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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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#1 Posted : Monday, July 8, 2019 3:23:23 PM(UTC)

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Hello All,
My friend that this forum has helped is in need of assistance. So, a letter was received from Social Security after 4 years that they matched Workers Comp payments and found that they have overpaid him. What is so questionable is that they compute payments 2 years before it was approved or did they go back to when it was first filed? Regardless, why would they after 4 years just caught this when all the paperwork was given to them? Also, they took over $30,000 so why would that be an over payment? They stated when he received a raise, they didn't subtract his increase, which was only a cost of living increase. They want a response in 30 days but we feel this is so wrong. If they know they overpaid, then whey do they want a response in 30 days, why not just deduct it? Has anyone else gone through something like this? Help would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks!!
#2 Posted : Monday, July 8, 2019 7:06:06 PM(UTC)

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It is the period for which the WC benefits were paid that matters, not when they were actually paid. If he received retroactive payments of WC any offset of the SSDI would apply to the period to the retroactive period as well as ongoing payments. Any time that WC payments increase (or decrease) that requires a recalculation of the offset effective with the month of the change. OWCP and multiple States periodically increase WC payments for various reasons, so adjusting the offset due to a change in the WC payments is common. The pamphlet that individuals receive when they are awarded SSDI benefits, and other correspondence from SSA, reminds the recipients of SSDI to report any changes to their WC payments, but many fail to do so. If it is Federal WC from OWCP that your friend is receiving (likely since that is the only matching operation SSA has regarding WC payments), theOWCP recipients in most years receive an increase every March. The matching operation with OWCP is designed to catch instances where individuals forget to report that increase. This occurs later and SSA makes the adjustment retroactive to the date of the increase. That normally results in an overpayment as in your friend's case. So what you friend is experiencing isn't that unusual.

SSA is required by law to give someone what is referred to as "due process" before just withholding an overpayment from benefits This gives your friend the opportunity to either contest the existence and/or amount of the overpayment itself and/or request that the overpayment be waived if it was not his fault and he cannot afford to repay it. That is why they do not just go ahead and immediately withhold it from future benefits. If your friend does wish to do one of those things he needs to do it within the time frame specified in the letter.
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