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Workers' Compensation for Older Federal Employees Being Targeted

Workplace safety is an important component of any job. This is true whether someone is employed by a private company or the federal government. Despite adequate safety precautions, work-related injures still may occur. Employees should have the peace of mind to know that if they are injured while performing the duties of their job they will receive necessary financial assistance.

An individual who is injured on the job in Colorado is likely entitled to workers' compensation. The funds someone receives from workers' compensation help to lessen the financial strain caused by medical bills and lost wages incurred during the period he or she is recuperating.

At the urging of a member of Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) may be looking into federal workers' compensation benefits and comparing data to state workers' compensation programs. Currently an estimated 49,000 people receive benefits under the Federal Employee Compensation Act (FECA).

The concern centers on the issue that many federal employees are receiving benefits into their 70s and 80s and may not have intentions of returning to work. FECA currently has no benefit caps and lacks requirements for ongoing third-party certifications of continued need. The GAO is being asked to look at the length of time employees remain on the program and the amount of recipients who receive benefits past retirement age.

The legislative and political director for the American Federation of Government Employees stated that the union also would like the review to include a thorough analysis about why Transportation Security Administration officers experience a significantly higher rate of on-the-job injuries than other federal employees.

Of course no one wants fraud to occur any system, but the rights of those honestly collecting benefits also need to be protected.

Source: Washington Post, "Federal retirees shouldn't be getting workers' comp, senator says," Joe Davidson, 17 January 2011

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2000 S. Colorado Blvd. No. 2-740
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