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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.

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#1 Posted : Tuesday, April 21, 2020 6:09:12 PM(UTC)

Rank: Newbie

Groups: Registered
Joined: 12/11/2018(UTC)
Posts: 1
United States

My story starts back in 2015 when I was severely injured working as a wildland firefighter. It’s hell of a long story so I’ll try and get right to the nitty gritty of my questions. I’ve seeked opinions from different folks these last few years including Jesse Slade who has been a huge help to me. Since I’ve always read the posts on this forum though I’d like to get all of your thoughts as well.

Here’s my story in short. I got burned up really bad in 2015 on the job. Been on owcp ever since. I was a temp employee so no option for retirement etc. I was a gs3 at the time of my injury so what I’ve gotten paid from owcp has been peanuts. Overall though, I gotta say that owcp took care of my medical bills with no major issues.

Fast forward to current time. I’ve made a really good recovery. I feel blessed. I’ve had literally dozens and dozens of operations and I’m ready to go back to living life. I WONT be going back to the agency that I previously worked for as I have much better options outside of the federal government. I started a lawsuit a couple of years back with a third party due to my injuries. I recently settled that case and I’m ready to move on. I paid my attorneys, already paid back all of my medical bills to owcp as well as the monthly income check they would send me and have some surplus. This is where my questions begin

1. I’ve been told that the surplus money sits in a form of escrow account and any future medical bills are withdrawn from that. The thing is, that never happened. Any money that was left over after attorney fees and paying back owcp was sent directly to me. There is no escrow account. Is that how it was supposed to work?

2. After reading this forum, I know many of you have had to fight tooth and nail to get payment from owcp. So what I’m gonna say next may sound crazy but I want to be done with owcp. More than anything, I wanna just move on with my life and have freedom and since I have job opportunities waiting that I wanna persue, is it just a matter of telling owcp to quit paying me? Again, I’m not going back to the feds so I don’t believe I need any doctors approvals or anything correct?

3. I feel that I have reached mmi. I’ve accepted I’m as good as I’m gonna get. I realize I’m entitled to a schedule award. The schedule award usually is deducted against the surplus. Since the surplus isn’t in escrow and is with me, is there even a point to going for a schedule award?

4. Finally, considering I wanna return to work, and I’ve paid owcp back every dime, I feel like telling them to quit paying me. Some people have told me that’s crazy but any money they send me going forward will have to be paid back eventually from the surplus. Since the “surplus” is mine and not in an account that owcp is deducting from, I might as well just have them stop. I’m hoping this sounds logical and wanting some confirmation on that.

Long story short, I’m hoping this is the end of the road with owcp. I just wanna move on with my life and tell owcp to pack sand. I’ve paid my debts and I’m ready to start new opportunities. Hoping you guys and gals can give me any helpful input before I pick a direction of these crossroads.
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