Complexities in any field, whether general, technical or mundane, possess a context which includes its history, its underlying purpose, and the years of evolving issues which have impacted the expanding compendium of rules, regulations, statutes and procedural mandates. The previously-stated sentence is itself a paradigm of such complexity, and unless a proper context is provided, retains scant meaning except in a garbled conglomeration of independent words.
Federal Disability Retirement from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether under FERS or CSRS, is somewhat akin to the context-less complexity experienced by any Federal or Postal Worker who approaches such an administrative process. Those who have been involved in the substantive and procedural morass understand the methodology, means and minutiae which must be engaged in order to successfully maneuver through the regulatory and administrative process. But most Federal and Postal employees have a singular contact with the entire process (and thankfully so), without a context of how, why, or when it reached a level of such complexity that it became necessary to search for some guidance to understand the very process itself.
Unfortunately, Human Resources personnel are often unhelpful or uninformed themselves. The statutes, laws and procedural regulations which are supposed to guide the Federal or Postal employees have themselves become a conglomeration of complexities. And the ability to discern and distinguish between information, helpful information, and errant information, has become a problem in and of itself.
Best to take some time at the front end to simply gather some facts, and determine what the central issues are. Taking the time at the front end to tackle the complexities, and understand the context, will save some troubles down the road.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire