Should You Seek Federal Disability Retirement on Your Own?

by | Apr 14, 2015

Last Updated May 24, 2022
Our federal employee disability retirement lawyers discuss when a federal employee should seek federal disability retirement claims on their own.

You can learn about the process a federal worker must follow to obtain federal disability retirement benefits  by going online or asking your federal agency’s human resources department.

So, why would you need help from Harris Federal? Based on our experience of working with federal employees across the country, we can actually think of many reasons. We ask you to consider the following service we can provide:

1. Helping you to determine if you qualify for benefits.

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has a long list of requirements you must meet to be eligible for disability retirement benefits. We can help you to determine if you meet these requirements by reviewing matters such as:

  • Have you worked with a federal agency as a career employee for at least 18 months?
  • If you were terminated from your position, has less than a year passed since your separation date?
  • Do you have a currently diagnosed medical condition that is affecting your ability to work?
  • Have you filed yet for Social Security Disability benefits?

We can make sure all of your bases are covered and all necessary records are in hand at every step of the way as we move forward in your case.

2. Collecting and reviewing your medical records.

Our team works with our client’s doctors from all over the country every day. You will have to fully document your medical condition for OPM as you apply for benefits. Are you confident that the records you have compiled to date will pass muster and support your application? Do you know whether your doctor properly documented your condition in a way that explains why you are entitled to benefits?

If not, you can rely on the professionals reviewing your case at Harris Federal to find any discrepancies. Remember: Unlike OPM, we won’t reject your claim due to these discrepancies – we will help you to address them effectively.

3. Preparing and submitting your application.

Applying for disability retirement benefits requires completing forms such as:

If you are unfamiliar with these forms, filling them out can be challenging and time-consuming. For instance, the SF 2801 is 21 pages long. The SF 3107 is 14 pages in length.

At Harris Federal, we have professionals who fill out these forms on a daily basis. We already know what information they require and where to find that information in your records. We also know how OPM wants to see that information communicated on these forms.

4. Keeping up with the status of your application.

One of the FAQs on the OPM website is: Why does it take so long to process my retirement claim?

Among the many reasons OPM provides for delays is the fact that 23 percent of all claims received are missing one or more records. However, a claim compiled and submitted with the help of Harris Federal will not have that problem.

If there is a different problem – for instance, your employing agency’s failure or refusal to return an OPM legal administrative specialist’s call – we can help you to address that issue as well.

We make it a practice to check our clients’ claims on a regular basis. We follow up immediately to correct any reported problems.

It is important to note that our firm has developed a solid reputation with OPM. We have successfully represented thousands of federal employees with their claims for disability retirement through OPM. We speak with disability staff daily and have visited the OPM office in Washington, D.C., many times in efforts to develop a great working relationship.

5. Representing you on appeal.

If your application for benefits is denied, the OPM will send you a letter explaining why. You have the right to correct problems and then ask for reconsideration by a different OPM legal administrative specialist.

If that specialist also rejects your claim, you have 30 days to appeal that decision to the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB).

If your claim is denied, we will recognize the issues you must address when seeking a reconsideration or appealing to the MSPB. We have seen it all before.

We can move immediately to submit your application for reconsideration. If you have to go to the MSPB with an appeal, we will be there with you as your knowledgeable advocate, ready to answer questions on the spot.

6. Saving you the headaches.

When you are suffering a serious medical condition, the last thing you should worry about is collecting all of the records and submitting all of the paperwork that is needed to obtain disability retirement benefits. While you focus on your health, we can handle those details for you.

Throughout the process, we can stay in touch with you to provide updates that are as frequent as you want. You can always call us to check on your claim’s status.

Contact Harris Federal if you have plans for retiring with federal disability benefits. We can remove the stress for you and help you to make your retirement a positive turning point in your life.

Message us & find out if you qualify today!

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