(a) An employee may elect to commute impairment income benefits when the employee has returned to work for at least three months, earning at least 80% of the employee’s average weekly wage.
(b) A request to commute must:
(1) be in writing on a commission-prescribed form;
(2) state the date the employee reached maximum medical improvement; the impairment rating; and the employee’s weekly impairment income benefit;
(3) be sent to the carrier; and
(4) be filed with the commission field office managing the claim.
(c) The commission-prescribed form shall include a warning to the employee that commutation terminates the employee’s entitlement to additional income benefits for the injury.
(d) The employee may contact the commission field office managing the claim to obtain or verify the information required to be included in the request.
(e) The carrier shall send a notice of approval or denial of the request to the employee no later than 14 days after receipt of the request. A notice of approval shall include payment of the commuted impairment income benefits. A notice of denial shall include the carrier’s reasons for denial. A copy of the notice shall be filed with the commission field office managing the claim.
(f) If the carrier denies the request, the employee may request the commission to schedule a benefit review conference to resolve the issue, as provided by § 141.1 of this title (relating to Requesting and Setting a Benefit Review Conference).
The provisions of this § 147.10 adopted to be effective December 16, 1991, 16 TexReg 7018.