VI. 611 - Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance
Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance exists to provide financial assistance to staff members who suffer a catastrophic illness or injury (as defined in this document). Financial assistance is available to staff members who have exhausted all of their paid leave (paid sick days, vacation days, personal days, and compensatory time) prior to returning to work or prior to meeting the required elimination period (i.e., waiting period) for long-term disability benefits.
Eligibility for emergency assistance is limited to full-time employees on regular appointment with Drury University who have satisfactorily completed one year of continuous regular full-time employment, who have applied for and been approved for Family and Medical Leave, and who have exhausted all of their paid leave.
A catastrophic illness or injury is one which is life threatening, terminal, or likely to result in a substantial permanent disability.
Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance will provide financial assistance to an eligible staff member with a catastrophic illness/injury (as defined above) which shall not exceed sixty (60) percent of the staff member's regular monthly salary. Such financial assistance will be provided for the lesser of:
- 180 calendar days in order to satisfy the long-term disability elimination period, or
- the date that long-term disability benefits are approved, or
- the date that the staff member's employment with the University is terminated, or
- the date that the staff member returns to work in at least a half-time capacity
The Director of Human Resources is responsible for administration of Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance.
Staff members may apply for emergency assistance under this program by completing a Request for Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance form (Appendix V) and submitting it to the Director of Human Resources for approval. The completed form will be considered a confidential document. Staff members who apply for assistance under this program must also apply for long-term disability benefits available through the University's Long-Term Disability (LTD) Insurance Plan by completing and submitting the required LTD applications and documents.
Staff members who receive financial assistance under the Catastrophic Financial Assistance Program will retain their employment with the University; however, their pay status will be "Leave without Pay".
Family & Medical Leave Act
Staff members approved for Family & Medical Leave (FMLA), which under University policy is unpaid leave, and who receive financial assistance under the Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance Program will have the approved and eligible FMLA time run concurrently with the time they receive financial assistance under the Catastrophic Illness or Injury Assistance Program. The University will continue in force the University-paid insurance programs that are normally paid for the staff member. If the staff member has elected any optional or dependent insurance coverages and wishes to retain such coverages, the staff member will pay the premiums for those coverages directly to the University.
Catastrophic Assistance Payments
Catastrophic assistance payments are made through the normal payroll process and are subject to all applicable federal and state taxes. The University will continue in force the University-paid insurance programs that are normally paid for the staff member. Participation in the retirement plan may continue, with applicable matching contributions, while the staff member is receiving financial assistance under this program.