many tattoos, and the grandmother-characteristic in the Case Worker may turn up a nose; not a firm enough handshake, and the old-man sense in another Case Worker may pause with concern.
First impressions; it is how one approaches a case, as much as the presentation of the evidence, in preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether under FERS or CSRS.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire