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FAQs: Claimant Correspondence

While a case is at NIOSH for dose reconstruction, claimants and their authorized representatives receive various pieces of correspondence. This correspondence may provide case status, explanations of steps in the dose reconstruction process, dose reconstruction findings, and other helpful program information.

To answer questions about this correspondence, click any one of the questions listed below to view its answer.

Acknowledgment Letter

What is the Acknowledgement Letter?

The Acknowledgement Letter lets claimants know that NIOSH received the case from the Department of Labor (DOL) for dose reconstruction and provides general information on the dose reconstruction program. An example of the acknowledgement letter and the enclosures provided with the letter are listed below:

When will I receive this letter?

You will receive the acknowledgement letter when NIOSH has received your case for compensation under EEOICPA (The Act) from DOL.

Is there anything I need to do after receiving the acknowledgement letter?

No action is required by you at that time.

Who do I contact if I have additional questions about the acknowledgement letter?

If you have additional questions about the acknowledgement letter, you can call your NIOSH Program Specialist directly (their name and number are provided on the letter). You can also call NIOSH toll-free at 1-877-222-7570.

Work History Phone Call and Phone Call Summary Report Letters

What is the Work History Phone Call Letter?

This letter provides information about a phone call that each claimant (energy employee or survivor) will have the opportunity to participate to discuss the energy employee's work history. A list of questions included in the letter provide claimants with the chance to share additional information about their work history that might not be found in the exposure monitoring information we receive from the Department of Energy (DOE) or Atomic Weapons Employer (AWE).

When will I receive the Work History Phone Call Letter?

Our contractor ORAU will send the work history phone call letter shortly after you have received the Acknowledgement Letter.

Is there anything I need to do after receiving this letter?

If you decide to answer the questions (participation is voluntary), and feel that you are ready to schedule your call, please call us Toll-Free at 1-800-790-ORAU (1-800-790-6728) and ask to speak to a scheduler. You can also call this number if you wish to decline the phone call.

What is the Phone Call Summary Report Letter?

The phone call summary report summarizes the information you provided to us during your initial phone call about the energy employee's radiation and exposure history. You will receive this report after the phone call has occurred. The report provides you with an opportunity to review the information you provided to us. Your review will help us ensure the information accurately reflects what you stated during the phone call.

If you have additional questions about the letter, please call us Toll-Free at 1-800-790-ORAU (1-800-790-6728).

Who do I contact if I have questions about the Work History Phone Call or Phone Call Summary Report Letter?

If you have additional questions about the letter, please call us Toll-Free at 1-800-790-ORAU (1-800-790-6728). Additional information can also be found on our website on the Phone Calls with Claimants and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) Work History Phone Calls pages.

Conflict of Interest Letter

What does "conflict of interest" mean?

"Conflict of interest" means a potential, actual, or appearance of a conflict and/or bias between the obligations of a person as a NIOSH Dose Reconstruction Program employee or contractor, and a personal or corporate interest.

What is the conflict of interest letter?

The conflict of interest letter provides claimants and authorized representatives with information about NIOSH's/ORAU's policy of selecting a Health Physicist(s) to work on a dose reconstruction for a case. It states that a dose reconstruction will not be assigned to a Health Physicist who worked at the same covered facility as the energy employee represented in the case.

When will I receive the conflict of interest letter?

You will receive the conflict of interest letter after your case file has been reviewed and we have determined that all required information has been gathered from the available records sources.

Who do I contact if I have questions about the conflict of interest letter?

If you have questions about the conflict of interest letter, please call us toll-free at 1-800-790-ORAU (1-800-790-6728).

Draft NIOSH Report of Dose Reconstruction

What is the draft dose reconstruction report?

The NIOSH draft dose reconstruction report is a summary report that provides a general overview of the dose reconstruction that NIOSH conducted for your case (e.g., dose reconstruction results, the basis on which the results were calculated, etc.).

Will I have the opportunity to review the draft dose reconstruction report?

Yes, we will send you a draft of the dose reconstruction report for you to review.

What happens after I receive the draft dose reconstruction report?

We will attempt to contact you to schedule a convenient date and time for conducting a closing phone call with you.

When does the closing phone call occur?

The closing phone call will occur after NIOSH has completed a reconstruction of the radiation dose and you have received a copy of the draft dose reconstruction report. Typically, the call occurs within two weeks of receipt of the draft dose reconstruction report letter.

Do I have to participate in the closing phone call?

No. Participation in the closing phone call is voluntary.

What if I disagree with the draft dose reconstruction report?

If you disagree with the draft dose reconstruction report, you will have an opportunity to state your disagreement to the final dose reconstruction report once you receive DOL's recommended decision on your case. Procedures for stating your disagreement are described in the DOL recommended decision. You can also contact the DOL District Office where you originally filed your claim for additional information:

  • Jacksonville, FL:     (513) 533-8425
  • Cleveland, OH:       (513) 533-8423
  • Denver, CO:           (513) 533-8426
  • Seattle, WA:           (513) 533-8424

What happens if NIOSH revises my draft dose reconstruction report?

If NIOSH revises your draft dose reconstruction report, you will be sent a revised copy of the report, which takes the place of any previous dose reconstruction reports we have sent you. Shortly thereafter, we will attempt to contact you to see if you would like to schedule a convenient date and time to discuss the revised report.

The probability of causation stated in my dose reconstruction report is 50% or greater. Does this mean that my claim will be compensated by DOL?

