Benefits Provided Under OWCP / DOL Federal Workers’ Compensation
If you get injured on your employment premise, what benefits can you ask from DOL? Let’s learn more about them.
If you got injured on the job, you should understand how the OWCP / DOL Federal Workers’ Compensation functions. All civil servants and officials of the federal government get covered under the Public Service Compensation Act (FECA), which provides for medical expenses and part (or all) of lost wages due to work-related injuries or illness.
Claims must be submitted following strict standards and within the stipulated timeframes to be accepted, and requirements can be highly challenging to manage for those who are unfamiliar with the process.
What is OWCP / DOL federal workers’ compensation?
The Federal Employee's Compensation Act was enacted in 1916 to ensure that federal-level workers had protection from injury or disease caused by their employment. Federal compensation programs get administered by the Office workers Compensation Programs (OWCP) under the Department of Labor (DOL).
Obtaining authorization for a claim can be difficult. There are rules to follow, strict timelines, many types to include, and the necessary medical evidence linking a disease or injury to a patient's work. It would be tricky and difficult to file a DOL OWCP claim in the right way so that only 3% authorization claims can get made. Contesting a rejecting claim may be more complicated than properly filling it out in the first place.
Continuation of the payment
If an employee receives a traumatic injury that occurs during one shift in one day, they must request and receive continuous pay (COP) from the employer for the first 45 days. Before the end of that period, he must complete a CA-7 form requesting the loss of wages to OWCP for payment from day 46 onwards.
Benefits of lost wages
The need for benefits for loss of wages arises when an injured employee cannot return to work due to an injury on the job. TheDOL OWCP may compensate for lost wages from the 46th day of the time lost to a traumatic injury or from the first day of loss due to a non-traumatic injury. Lost wages are paid at the rate of two-thirds of the average wages for employees for singles and 75% of dependents. For legal purposes, a spouse is considered a dependent. The average per capita income is based on the average 52 weeks before the injury date, and certain payments and benefits are deposited and deducted at the 52-week average.
To receive lost benefits, an injured employee must provide medical evidence that an injury at work has caused or contributed to the inability to return to work or work the complete number of standard hours.
Many of the inquiries we receive are about OWCP's denial of income loss benefits and the answer to the plaintiff that medical evidence is insufficient to justify the payment of income loss benefits.
Medical evidence should include an understanding of the nature of the injury and the diagnosis of the condition supported by medical studies. Without medical evidence, the Claims Examiner happily maintains the claim.
The real reasons why a Claims examiner may deny a loss of salary are numerous. If your article requires additional documentation to receive wage loss benefits from the loss of benefits, you may contact a workers' comp lawyer.
Medical care advantages
The law allows an injured worker to choose a physician first, and the OWCP regulates medical care after that point. Your physician needs to determine all the conditions diagnosed sooner rather than later.
It is found that the Department of Labor is more likely to deny the diagnosis that had been exposed to them for months, or even weeks, after the day of the accident. The sooner a diagnosis is made, the more likely it is to be approved by the OWCP.
Generally, the first step is to diagnose work-related conditions and make those conditions acceptable to the OWCP. The next step is to get the necessary treatment and care to properly manage the injury and hopefully, allow the injured worker to experience a full recovery.
In many cases, complete recovery is not possible. An injured worker gets left with a permanent illness, which may require further treatment and medication for the rest of their life. The OWCP will always be responsible for treating those injured. Still, they should continue to receive regular medical notes from a licensed physician who describes the need for ongoing care.
You have owned benefits if you get injured on the job. OWCP / DOL Federal Workers’ Compensation should include your medical care, medication, other necessary equipment, and even transportation to and from clinic visits. You have the right to choose your doctor and see someone of your choice, not the one nominated by your employer. If you finally need to change career paths, as a result, OWCP also provides vocational rehabilitation and training under FECA.
There’s a lot on your plate trying to recover and get back to work, and a lot of paperwork may not be your priority right now. But time is of the essence - if you miss out on the opportunity to file, you may eventually pay for things in your pocket and not get the benefits you deserve.