Workplace issues

Injured on the job

Director of Workers' Compensation

Director of Workers' Compensation

Articles by Kevin Card.

OWCP: File a claim and file a grievance

Aug. 26, 2016: 2016 Convention presentation by Kevin Card, assistant to the president for workers’ compensation (PDF)

National-level case settled over ‘rights and responsibilities’ forms

Sept. 4, 2015: The NALC and the Postal Service have settled national-level case Q06N-4Q-C 12288947 concerning two forms that explain employee rights and responsibilities and are issued to letter carriers who are injured on the job. This settlement, M-01862, corrects several inconsistencies between the information on the forms and current Postal Service and Office of Workers’ Compensation (OWCP) policies and programs.

Have you been injured on the job?

The NALC is committed to helping injured members with their on the job injuries. If you are not a member and need help, contact your shop steward to join the NALC so we can help you too. If you don't know who your steward is, you can contact your branch on national business agent's office here.

Please answer the following questions to help you get the assistance you need.

Was your injury due to a specific event?

What to do when you have a traumatic injury

A traumatic injury is defined as:

“A wound or other condition of the body caused by external force, including stress or strain, which is identifiable as to the time and place of occurrence and member or function of the body affected. The injury must be caused by a specific event or incident or series of events or incidents within a single work day or work shift.”

The key to this definition is that an event or events must have occurred during a single workday or work shift.

Step 1: Notifying your supervisor

Immediately notify your supervisor and request:

Form CA-1, Federal Employee's Notice of Traumatic Injury and Claim for Continuation of Pay/Compensation (must be supplied immediately)

Form CA-16, Authorization for Examination and/or Treatment (must be supplied by your manager within 4 hours)

Form CA-17, Duty Status Report (must be supplied immediately)

Forms CA-1 and CA-17 are available at the Department of Labor website.

Step 2: The CA-1

If you do not need immediate medical attention, fill out the CA-1. The burden of proof in every OWCP case rests on the injured worker; you must be an active participant in the claims process. Be thorough in describing the accident and related factors.

Fill out the CA-1 yourself – do not let a supervisor fill it out for you! At the bottom of the CA-1, question number 15 allows you to choose either Continuation of Pay (COP) or Sick leave. If you elect COP you will be paid your regular pay for 45 calendar days.

For the first three days of COP, you must use either sick leave, annual leave or leave without pay. After that, you will continue to get paid every two weeks as if you were working. If your absence exceeds 14 days, ask the Postal Service to convert your 3 days to COP and credit the proper leave account. You must supply medical evidence of your injury, signed by a doctor within 10 days to qualify for COP.

Once you have reviewed and signed your CA-1, physically hand the completed CA-1 to your supervisor.  Do not leave it on your supervisor’s desk or inbox. Request that your supervisor gives you the signed receipt (page 4) immediately. Once you are certain that the CA-1 has been properly completed, request a copy for your file.

The CA-1 receipt establishes a record of your injury and the date you filed your claim.

The Postal Service has 10 working days to submit the CA-1 to the Office of Worker’s Compensation Programs, (OWCP). Once management has completed their portion of the CA-1, get a copy of it for your files. Build a file of every document related to your injury, including medical reports and documents from the Postal Service and OWCP.

Step 3: Seeking medical treatment

Form CA-16 authorizes payment for medical treatment and provides an initial medical report. Make sure the Postal Service properly fills out their portion of the CA-16, signing and dating it and putting OWCP’s address in Box 12. The CA-16 is a payment voucher for medical treatment for on the job injuries. You can use the CA-16 to see the doctor of your choice.

You have the right to seek treatment from your own doctor. If the Postal Service insists that you go to their doctor, you have to be seen by them but you do not have to be treated by them.

If you are examined by a physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner, your medical report must be counter-signed by a doctor.

Provide the doctor with a copy of the CA-17. The Postal Service is responsible for filling out the job requirements on the left (side A) of the CA-17. Your doctor fills out the right (side B) of the CA-17, listing any medical restrictions. Make a copy of the completed CA-17 and give one copy to your supervisor.

The Postal Service has 10 business days to send your claim to OWCP. OWCP will send you a notification including your claim number. If you do not receive a notice from OWCP with your claim number contact your shop steward or National Business Agent’s office.

