Work Comp Injury | Supplemental Job Displacement Benefits | Return-To-Work Fund
For injuries occurring between January 1, 2004 and December 31, 2012, a voucher is offered to you, where permanent disability level has been determined, either by way of an agreement between you and the employer or insurance company or by way of an Award by a workers' compensation judge. The voucher must be provided within 25 calendar days from the issuance of the permanent partial disability award by a workers' compensation judge at the local Workers' Compensation Appeals Board district office.
For injuries on or after January 1, 2013, the voucher is due within 20 calendar days from the expiration of time for making an offer of regular, modified, or alternative work. The job must pay no less than 85 percent of the worker's earnings at the time of the injury and must be expected to last at least 12 months.
For injuries occurring between January 1, 2004 and December 31, 2012, you will receive the voucher. When you receive the voucher, the claims administrator should have completed lines 1 - 8. You are then responsible for completing lines 9 - 19. Lines 9 - 12 must be completed when using a vocational return to work counselor (VRTWC).
A list of counselors is available to you on the DWC website. If you do not select a counselor, you do not need to complete lines 9 - 12. The training provider you select should assist you in completing lines 13 - 19 on the voucher. You can contact the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPVE) at www.bppe.ca.gov to get a list of accredited private schools in your area. When you have completed the voucher, you must sign and date it before sending it back to the claims administrator. You must also attach any receipts or invoices for direct payment to you, the training provider, and/or the VRTWC. You can expect the payment to be made within 45 calendar days from the date the claims administrator receives the voucher.
For injuries on or after January 1, 2013, you will receive the voucher. When you receive the voucher, the claims administrator should have completed the information on the first page. If you will be using the services of a vocational return-to-work counselor, and/or training provider or school, complete the second page and mail it along with a copy of the first page to the claims administrator. If you would like to request an advance and/or reimbursement on miscellaneous expenses up to $500, complete the third page and return it to the claims administrator. If you would like to request reimbursement for computer equipment, tuition, fees, books, and/or tools, return page four to the claims administrator along with receipts and documentation. You can expect the payment to be made within 45 calendar days from the date the claims administrator receives the voucher.
Injured workers with a date of injury on or after January 1, 2013 and who have received a SJDB voucher for said injury may be eligible for a one-time return-to-work supplement of $5000. To apply for this one-time payment, an application must be completed and must be accompanied by a cover sheet prepared by the claims administrator containing notice of the Return to Work Supplement Program.
The 2012 reforms provided for a $120 million fund for "injured workers whose permanent disability ratings are disproportionately low in comparison to their wage loss." Eligibility for the benefits and the specifics of how the fund will be administered will be based on research to be performed by the State of California in consultation with the Commission on Health, Safety and Workers' Compensation (CHSWC). This benefit is decided by the State of California.