Workers Compensation in Springfield, 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 Springfield, Illinois workers’ compensation insurance and how the process works.
Workers Compensation Statistics in Springfield, Illinois?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the Illinois industry with the most injuries is trade, transportation, and utilities. The education and health services industry also reports a significant number of injuries. The majority of Springfield work injuries are sprains and strains, typically caused by twisting, lifting, or repetitive motion. Falls and contact with objects or equipment also account for a large number of work-related Springfield injuries. These injuries can range from minor to very serious. However, more than half result in either missed or restricted work.
How Does Workers Comp Work in Springfield, 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.
Illinois requires all Springfield employers with at least 1 employee to carry workers’ compensation insurance. All reasonable and necessary medical expenses are covered, but the physician must be approved by your employer. In addition, lost wages can be compensated if more than 3 days of work are missed. According to the Illinois Workers Compensation Commission, the range of weekly lost wage payments is adjusted yearly. For 2021, the minimum is $605, and the maximum is $1614. In the event of a fatal injury, weekly death benefits and funeral expenses are also provided.
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 Springfield, 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 Springfield, 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 occurred 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.
Employees in Springfield must report an injury to their employer within 45 days. If the employer fails to file a claim, the employee may do so directly. However, this direct claim must be made within 3 years of the injury.
Timeline and Other Information
If your Springfield worker’s compensation claim is denied, you can request a hearing with the Workers Compensation Commission. The Commission must issue a decision within 180 days of your initial request. If you are temporarily disabled, wage benefits can continue until your condition stabilizes or until you can return to work. Unlike some states, Illinois does not cap the duration of temporary benefits. If your condition has stabilized and you are still unable to work, you may be eligible for permanent disability benefits.
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 Springfield, Illinois Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
While workers’ compensation claims may be straightforward for some cases in Springfield, 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 Springfieldworkers’ comp lawyer ensures that you have an advocate to fight for your rights as a victim.
Work With an Experienced Local Lawyer In Springfield, Illinois
If you are hurt or contract an illness as a result of your job in Springfield, 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.