All District 230 employees are covered under the provisions of the workers’ compensation laws of Illinois. The law covers an employee’s reasonable and necessary medical expenses and provides the employee with weekly income for lost time from work due to an accident or an illness deemed compensable under the Illinois workers’ compensation laws. It is strongly encouraged that an employee report any accident or injury that occurs during the work day, even if no medical attention is required, to the employee’s supervisor within 24 hours of occurrence or as soon as practicable. An employee’s failure to report an accident may jeopardize his/her workers’ compensation benefits, especially in the event that symptoms do not appear for an extended period of time.
To be considered a workers’ compensation case (compensable), the injury or illness must be work-related, meaning that it arises from and occurs in the course of employment. Medical expenses related to the treatment of a work-related injury or illness (including doctor, hospital, surgical, physical therapy, prescription medication, medical equipment, and any out-of-pocket expenses) are covered when authorized by the District’s Workers’ Compensation provider. Workers’ Compensation also pays for wages lost as a result of an employee injury or illness, provided that the absence from work is related to a work injury or illness and is authorized by the District’s Workers’ Compensation provider. The employee must be out of work for three days (excluding the day of the injury) before workers’ compensation pays for work time lost. Workers’ Compensation disability payments are approximately 66 2/3% of an employee’s average weekly wages and are non-taxable income.
All injuries to employees should be documented and reported no matter how minor they may initially appear. An employee should report all injuries and accidents to his/her supervisor within 24 hours after the injury occurs or as soon as practicable. If the supervisor is not present at the time of the injury, the employee should contact an available building level administrator. An employee should also complete all paperwork within 24 hours of the injury or as soon as practicable to ensure the best recall of facts. If emergency aid is needed, the employee should seek assistance from the school nurse or main office administrative staff. The nurse is responsible for providing assistance to the injured or ill worker, and will contact Human Resources for further emergency medical treatment authorization, if necessary. If the injury is critical, the supervisor or the nurse will contact appropriate emergency responders and request immediate medical assistance.
Return to Work
An employee on workers’ compensation is responsible for keeping his/her supervisor and Human Resources informed of his/her work status. All disability documentation from the treating physician noting the employee’s dates absent from work and the diagnosis of the injury or illness must be provided to the supervisor and Human Resources immediately. If this documentation is not provided, the employee’s workers’ compensation benefits will be suspended.
The employee is required to provide a Permit to Return to Work prior to returning to work. Modified or light duty may be provided for an employee who can return to work but must temporarily alter his/her tasks. An employee is required to follow his/her doctor’s treatment plan and must not exceed any limitations that are imposed. Modified duty is handled on a case-by-case basis on the recommendation of the treating physician. An employee on modified or restricted duty is not eligible for paid overtime work.
When an employee is fully able to return to work, written clearance from the treating physician documenting that the employee is fully capable of performing the regular job duties must be provided to the supervisor and Human Resources.
Workers’ compensation claims are subject to investigation by the District and the District Workers’ Compensation provider. It is essential that the employee cooperate fully with the District and the District Workers’ Compensation provider to ensure effective and timely management of employee claims. Insurance law allows for the prosecution of those who have knowingly falsified information relating to a workers’ compensation claim.
LEGAL REF: 820 ILCS 305/1 et seq.
ADOPTED: September 24, 2009