Your medical records are protected by the Privacy Act. Your Postmaster, manager and supervisor are not entitled to your personal medical records. OWCP is responsible for the protection of all of your medical records.

Step 4: Continuing treatment/Returning to work

Follow your doctor’s restrictions. Delivering mail is physically demanding work, and returning to work before you have healed can lead to life-long debilitating injuries. Take a CA-17 to every medical appointment and provide a copy to your supervisor.

The Postal Service has an obligation to offer you work within your restrictions. The completed CA-17 must be provided to the Postal Service to determine if there is work available within your restrictions. If the Postal Service offers you work and you are uncertain if you can do it, you have the right to request a written job offer to take to your doctor.

Medical reports should be sent directly to OWCP, not the Postal Service.  Your doctor may send the reports directly to OWCP or you can upload them into your file via ECOMP.

Step 5: Managing your claim

Once you have filed your claim, OWCP has three options:

1. Request more information

OWCP will notify you if your case lacks enough information to make a decision in your case. They will send you a development letter requesting more information listing a series of questions for both you and your doctor to answer. These letters always give you exactly 30 days from the date on the letter to respond.

It is important that you act quickly to get the questions answered within the 30-day time limit. Make an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. Bring the OWCP letter to your appointment. and ask your doctor to thoroughly answer the questions.  OWCP must receive the information within the 30 days, a postmark is insufficient. Make sure your doctor understands the urgency. Use ECOMP to upload your documents directly to your file if necessary.

Never forward documents without first making copies for your own records. You need to organize your records to be ready to respond to OWCP. If you have problems with your claim, contact a branch officer or National Business Agent to find an NALC representative to assist you. FECA gives you the right to appoint a representative of your choice.

2. Claim acceptance

In accepting your claim, OWCP has determined the documentation provided was sufficient. If you are on COP and it appears you will not return to work after 45 days, the Postal Service is required to provide you with form CA-7 to request wage-loss compensation after 45 days. The CA-7 comes with instructions on how to properly fill it out and submit it.

If you do not receive a CA-7 from the Postal Service, request one from your supervisor or print one from the DOL’s website. Submit the completed CA-7 every two weeks, usually on the last Friday, to your district Health Resource Management, HRM office. Send a written request for a copy of the completed CA-7, including management’s portion, for your file every time you submit it to HRM.

Ask your supervisor for the HRM office’s address and fax number. The Postal Service has five working days to complete their portion of the CA-7 and send it to OWCP.  Always keep a copy of your CA-7 for your file.

If the Postal Service notifies you that they have a Limited Duty Job Offer (LDJO) for you, you need to examine it and see if it falls within your doctor’s restrictions listed on your most recent CA-17. If the job offer looks reasonable and is within your medical restrictions, accept the job offer and begin working it. If you think the job offer exceeds those limitations, you have the right to take the job offer to your doctor and let the doctor determine if the job offer is within your medical restrictions.

Never refuse a job offer. If management demands you accept or reject a job offer, accept the offer and write “pending doctor’s approval” next to your signature. FECA regulations allow you to have your doctor review any job offer for compliance with your medical restrictions.

You should take the job offer to your doctor as soon as possible and give a copy of the response to the Postal Service and OWCP. The Postal Service may make you multiple job offers and you should follow the procedures above every time.

OWCP has the sole authority to determine whether the LDJO is suitable. If OWCP determines that the job offer is suitable, it is required to notify the employee in writing and give the employee 30 days to begin the job.

3. Claim denial

If OWCP denies your claim, they will normally list the reason(s) why. Along with the denial, OWCP will give you a list of your appeal rights. Each venue has specific time limits that are absolute. In order to successfully appeal a denial, you must address OWCP’s reason(s) for the denial. It often involves further medical documentation and new medical opinions from your doctor or a specialist.

Contact a branch officer or NBA’s office to solicit help in choosing the proper venue for appeal.

Did your injury occur over more than one day?

How to file a CA-2 for an occupational disease

Occupational diseases are defined as injuries that occur over a period longer than one day or one work shift. To file a claim for an occupational disease, letter carriers need to provide a description of their work duties and a medical narrative that makes a causal connection between the injury and work factors. The burden of proof in every OWCP case rests on the injured worker; you must be an active participant in the claims process.

Step 1: Employee narrative

For your doctor to formulate a medical opinion that your duties as a letter carrier caused, aggravated, accelerated or precipitated your medical condition, you need to explain your day to day duties as a letter carrier. A written explanation of your job duties as a letter carrier provides your doctor with the information to form a rationalized medical opinion regarding causation. Most doctors are very busy, so keep you need to keep your explanation to one page.

Describe an average day on your route. Mail volume and deliveries fluctuate every day so avoid exact numbers. Describe how long you sort and deliver mail. Estimate mail volumes, weights, distances and repetitions. Never exaggerate. Use action words that describe your work factors like walking, carrying, reaching, pushing, pulling etc.

Step 2: The doctor’s narrative

Once you have your job description completed, print a copy of it and take it to your doctor. The medical opinion of a board-certified specialist with expertise in your particular injury will have more weight with the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP), than a general practitioner.  You can research doctors online or ask your general practitioner for a referral. Not all doctors will accept Federal Worker’s Compensation claims, so ask them if they do.

OWCP requires a rationalized medical narrative that describes the causal relationship between the work factors described in your explanation and the diagnosed injury. The narrative must  based on objective medical evidence such as tests, x-rays, or MRIs. In this medical narrative, your doctor will need to describe the physiological mechanism(s) by which the work factors outlined in your job description caused the diagnosed condition.

Step 3: Submitting the CA-2

Once you have the medical narrative describing the causal relationship between your work and your medical condition, ask your supervisor for a CA-2, Notice of Occupational Disease and a CA-17, Duty Status Report.

As you fill out the CA-2, you will come to question 11; Date you first became aware of the disease or illness, and question 12; Date you first realized the disease or illness was caused or aggravated by your employment. Answer question 11 as best as you can, your injury may have been ongoing for years, OWCP needs to have a rough idea of when you had an initial diagnosis.

When it comes to question 12, even though you may have felt your injury was work related, OWCP will only accept the date your doctor tells you it is work related. The date your doctor signs his rationalized medical opinion will be the date you enter in question 12.

You should file the CA-2 as soon as possible, preferably within the 30 days from the date listed in question 12. However, the CA-2 will meet the statutory time requirement if filed no later than 3 years after the injury.

Complete your portion of the CA-2, make a copy of it and hand the original along with your narrative to your supervisor, do not place it on their desk or in their inbox. Get the signed receipt portion of the CA-2 from your supervisor. Make sure the supervisor has signed it and properly completed it, including placement of your name on it. Request a copy of the completed CA-2 for your file.

The Postal Service is required to send your CA-2 to OWCP within 10 working days of receiving it from you. Once OWCP gets your CA-2 they will assign you a claim number and send you a letter. If you do not receive a letter from OWCP, call your OWCP district office and ask for your file number.

Medical reports should be sent directly to OWCP, not the Postal Service.  Once you have the file number, you will need to mail all of the medical information – test results, medical narratives etc. directly to: 

Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs
PO Box 8300
London, KY 40742

When communicating with OWCP, it is essential to have your file number on every page, usually at the very top. Documents mailed to the London, Kentucky address get scanned; a page without a file number may never get into your claim file.

You can upload pdf’s of your documents directly to your file via OWCP’s ECOMP portal. Go to: https://www.ecomp.dol.gov/#. On the right side of the page, under Need to Upload a Document, click on the green Access Case and Upload Document icon. Follow the instructions on the next page and record the DCN number once your files have been uploaded. Uploading your information is faster and more reliable than mailing.

The Postal Service has an obligation to make every effort to find you work within your limitations. Request a copy of form CA-17 from your supervisor. The Postal Service is responsible for filling out the job requirements on the left (side A) of the CA-17. Your doctor fills out the right (side B) of the CA-17, listing any medical restrictions. Make a copy of the completed CA-17 and give one copy to your supervisor.

Step 4: Managing your claim

Once you have filed your claim, OWCP has three options:

1. Request more information

OWCP will notify you if your case lacks enough information to make a decision in your case. They will send you a development letter requesting more information listing a series of questions for both you and your doctor to answer. These letters always give you exactly 30 days from the date on the letter to respond.

It is important that you act quickly to get the questions answered within the 30-day time limit. Make an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. Bring the OWCP letter to your appointment. and ask your doctor to thoroughly answer the questions.  OWCP must receive the information within the 30 days, a postmark is insufficient. Make sure your doctor understands the urgency. Use ECOMP to upload your documents directly to your file if necessary.

Never forward documents without first making copies for your own records. You need to organize your records to be ready to respond to OWCP. If you have problems with your claim, contact a branch officer or National Business Agent to find an NALC representative to assist you. FECA gives you the right to appoint a representative of your choice.

2. Claim acceptance

In accepting your claim, OWCP has determined the documentation provided was sufficient. To claim wage-loss compensation for lost time, you need to submit a CA-7 to the Postal Service. 

If you do not receive a CA-7 from the Postal Service, request one from your supervisor or print one from the DOL’s website. The CA-7 comes with instructions on how to properly fill it out and submit it. Submit the completed CA-7 every two weeks, usually on the last Friday, to your district Health Resource Management, HRM office. Send a written request for a copy of the completed CA-7, including management’s portion, for your file every time you submit it to HRM.

Ask your supervisor for the HRM office’s address and fax number. The Postal Service has five working days to complete their portion of the CA-7 and send it to OWCP.  Always keep a copy of your CA-7 for your file.

If the Postal Service notifies you that they have a Limited Duty Job Offer (LDJO) for you, you need to examine it and see if it falls within your doctor’s restrictions listed on your most recent CA-17. If the job offer looks reasonable and is within your medical restrictions, accept the job offer and begin working it. If you think the job offer exceeds those limitations, you have the right to take the job offer to your doctor and let the doctor determine if the job offer is within your medical restrictions.

NEVER refuse a job offer. If management demands you accept or reject a job offer, accept the offer and write “pending doctor’s approval” next to your signature. FECA regulations allow you to have your doctor review any job offer for compliance with your medical restrictions.

You should take the job offer to your doctor as soon as possible and give a copy of the response to the Postal Service and OWCP. The Postal Service may make you multiple job offers and you should follow the procedures above every time.

OWCP has the sole authority to determine whether the LDJO is suitable. If OWCP determines that the job offer is suitable, it is required to notify the employee in writing and give the employee 30 days to begin the job.

3. Claim denial

If OWCP denies your claim, they will normally list the reason(s) why. Along with the denial, OWCP will give you a list of your appeal rights. Each venue has specific time limits that are absolute. In order to successfully appeal a denial, you must address OWCP’s reason(s) for the denial. It often involves further medical documentation and new medical opinions from your doctor or a specialist.

Contact a branch officer or NBA’s office to solicit help in choosing the proper venue for appeal.

Did you reinjure yourself?

CA2a Rule No. 1: Never file a CA2a unless your limited-duty job has been withdrawn or OWCP tells you in writing to do so. Always talk to your branch OWCP specialist or national business agent before filing a CA2a.

Injured letter carriers should only file a recurrence if the Postal Service withdrew their limited duty job.

Management often gives injured letter carriers a CA2a in error. If you have returned to work and re-injure the same body part, you need to file a CA-1 or CA-2. Filing a CA2a when you have been exposed to the same work factors will result in claim denial. If you are not sure if you should file a CA2a, call your national business agent’s office.

Did your claim get denied?

OWCP appeals

If your initial claim has been formally denied by OWCP, your denial letter should include one of three options for appealing the decision. The three avenues and their time limits are:

  • Hearings and Review for either an oral hearing or a review of the written record; 30 days
  • Reconsideration; 1 year from the date of the last merit decision
  • Employees’ Compensation Appeals Board (ECAB); 180 days from the last decision

You can only request one form of appeal at a time. You must view each avenue of appeal based upon what you can tactically accomplish. The three avenues should not be viewed as hierarchical, and the decision to appeal an adverse decision must be viewed as a strategic one.

You should always consult your branch OWCP specialist or your national business agent prior to selecting an appeal route. Because an appeal to Hearings and Review must be done within 30 days of the formal decision, consultation should take place immediately upon receipt of the decision.

