Farming is an essential industry for both workers and everyday Illinois residents. However, it can also be an incredibly dangerous field to work in, given the heavy machinery and hazardous materials a farm worker may come into contact with on a daily basis. Injuries suffered on farms often have devastating, long-term consequences.
If you were hurt while working on a farm, you may have grounds to seek financial compensation with the help of a seasoned Normal farm injury lawyer. Whether you are eligible to pursue workers’ compensation benefits or need to file a lawsuit for negligence, a qualified personal injury attorney could provide customized guidance and support throughout every stage of your case.
Common Types of Farming Accidents
Accidents and serious injuries can occur almost anywhere on a farm, especially if an employer or third party does something reckless or careless. A farm worker could be involved in a tractor accident, have a limb or other extremity caught in a grain or corn combine, suffer an injury in a grain truck accident, or get hurt by malfunctioning equipment, faulty structures, or uncontrolled livestock.
A knowledgeable local attorney could help a farm worker seek recovery for any kind of injury they experience, such as:
- Traumatic damage to the brain, neck, and/or spine
- Crushing injuries
- Broken bones
- Loss of limb
- Ligament and muscle tears
- Damage to internal organs
Legal counsel could also help an injured worker identify how they should go about pursuing compensation in their particular case, as the options available to them may differ depending on who they are employed by and what kind of work they do.
Farming and Workers’ Compensation Law
Under current state law, many agricultural employers are exempt from having to provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage to their employees. Specifically, 820 Illinois Compiled Statutes §305/3(19) extends immunity from the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act to any agricultural employer who requires less than 400 working hours of labor per quarter, not counting any hours worked by members of an employer’s immediate family.
This exemption takes into account all hours worked on a farm, not just those worked by full-time employees. In other words, if the combined working hours of part-time and seasonal laborers put an employer over the 400-hour limit, that employer would be obligated under state law to provide workers’ compensation insurance. Any employee who performs duties other than farming, such as building construction, property repair, or trucking for hire, may be entitled to workers’ comp benefits as well.
Farm employers who do not meet the 400-hour labor threshold can either choose to purchase workers’ comp coverage anyway or provide farm liability coverage to employees, the latter of which requires workers to prove negligence by either their employer or a third party before they can recover compensation for a work-related injury. Either way, an experienced farm accident lawyer could help an injured farm worker in Normal pursue the restitution they need following an on-the-job accident.
Seek Counsel from a Qualified Normal Farm Injury Attorney
Recovering physically after a work-related accident on a farm can be a complicated and intensive endeavor. In many cases, farm workers unfortunately suffer permanent disfigurements and disabilities as a result of these injuries. Even if you will be able to make a full recovery after your accident, you should still look into your legal options for pursuing compensation.
During your free initial consultation, a Normal farm injury lawyer could go over your legal options with you and help determine the best course of action for your unique circumstances. Call today to start discussing your potential case.