Q. If you are approved for disability retirement, are you responsible for paying for your medical insurance and life insurance coverage? Also, if you are approved for disability retirement with the governmental agency where you work, does this mean that Social Security will approve you also?

A. Yes, you are responsible for paying the premiums for your health and life insurance coverage. No, the fact that you have been approved for disability retirement doesn’t automatically qualify you for Social Security disability benefits. That’s because the criteria are different. To be approved for disability retirement, you must be unable to perform the duties of your current job and any other available job for which you are qualified at the same grade and geographic location. To qualify for Social Security disability benefits, you must be so severely impaired that you cannot perform any substantial gainful activity.


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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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