Answers from Experienced Federal Workers’ Compensation Lawyers
The federal workers’ compensation lawyers of Aumiller Lomax can help you learn more about your entitled compensation after you sustain a workplace injury. Dealing with the legal system can add insult to injury after you are hurt at work. Luckily, we can help educate you on your rights, responsibilities, obligations, and options. Your case shouldn’t be a pain. Our experienced lawyers can help maximize your compensation and keep you informed. Our frequently asked questions cover the basics but contact us today if you’d like to learn more.
What is federal workers’ compensation?
Federal workers’ compensation provides a federal employee or their survivor with benefits in the form of money for lost wages, medical bills, rehabilitation, and more. When you are injured on the job or contract a work-related disease, you are likely eligible for these benefits.
What is FECA?
FECA, or the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act, was designed to enable injured workers to receive fair compensation for work-related injury or illness. This is the governing law over federal workers’ compensation. It is administered by the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) in the U.S. Department of Labor.
How can the OWCP help me?
The Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) administers four major compensation programs that can help you obtain workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits include essential wage replacement, medical care, and rehabilitation. This organization has the final say on what benefits you are awarded.
How does federal workers’ compensation work?
When you partner with Aumiller Lomax to aid you in your federal workers’ compensation claim, we will walk you through every step of the process to ensure you receive the maximum possible benefits. When you sustain a work-related injury or contract a severe work-related illness, please complete the following:
- Immediately notify your supervisor when an injury- or illness-inducing accident occurs. Call 911 if you suspect your condition is life-threatening.
- You will need to fill out the form corresponding to your work-induced injury or illness. If you are injured, you will need to fill out a CA-1, a Federal Notice of Traumatic Injury and Claim for Continuation of Pay/Compensation. For illnesses induced by your workplace or injuries that occur over time (i.e. carpal tunnel syndrome), complete a CA-2 form, a Notice of Occupational Disease and Claim for Correspondence. Remember to obtain and complete these forms in a timely manner.
- The next step is to submit your CA-1 or CA-2 forms. These must be submitted within 30 days of the incident. Your supervisor should submit their portion of the form to the appropriate OWCP office, as well. Please keep a copy of everything you submit for your personal records.
- At this point, a representative from your regional OWCP office will investigate your claim and notify you if there is enough evidence to proceed with it. You may be asked to submit additional information if further confirmation is required. If your claim is denied, you reserve the right to file an appeal.
- Finally, you will select a physician to fulfill your further treatment. Be sure to select a medical provider who is familiar with federal workers’ compensation procedures and forms, as they will need to assist you throughout the process. Your workers’ compensation benefits are not contingent on you seeing a provider within a specific network. You may see any qualified physician of your choice.
How do I know if I qualify for federal workers’ comp?
Several key factors must be proven for your claim to be accepted by the OWCP examiner. If you satisfy these five requirements, you can expect to receive benefits. If you question whether your work-related injury or illness qualifies, our team of lawyers can help. The requirements are as follows:
- You must provide written notice of your injury, illness, or death to the OWCP within 30 days of the incident. Your claim also must be accepted within three years of the incident date.
- You must provide evidence of your injury or illness occurring during your federal employment. This can be proven using a supervisor’s report.
- Proof of injury or illness must also be provided. The claims examiner (CE) will first determine the incident did occur. Then they will review your medical records to ensure your condition is the result of a work-related accident. They will also uncover the facts surrounding occupational illness or injury without a singular incident or sudden onset.
- Injuries due to activities unrelated to your job performance will not be accepted for benefits. Your injury or illness must have happened as a direct result of your duties on the job. For example, accidents due to fooling around are deemed your own fault and don’t qualify you for workers’ compensation, even if the injury occurred on the job site.
- Direct or aggravated must be proven. This means it must be proven that your injury was causally related to your activities on the job. If you have a pre-existing injury or condition that was aggravated by a job-related event or activity, that may qualify as well.
- It is pertinent to present adequate medical records along with a legitimate diagnosis provided by a qualified physician when you submit your claim.
Is there a statute of limitations for workers’ comp claims?
Yes, the statute of limitations for your claim is three years from the date of injury or death. However, the notice of injury death must be presented within 30 days of the incident. There are a few exceptions. If you fail to give timely notice, your claim will not be approved. If you fail to use your benefits within the three-year window, neither you nor your survivors will still have access to the claim.
How long does federal workers’ compensation last?
You may claim your federal workers’ compensation benefits within the three years following your incident. Anything after three years is beyond the statute of limitations. The length of time you receive benefits will depend on your award amount and your recovery period.
What is a schedule award?
A schedule award officially recognizes that you have suffered a permanent impairment as a result of your work injury. You may be eligible for a schedule award if you partially or completely lost the use of a limb or organ due to your workplace incident. Schedule awards are only distributed after the completion of a careful application process. If you believe you may qualify for a schedule award, you should seek our professional services immediately. Timing is incredibly important in securing these permanent awards.
Can I receive FECA and Social Security Disability benefits at the same time?
Yes, you can receive both federal workers’ compensation and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Accepting both benefits at the same time may affect your tax exemption. The most common occurrence of an individual receiving both workers’ compensation and social security payments occurs when a taxpayer injured in the workplace fails to improve and may eventually qualify for both disability and workers’ compensation benefits.
Are federal workers’ compensation benefits taxable?
In most instances, federal workers’ compensation benefits are not taxable at the state or federal levels. If you also receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), a portion of your workers’ comp benefits may be taxed. The workers’ compensation act awards compensation for work-related sickness and injury that is fully exempt from tax. When this award is combined with supplemental security income, you may have to pay some taxes. However, most are negligible. If you have questions about whether your workers’ compensation benefits are taxable, our legal team would be happy to discuss your situation.
Still Have Questions? Contact Us Today to Learn More
If you recently fell ill or became injured because of your workplace or job site, we can help. No matter your occupation, you deserve to be compensated for your pain and inconvenience. Our skilled lawyers are adept at assisting workers with all sorts of cases. You can count on our experience to help you secure maximum compensation benefits. Choose the federal workers’ compensation lawyers you can rely on. Contact us today to schedule your free initial consultation.
What Sets Us Apart
- Over 30 Combined Years Of Experience
- Providing National & International Services
- We Focus on Federal Work Injuries