Here is a brief review of the 3 types of appeals, for more information refer to The Postal Record columns referenced at the end of each section.

Hearings and Review

A request for an oral hearing or review of the written record must be submitted in writing within 30 days (as determined by postmark) of the date of the decision for which the hearing is sought, to the address specified in the decision. The date of the decision counts as Day 1.

While no special form is required to request an oral hearing or review of the written record, the claimant should provide the date of the decision he or she is appealing and the issue to be addressed by the hearing representative.

Claimants pursuing this avenue of appeal have the option of electing either an oral hearing before a hearing representative or a review of the case file by the hearing representative.

A claimant may be represented by any responsible individual at an OWCP hearing: a friend, an attorney, an NALC branch officer, or a shop steward. Only one representative is permitted. The representative should be knowledgeable about the FECA, fully familiar with the claim, and have prior experience with FECA hearings.

OWCP will furnish a copy of the transcript to the claimant or his or her representative and to the employing agency. Both the claimant and the employing agency have 20 days from the date the transcript is sent to send in comments. Any comments that the employing agency sends to OWCP it must also send to the claimant, who will be given an additional 20 days from the date they are sent to respond to the comments.

OWCP’s regulations also provide that the hearing will remain open for the submission of additional evidence until 30 days after the hearing is held, unless the hearing representative, at his or her discretion, grants an extension. A copy of the decision will be mailed to the claimant, his or her representative and the employing agency.

See Postal Record columns: August, October and November 2012

Reconsideration

To qualify for reconsideration of a decision a claimant must set forth arguments and include evidence that either:

  • Shows that OWCP erroneously applied or interpreted a specific point of law; or
  • Advances a relevant legal argument not considered by OWCP; or
  • Constitutes relevant and pertinent new evidence not previously considered by OWCP.

The reconsideration request must be made within one year of the date the office issued the formal decision. The decisions can include:

  • The initial decision by the OWCP district office.
  • A decision by an OWCP hearing representative following an oral hearing or review of the written record.
  • A decision by the ECAB.
  • A previous reconsideration decision.
  • A merit decision issued by OWCP following an ECAB decision.

Any request for reconsideration should be sent well before the end of the one-year period to ensure that OWCP will acknowledge its receipt within one year.

Reconsideration requests can also be made through ECOMP. This is an effective and efficient avenue to submit the request, especially if the claimant is close to the end of the one-year period.

When OWCP grants an application for reconsideration, a claims examiner who did not participate in making the contested decision will re-examine all of the evidence and arguments in the claim file to determine whether they support modification of the prior decision and a new merit decision will be made. If the new decision is adverse, the claims examiner will advise the claimant of his or her rights to again request reconsideration or to appeal to the ECAB.

See Postal Record columns: January, March, April and May 2013

ECAB

The Employees’ Compensation Appeals Board (ECAB) is an appellate body in the Department of Labor separate and apart from OWCP. Decisions are issued by a three-member panel—each member appointed by the Secretary of Labor.

The ECAB will consider only evidence which was in the case record at the time of the OWCP decision being appealed. An appeal should be requested within 180 days of the OWCP decision; however, the ECAB will consider requests received within one year if good cause is shown for the delay. No appeals are accepted after one year.

The 180 days/one year runs from the date of the OWCP decision being appealed—either OWCP’s initial decision, the decision of an OWCP hearing representative, and/or an OWCP decision based on a request for reconsideration.                                          

An employee or survivor may be represented before the ECAB by any responsible individual. The ECAB limits employees and survivors to a single representative—i.e., it is not possible for both a private attorney and an NALC representative to represent an employee or survivor before the ECAB.

A request for an appeal must be in writing and sent to: Employees’ Compensation Appeals Board, 200 Constitution Ave. NW, Room N-2609, Washington, DC 20210—and must include the following:

  • OWCP case file number;
  • Date of OWCP decision being appealed; and
  • Name and address of designated representative, if any.

Claimants are advised to contact their National Business Agent prior to appealing to ECAB. The NALC will represent claimant appeals before the ECAB but must be notified prior to the appeal.

See Postal Record column: June 2000

Do you have a permanent impairment due to an accepted OWCP claim?

If you have an accepted OWCP claim and suffer permanent impairment from your injury, you may be eligible for a schedule award. The schedule award benefit often is not well understood. It is payable when an injured employee has suffered a permanent impairment to a part or function of the body that is listed in the schedule of body functions and members found in the FECA at 5 USC 8107.

Permanent impairment is defined as the permanent loss, or loss of use of, a part of the body. The degree of impairment (and ultimately the amount of the schedule award) is determined by medical evaluation—a physician identifies the appropriate diagnosis, makes certain estimates and/or takes certain measurement, and then applies those measurements and/or estimates to applicable charts and tables found in the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment, Sixth Edition (usually referred to as the AMA Guides).

The relevant charts and tables in the AMA Guides provide an impairment percent rating that corresponds to each measurement and/or estimation.

See Postal Record columns: November and December 2013

Tools for managing your OWCP claim

ECOMP

OWCP has an electronic document filing portal for injured workers: ECOMP. This is the fastest way for you to upload documents and medical information directly to your file. At this time, you cannot upload OWCP forms on ECOMP.

To access the system, log on to https://www.ecomp.dol.gov/

The left side of the page that asks “Have you been hurt on the job?” will not work for postal employees. However, look on the right side of the page and click on the green icon: Access Case and Upload Document

On the next page you will need to enter your case number, last name, date of birth and date of injury. Once you have properly entered the required information, you can upload documents directly to your file.

You must scan a document to your computer before uploading it. If you are requesting information from OWCP or are providing requested information, be sure the document is signed and dated. There is a six-page limit for each ECOMP upload. Use multiple uploads for longer files.

You will get a document control number (DCN) for every uploaded document. Either print the screen or record the DCN numbers for your file. The DCN numbers may be used to verify dates of submission for important documents, appeals etc.

You will find that once you are comfortable using ECOMP, you have the ability to add medical updates and answer OWCP requests in a fraction of the time it takes to print and mail them.

This is important in that OWCP time limits are absolute. OWCP normally gives a claimant 30 days to respond to a request. Thirty days go by quickly, and ECOMP can give you extra time to get necessary medical reports from your doctor.

Accessing your case information

Once you have filed your claim and been assigned a claim number, OWCP will build a digital file containing all documents they have received related to your claim. At this time, the only way to access your entire file is to write to OWCP and request a copy of your file. OWCP will send you a CD containing everything in your file up to the date they copy the file. If you upload the request on ECOMP, you can usually get your file within one month.

You will want to request your file after there has been a decision in your case. Whether your case has been accepted or denied, your case file will show you what documents were sent by you, your doctors and most importantly the Postal Service. Knowing what’s in your file can help you in appealing a denial and managing an accepted case.

There are two other ways to access your OWCP case information online.

ACS bill pay portal

OWCP has a useful, Internet-based system that allows injured workers and their representatives access to real-time bill pay information. To gain entry for a particular claim, three items of information are needed: claim number, date of injury and date of birth.

Here is how to access a claim through the portal:

  1. Go to http://owcp.dol.acs-inc.com/portal/main.do
  2. Click on the FECA Claimant icon.
  3. Click Accept.
  4. Enter your OWCP case number, date of injury and date of birth.
  5. Click Submit.

    You will now be in the Bill Status Inquiry screen. You will see at the upper left-hand side of the screen that there are three available inquiries: Eligibility, Bill Status and Medical Authorization. Remain in the Bill Status Inquiry screen.

  6. Click View Option: Resolved Bills and enter date range of desired view of bills. To view all bills, leave the date range fields blank.

    You can view all of the bills submitted and whether they have been paid or denied.

