While some jobs carry inherent risks, such as heavy machine operation or mining, even desk jobs can be hazardous to your health and safety. If you experience an injury at work, you may have to receive help from emergency services, stay overnight at a hospital, and take time off work to recover.
A Bloomington workers’ compensation lawyer could help if this describes your situation. An attorney could evaluate your case, offer advice about your options, and help you file a workers’ comp claim seeking the benefits you need.
What is Workers’ Compensation?
In Illinois, workers’ compensation is a benefit system for employees who experience work-related injuries or occupational diseases. In most cases, benefits are paid regardless of fault for the accident. This system covers the vast majority of employees who are hired or employed within Illinois from the moment they begin their jobs.
Workers’ compensation covers accidents that arise out of and during the course of employment. In other words, the law covers injuries that result in part or whole from the employee doing their job.
The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission administers the process that handles disputed workers’ compensation claims. The Commission is a neutral party between injured employees, their employers, or their employers’ workers’ compensation insurance company.
As such, Commission staff can explain the basics of the state’s workers’ compensation act to claimants but cannot provide legal advice or advocate for them. It is useful to consult a Bloomington workers’ compensation attorney from the outset of any claim to avoid such disputes and, instead, try have an application approved the first time.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
The Illinois Workers Compensation Act (820 ILCS 305) provides different categories of benefits, including:
- Medical care reasonably necessary to treat the work-related injury,
- Temporary total disability benefits while employees are off work and recovering from their injuries,
- Temporary partial disability benefits while employees are recovering from the injury but working on a limited basis,
- Vocational rehabilitation or training benefits available to injured employees who participate in an approved program,
- Permanent partial disability benefits for employees who suffer some permanent disfigurement or disability but are able to work,
- Permanent total disability benefits for employees who are injured and permanently unable to work, and
- Death benefits for surviving family members of deceased employees.
The benefits category an injured employee may be entitled to depend on the nature of the injury. The amount of compensation an employee can receive varies based on workers’ pre-accident wages and the extent and severity of the injury, among other things.
How an Attorney Could Help
Though the workers’ compensation system seeks to help injured employees stay afloat financially after an injury, the claims process can be fraught with difficulties. The law has many technicalities and deadlines that a claimant must adhere to. Furthermore, employers or their workers’ compensation insurer may deny claims for failure to comply with the rules or because of exaggerated claims.
A Bloomington attorney experienced with workers’ compensation law could help their client file a complete and timely claim. If a client has had their claim denied, an attorney can help identify the issue and help with corrections.
Contact a Bloomington Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today
If you have been injured at work, you may be facing significant medical expenses, ongoing treatments, and may have been unable to earn an income due to your injuries or illness. Lawyers understand how this can be a huge setback for you and your family.