When a Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS or CSRS is denied at the first stage of the process, a Federal or Postal worker who filed for the benefit has the administrative right to request that it be “reconsidered” by the Office of Personnel Management. Once requested, the case file is turned over to the “Disability Reconsideration Branch” of the office, and will be reviewed and evaluated by a Disability Specialist — not the same person who reviewed it at the Initial Stage of the process.
A person who has filed for Federal Disability Retirement benefits has thirty (30) days to Request Reconsideration. While the 30-day period may arguably have some flexibility based upon when the applicant actually received the denial letter, it is nevertheless a good policy to adhere to the 30-day time-frame by counting the date of the denial letter as the “beginning” date. Obviously, it is better NOT to be placed in a position of having to argue whether or not the applicant met the 30-day deadline. Further, it is best to send it in via a means where confirmation of receipt can be shown. OPM is a large bureaucracy, and things get lost in the morass of the volume of submissions.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire