All Library employees are covered by the Mississippi Workers' Compensation Law, Mississippi Code of 1972, Annotated § 71‐3‐1 et seq. which provides certain benefits in the event an employee suffers a work‐related injury or illness. In case of a work‐related fatality, the law guarantees payment of benefits to the spouse and dependents of the deceased. Workers’ Compensation benefits are provided at no cost to the employee or dependents. For injury/illness, benefits may include payment of all reasonable and necessary medical expenses, as well as, partial compensation for wages lost due to the injury or illness. In certain cases, vocational rehabilitation may also be available.

Any injury/illness that happens on the job should be reported immediately to the Library Director to ensure appropriate medical treatment is provided and any wage loss benefits due the employee are paid without unnecessary delay.

Wage‐loss benefits for injury /illness are not paid for the first five (5) days of disability unless the disability extends fourteen (14) or more days. These benefits are payable at the rate of two‐thirds of the employee's average weekly wage. These benefits may also be subject to a weekly maximum set by law.

Workers’ Compensation claims are time‐sensitive. Employees must report claims to the workers’ compensation carrier within thirty (30) days after the occurrence, subject to statutory exceptions as outlined in the Mississippi Code of 1972, Annotated § 71‐3‐35.

The Library’s workers’ compensation coverage is provided through Mississippi Public Entity Workers Compensation Trust (MPEWCT).  MPEWCT’s certificate of coverage and contact information is posted at each library branch alongside other labor relation posters.

Workers’ Compensation and paid leave usage

Employees must notify the Library Director in writing if he/she desires to use part or all of his/her sick or personal leave during any portion of his/her worker’s compensation coverage period.  This is because wage-loss benefits are only activated when there is a loss of wages for the employee.   Receiving paid leave benefits may postpone the receipt of wage-loss benefits.

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Policy’s Procedural Implementation

Employees experiencing a work comp event may be temporarily re-assigned to lighter work duties and/or required to take leave until such time as a doctor’s excuse is provided that clearly indicates that the employee is fit to return to work and under what conditions.

See also online resources at the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Commission site.

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