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Federal Workers' Compensation

The Office of Workers' Compensation Programs administers four major disability compensation programs which provide wage replacement benefits, medical treatment, vocational rehabilitation and other benefits to certain workers or their dependents who experience work-related injury or occupational disease.

Here is a forum for members to share and exchange experiences regarding to workers' compensation related issues.


To read today's top news stories on federal employee pay, benefits, retirement, job rights and other workplace issues visit FederalDaily.com.
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djplourd  
#1 Posted : Tuesday, June 9, 2020 6:36:26 AM(UTC)
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My wife has been on OWCP since December 2016. Earlier this year she was approved for DR. As I understand it, she has the option of taking her OPM DR annuity or continuing to receive OWCP payments. She chose to continue receiving OWCP payments but we immediately hit a roadblock. An HR rep claimed that she had refused a job offer and was therefor not eligible to continue receiving the OWCP payments. There were some informal discussions with HR and her supervisor but there's was never an official offer for her to accept or reject. Her medical restriction limit her to 3 hours a day. She was performing under her previous PD as other duties as assigned. She was a Dental Assistant but because of the accident she has lost most of the use of her left arm. During her 3 hours she was only doing routine admin tasks.

We are trying to fight this but we're not getting any support from senior HR. Her supervisor wrote a letter stating that there wasn't a job offer, but no one seems to be accepting it.

Any suggestions on how we can fight this?

We're also shifting tactics and starting to pursue a schedule award. Harris Federal helped us with the DR but they said they were too busy to help with the schedule award. They recommended Alan Shapiro and we've made initial contact with him. Now we're waiting for him to send us some information.

I think all we really need is a doctor to do the impairment rating. I've searched and searched but haven't had any success in finding any doctors in my area (DMV -DC/MD/VA). Any recommendations? We were hoping that Harris could provide us some doctors to contact but they said the didn't have any.

Looking for recommendations for other lawyers that can help with schedule awards and/or doctor recommendatiosn for the impairment rating.
LeroyToliver  
#2 Posted : Sunday, June 14, 2020 1:03:03 PM(UTC)
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Stick with Shapiro, his network knows the system and the games they play. When you do receive a job offer while on OWCP you always make an effort and work within your restrictions placed in writing. A simple reply accepting a job offer but making note of how she wouldn't be able to do x,y,z parts of the job due to her restriction and would need help with ..., but otherwise happy to accept. The DOL will throw everything at her if she refuses to do any type of work and there is no attorney that can save her from refusing an offer and thinking about collecting OWCP payments to stay at home. When push comes to shove they'll have her sitting in a break room for 40 hours a week moving things around with one arm to prove their point. Best go DR if no adequate job offer can be found.
djplourd  
#3 Posted : Tuesday, June 16, 2020 5:18:34 AM(UTC)
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My wife is already out on Disability Retirement. All we're looking for at this point is help with filing for a schedule award. Maybe if we'd gone with Shapiro at the start then his 20% might have been worth it. Seems excessive since all we really need is a doctor to do the impairment rating evaluation. We wanted to stay with Harris since they helped with the DR, but they said they were too busy to help with the schedule award. We also asked about doctor referrals but they said they didn't have any.
Sofedup  
#4 Posted : Tuesday, June 16, 2020 8:17:05 AM(UTC)
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Check Jesse Slades website. OWCPClassroom. There is a list of doctors that do schedule awards for many states.
djplourd  
#5 Posted : Tuesday, June 16, 2020 8:35:29 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Sofedup Go to Quoted Post
Check Jesse Slades website. OWCPClassroom. There is a list of doctors that do schedule awards for many states.


Unfortunately none of the doctors on Jesse's list are anywhere near me. There is a link to feddoctor.com but it comes up as a malicious link.
jesse slade  
#6 Posted : Tuesday, June 16, 2020 1:31:04 PM(UTC)

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I don't know why the FedDoctor link would come up 'malicious' for you. That's the first I heard of that. I tried that link and no such message came up.

You're very likely going to have to travel to find a good rating doctor. That's just a fact of life in OWCPland. The odds of you finding a good rating doctor without some travelling are pretty slim for most people.

It is illegal for any contingency fee to be charged for anything relating to your OWCP claim. You can tell a good rep from a not so good one if they charge a contingency fee, not caring if they violate the law to make more of your money.

Applying for a schedule award really isn't that hard. You find a good rating doctor and get the rating. You complete and submit the schedule award portion of a CA-7. OWCP processes the award.

Everything really boils down to the quality of your rating. That's done by a physician, not an attorney. So why would you give up a percentage of your schedule award, that is paying you for permanent loss of use to an attorney who is charging you an illegal contingency fee?

Edited by user Tuesday, June 16, 2020 1:31:47 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

djplourd  
#7 Posted : Thursday, June 18, 2020 1:49:31 AM(UTC)
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I tried different browsers and still got the malicious link warning. I went ahead and allowed it anyway but of course there are no doctors listed within a 100 miles of me. The only reason we were considering the lawyer is because we hadn't been able to find a doctor that could do the Impairment Rating. We were hoping that Harris Federal who handled her DR could help with the Schedule Award or at least refer us to a doctor that could help. They told us they were too busy handling other Schedule Awards and they did not have any doctors to refer us to. With some further searching I finally found a doctors office in Rockville, MD (within an hour's drive) that claims they have an OWCP Expert doctor that can complete a Schedule Award Impairment Rating.

My wife already filed a CA-7 for the schedule award and they said they'd be sending her some paperwork shortly. Once we get that paperwork, we're going to see if any of her current doctors (PCM, Neurosurgeon, Pain Management, and Occupational Therapy) are willing / capable of doing the Impairment Rating. If none of them can/will do the rating, we'll contact the Rockville office and go from there.

Edited by user Thursday, June 18, 2020 1:51:56 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

VetMom  
#8 Posted : Sunday, June 28, 2020 5:15:33 AM(UTC)
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First again THANK YOU JESSE FOR YOUR EXCELLENT ADVICE on my last APPROVED schedule award/recurrence!!! I thought about you immediately when the same very nice claims examiner in Philly office is once again assigned to my new recurrence/SA case!!! I understand folks getting nervous wanting to hire a lawyer but like I just told several fellow vets and friends my bank/investment accs reflect MY LEG WORK!! Not easy finding Drs to work with OWCP but they're out there!!! As several "fedsoup experts" have said it gets back to the "medical reports!!" Like I posted recently I never expected SECOMP Dr to go in my favor!!DMA added a condition upon review of SECOMP!!

Again THANK YOU JESSE and folks NEVER GIVE UP.....

100% P&T Disabld Vet
FERS Disability Retired
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