Form SF 3112A: Applicant’s Statement of Disability is a crucial component of your application for FERS Disability Retirement (FDR).
This article discusses the purpose of SF 3112A and provides some important tips for drafting a compelling statement.
As a first step, let’s take a look at how SF 3112A fits into the big picture. Sometimes it’s helpful to think of your disability claim as a triangle:
One side of the triangle is the statement prepared by your physician (SF 3112C). Another side is the statement prepared by your agency (SF 3112B, SF 3112D, and SF 3112E). And the remaining side is your personal statement of disability (SF 3112A).
Ideally, all three statements should be consistent and should provide clear evidence of your eligibility for FDR.
What is the Role of SF 3112A?
Basically, SF 3112A is your opportunity to express to OPM why you believe you are entitled to FDR benefits. Although your statement is not the only one that matters (as depicted in the above figure), OPM gives considerable weight to your subjective account of your medical conditions.
It is imperative, therefore, that you describe the nature and severity of your disabilities accurately and completely. You must also be able to show that there exists a causal relationship between your disabling medical conditions and your inability to perform one or more essential functions of your position of record.
When drafting SF 3112A, be sure to include the following:
- A list of your official diagnoses and the corresponding ICD 10 codes.
- A list and/or discussion of your symptoms, including the severity and frequency of each symptom.
- A list and/or discussion of the work functions you are unable to do (or have major difficulty doing) as a direct result of your medical conditions.
- A list and/or discussion of the non-work functions (for example, personal hygiene, driving, house cleaning, sleeping, eating, exercising, grocery shopping, climbing stairs, etc.) that you are unable to do (or have major difficulty doing) as a direct result of your medical conditions.
- And if you are currently working in another position, a description of how the duties and responsibilities of the new position differ from those of your federal position and how the new position accommodates your medical restrictions.
I hope you find this information helpful. For similar topics, please visit my Blog and FAQ. Should you ever have questions about your eligibility for FERS Disability Retirement, please contact me to schedule your free 30-minute consultation!