BASIC (09-08)

DI 52115.025 Other Federal Workers’ Compensation (WC) Programs

The Federal WC programs discussed in this section provide WC coverage for high-risk occupations or occupations not covered under any other WC plan.

A. Extensions of the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA)

The Department of Labor administers a number of WC programs that have grown out of the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act. Claims under these provisions are filed with the appropriate Department of Labor district office (DO).

1. Defense Base Act (DBA)

The DBA provides WC benefits to civilian employees working at military, air and naval bases outside the United States (U.S.) under a contract with the U.S. government for public works or national defense. Permanent total disability and death benefits are subject to annual cost of living allowances (COLAs). The LHWCA minimum benefit rate does not apply to DBA claims. Therefore, when verifying rates, do not assume payments made under the DBA should agree with the payments made under the LHWCA. If the beneficiary cannot provide proof of the WC, contact the following:

  • Insurance carriers;

  • Self-insured employers; or

  • LSHWCA district office in the Compensation District where the claimant resides. Refer to DOL website .

  • A list of insurance carriers and self-insured employers currently authorized to write coverage under the LSHWCA are available on the DOL website .

    NOTE: Cases are first reported to the New York, Boston, or Honolulu DO, depending on which side of the world the injury occurs, and then transferred to the district office responsible for the State in which the claimant resides.

2. War Hazards Compensation Act (WHCA)

The WHCA extends the Defense Base Act to provide compensation for those overseas civilian employees of contractors with the United States who do not work on a military, air or naval base. If an injury or death claim is related to a "war-risk hazard," the WHCA provides for government reimbursement from the Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA) to private WC insurance carriers. (This makes it easier for employers to obtain WC insurance coverage for their employees.)

NOTE: The employer’s or carrier’s reimbursement from the FECA Fund does not affect the offset computation. Employees are sometimes reimbursed directly for out of pocket expenses.

When verification is necessary, send requests for verification to: U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, Branch of Special Claims, P.O. Box 37117, Washington, D.C. 20013-7117.

3. Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA)

The OCSLA covers primarily oil rig employees. Compensation is paid under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). When verification is necessary, develop to the appropriate longshore district office. See DOL website for contact information.

4. Nonappropriated Funds Instrumentalities Act (NFIA)

The NFIA covers disability or death resulting from injury occurring to civilian employees on military bases that provide support services to military personnel (e.g., post exchanges, bowling alleys). The wages of these employees are paid from nonappropriated funds of the Armed Forces (i.e. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard). When verification is necessary, develop to the LSHWCA district office servicing DBA claims. See DOL website for contact information.

5. District of Columbia Workmen's Compensation Act (DCWCA)

a. Date of injury/illness prior to 07/26/1982

The DCWCA compensates employees of private companies within the District of Columbia for on the job injuries or illnesses that occurred before 07/26/1982. These claims are handled by the Department of Labor. If the NH cannot provide documentation, contact DOL at:

Longshore District Office #40,
DC Department of Employment Services
64 New York Ave NE - 2nd Floor
Washington DC 20002

b. Date of injury/illness on or after 07/26/1982

Claims arising from injuries or illnesses occurring on or after 07/26/1982 fall under the District of Columbia Workers’ Compensation Act of 1979, which created the D.C. Department of Employment Services and gave it oversight authority for WC claims. DC workers compensation is pai