The U.S. Department of Labor has recently proposed changes that would reduce workers’ compensation for federal employees. The proposed changes – which are creating a rift among political parties – were prompted by the concerns of some who believe that workers’ comp benefits are “too generous” and that they can discourage employees from returning to work.
Here are some details about the push for reductions:
- Officials from the Labor Department have stated that the proposed changes to the Federal Employees Compensation Act would help save money – although it comes at the price of cutting future payments to many workers who are injured on the job. It is the third time in the past five years that the Department of Labor has proposed cutbacks to worker’s comp benefits.
- Under current law, compensation for injured workers with no dependents is 2/3 of their normal wages and 75% for workers with dependents (which make up about 64% of workers’ comp recipients). The proposed change would make the rate 70% for all employees.
- Those who oppose the change have stated that the proposal does not supply evidence as to how workers’ compensation – which is designed to help workers as they recover from work-related injuries – discourages workers from returning to their jobs. In fact, more than 90% of injured workers return to work within two years.
At Shook & Stone, we have helped many clients secure workers’ compensation benefits after they were injured on the job. Our attorneys know first-hand how important these benefits are to workers and their families, and that reducing benefits hurts workers in a number of ways. This includes not only reduced income and less time to recover, but also the added financial and emotional frustration of dealing with bureaucracy. Your can read more about this issue here.
If you or someone you love has been injured on the job, our legal team is available to help you learn more about workers’ compensation and how we may be able to help you secure the benefits you need. To discuss your case during a free consultation, contact us today.