Gargantuan; Leviathan-like; Mammoth; Elephantine; such descriptive words at once describe and simultaneously belie the true nature of an entity, especially when it comes to an administrative bureaucracy at the Federal level. Agencies are organic structures, made up of micro-entities (i.e., people), divided into sections which operate within an infrastructure of larger branches, some of which are essential to the direction of the organism, others which are peripheral but still serve a minor purpose.
Thus, a Federal Agency can be likened to the human body; certain “parts” can be severed without doing mortal harm (a toe or a finger, perhaps); other organs are vital to the very survival of the living organism. Within that large structural entity lives and breathes the multiplicity of components which make up the composite whole. Because of the sheer size, it is advisable to retain evidence of anything which has been forwarded or sent in for consumption by the beast.
Thus, in a Federal Disability Retirement case, whether under FERS or CSRS, the normal course of business in encountering the U.S. Office of Personnel Management should include the ability to show that a vital piece of information was sent and can be verified that it was sent. Receipt is another matter. Once a beast consumes its prey, it is difficult enough to try and reach down its throat to see if it made its way into the proper digestive system. All that one can show is that it was fed; whether and how it was received is often known only by the burp of satisfaction echoing from the winding corridors of an endless maze.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire