Workers Compensation in Chicago, IL

You aren’t alone if you ask “How does workers comp work?” Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that provides wage and medical benefits to people who have become ill or injured while at work. The extent of workers’ comp coverage an employer is required to carry is governed by Illinois state law. Thus, in trying to figure out how workers comp works, it helps to understand the laws on the books in the state where the business operates. If the injury or illness a worker sustains is eligible for compensation, the insurance carrier should help ease the financial burden the illness or injury created on the worker. Learn some of the basic principles of Chicago, Illinois workers’ compensation insurance and how the process works.

Workers Compensation Statistics in Chicago, Illinois?

The Chicago Business Journal states that falls are the most common form of fatal injury in Chicago, Illinois. Other work-related injuries that are high in the city of Chicago are repetitive stress injuries, lacerations, and injuries from falling objects. Falling objects are due to a heavy presence of construction and manufacturing in Chicago. Flight Engineers can also find their jobs to be highly dangerous because of the hazardous weather conditions surrounding Chicago.

How Does Workers Comp Work in Chicago, Illinois?

Unfortunately, going through the process of applying for workers’ compensation begins with getting sick or injured on the job. The circumstances surrounding the incident that led to your problems are especially crucial. For example, the injury had to occur during your regular work duties. While an event that happens during your lunch break wouldn’t apply, getting into a car accident while running an errand for your boss would qualify for a claim. 

The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission deems it necessary for every business to provide workers’ compensation insurance. However, sole proprietors, corporate members, and LLC members can exempt themselves. Chicago provides benefits for workers’ compensation in the form of medical benefits, temporary and permanent disability payments, and death benefits. You may also be entitled to loss of wage benefits, if you are able to return to work after your injury, but are earning less than your pre-injury salary.

For example, say your supervisor asked you to drop something off on your lunch break. While running this errand you then get in a car accident on your way to the destination. Any resulting injury is eligible for workers’ compensation. However, if you are on your lunch break, performing no such task when you get in an accident, it does not qualify for a claim.

The steps you take immediately following a workplace incident in Chicago, Illinois are critical for purposes of filing a claim for compensation. Follow the following steps to preserve your rights and learn how workers comp works.

Get Medical Attention

After you get injured or feel ill, the first step is to see a doctor. Don’t delay seeking help from a Chicago, Illinois healthcare professional. This could not only jeopardize your health, but you run the risk of missing time-sensitive deadlines in the workers’ compensation process. Having a proper medical report detailing the extent of the damage and how it occured is the first step in the process. Your employer cannot file a claim with their insurance carrier without this information.

When dealing with a job-related illness, the symptoms and diagnosis may not happen right away. You may find yourself attending regular checkups and testing for weeks or months before a doctor finally associates your illness with your job. Your doctor may make the determination that the illness is either the result of your work conditions or aggravated by them. Once they do, see your human resources representative to file a workers’ compensation claim.

File a First Report of Injury

The first report of an on the job injury or illness will provide the workers’ compensation insurance carrier with the details of the events leading up to the injury. In this report, you will provide your physical injuries, the medical treatment you received and the facilities that provided it. It’s always a good idea to bring a copy of the doctor’s report to submit with the report of injury.

According to Illinois Legal Aid, time is the most valuable asset when dealing with the filing of an injury report. You should notify your employer as soon as possible if you are injured or develop symptoms of a work-related illness. You should also seek out medical treatment as soon as it is possible. Taking these actions in a timely manner will establish a timeline should any disputes arise in your claim. It is also wise to obtain 2 copies of the doctor’s report after your medical treatment. 1 copy for your employer, and 1 copy for you.

Timeline and Other Information

After you file, your employer must report your accident to The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Committee within 30 days. In most cases your claim will be processed and benefits should arrive in the form of a check by mail. Typically within 14 to 30 days. Chicago also has a maximum of 52 weeks of short term disability. Both Total and Temporary Disability benefits average out to about 67% of your weekly working wage.

Your employer should furnish you with information about the claims process. The adjuster or insurance carrier representative may want to speak to you at some point about the incident and any possible witnesses to the event. In the meantime, the workers’ comp insurer may begin paying medical benefits while the investigation into your claim continues.

Why You Should Hire a Chicago, Illinois Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

While workers’ compensation claims may be straightforward for some cases in Chicago, Illinois, in others, it may be more difficult. For example, your employer may decide to question whether you were hurt on the clock or your own time. It’s also common for a company to question the full extent of your injury. Hiring a Chicago workers’ comp lawyer ensures that you have an advocate to fight for your rights as a victim.

Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer In Chicago, Illinois

If you are hurt or contract an illness as a result of your job in Chicago, Illinois you need to find the right people to help. Since the workers’ compensation claims process can have pitfalls, you should consider getting a local attorney who knows how to avoid them. 

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!

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