Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

Defense Base Act Average Weekly Wage and Up Pays-Overseas Employee Remuneration

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on November 6, 2011

Average Weekly Wage determinations are based on the amount you were making at the time you were injured and

INCLUDE UP PAYS

Still the Department of Labor allows the Insurance Company to use this issue to underpay and deny payment of indemnity to injured contractors and death benefits to the family members of those killed.

One Claims Examiner in particular recommends at every informal conference we have been made aware of that the injured contractors AWW does not include up pays.  This allows the insurance company to either cease payments or underpay the injured for the years it often takes to get the claim before an ALJ where this will be remedied.

Often the Injured Contractor has grown so weary of the fight that they accept this lower AWW and consequently lower indemnity payments.  Worse often the Injured Contractors own Attorney recommends to them that they accept this illegal determination.  It will not effect what they get paid.

An injured contractor may be told that this is inconsequential to their claim because their AWW is so much higher than the DBA limits.  Never accept this determination as it will effect your residual wage earning capacity in the event you are able to return to work albeit in a diminished capacity.

This biased practice on behalf of some Department of Labor employees places an increased burden on the DBA Administrative System which is evidently nearly at a standstill, on the injured contractor and their family, and unfairly allows the insurance company to drag out claims unnecessarily for years on end.  More legal fees to be paid by the taxpayer for both sides and it only cost the insurance company .24 percent to withhold these funds.

DBA Insurance Insurance Premiums are paid based on the following:

The rates are per $100 of contractors’ overseas employee remuneration.

“Overseas employee remuneration” means the salary of an employee eligible for DBA coverage earned overseas and includes
Overseas recruitment incentive,
Post differential, and
Danger pay,

But excludes
     Per diem,
     Housing allowance,
     Travel expenses,
     Temporary quarters allowance,
     Education allowance, and
     Any other miscellaneous post allowances

Any changes in the amount of remuneration paid during the term of the policy will result in corresponding changes to the amount of the premium. This is where CNA screwed over USACE by not refunding premiums where required.

The above DBA premium information was taken from the following though it is also stated in the LHWCA

Acquisition Assistance and Policy Directive Defense Base Act Insurance for 2010-2015 USAID

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