You may wonder if it is in your best interest to accept an offer by your Agency for a light duty assignment. You plan on applying for OPM Disability Retirement, or may actually be in the process of doing so, and are concerned that OPM may view your acceptance of light duty as effectively being accommodated or reassigned.
The truth is that generally it is perfectly fine to go ahead and accept the offer if all other factors make sense to you. When your 3112 D Supervisor’s Statement reflects the light duty reassignment, it actually may assist you in arguing your case; the agency is in effect agreeing that your medical conditions are preventing you from performing one or more essential functions of your position, and out of necessity have removed the bulk of your responsibilities.
As far as the concern of light duty being interpreted as a reasonable accommodation, there is generally no need to worry. An accommodation situation can be described as the agency’s provision of some sort of assistive device or arrangement so that the employee can continue to perform his/her position description just as before. Light duty, on the other hand, generally means that the employee has been stripped of a considerable amount of his/her duties and is most certainly not performing, at minimum, one essential function of the position. Of course every situation is unique and we would be happy to discuss your particular circumstances.
If you have more questions regarding reasonable accommodation or light duty as it relates to OPM Disability Retirement, feel free to contact The Law Offices of Eric L. Pines, PLLC at 800-801-0598 or firstname.lastname@example.org.