## Thursday, February 26, 2015

### Calculating A Schedule Award

You've had your impairment rating, submitted your rating and your CA-7 and OWCP has approved your percentage of loss...so how much will your schedule award pay you?

First, use the chart below to determine the maximum number of weeks allowed for the impaired body part.

Schedule awards are paid at your compensation rate of either 66 2/3% (no dependents) or 75% (with dependents).

To calculate the schedule award payment, multiply your actual percentage of impairment of the affected body part by the maximum number of weeks from the chart below. This will determine the number of weeks you're entitled to.

Then multiply the number of weeks you're entitled to by your weekly pay rate and multiply that result by your compensation rate of either 66 2/3% (no dependents) or 75% (dependents). This will give you the approximate amount of your schedule award.

Examples:

In this example there is a 10% impairment rating of the hand with a 75% compensation rate and a weekly pay rate of \$500.00:

10% (your actual percentage of impairment) X 244 weeks (100% loss of use of the hand) = 24.4 weeks

24.4 weeks X \$500.00 (weekly pay rate) X 75% (compensation rate) = \$7,320.00

In this example there is a 15% impairment rating of the arm with a 66 2/3% compensation rate and a weekly pay rate of \$500.00:

15% (your actual percentage of impairment) X 312 weeks (100% loss of use of the arm) = 46.8 weeks

46.8 weeks X \$500.00 (weekly pay rate) X 66 2/3% (compensation rate) = \$15,600.00

*When the compensation rate is 66 2/3% multiply the compensation rate by 66.666666667%

COVERED MEMBERS AND

MAXIMUM NUMBER OF WEEKS PAYABLE FOR TOTAL (100%) LOSS:
• Arm 312 weeks
• Leg 288 weeks
• Eye 160 weeks
• Hearing (one ear) 52 weeks
• Hearing (both ears) 200 weeks
• Hand 244 weeks
• Thumb 75 weeks
• 1st Finger 46 weeks
• 2nd Finger 30 weeks
• 3rd Finger (ring finger) 25 weeks
• 4th Finger (pinky finger) 15 weeks
• Foot 205 weeks
• Great Toe 38 weeks
• Toe (other than great toe) 16 weeks
• Vulva-Vagina-Uterus-Cervix 205 weeks
• Breast 52 weeks
• Ovary (includes Fallopian tubes) 52 weeks
• Penis 205 weeks
• Testicle 52 weeks
• Larynx-Tongue 160 weeks
• Kidney 156 weeks
• Lung 156 weeks
• Skin 205 weeks

Even if your accepted injuries are not on this list, you may still be entitled to a schedule award if the accepted injury caused impairment to a covered body part. For instance if you have a spinal injury which is not a covered member, you may have nerve damage caused by the spinal injury that affects your arm(s) and/or leg(s). The nerve damage could entitle you to a schedule award under the hand, fingers, arm, leg, foot and/or toes. The same would be true for a brain injury or other body parts that are not covered for a schedule award.

You may not collect both a schedule award and OWCP compensation at the same time if the compensation and the schedule award are for the same body part and/or extremity. For example if you are collecting OWCP compensation due to a right shoulder injury you cannot collect a schedule award for an impairment to the right hand since it is the same extremity-the right arm.

In this case, OWCP will suspend (stop) compensation until the schedule award is paid and then compensation will resume.

Your actual schedule award payment may vary slightly but this method gives you an idea of what payment to expect from your schedule award.

1. So if you have an ankle injury does the impairment related to it get compensated based on weeks for foot (205)or leg (288)?

2. It depends on how the rating doctor rates it based on your medical evidence and the impairments.

3. I reached mmi with a ppi of 38% loss of use of my arm back on October 10, 2014. I applied for a schedule award, however my doctor only went by the 5th Edition AMA guide, therefore my claim was denied. It has taken me over two years to find a doctor in my area who can do the impairment rating using the 6th Edition AMA guide. I recently was seen by this doctor. I know he has determined that I have a 40% loss of use of my arm. I also have diminished function of my wrist, a 20% finger-lag of my second finger, and both my third and fourth fingers drift outward. I have constant burning pain in my whole arm, which gets worse when I move my arm, hand or fingers (actively or passively). It is discolored. Sometimes it is cold to the touch, but it is always extremely sensitive to cold (even if the weather is in the 80's). Here are my questions: should there be an impairment rating for my hand and each of my impacted fingers as well as my arm? And since I actually reached MMI as of October 10, 2014 but am just now getting a new CA-7 turned in for the schedule award, should OWCP still have to go by actual date I reached MMI when figuring the payments?

4. If the rating was done according to the 5th Edition, it was improper and you have to start over.

When you're rated, the doctor will most likely put you at MMI on the date of the exam/rating. It is doubtful the MMI date would be backed up to 2014.

This would make little difference because the MMI date is used as the start date of the award and the length of time the award pays is based on the percentage of loss.

When you have multiple issues, most rating physicians will separate those issues and give an impairment rating for each covered body part. It would be part of one total rating, but would include the fingers, the arm and the hand for a total impairment to the upper extremity.

5. I just had rotator cuff surgery on my left shoulder 06/28/2017. I also had 2 surgery on my right shoulder 6/7 months apart. The right side is causing me to have headaches and neck pains when i hold my head down. The orthopedic doctor sent me to a pain clinic for my neck and shoulder. They gave me a "CERVICAL FACET INJECTION". At first OWCP approved it. Now the Pain Clinic say that OWCP had denied the claim for my neck. Which my orthopedic doctor sent me. What do I do? Now I'm having nerve problem in my right hand which cause it to shake majority of the time. Please tell me what I should do about this. Ms Renee

6. If the conditions of the neck are not accepted, then OWCP isn't going to pay for treatment.

If you filed a claim for the cervical spine and it was denied, you would need to appeal the decision denying the claim.

If the cervical conditions developed as a result of the accepted conditions, you would need a medical narrative explaining how the cervical issues are related to the accepted conditions and request that OWCP expand the claim to include the cervical conditions.

You should have a nerve conduction study, (NCS) to find out what nerves are affected. If the affected nerves are in the cervical spine, then that should be included as part of the evidence in the expansion of your claim.

If the damaged nerves are due to the accepted shoulder conditions, the claim should be expanded to include the nerve damage. This would also require a medical narrative from your doctor.

7. The tendons in my ankle had tonbe replace with artificial ones and have since developed CRPS in my anke and foot.since CRPS is for life, will this be considered in determining my percentage rating?

8. CRPS is a 'pain syndrome' and the 6th Edition of the Guides factors pain into the rating.

However, CRPS can cause swelling and nerve damage so that would become part of the rating. The CRPS will be considered insofar as the damage it has done...nerve damage, range of motion issues, swelling, etc...

9. I have a claim for scheduled award with a 2% impairment rating. Everything has been agreed on, but I am curious to know if nerve damage is considered something different that other injuries. At \$1,033 per week, I found only a maximum of 312 weeks. If I multiply correctly, by the calculator given at 75% for being married, I get a payment of \$6,445.92. Would this be accurate for what was entered as a right upper extremity injury (ulnar nerve damage requiring surgery for an ulnar nerve release)?

10. Nerve damage is a separate medical condition but should be included in the impairment rating.

Your award would be calculated like this:

312 weeks x 2% = 6.24 weeks payable. 6.24 x 1,033.00 =\$6,445.92 x 75% comp rate = \$4,834.44 total award.

If the \$1,033.00 is after you already factored in the 75%, then it's the \$6,445.92

11. I fractured my middle finger but continued to work been doing physical therapy for 3 months and it still hasn't healed, am I entitled to a scheduled award?

12. If the claim is accepted and there's permanent impairment, then yes, you can file for a schedule award.

1. My claim was accepted so how do I calculate what my payment will be?

13. The method of calculating a schedule award is in the article above.

14. Can a federal employee whose case for ptsd has been approved file for any schedule award?

15. No. Emotional conditions are not covered for a schedule award.

16. WAS DECLINED FOR FEDERAL WORK COMP AND APPEALED AS CA 20 WAS NOT COMPMLETED RIGHT. HAVE SUBMITTED A NEW CA 20 FROM INDEPENDENT NUEROSURGEON. HAVE 4 HERNIATED DISC THAT ARE JOB RELATED FROM CHRONIC LIFTING, PULLING AS A NURSE. HAVE HAD 3 STEROID INJECTIONS, A MYOLGRAM AND LAST PROCEDURE WAS A DISCOGRAM ON MAY 4TH . WHEN THEY WENT TO AWAKEN ME I WAS BLUE, NO PULSE, NO RESPIRATIONS. CPR WAS STARTED AND SENT VIA AMBULANCE TO ER , CARDIAC UNIT, ETC..NOW WHAT DO I DO

17. A CA-20 will not get your claim accepted, you must have a medical narrative completed by your physician.

Once you have the medical narrative, you can submit it to OWCP with your appeal forms.

18. I have a herniated disc in my neck two are to the left are sitting on a nerve gives my left arm pain and numbness in my hand two are to the right occasional pain numbness in my arm I have also been experiencing tension headache, nerve pain in my legs and numbness in my toes how can I prove that all of this is connected to my herniated disc

19. There is something called a nerve conduction study which is a test that shows what nerves are affected and where they come from.

In addition, a rating physician can make the connection between the symptoms of nerve damage and the accepted conditions if there is a connection.

20. I have been notified that the QME has rated me at 50% loss of usage for my arm and can return to work with permanent modified restrictions. I have a dependent so how will I figure my reward?

21. The information on how to calculate an award is included in the article above.

22. I had part of my meniscus removed I fell a work due to a bad lift can I file for a schedule award

23. I fell at work tore my meniscus can I file for schedule award

24. Yes, the knee is a covered body part.

25. Do I calculate what WC is paying me weekly or my wages before my injury???

26. I have a question regarding scheduled awards, my left knee was rated at 50% 6th ed. by the doctor my lawyer sent me to. I work in the fire service for a DOD component. My question is if there is a different schedule calculation for my career field based on the amount of hours worked 60 per week?

27. Your pay rate for the schedule award is usually the same as the pay rate for your compensation.

28. You have an attorney so you should contact your attorney to discuss your questions/concerns...that's what you're paying the attorney for.

29. Will owcp continue paying for my doctor visits after schedule award is paid?

30. If my date of injury was june 2000 with Boder Patrol, and my impairment was given on July 2014 while working for another agency, at what rate of pay will my impairment be based on.

Date of injury in 2000 or 2014 with new agency.

31. Date of Injury

32. If u have surgery on carpel tunnel both hands would it be 244x2 or just one combined weekly

33. The number of weeks is based on the percentage of loss. 244 weeks is for 100% loss, for instance if your hands were amputated.

Normally OWCP pays schedule awards consecutively not concurrently. This means that they would pay for one side and when that one was paid, they'd pay the other.

34. What if I had zero dependants during the date of injury, than after filing a scheduled award and currently going through the motions to get compensated my status has changed to having a dependant. Will I get paid under the 75% compensation rate?

35. You need to notify OWCP that you now have a dependent. Once that occurs, the compensation rate should change to 75% from the date you got the dependent.

For instance if you got married, the rate should change from the date of the marriage. If you had a baby, it would be from the date of birth of the baby, etc...

36. can anyone tell me if a schedule award is paid in one lump sum or paid monthly

37. You have to request a lump sum. A lump sum payment is completely OWCP's decision.

You would have to request it and OWCP usually won't pay a lump sum unless there's another source of income such as you're working or receiving OPM benefits.

If the lump sum is paid, OWCP takes a 4% 'fee' for paying it in a lump sum.

38. Hello Mr. Slade, I recently had cervical fusion surgery which is related to my shoulder injury sustained from repetitive motion in my job of 30 years and is part of my approved DOL claim. I also have 3 bulging disc in my lower back that are pushing on my spinal chord identical to what I had in my neck that necessitated the fusion surgery. All are part of the claim accepted by the DOL. First, is there an award for cervical fusion surgery? If so what is calculation of said award? Also, I'm being told by my treating physician that further surgery would do more harm than good for me and he doesn't recommend any further surgery. I have been told that because of this situation, he recommends I move on to my shoulder and address that problem that has already called for surgery. He has told me I would be better off retiring from my job as I won't be able to perform the tasks required of my position any longer. I was informed if I took a medical retirement that I wouldn't get an award but would be able to calculate around 18% multiplied by the amount of retirement I am currently eligible for (31 years service and my age of 53 to total at least 80 years combined). Or I could just retire outright and take the award to allow me freedom from the DOL and go on to other things if I so wish. Since my doctor has concluded more surgery is detrimental to my recovery but I am no longer able to do my job as required, what advice do you have for me as to options both about my job and financial restitution?

39. There is no schedule award for the spine, however if the accepted spinal conditions cause nerve damage in the arms, then the nerve damage would be eligible for a schedule award because the arms are a covered body part.

You can be approved for both OWCP and disability retirement at the same time, but you cannot be paid OWCP compensation and disability retirement at the same time.

The only time you can collect both is if OWCP is paying out a schedule award.

I have no idea what your doctor is talking about with the calculation that's based on the amount of retirement you're eligible for. That's not how it works.

A schedule award pays for the percentage of loss of use of a covered body part. Disability retirement pays if you cannot perform the duties of the job you were hired for.

Disability retirement pays 60% of your salary for the first year and 40% thereafter and is taxable. The schedule award normally pays at the date of injury pay rate.

Even if you retire and accept OPM benefits, either regular retirement or disability retirement, as long as the claim is open and you require treatment, OWCP is still in your life for the medical side of your claim.

Just because you can't perform your normal job duties doesn't mean that you can't work with restrictions.

40. I had an impairment rating in June 2017 from Dr. Ellis in Oklahoma. He rated both shoulders one at 21 percent the other 23 percent. The DMA rated one at 17 percent the other 19 percent and asked for clarification from Dr. Ellis as to why he felt it was 21 and 23 percent . I provided Dr. Ellis's narrative response to the DMA and haven't heard back or had any further communication yet. Where does this go from here? Can the DMA go with his figures (which would be fine by me) as I can return each year for an additional rating. Or from your experience is it more likely he will send me for a second opinion? I'm hoping they don't send it for a second opinion as it will drag this out much longer. So far owcp has been fairly responsive which is surprising. Just trying to figure out where this will go next.

41. If Dr. Ellis agrees with the DMA, OWCP will go with the DMA's percentages.

If Dr. Ellis disagrees then OWCP can send you to a referee physician to determine which percentages to go with.

If you're okay with the DMA's percentages you can ask Dr. Ellis to agree with the DMA. If he did, then OWCP would go with the DMA's percentages and pay out the schedule award at those percentages.

42. My husband has been temporarily totally disabled and receiving OWCP wage compensation for 2 years due to a severe accident resulting in 3 rotator cuff repairs (once left and twice on right) with loss of function and bilateral neuropathy, right hand surgery with loss of function and disfigurement and cervical displacement. He has just reached MMI. His OWCP Orthopedic doctor is calculating his impairment percentage this weekend. His doctor said his restrictions are such that he can't really work again because it would be difficult to accommodate:less than 2# each arm, only 15 minutes of each hour and for only 4 hours a day with no reaching up. His doctor and his OWCP claims examiner have asked if he's going to take 'medical disability' or 'disability retirement'. We don't know what they mean. He is at retirement age and can do so at any time. We understand he will receive a scheduled award also. Can you help us understand his options? Thank you.

43. You're confused because the CE has confused 'medical disability' and 'disability retirement' as two different things when those are both terms for disability retirement.

I think what the CE is asking is will you be taking the schedule award and disability retirement or stay with the OWCP compensation.

If he has applied for and been approved for disability retirement, he can accept the schedule award and switch to the disability retirement and collect both at the same time.

If he has not applied for disability retirement or any other retirement, then that option is not available to him so the choice is does he want to continue to keep receiving compensation or does he want to collect the schedule award.

If he's receiving compensation, OWCP would suspend the compensation, pay the schedule award and resume the compensation when the schedule award is done paying out. He cannot receive both OWCP compensation and the schedule award at the same time.

If he has not applied for any OPM benefits (disability or regular retirement) then that's not an option and if he applied now, you should know that OPM can take 8-12 months to approve the application.

If he's at retirement age, he would apply for regular retirement and not disability retirement if he was applying for OPM benefits.

44. I just wanted to say thank you for the questions and answers. they are helping with some the run around I am getting from OWCP

45. My husband just received his letter from OWCP regarding his schedule award.
He is totally blind in one eye and was evaluated to have 48% loss in the other eye.
The letter only has an award of 48% for 76 weeks of compensation.
This does not make sense to me because as I read the schedule award scale the total loss of vision in one eye should be 100 % at 160 weeks and the other eye at 48% for 76 weeks would be a total of 246 weeks. Is there something I am not understanding?
Thanking you in advance.

46. Without knowing more, I couldn't say what the issue is. For instance, are both eyes accepted or is it only one?

Did the letter from OWCP indicate the DMA made a determination and if so, did you ask for a copy of the DMA's report?

Does the letter indicate is it for one eye and they've discounted the other eye or is it possible they're doing them separately?

There's not enough information to say what the issue is.

47. I've had 3 surgeries from injuries at work one on my elbow and both feet. 1/18/17 2/7/17 and 4/4/17. OWCP told me I have to wait 1 year after surgery to file for a schedule award. My question is do I really have to wait it has been almost a year I'm at MMI for all and went to a FCE with rating a week ago? Also do I have to file one foot at a time I do have separate case numbers for them? They put all my cases under one master case number so should each claim be submitted under the original case#?

48. There is no specific time frame. Once you reach MMI whether it's a couple of months after an injury or years after an injury, you can have the impairment rating and apply for a schedule award.

If you do the ratings one at a time, each will be identified by its claim number. If you do them both at once, both claim numbers will be included.

Even though the claims have been combined, they are each identified by their individual claim numbers.

You can do them one at a time or both in one rating if the doctor agrees to do them both in one rating.

49. To Jesse,
I'm having a Left Total Knee Replacement. I'm single no dependents 66 2/3. I'm receiving about \$500.00 a week from OWCP DOL. Let's say my orthopedic says I have a 20% loss of use impairment rating. If my calculations are correct 288 weeks (leg) X 20% (impairment) = 57.6 weeks. So 57.6 weeks (20% loss of use) X 500.00 a week OWCP X 66.666666667 = about \$19,200 Total Award. Is this a correct scheduled award? Thanks in advance for taking the time to read my post.

50. Your calculations are accurate!

1. Jesse, Thank You soooo much for responding to my post and advising me that my calculations and accuracy were correct. You're a Godsend.

51. Who determines my MMI for a scheduled award? I was cleared to full duty by my surgeon and doctor. My surgeon left the MMI box blank and the doctor checked no. The doctor however scheduled for a impairment rating. Does the impairment doctor sign of the MMI?

52. The date of MMI is indicated at the time of the rating and is usually the date the rating is performed. The MMI date must be in your rating report.

53. 03/08/2018
DOI was 12/2007 I went for impairment rating on 02/15/2018 was given 23% rating for UEI. MMI date should be same as exam I thought, but the Dr. indicated in the report There is evidence to support that MMI was more likely than not present at an earlier date during the former part of 2011. How does this effect my schedule award?

54. This could complicate things. There must be proof in the file that supports an MMI date in the past and if OWCP accepts this date, they will use the date of injury pay rate when calculating the award.

If you received compensation during that same period, that also complicates things because you cannot receive OWCP compensation and a schedule award at the same time.

55. Hello Jesse, my DOI was back in Oct 2016 for back sprain and then they expanded the claim to include radiculopathy of the left leg. They still have not approved surgery for me as of yet. I’ve been working full time in limited/restrictive role. HR wants my doctor to fill out paperwork for me for MMI, but I’m concerned if my dr does that then it would becoming even more difficult to have the back surgery.
Would OWCP still pay for surgeries after MMI is established? Should I wait until after surgery to get MMI?
Also, I’m going through some transition of doctors because my dr is leaving the practice/state. I hate the practice, and I’m trying to find another dr to take over my case, and I’m not having much luck with that. I’m so frustrated because I have no idea how to proceed. It’s also going to be difficult because I need to expand my claim to include my right leg radiculopathy, and now I’m have severe nerve damage to both my arms and hands (I didn’t know the extent until after an EMG performed last October 2017).
Any direction would be extremely helpful.

56. You're not at MMI if you require a surgery and your doctor shouldn't state you're at MMI just because the agency wants it.

57. Hi and thanks for the great information. I could not find anywhere if LEAP is included in determining your weekly pay rate? I get paid bi weekly so I just divided it in half to determine my weekly pay rate but have two numbers. One with LEAP included and without. Which number is correct? Thank you in advance.

58. LEAP is included in your weekly pay rate.