On the other hand, there is no such thing as a “lost cause” case. To assert such a conclusion would be to presumptively admit defeat. In Federal Disability Retirement cases, there is always a good chance of prevailing, whether or not a mistake was made; whether or not a doctor annotated, on a particular day in a moment of hope, that the patient showed “hopeful improvement”. Yes, it is the job of the Office of Personnel Management to cling onto such peripheral statements, and to magnify such statements such that they appear to encompass the essence of the medical condition.
It is always with some amusement that I hear an agency Human Resources person state something to the effect of: “Well, you know, Mr. McGill, this is not an adversarial process. We and the Office of Personnel Management are merely here to determine the eligibility of the Federal worker, and to make sure that he or she fits the criteria.” Not an adversarial process? Is the Office of Personnel Management “there” to help you? Is that why, in their template denial letters, they latch onto the most peripheral of issues and emphasize those points which allegedly present a problem, and ignore the rest of the medical evidence? Any Federal or Postal employee who is contemplating filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS would be wise to see the entire Federal Disability Retirement process as one of an “adversarial process”. If you don’t, you proceed at your own peril. On the other hand…
Robert R. McGill, Esquire