No, the dose reconstruction report does not present a probability of causation number. The results of the NIOSH dose reconstruction do not determine whether or not a claim is compensated. Once the dose reconstruction is completed by NIOSH, the case is returned to DOL. At that time, DOL will determine whether or not the cancer was "at least as likely as not" caused by exposure to radiation during employment at a covered facility. Based upon this determination, DOL will either award or deny compensation.

There is an OCAS-1 Form included along with my draft dose reconstruction report. What is the purpose of this form?

The OCAS-1 Form tells NIOSH that at the time you sign the form, you do not have any additional information to share with us that might be related to the dose reconstruction for your case and the dose reconstruction is complete and can be forwarded to DOL for a decision on your claim. Signing the form does not mean that you agree or disagree with the dose reconstruction.

Do I have to sign the OCAS-1 form?

Yes. The OCAS-1 Form must be properly signed (just your signature and date on the form) and returned to our office in order for us to forward your final dose reconstruction report to DOL for a decision on your claim.

Does my signature on the OCAS-1 Form indicate that I agree with the draft dose reconstruction report?

No. Your signature on the OCAS-1 Form only tells NIOSH that at the time you sign the form, you do not have any additional information that might be important to the dose reconstruction for your case.

How long do I have to return the signed OCAS-1 form?

You have 60 days to return the signed OCAS-1 Form to NIOSH.

Can I wait until the closing phone call before I return the signed OCAS-1 Form?

Yes. You can sign and return the OCAS-1 Form after you have your closing phone call. However, you still have 60 days from the date you receive the draft dose reconstruction report to return the signed OCAS-1 Form to NIOSH.

What happens if I do not return the signed OCAS-1 Form?

If NIOSH does not receive your signed OCAS-1 Form within 60 days, we cannot forward your final dose reconstruction report to DOL for a decision on your claim. If this happens, NIOSH may administratively close the dose reconstruction case and notify DOL of this action. A dose reconstruction that has been administratively closed can be reopened once the signed OCAS-1 Form is received by NIOSH.

What does "administratively close" mean?

Per NIOSH, "administratively close" means that the case has been closed by NIOSH and the case will not be forwarded to DOL. For example, a case could be administratively closed if the claimant does not sign and return the OCAS-1 Form within 60 days of receiving it. The case can be reopened once the signed OCAS-1 Form is submitted.

The required time period to return the OCAS-1 Form has expired, but I have extenuating circumstances that delayed its return. Can I return the signed OCAS-1 Form at this time?

This case may have been administratively closed since NIOSH did not receive a properly signed OCAS-1 Form within the required time period. You can still sign and return the form to us at this time. If it is properly signed (just your signature and date on the form), we will send the dose reconstruction report to DOL for their consideration.

I have multiple siblings who are also claimants. One of them has not (or refuses) to sign and return the OCAS-1 Form. How will this affect my case?

The OCAS-1 Form must be signed and returned by at least one claimant for the case to proceed to DOL for a final decision. If DOL determines that an award is appropriate for your case, a portion of the compensation will only be awarded to individuals that have submitted a signed OCAS-1 Form.

What happens to a claimant's award money if it is not claimed?

If DOL determines that an award is appropriate for a case that has multiple claimants, a portion of the compensation will only be awarded to individuals that have submitted a signed OCAS-1 Form (claimed the award). The award money will be set aside for all other claimants until they return the signed OCAS-1 Form.

What happens after I return my signed OCAS-1 Form to NIOSH?

Once NIOSH receives your signed OCAS-1 Form, a final dose reconstruction report will be sent to DOL and to you. DOL will use the information in the final report to assist them in determining whether or not your claim qualifies for compensation.

Who do I contact if I have additional questions about the draft dose reconstruction report?

If you have any additional questions regarding the draft dose reconstruction report, please contact us toll-free at 1-800-790-ORAU (1-800-790-6728).

Final NIOSH Report of Dose Reconstruction

What is the NIOSH dose reconstruction final report?

This is the final NIOSH Report of Dose Reconstruction that provides the dose reconstruction results for your case and the basis on which the results were calculated.

When will I receive the final dose reconstruction report?

You should receive this report after we have received a properly signed OCAS-1 Form. This report will be forwarded to DOL for their use in determining whether or not to compensate your claim. A copy will also be sent to the Department of Energy (DOE).

How is the final dose reconstruction report used in DOL's compensation decision?

The information in the tables at the end of the final NIOSH dose reconstruction report is used by DOL to determine the probability of causation - the probability that a worker's cancer was "at least as likely as not" due to his/her occupational exposure to ionizing radiation during employment at a covered facility.

What if I disagree with the final dose reconstruction report?

If you disagree with the draft dose reconstruction report, you will have an opportunity to state your disagreement to the final dose reconstruction report once you receive DOL's recommended decision on your case. Procedures for stating your disagreement are described in the DOL recommended decision. You can also contact the DOL District Office where you originally filed your claim for additional information:

  • Jacksonville, FL:     (513) 533-8425
  • Cleveland, OH:       (513) 533-8423
  • Denver, CO:           (513) 533-8426
  • Seattle, WA:           (513) 533-8424

What if I remember additional information that may be important to my dose reconstruction after DOL has made a decision?

If you have additional information about your case after DOL has made a decision, you can contact DOL and provide them with the information. DOL will then decide whether or not your case should be reopened and returned to NIOSH for rework.

Who do I contact if I have any additional questions regarding the final dose reconstruction report?

If you have any additional questions regarding the final dose reconstruction report, please contact us toll-free at 1-800-790-ORAU (1-800-790-6728) or NIOSH toll free at 1-877-222-7570.

 
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