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Disability Retirement


The federal government allows employees who are unable to work to retire under a disability retirement. It is in the best interest of both employees and the federal government for employees to remain gainfully employed in their current grade or pay level, as long as they can provide useful and efficient service without endangering themselves, others or government property.
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riveraz  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, May 15, 2019 9:07:06 AM(UTC)

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Hello, I have been reading a lot of your posts about timelines and seems to me like in 2015 to 2018 the decisions from OPM were taking longer than now. I heard that OPM is doing a lot better now with the backlog and I wanted to hear from folks that applied as recent as last year (2018) to now (2019).
I applied 2 JAN 2019 and since 18 JAN my application is in Boyer awaiting medical specialist, they told me that it will take 6 months from the date they received it which is 18 JAN 2019. I received the CSA on 29 JAN. Anyone??

Edited by user Wednesday, May 15, 2019 9:22:31 AM(UTC)  | Reason: spell check correction

GSBS  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, May 15, 2019 9:45:50 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: riveraz Go to Quoted Post
Hello, I have been reading a lot of your posts about timelines and seems to me like in 2015 to 2018 the decisions from OPM were taking longer than now. I heard that OPM is doing a lot better now with the backlog and I wanted to hear from folks that applied as recent as last year (2018) to now (2019).
I applied 2 JAN 2019 and since 18 JAN my application is in Boyer awaiting medical specialist, they told me that it will take 6 months from the date they received it which is 18 JAN 2019. I received the CSA on 29 JAN. Anyone??
You must know that 'they' can't tell you a time frame. Is that six months until they first look at your file, it it six months until rejected at step one, no one knows? From reading other recent threads I have not seen anything that indicates the OPM backlog is better now then at anytime in the past. Not too long ago the President fired OPM's newest permanent Director and just have an acting one, I actually heard OPM is doing worse with times reaching a year or two to be finalized and that's if you win...

thanks 1 user thanked GSBS for this useful post.
riveraz on 5/16/2019(UTC)
gembarok  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, May 15, 2019 9:45:55 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: riveraz Go to Quoted Post
Hello, I have been reading a lot of your posts about timelines and seems to me like in 2015 to 2018 the decisions from OPM were taking longer than now. I heard that OPM is doing a lot better now with the backlog and I wanted to hear from folks that applied as recent as last year (2018) to now (2019).
I applied 2 JAN 2019 and since 18 JAN my application is in Boyer awaiting medical specialist, they told me that it will take 6 months from the date they received it which is 18 JAN 2019. I received the CSA on 29 JAN. Anyone??


Greetings,

I don't fit into your criteria, but I wanted to give you this observation for your year group. Faced with the backlog, it is my understanding that OPM brought in a contractor to "catch up," on the approval phase and moved those operations to Boyers. But those folks do not do the next phase which is processing those approvals. Near as I can tell, what that did was create a log jam on the back side of the process. So approvals are no longer taking 12-14 months or longer... the finalization is now taking longer then it was back then. Just an observation.

S/
K
thanks 1 user thanked gembarok for this useful post.
riveraz on 5/16/2019(UTC)
MysticCrab  
#4 Posted : Thursday, May 16, 2019 5:47:14 PM(UTC)
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My last day of work was 7/01/2017 and it took me a while to get all my medical documents together, but I submitted them to my Agency on 1/18/2018. They sat on them for a while for unknown (to me) reasons and finally submitted them to OPM on 11/4/2018. In March 2019 I asked for an update and was told that as of 1/11/2019 my packet was in a pile waiting to be assigned to a medical specialist. I was going to request another update next week - but got the best surprise today in the mail.. I got my approval letter!!

So less than 7 months for mine (once it got to OPM)-
11/4/2018 - Submitted to OPM
5/13/2019 - Date of approval letter
riveraz  
#5 Posted : Thursday, May 16, 2019 6:24:06 PM(UTC)

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Congratulations! This is precisely why I ask the question, because I heard is taking about 6-12 months to get approved.
Mine got there on 18 Jan waiting for medical review now. Your good news gives me hopes!
BustedNeck  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, May 22, 2019 8:08:52 AM(UTC)
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This is my timeline so far...
Sept. 2018 started LWOP
Nov. 2018 application Sent to OPM
Dec. 2018 received CSA #
Feb. 2019 denial from SSA
Apr. 2019 medically terminated
Apr. 2019 letter to hopefully expedite the DR process written by my physician sent to OPM
May 2019 OPM sent DR approval letter (regular mail)
Total of five months after I received CSA # got approved ... Let's see how long before any payment ... I will update when I get payments. I hope this helped with this feed topic.
UPDATE...
June 2019 ... First Interim payment deposited (got a letter in the mail stating that payment was for April and May)
July 2019 first regular interim payment

Waiting on 6 months of back pay and finalization letter ... Hopefully soon.
I will update again when I receive it. I hope this timeline helps folks who wonder how long it take sometimes.
I have to say all parts of my application was completed perfectly by Harris Law and everyone did their part correctly and timely ... Supervisors forms, physicians/medical reports, and my part.
Good luck all.

Edited by user Friday, July 5, 2019 10:07:43 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

riveraz  
#7 Posted : Wednesday, May 22, 2019 8:53:22 AM(UTC)

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Thanks so much, I think it depends on the disability too. But knowing that it moved so quick for you is good to know. Congrats and hope you start receiving your payments soon.
gembarok  
#8 Posted : Wednesday, May 22, 2019 10:32:39 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: riveraz Go to Quoted Post
Thanks so much, I think it depends on the disability too. But knowing that it moved so quick for you is good to know. Congrats and hope you start receiving your payments soon.


Greetings,

I can't say for sure, but I don't think so. The FERS requirement by law is the ability to perform the functions. That is the weight you have to prove. Where as with SSDI, they have certain line items for different diseases coded in law. Diseases outside those line items you have to prove your disease fits a line item to qualify. The way I understand it. For instance:

FERS DR: Job requires lifting 50 pounds. Bad back, amputation, COPD... all they care is can you lift 50 pounds

SSDI: You have COPD. It's a line item. Take a PFT and if it is a bad score, approved.

S/
K
nynyer  
#9 Posted : Tuesday, May 28, 2019 10:20:00 AM(UTC)

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My last day of work was in April 2018, and I think my full application was completed in June or July. I received my approval in May 2019. The department is moving a lot quicker that they used to.

I was just told I may or may not qualify for interim payments, which kind of freaked me out. I really need the interim payments because I'm going to be in complete poverty by paying for my insurance which is close to the cost of my mortgage! And OPM said it could take up to another 6 months for everything to be completed on their end. Of course, everything will be paid back to me and on that day I'll be a very happy girl, but I'm really hoping that I do in fact qualify for the interim payments. Hearing that there is even a chance that I won't is making me very nervous!
riveraz  
#10 Posted : Tuesday, May 28, 2019 10:56:31 AM(UTC)

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Glad you got approved! How do they decide if you qualify or not for the interim payment?
GSBS  
#11 Posted : Tuesday, May 28, 2019 11:39:46 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: nynyer Go to Quoted Post
My last day of work was in April 2018, and I think my full application was completed in June or July. I received my approval in May 2019. The department is moving a lot quicker that they used to.

I was just told I may or may not qualify for interim payments, which kind of freaked me out. I really need the interim payments because I'm going to be in complete poverty by paying for my insurance which is close to the cost of my mortgage! And OPM said it could take up to another 6 months for everything to be completed on their end. Of course, everything will be paid back to me and on that day I'll be a very happy girl, but I'm really hoping that I do in fact qualify for the interim payments. Hearing that there is even a chance that I won't is making me very nervous!
Who told you that you may or may not "qualify" for interim payments, you would be the first who didn't. Did they give you a reason? Some here won't 'qualify' for back pay because they are still in Pay Status, or on OWCP, or simply don't have enough back pay to be paid back. I see 13 months in your case which is usually paid in two installments, one upfront, and the rest when your Blue Book arrives This all can take up to a year or longer, thus the reason for estimated interim pay. Nothing is moving quicker, be selective in what you accept as fact from the OPM Phone Operators

Edited by user Tuesday, May 28, 2019 11:41:49 AM(UTC)  | Reason: -

chapie1968  
#12 Posted : Tuesday, May 28, 2019 2:22:27 PM(UTC)
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My approximate timeline

Last day of work Jan 2017, into LWOP status
finally decided and filed for OPM retirement and SSDI June 2018
Oct 2018 received CSA number
November 2018 sent to SSDI interview/examination
December 2018 told file waiting for medical specialist at Boyers
January 2019 approved for SSDI
Febuary 2019received back pay from SSDI
April 2018 approval letter from USPS/officially separated from service.
May first interim payment from OPM.

Waiting on 28 months of back pay from OPM and trying to get my GEHA health reinstated.

Edited by user Tuesday, May 28, 2019 2:24:01 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

taadow75  
#13 Posted : Wednesday, June 5, 2019 9:29:09 AM(UTC)

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Boyers has officially had my application about a month now. I called to see about sending in additional evidence and while I was on the phone with the rep, I asked about the status. She told me it was a MINIMUM of a year to process these applications. SMH
wtx carrier  
#14 Posted : Wednesday, June 5, 2019 2:22:40 PM(UTC)
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Hired lawyer and started filing:4/16/18
got csa# 8/6/18

denied ssdi 2/15/19
opm dr approval: 3/4/19

got a payment 4/1/2019
got an interim payment 5/1/2019
got an interim payment 6/3/2019
got an interim payment 7/1/2019

Edited by user Tuesday, July 2, 2019 2:35:40 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

riveraz  
#15 Posted : Thursday, June 6, 2019 1:06:23 PM(UTC)

