Workers compensation laws are designed to protect the injured worker. As described by the Illinois Supreme Court, the purpose of the Workers’ Compensation Act “…is to provide employees a prompt, sure, and definite compensation, together with a quick and efficient remedy, for injuries or death suffered by such employees in the course of their employment . . . and to require the cost of such injuries to be borne by the industry itself and not by its individual members.” In other words, when an accident occurs that arises out of, and in the course of an employee’s employment, it is the responsibility of the employer to make sure that the employee is properly taken care of and compensated for that injury or death.
There are a wide range of injuries that may give rise to a proper workers compensation claim. The work accident may involve a traumatic event like a back injury caused by lifting an object, a crush injury, a broken bone, traumatic brain damage, or even death. Other types of compensable workers compensation claims involve repetitive stress injuries that may build over time from repeated movements, such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
There are particular requirements that must be met to properly file a workers compensation case. An injured worker must inform the employer within a certain time period. Then a specific form called an “Application for Adjustment of Claim” must be filed with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission (previously known as the Illinois Industrial Commission). Other specific requirements apply as well.
When you choose to allow experienced Illinois Workers Compensation Lawyers to discuss your case, most reputable lawyers will not charge any upfront fee, but will instead investigate the circumstances of your injury to determine whether a proper workers compensation claim can be filed with the Illinois Workers Compensation Commission. A good lawyer will assist you in any possible way, and offer to file a claim on your behalf, with no attorney fees charged unless a successful settlement or award can be reached. Even if you are already being paid for your lost time or being compensated for the medical bills from your injury, attorneys can confirm free of charge whether you are receiving the proper rate. As part of this legal representation, an experienced attorney will focus on the following:
Medical Benefits- Will make sure that you are receiving all of the medical assistance you are entitled to, including treatment, therapy and if necessary, surgery. Of course, they will help guide you through this process to help ensure that your medical bills are paid for through the employer, and that you are not left holding the bag.
Future Employment- Depending on your injury, the level of severity, and the type of work you do, some employees are unable to return to work at the same job position. In those circumstances, attorneys will also help arrange appropriate job training, so that the worker can later obtain a good job that won’t aggravate these injuries.
Monetary Compensation- Once experienced Illinois workers compensation attorneys have helped you address your medical issues, get the appropriate medical treatment, and provide for your future employment, then they will aggressively pursue a maximum settlement or award on your behalf.