If you’re a federal government worker with a medical condition, you may be able to take advantage of the federal government’s medical retirement.
Civil service medical retirement is possible if you are a civil servant with a disabling medical condition.
However, your agency first needs to determine that it cannot accommodate or reassign you. If you are in the army national guard or the reserves, you will have to follow a different medical retirement process.
OPM’s Medical Retirement Definition and Eligibility Requirements
According to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), medical retirement (or disability retirement) is available for employees with disabling medical conditions who cannot work effectively for their agency. Specifically, employees are eligible for federal government medical retirement if:
- They have completed at least 18 months of creditable federal civilian service under the Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS);
- They have become disabled because of a medical condition, such as a disease or injury;
- Their disability is expected to last at least one year;
- Their agency is unable to effectively accommodate their disability in the employee’s current position; and
- The employee’s agency cannot reassign the employee to another vacant position (often because no such positions exist).
An employee must also apply for Social Security disability benefits before applying for federal government medical retirement. Finally, they must apply for disability retirement within one year of separation.
Need Help with Planning Your Federal Medical Retirement?
Medical retirement in the government is complicated. That’s true whether you follow OPM’s medical retirement process as a civil servant or the IDES process.
On top of that, the federal government often makes mistakes. Even the smallest mistake regarding your medical condition could turn your medical disability retirement plans upside down.
For those reasons, if you are considering applying for medical retirement, your best choice is to contact a knowledgeable federal employment attorney.
At the Federal Employment Law Firm of Aaron D Wersing PLLC, we handle all kinds of federal employment cases. Over the years, our firm has helped many federal employees with medical retirement issues. We aim to help you access your rights as a federal employee. All our initial consultations are free, so contact us right away.