For each Federal and Postal employee, there is a “right” time to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS & CSRS. By “right time”, I do not mean as to the proper timing in the actual filing of a Federal Disability Retirement case — i.e., whether it should be before or after separation from service, whether at the end of the year, the beginning of the year, etc. No, by “right” time, I refer to the time when a Federal or Postal employee — that person who has put in all of those many years of loyal service, managed through pain, discomfort, overwhelming stresses, anxieties, fears, chronic and intractable pain, etc. — comes to the conclusion that he or she cannot continue in this mode of existence anymore. Whether or not a Federal Disability Retirement case is filed with an agency or at the Office of Personnel Management in one month as opposed to another, is ultimately not of great importance; whether a person who is suffering from a medical condition for months, or years, and has been adept at hiding the daily pain and suffering — whether that person has come to a decision that it is now the “right time” to file for disability retirement, makes all the difference. Each person must find that right time. “How” and “when” are the two questions which must be answered, and only the Federal or Postal employee who is contemplating filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS can answer such questions.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire