When an injured federal employee (or USPS employee) has a permanent loss to body parts or organs, he or she can request a schedule award by filing a claim with the OWCP. The injury must reach maximum medical improvement before a schedule award can be obtained. At this point, a doctor can give an impairment rating using the 6th edition of the American Medical Association Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment. The impairment rating must be submitted on a ca-7 form sent to the employee’s agency if the employee is still with the agency; otherwise it can be sent directly to the OWCP.
Compensation for the number of weeks of lost wages has been set by Congress. Some examples of these are:
- Arm Loss – 312 weeks of compensation
- Leg Loss – 288 weeks of compensation
- Complete loss of hearing – 52 weeks of compensation
An employee gets compensated at the rate of 66 and 2/3 percent if the employee does not have any dependants and at the rate of 75 percent if the employee has a dependant or a spouse.
For example: An employee makes $1,000 per week. Her shoulder gets injured in an accident at work. After the injury has reached maximum medical improvement, the employee goes to the doctor to get an impairment rating. Her arm receives an impairment rating of 50%. Fifty percent of an arm (312 weeks) is 156 weeks. The employee is married. The 156 weeks is multiplied by 75 percent for a result of 117 weeks of pay.