If a claimant disagrees with a decision made on a claim, he or she has 60 days from the date of the initial notice of the decision in which to file a written statement requesting reconsideration from the RRB office that made the decision. This step is mandatory before a decision may be appealed to the RRB's Bureau of Hearings and Appeals. Failure to request reconsideration within 60 days will result in forfeiture of further appeal rights.
If the case involves a benefit overpayment of more than 10 times the maximum daily benefit rate, the claimant may request a waiver of recovery. In order for recovery of the overpayment to be deferred while a waiver request is pending, the waiver request must be in writing and filed within 60 days from the date on which notice of the overpayment was mailed to the beneficiary. If waiver is requested, the claimant may be asked to complete a financial statement on a form provided by the RRB.
If dissatisfied with the reconsideration or waiver decision, a claimant may, within 60 days, appeal to the RRB's Bureau of Hearings and Appeals. This appeal must be filed using RRB Form HA-1, which may be obtained from any RRB field office or online.
If not satisfied with the Bureau of Hearings and Appeals' decision, a claimant may further appeal, within 60 days, to the three-member Board.
If not satisfied with the three-member Board's decision, a claimant may file a petition for a review of the decision by the appropriate U.S. Court of Appeals. A petition for review must be filed within 90 days of the notice of the Board's decision.
When an employer is a party to a claim for benefits, that employer may protest the payment of benefits, but such protests do not prevent the timely payment of benefits. However, employees may be required to repay benefits if their employers' protests are ultimately successful. The employer also has the right to appeal an unfavorable decision to the RRB's Bureau of Hearings and Appeals.