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Hello everyone! So going back to my timeline post.
I was just told that since June 3rd my file was assigned to a medical reviewer. They said it could take 60 days for me to received approve/disapprove letter. I am praying that happens soon because I am having a hard time at work with supervisor playing games with me. Not a good environment to be in.
Wish me luck!
corey301  
#16 Posted : Tuesday, July 2, 2019 2:29:24 PM(UTC)
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Hello all

My timeline:

Mailed in application for DR August 2018
Received my CSA # November 2018
Went to Disability section in Jan 2019
Approved in Early May2019
Received 2 months of interim payments mid May2019
Regular Interim Payments as of June 2019
July interim payment 2019
Called OPM July 2nd and ask what my status is....They said I am expected to receive 2 checks in August for backpay and finalization is scheduled for September 2019. Will this happen as they say....Maybe not but that's what they are telling so far. He said there is an actual date in the computer for finalization. I hope they got my last day of pay corrected because they were first showing March of 2019 and I haven't worked since August of 2018. Also to anyone not receiving Interim Payments. I was told you had to have a financial need...hardship to be able to receive Interim payments. Try telling them you are having a financial hardship and see if they will put you in for interim payments. Worked for me....I told them this and I had interim payments in less than 2 weeks.
riveraz  
#17 Posted : Tuesday, July 2, 2019 3:06:31 PM(UTC)

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Congratulations! Did your approve letter had an effective date of disability retirement?
My application is under medical review since June 3rd, and they said it will take 60 days for me to receive a letter in the mail with their response. I am still working so I would like to know about the effective date.
riveraz  
#18 Posted : Friday, July 5, 2019 10:58:24 AM(UTC)

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Today, I received the certified letter. As you know what that means, I was not approved. Some inconsistencies in my medical records and the letter of my supervisor which I think he was trying to help or maybe not, who knows. I used Harris Federal and will appeal. So sad, today was not a good day, since I have been crying over the death of my cousin and now this. Praying ti gets better in the appeal.
GSBS  
#19 Posted : Friday, July 5, 2019 3:18:40 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: corey301 Go to Quoted Post
Hello all

My timeline:

Mailed in application for DR August 2018
Received my CSA # November 2018
Went to Disability section in Jan 2019
Approved in Early May2019
Received 2 months of interim payments mid May2019
Regular Interim Payments as of June 2019
July interim payment 2019
Called OPM July 2nd and ask what my status is....They said I am expected to receive 2 checks in August for backpay and finalization is scheduled for September 2019. Will this happen as they say....Maybe not but that's what they are telling so far. He said there is an actual date in the computer for finalization. I hope they got my last day of pay corrected because they were first showing March of 2019 and I haven't worked since August of 2018. Also to anyone not receiving Interim Payments. I was told you had to have a financial need...hardship to be able to receive Interim payments. Try telling them you are having a financial hardship and see if they will put you in for interim payments. Worked for me....I told them this and I had interim payments in less than 2 weeks.
Why did you call OPM this week to find out your 'status' if you were approved in May? I do understand the possible wrong service date but that needs to be addressed with the one working on your Finalization, not the call center. Never heard you have to request Interim pay by claiming a hardship, how long did you possibly wait with your early May approval and your Mid May payments before requesting escalation, takes that long just to notify your Agency and obtain needed exit paperwork. Two interim payments in the same month doesn't sound right, one probably was backpay or a duplicate payment. For that matter I don't know why you were "told" you get two backpay payments in August if Finalization is "scheduled" in September, we have members waiting way over a year for this. My only other comment reading that your VA Elected Representative got you D.R. in 2 Weeks, I would like to think you were granted this benefit based on your own Disability and facts presented.

Edited by user Saturday, July 6, 2019 9:01:27 AM(UTC)  | Reason: .

gembarok  
#20 Posted : Saturday, July 6, 2019 11:53:35 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: GSBS Go to Quoted Post
Never heard you have to request Interim pay by claiming a hardship, how long did you possibly wait with your early May approval and your Mid May payments before requesting escalation, takes that long just to notify your Agency and obtain needed exit paperwork. Two interim payments in the same month doesn't sound right, one probably was backpay or a duplicate payment. For that matter I don't know why you were "told" you get two backpay payments in August if Finalization is "scheduled" in September, we have members waiting way over a year for this. My only other comment reading that your VA Elected Representative got you D.R. in 2 Weeks, I would like to think you were granted this benefit based on your own Disability and facts presented.


Greetings,

Somebody would have to show me that in writing somewhere as this would be a policy contrary to what OPM has published. Interim payments are not listed as optional. You would have to be in debt already with OPM not to receive IP. If they are telling you that there needs to be a financial hardship that is new and absurd.

I agree with GSBS that I think your own tenacity is what has gotten you this far so quickly and the fact that two weeks after your congressman's involvement you got approved is merely a happy coincidence.

S/
K
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