If you are a federal employee who is struggling with an injury or illness, you may be wondering what you can do to increase your chances of approval for Federal Disability Retirement. Applying for Federal Disability Retirement can be an overwhelming process, but the benefits of Federal Disability Retirement are completely worth the effort. Being approved can be difficult, but even if you are denied, you still have options for your future.
In this article, we will outline the steps you can take to improve your chances of approval for Federal Disability Retirement.
Understand the Process
First and foremost, you should understand the Federal Disability Retirement process and all of the eligibility and qualification requirements. You must meet all of the requirements set forth by the OPM in order to be approved.
You will have to prove to the OPM that your agency is unable to reasonably accommodate or reassign you. This is an essential step in the process that should not be overlooked. You must exhaust all reasonable accommodation efforts before applying for Federal Disability Retirement.
You will have to fill out the SF 3107 and the SF 3112 to apply for Federal Disability Retirement. Both of these documents require a lot of thought and preparation. It is recommended to have legal representation during this process to ensure these documents are filled out correctly.
Don’t forget, you must apply within one year of separation from your agency. This is a strict deadline that the OPM will not overlook. If you miss this deadline, you will not have any more chances.
Gather All Supportive Medical Documentation
Having the right medical evidence is imperative to increasing your approval chances on your Federal Disability Retirement case. It’s important to have a supportive medical professional on your side to help back up your case with the most comprehensive evidence. It’s also important to know which medical evidence to include. This can be a difficult undertaking if you don’t have experience working with the OPM.
You will have to prove to the OPM that your medical condition is affecting your ability to perform your job, and without the right supportive medical evidence, this will be very difficult.
You can use your medical history, performance evaluations, treatment plans, test results, etc. to support your case.
Consult an Experienced Attorney
The best step you can take to improve your approval chances is hiring an attorney. This will prevent you from making costly mistakes in your application that could lengthen the process or even lead to a denial.
Harris Federal Law Firm has helped over 8,000 federal employees apply for this benefit at a 99% approval rate, and we know exactly what the OPM is looking for in a Federal Disability Retirement application.
We take cases at any stage of the application process, from initial application to MSPB, and we want to help you secure your future.
Remain Positive and Patient
Finally, it’s important to remain patient and positive throughout the process! We know how hard it is struggling in your job due to an injury or illness. It can be disheartening to feel like you have no options for your future, but Federal Disability Retirement can provide a light at the end of the tunnel.
There will be long periods of time where you don’t hear anything from the OPM about your case but do not be discouraged, we offer lots of resources in the meantime to help educate you on every aspect of Federal Disability Retirement.
If you are approved, congratulations! You will start receiving interim payments while the OPM finalizes your annuity. If you are denied, we will immediately begin working on your appeal case.
If you are planning on applying for Federal Disability Retirement, schedule a FREE consultation with our firm to learn how we can help you.