Fortunately, most of my cases which are submitted before the Office of Personnel Management at the Initial Stage are approved. It is important to step back and understand, first and foremost, how the approval/disapproval process works. Remember that the submission to the Office of Personnel Management is a “paper submission”, and as with any bureaucratic presentation, it is important to make sure that it is neat, understandable, and “presentable.” You want to make your particular submission stand out from the thousands which are submitted. Neatness and streamling accounts for much. Merely gathering up a thousand pages of medical documentation and hoping that the sheer volume and weight of the medical records will be proportionate to the seriousness which the OPM representative will view your case, is a foolhardy approach.
I attempt to streamline the case for the OPM representative, by annotating, identifying the medical documentation, explaining the relevance of the documentation, and identifying both statutory and case-law citations which are relevant in supporting the fundamental basis for the disability retirement application. It is important to make a proper presentation. It makes the life of the OPM Representative that much easier, and if the OPM Representative can review the application, read the synopsis, clearly understand the relevance of the medical documentation, be able to analyze the applicant’s statement and do it almost effortlessly, then one is more often than not rewarded with an approval, rather than the dreaded “denial letter”.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire