In preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether under FERS or CSRS, one must always be cognizant of the “legal aspect” of the entire bureaucratic process. For, ultimately, FERS & CSRS is based upon a statute, which has been further expanded and delineated in regulatory explication, and additionally, evolved through judicial decisions called “case laws“. It is the compendium and compilation of a legal framework of administrative law which comprises the entirety of eligibility and entitlement to Federal Disability Retirement benefits.
Within this context, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management must make its decision upon a review of each and every Federal Disability Retirement application. If in any single aspect of applying the law, OPM goes counter to, or misapplies the substance of, the legal framework — whether against the originating statute; in non-compliance with the regulations; in failing to apply the clarifications mandated by case-law; then, a decision by OPM denying a Federal Disability Retirement application can be reversed based upon an error in applying the law.
Thus, the importance of making a proper legal argument in a Federal Disability Retirement application cannot be overemphasized. As “the law” is the basis of any civilized society, so the proper application of the law ensures the fair and equitable process due to each citizen who fits within the framework of the law.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire