08/12/2013 - In a bold step to protect the privacy rights of injured workers, the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) has indefinitely suspended the Postal Service’s ability to review, receive, and transfer Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) information and documents electronically. The decision was made in consultation with the Department of Justice (DOJ).
The Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) provides wage loss compensation and medical benefits to postal and federal employees who become injured or ill as a result of their duties.
Federal Injury Compensation Laws, Regulations and Policies
The Code of Federal Regulations (20 CFR Parts 10 and 25) provides specific instructions as to how FECA should be administered by the employing agency.
The US Postal Service has, as required, published specific instructions regarding the policies and procedures which it will utilize in administering federal injury compensation laws and regulations. This language can be found primarily in Chapter 540 of the Employee and Labor Relations (ELM) and in EL 505 Handbook, Injury Compensation.
Within the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP), the Division of Federal Employees’ Compensation (DFEC) is responsible for processing claims filed by Postal Service employees. The DFEC Web site provides very useful information regarding the claims process. Particularly useful are their publications “Questions and Answers About the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (CA 550), and Injury Compensation for Federal Employees (CA-810).
Even though the Postal Service has an obligation to provide to an employee the forms that are used to file OWCP claims, these forms are also available from this Web site (Forms). Also, provided is information regarding the recently implemented Consolidated Bill Processing and Medical Authorization System.
Those who want a deeper understanding of how OWCP Claims Examiners (CEs) adjudicate claims can review the Program Procedures, which CEs must follow.
Of particular interest will be Claims, FECA, Part 2, which describes the procedures for adjudicating, paying, and managing claims, including the appeals process and other specialized topics.
News: Injury Compensation (OWCP)
07/31/2012 - The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the APWU are investigating the death of APWU member Steny Wing Hoi Yu, who died July 27 from injuries sustained in work-related accident at the Detroit NDC on July 23.
03/02/2012 - The Employees' Compensation Operations and Management Portal (ECOMP) is the newest on-line tool created by the Office of Worker’s Compensation Programs (OWCP) to assist with claims processing and tracking.
01/26/2012 - The APWU “strongly discourages” union members from participating in physical therapy through Align Networks, Human Relations Director Sue Carney says.
12/08/2011 - Time is running out for postal employees involved in the Walker Class-Action lawsuit to return questionnaires they recently received from the Postal Service.
12/01/2011 - The House of Representatives passed bi-partisan legislation supported by the APWU to update benefits for injured federal and postal workers on Nov. 29.
08/11/2011 - An internal USPS document indicating that the reassessment of Limited Duty and Rehabilitation employees concluded on Jan. 31, 2011, is not cause for celebration, Human Relations Director Sue Carney says, because the National Reassessment Process (NRP) seems to have been eliminated in name only.
05/12/2011 - Proposed changes to the Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA) “will negatively affect public servants and their families,” APWU Human Relations Director Sue Carney said in testimony before the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections.
Injured Workers Would Face Reduced Benefits
02/10/2011 - Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) has sponsored legislation that would lead to reduced benefits for postal and federal employees who receive payments from the Office of Workers Compensation Program (OWCP) due to job-related injuries or illnesses.
07/15/2010 - To strengthen the fight against the Postal Service’s harsh National Reassessment Program (NRP), the APWU is encouraging limited-duty and permanent-rehabilitation employees to complete a questionnaire sponsored by a law firm that has filed a class-action complaint against the USPS.