Ask the Lawyer received the following question (paraphrased for easier reading and clarity) from a reader on a legal matter that might be of interest to the entire audience.
Can a federal agency refuse me workers’ compensation? What is the recourse if I am denied workers’ comp?
For injuries that occur on the job, you need to complete either form CA-1, “Federal Employee’s Notice of Traumatic Injury and Claim for Continuation of Pay/Compensation” or form CA-2 “Notice of Occupational Disease and Claim for Compensation”. The timeline for filing a claim under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) for compensation is 3 years of the date of injury. The OWCP claims are adjudicated by the Department of Labor.
Once OWCP issues a decision on a claim, an individual who disagrees with a formal decision can file an appeal with the Employees’ Compensation Appeals Board. An appeal must be filed within 180 days following the date of the Office’s final decision. If you are not satisfied with the Board’s decision, then you can petition for reconsideration within 30 days from the date the Board’s decision or order.
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