Amend the bill by striking out everything after the enacting clause and inserting the following:
‘Sec. 1. 39-A MRSA §213, sub-§1-B, as enacted by PL 2011, c. 647, §8, is repealed and the following enacted in its place:
Sec. 2. 39-A MRSA §214, sub-§1, ¶F is enacted to read:
F. If the employee is not working and has performed a work search sufficient for the receipt of unemployment benefits as required by the Department of Labor, a rebuttable presumption is created that the employee is entitled to receive a weekly compensation amount equal to the amount permitted for total incapacity under section 212. This presumption may be rebutted only by a showing that the employee has received a bona fide offer of reasonable employment and refused that offer without good and reasonable cause.
Sec. 3. 39-A MRSA §217, sub-§8, as enacted by PL 2011, c. 647, §14, is amended to read:
This amendment is the majority report of the Joint Standing Committee on Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development. Current eligibility requirements under the Maine Workers' Compensation Act of 1992 for long-term partial incapacity benefits require at least an 18% permanent impairment, a weekly wage of 65% or less of the preinjury weekly wage and that the employee have earnings for at least 12 of the prior 24 months. This amendment replaces those eligibility requirements with requirements that the employee have a demonstrated earning capacity of 70% or less than the employee's earnings at the time of injury and the employee is working within the employee's documented capacity. The amendment adds that compensation is to be made at a fixed rate and reviewable no more frequently than every 2 years. Additionally, the amendment creates a rebuttable presumption that an injured worker with partial incapacity is eligible for benefits in the weekly amount permitted for total incapacity benefits as long as that injured worker has performed a work search sufficient to qualify for unemployment benefits through the Department of Labor.
The amendment also provides that rehabilitation plans voluntarily offered by the injured worker's employer qualify the injured worker for the same presumption that work is unavailable that is currently afforded to participants in Workers' Compensation Board rehabilitation plans.