Medical arbitration may be appropriate for you in one of several instances:
- If you are regularly appointed and have been denied injury-in-the-line-of-duty status for more than 20 consecutive days.
- If you have been denied either a sabbatical leave for restoration of health or an unpaid leave of absence for restoration of health.
- If you believe you are fit for duty and the DOE says you are not.
If you are denied for any of these reasons, you must file for medical arbitration within 10 days of the receipt of the denial. The medical arbitrator is an independent doctor, jointly selected by the union and the DOE, who will review your medical documentation to determine if the medical bureau’s decision was correct. The medical arbitrator’s decision is final and binding. You should speak to your UFT borough office if you want to pursue this course of action.
The 2023 DOE-UFT contract states that independent medical evaluations will take place as expeditiously as possible following a teacher’s request for such an evaluation. To address the current delays, the DOE and the UFT will meet to explore ways to add more medical arbitrators to the rotating panel of doctors.