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OhioBWC - Basics:  Handicap Reimbursement

Qualifying conditions, eligible employers and time limitations for Handicap Reimbursement

The employer of record can request that a percentage of the costs in a workers' compensation claim be charged to, or refunded from, the Statutory Surplus Fund.

Qualifying conditions – Employers can only be granted reimbursement for costs associated to claims of injured workers with certain statutorily specified conditions. The conditions for which reimbursement can be granted are:

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Epilepsy;
Diabetes;
Cardiac disease;
Arthritis;
Amputated foot, leg, arm or hand;
Loss of sight of one or both eyes or
partial loss of uncorrected vision of
more than 75 percent bilaterally;
Residual disability from poliomyelitis;
Cerebral palsy;
Multiple sclerosis;
Parkinson’s disease;
Cerebral vascular accident;
Tuberculosis;
Silicosis;
Psycho-neurotic disability following
treatment in a recognized medical
mental institution;
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Hemophilia;
Chronic osteomyelitis;
Ankylosis of joints;
Hyper Insulinism;
Muscular dystrophies;
Arterio-sclerosis;
Thrombo-phlebitis;
Varicose veins;
Cardiovascular and poliomyelitis
pulmonary diseases of a firefighter
employed by municipal corporation
or township as a regular member of a
lawfully constituted fire department;
Coal miners pneumoconiosis;
Disability with respect to which an
individual has completed a rehabili-
tation program (ORC 4121.61-69).



Requests for handicap reimbursement must be supported by evidence as follows:
  • Medical evidence (in the nature of doctor’s reports and dispensary records) that the employee suffered from one of the conditions listed above;
  • Evidence that the condition constituted a handicap within the meaning of the law, full or in part, but not limited to the following;

    • Evidence that the employee was hired for restricted work;
    • Evidence that prior to the injury, disease or death the employee was limited by the employer to certain restricted work;
    • Evidence that prior to the injury, disease or death, the condition caused the employee to be hospitalized or to obtain extensive medical treatment;
    • Evidence that prior to the injury, disease or death, the condition caused the employee to be absent from work an excessive amount of time;
    • Evidence in the form of affidavits or medical reports to support the contention that the injury, disease or death would not have occurred but for the pre-existing handicap condition of the employee or that the resulting disability or death was caused, in part, through aggravation of the handicapped condition.
Eligible employers
Although most employers are eligible for handicap reimbursement there are some exceptions. Employers who are eligible include:
  • All state-fund employers;
  • All public employers (except state agencies and universities).
Employers who are not eligible
  • All non-complying employers (employers with no coverage or whose coverage had lapsed at the time of the injury)
  • All out-of-business employers
  • All self-insuring employers
  • Most bankrupt employers (Requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Some bankrupt employers may qualify for a reimbursement)
  • State agencies and universities

When a subsequent application is filed for a different handicapped condition the employer is eligible for an additional handicap reimbursement.

Time limitations for filing
Employers must file the application for handicap reimbursement while the claim is still within the employer’s experience. Time limitations for filing differ based on employer type.
  • For a claim involving a private state fund employer with a date of injury on or before Dec. 31, 2009, the application must be filed by June 30 of the year no more than six years from the year of the date of the injury or occupational disease.
  • For a claim involving a private state fund employer with a date of injury on or after Jan. 1, 2010:


    • If the date of injury is between Jan. 1 and June 30, the application shall be filed by June 30 of the year no more than six years from the year of the date of the injury or occupational disease.
    • If the date of injury is between July 1 and Dec. 31, the application shall be filed by June 30 of the year no more than seven years from the year of the date of the injury or occupational disease.


  • For a claim involving a public employer taxing district employer with a date of injury on or before Dec. 31, 2009, the application shall be filed by Dec. 31 of the year no more than five years from the year of the date of the injury or occupational disease.
  • For a claim involving a public employer taxing district employer with a date of injury on or after Jan. 1, 2010, the application shall be filed by Dec. 31 of the year no more than six years from the year of the date of the injury or occupational disease.
Claim settlement does not affect an employer’s right to have a handicap reimbursement application considered.

All requests for Handicap Reimbursement are reviewed and determined by BWC’s Legal Operations Department.

An employer with additional questions or needing further information about Handicap Reimbursement should contact BWC Legal Operations at 614-466-6600


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