Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

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Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

Postby mta2 on Mon Jan 09, 2017 9:34 am

Does an injured worker have to be enrolled in a school to request reimbursement or payment for a computer? I have an injured worker who has provided a cost breakdown for the computer she will be purchasing for a class that she plans on taking. On page 5 of the Voucher she can check off "A written invoice is attached". This is the first time I have actually had an injured worker request money for the purchase of a computer. Thank you.
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Re: Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

Postby mta2 on Thu Jan 12, 2017 10:31 am

I assume that no-one has the answer to this question?
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Re: Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

Postby vampireinthenight on Thu Jan 12, 2017 11:42 am

I would think the computer must be part of an approved program, but I have not litigated this issue, so cannot cite anything. I would start with the regulations and see what they say. What is the closest you have found?
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Re: Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California) (California)

Postby Barney5 on Fri Jan 13, 2017 8:20 am

It states part of the voucher can be used for a computer and I do not see anywhere in the rules that states they must be enrolled in a class first to obtain the computer. I have not read any stipulations that they have to be enrolled in anything or do anything to obtain the computer. Also, they can request an additional $500. that does not have to be accounted for separate from the computer, and there is nothing I have read that states they must be enrolled in a class first for that either. This voucher system was to help people and not to have them run through more hoops to receive these benefits.

If the injured worker does not have a computer it may be difficult to research colleges and sign up for college in the first place as most everything is online these days even registration. I guess they could go to a library, but why should they have to since we have this program in place to help injured workers and not make it more difficult to start college. For those who are low income and do not have a computer or even a car, obtaining a computer can be life changing.

If someone finds rules that state otherwise please post.

I want to post some additional information for claims adjusters who are interested in encouraging injured workers to attending college, but that have injuries that may need accommodation. All colleges have disabled student services department, and for those who may need accommodation due to their injury I encourage them to meet with a disabled student counselor and sign up for this. They can provide them with things like special equipment, voice activated computers, online classes, extra time for testing, note takers etc. They may also receive priority registration. I have seen students who are paralyzed from the neck down attend college full time. If there is a will there is a way.
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Re: Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

Postby vampireinthenight on Fri Jan 13, 2017 9:30 am

That's good info to remember, but I think transport is the main concern for college. It looks like that can be a claimed expense under the voucher, but it is cumbersome and the significantly disabled IW would need a lot of it.

Maybe I screwed it up, but when I put in the link from Regulation 10133.58, I did NOT get the list of eligible providers.
http://etpl.edd.ca.gov/wiaetplind.htm

Interesting that the employer retains the option to provide the computer directly to the IW. I wonder what that is all about?
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Re: Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

Postby Barney5 on Sat Jan 14, 2017 7:37 pm

Vampireinthenight I have not read anything about the claims adjuster having an option to providing to provide the computer. Do you mean they can say no to a computer or they have the option to purchase the computer for the injured worker instead of allowing the injured worker to pay for it and then ask for reimbursement?

There is a list of colleges but the vouchers can be used at any California state or city college. The problem some injured workers are having is these colleges are not accepting the vouchers, and in this case they are supposed to submit receipts to the adjuster for reimbursement. For injured workers who do not have the money to front the cost of the classes I can see this being a problem. I hope if the injured worker is in this situation there is a way for claims adjuster to pay for the classes, books etc.

I can see transport being an issue for those who have serious injuries. Most colleges offer online classes, but it can be difficult to do some classes online. There are benefits to going to class, especially for someone who is isolated after an injury. I know once on a campus a college will provide a helper for student if they need assistance to class and also in class, to take notes etc. I was not aware transportation to and from college was an issue, but glad you mentioned voucher may cover it. I wonder if there are organizations that will also provide transportation help.

The student should also apply for financial aid no matter if they receive a voucher or not (JMO). There are also a lot of grants out there too.
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Re: Payment/reimbursement for Computer (California)

Postby vampireinthenight on Tue Jan 17, 2017 9:17 am

I think I misread it a little. Reg 10133.31(f)(5) allows the employer to giver the option of purchase of computer from the employer. It sounds like both parties must consent, however.

I still don't know who thought this provision was necessary. ?

$1000 will buy a pretty sweet laptop these days. My wife just got one for under $600 and it works great.
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