Leviathan is both a mythological sea creature, as well as the title of a famous book authored by Thomas Hobbes. It represents that uncontrollable entity of gargantuan proportions, unstoppable and thoughtlessly destructive. It takes on many forms, many faces; or none at all. It is an entity of nondescript characteristic, and engulfs countless lives marked by unidentified graves.
For the Federal employee and the Postal worker who is lost in the bureaucratic shuffle of loss of identity, the concept of a Leviathan is both familiar, daunting and dismaying. There are countless tentacles of agencies and departments within the Federal Government, the largest of them including the Department of Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Department of Justice, The U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Department of Homeland Security, and the umbrella Department of Defense, to name just some of the larger ones.
Becoming a part of the mission of those, or any of the multiple lesser ones, can be an exciting venture. But when a medical condition begins to reduce the stature of one’s potential accomplishments and contribution to the mission of an agency, it becomes easy to get lost in the very size of the agency. Most such agencies have a centralized Human Resources Department, such as a “Civilian Personnel Advisory Center”, which is another faceless and gargantuan bureaucracy. Personalized Human Resource offices are being gobbled up by the Leviathan of so-called efficiency of centralization; the “personal touch” is left on the side of the road to bigger is better.
For the Federal employee and the Postal worker who needs to file a Federal Disability claim, it is precisely that “personal touch” which is often needed, but is lacking because of the Leviathan of modernity. Then, of course, the very agency which makes the decision of an approval or a denial — the U.S. Office of Personnel Management — is itself a sea creature of sorts. Difficult to access and even more of a problem of finding information concerning one’s case, the Leviathans of the modern-day world must be constantly battled and confronted with effective swords and shields.
When a Federal employee or Postal worker suffers from a medical condition, such that the medical condition necessitates filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, whether one is under FERS or CSRS, it is important to understand the nature of the beast, and the fact that one’s own agency is merely one of many, and the modern-day David in a world of Goliaths may need more assistance than a mere handful of stones.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire