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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Computer Problems Delay 3/1/11 COLA for FECA Recipients

I have in recent days received many phone calls from FECA recipients wondering why they had not received the March 1, 2011 COLA adjustment to their periodic roll wage loss and schedule award payments. The March 1, 2011 COLA is 1.7%.

I have spoken with several knowledgeable persons who confirm that some sort of computer glitch has delayed implementation of the 1.7% COLA. The next periodic roll payments should reflect the COLA; OWCP will send FECA recipients a separate supplemental check to cover the COLA adjustment effective March 1, 2011 or they may include it in the next periodic payment.

At least one claimant who called District 2 (NY) was told that there will not be a COLA adjustment this year which I am advised is incorrect. Unfortunately, FECA claimants will actually see their net check go down once again in 2011 as the cost of health insurance continues to increase far more rapidly than the COLA on their wage loss and schedule award payments.