OWCP District Offices

District Office 1 - Boston

CT, ME, MA, NH, RI and VT
Mark Foley, District Director
(857) 264-4600
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
JFK Federal Building, Room E-260
Boston, MA 02203
Fax: (857) 264-4602

District Office 2 - New York

NJ, NY, PR and VI
Rholanda Basnight, District Director
(212) 863-0800
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
201 Varick Street, Room 740
New York, NY 10014
Fax: (212) 863-0801

District Office 3 - Philadelphia

DE, PA and WV, plus MD when claimant's residence has a ZIP Code beginning with 21xxx

Angelo Randazzo, District Director (Acting)
(267) 687-4160
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
Curtis Center, Suite 715 East
170 S. Independence Mall West
Philadelphia, PA 19106-3308
Fax: (267) 687-4155

District Office 6 - Jacksonville

AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC and TN
Tisha Carter, District Director
(904) 366-0100
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
Charles E. Bennett Federal Building
400 West Bay Street, Room 826
Jacksonville, FL 32202
Fax: (904) 366-0101

District Office 9 - Cleveland

IN, MI, OH; All special claims and all areas outside the U.S., its possessions, territories and trust territories
Helen Boberek, District Director
(216) 902-5600
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
1240 East Ninth Street, Room 851
Cleveland, OH 44199
Fax: (216) 902-5601

District Office 10 - Chicago

IL, MN, WI
James Polcyn, District Director
(312) 789-2800
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
230 South Dearborn Street, Eighth Floor
Chicago, IL 60604
Fax: (312) 789-2801

District Office 11 - Kansas City

AR, IA, KS, MO and NE
Jack Mercer, District Director
(816) 268-3040
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
Two Pershing Square Building
2300 Main Street, Suite 1090
Kansas City, MO 64108-2416
General Fax: (816) 268-3041

District Office 12 - Denver

CO, MT, NM, ND, SD, UT and WY
Nigel Strozier, District Director
(303) 202-2500
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
P.O. Box 25602
One Denver Federal Center, Bldg 53
Denver, CO 80225-0602
Fax: (303) 202-2501

District Office 13 - San Francisco

AZ, CA, HI and NV
Susan Pearlman, District Director
(415) 241-3300
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
90 Seventh St., Suite 15-100F
San Francisco, CA 94103
Fax: (415) 241-3301

District Office 14 - Seattle

AK, ID, OR and WA
Marcus Tapia, District Director
(206) 470-3100
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
300 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1050F
Seattle, WA 98104-2429
Fax: (206) 470-3101

District Office 16 - Dallas

LA, OK and TX
Gloria Taylor, Acting District Director
(214) 749-2320
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
525 South Griffin Street, Room 100
Dallas, TX 75202
Fax: (214) 749-2321

District Office 25 - Washington, DC

DC and VA, plus MD when claimant's residence has a ZIP code other than 21xxx
Angella Winn, District Director
(202) 513-6800
U.S. Dept. of Labor, OWCP
800 N. Capitol Street, N.W., Room 800
Washington, DC 20211
Fax: (202) 513-6806


NALC National Business Agent offices

You can find your national business agent’s office here

FECA COLA

Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA) cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) are applicable only in cases where death or disability occurred more than one year prior to the adjustment’s effective date.

2018 FECA COLA Projection: 1% as of March 2017

Based on the release of the March 2017 CPI-W (1982-84=100), the 2018 FECA COLA is currently projected to be 1%. The March 2017 CPI-W (237.656) was 1% above the December 2016 base index (235.390).

CCAs and on-the-job injuries

The NALC is committed to ensuring that every injured letter carrier receives his or her rights when injured on the job. As a CCA, you are protected under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA), which provides benefits for federal employees who are injured on duty.

The Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) administers the FECA and has sole authority to award benefits. The FECA provides the right to medical care and wage-loss compensation for accepted injuries.

The Postal Service has no obligation to inform you about your rights under FECA until after a job-related injury.

In some offices, there is an unfortunate but pervasive sentiment that probationary employees should never report on-the-job injuries because it will lead to immediate separation without recourse.

While it is true that employees in a probationary period of 90 or 120 days have no standing to file grievances protesting separations, employees who are intimidated, discouraged, denied, or separated after reporting an on-the-job injury have the right to file an Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) Whistleblower complaint within 30 days.

The easiest way to file a complaint is by calling the OSHA hotline at 202-693-2199. An OSHA representative will document your contact information and a trained investigator will contact you to file your complaint.

You also may file a complaint online by going to:

https://www.osha.gov/ whistleblower/WBComplaint.html.

CCAs should not feel intimidated in exercising their rights when injured on the job. Report any injury immediately to your supervisor and demand a CA-1 and CA-16 if you need medical attention. If you do not get help, call your shop steward, branch or National Business Agent’s office immediately.

 

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