Instead of signing the SF 3112C (Physician’s Statement), in representing my clients to obtain disability retirement, I write a 4 – 5 page letter directly to the client’s treating physicians to obtain a current medical report. Generally speaking, I advise my clients not to sign the SF 3112C, because it is essentially a general release of medical information which releases any and all medical records to the Agency’s Human Resources designee.
There is no reason to release all of your medical information — especially such information which is private, which is irrelevant to the medical disabilities which are specifically described and identified as the basis of your disability retirement application in your applicant’s statement of disability, and which do not impact your ability or inability to perform you job. Indeed, while the Agency will often insist upon the signature of the 3112C as being “required”, this is simply not true: Look at SF 3112E(8)(d) (Disability Retirement Application Checklist), which states: “SF 3112C, Physician’s Statement (or equivalent).” This shows that signature of the SF 3112C is not required — if you go out and obtain the medical records and reports yourself, and file the supporting medical documentation, then such documentation constitutes its “equivalent”.
It is my job, in representing a client to obtain disability retirement benefits, to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that my client is entitled to disability retirement benefits. It is not my job to release and and all private medical documentation to the Office of Personnel Management — only such documentation as will prove my case. As such, it is important to know what is required, and what is not.
Sincerely, Robert R. McGill, Attorney specializing in disability retirement cases for Federal and Postal employees