Disability retirement


Q: I am retired under federal disability retirement from the postal service. I understand you are medically re-evaluated every year or two. At what age does this stop? Also, what if it is determined that you are no longer disabled? Are you returned to your previous position? I understand you cannot make too much money. If you do, will you lose disability and be returned to your prior position as well?

A: Until you reach age 60 OPM has the right to ask you to provide medical information or undergo medical examination to determine if you have recovered from the disabling condition. While it can ask for that proof annually, it generally won’t do that unless it feels it needs that frequent an update. On the other hand, you are required to complete the questionnaire that OPM sends out every year asking for information about your earnings from wages or self-employment. If they exceed 80 percent of the current basic pay for the position you occupied when you were retired on disability, your annuity will be discontinued either on your re-emplyment by the federal government or six months from the end of the calendar year in which your earning capacity was restored. If your annuity is discontinued, you will be given priority referral to other jobs in the federal government. However, your agency isn’t required to place you in your former position nor is it required to rehire you.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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