Workers’ Compensation in Mississippi
Most people spend the majority of their waking hours at work, which means sustaining an on-the-job injury is relatively likely whether you spend most of your time at a desk or operating heavy equipment. In fact, naming a profession that doesn’t pose some risk, from carpal tunnel syndrome to chemical burns to broken bones, may be impossible. The goal of workers’ compensation in Mississippi is to provide benefits to injured employees. Unfortunately, workers’ comp benefits are not always as quickly or easily obtained as they should be after sustaining an injury or becoming sick.
On-the-Job Injuries Covered by Mississippi Workers’ Comp
Workers injured on the job are eligible for cash disability benefits and medical care through the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Act. The Act covers nearly every working Mississippian with just a few exceptions, such as businesses with less than five employees, independent contractors, and volunteers. Coverage begins upon employment, and has no probationary period or minimum salary level for eligibility.
The types of injuries covered by workers’ comp are those which can be connected in some way to an employment requirement or condition, such as spending many consecutive hours at a computer or lifting heavy boxes. Some examples of injuries and situations generally covered by workers’ compensation include:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Strains and sprains caused by reaching, lifting, pushing, and general overexertion
- Chronic pain due to repeated lifting and lowering
- Routine headaches caused by chemical exposure
- Respiratory conditions from repeated chemical exposure
- Machine crushing or entanglement
- Exposure to extreme temperatures
- Falls from heights, such as ladders, scaffolding, roofs, and stairways
- Falls on wet and slippery surfaces
- Falling objects or debris
- Injuries sustained in a car accident while traveling to or from a business meeting or other work-related event
- Injuries sustained in a car accident while making deliveries
- Depression and/or severe anxiety caused by work-related stress
If you sustain an on-the-job injury or discover you have a work-related illness, you should report it immediately to your employer, who in turn files a report with the Mississippi Workers’ Compensation Commission. Coverage should include medical services and supplies, prescription medicine, cash payments for lost wages, rehabilitation services, and mileage for doctor’s appointments. The workers’ comp benefits may be tax-free and can amount to two-thirds of your average weekly salary over the last year.
However, notifying your employer of your injury and filing your paperwork in a timely manner does not guarantee maximum workers’ compensation benefits. Your employer may seek to minimize your claim in order to keep its insurance premiums low, and your employer’s insurance company may seek to minimize or eliminate the amount of money it has to pay out. The less the insurance companies pays on claims, the more money it keeps for itself.
An experienced Mississippi workers’ compensation lawyer can help. If your employer or its insurance carrier denies your claim, you should definitely consult with an attorney for advice.
Contact the Gardner Law Firm for Help with Workers’ Comp
In the Biloxi area, contact the Gardner Law Firm for help with workers’ compensation. We offer a free initial consultation and live chat to answer your questions. Our goal is to help you get the benefits you deserve.