FMLA, or the “Family and Medical Leave Act“, allows for the Federal or Postal employee to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid (LWOP) leave during a 12 month period. It is “protective” measurement against adverse actions by an Agency or the U.S. Postal Service.
While the process of preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS may take longer than the 12-week period, it nevertheless allows for some protection during the administrative process. Moreover, if timed properly, it can fend off adversarial actions, harassment, undue pressure, etc., in conjunction with other requests and actions — such as taking sick leave, annual leave, etc.
Often, agencies become irrational and impatient during the long administrative process of filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits from the Office of Personnel Management, acting as if the Federal or Postal employee has any control over the timing or the timeframe taken by the Office of Personnel Management. While FMLA has no direct connection to OPM Medical Retirement, it is one more “tool” that the Federal or Postal employee may utilize to shield one’s self against the aggressive actions of the Federal Agency or the U.S. Postal Service.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire