If you have been injured at work or acquired a disease or illness because of your work duties, you may be entitled to workers' compensation. In Illinois, workers' compensation benefits may be awarded to cover several types of work-related injuries and illnesses and the related expenses and losses. This article provides a brief overview of Illinois workers' compensation, and anyone who wishes to make a claim should consult a professional for more information.
Workers' compensation is designed to provide benefits to injured workers without requiring them to prove fault for their injury or illness. Instead of proving fault, a worker must demonstrate that the injury was caused or aggravated by a work act, accident or exposure, and also that the injury or illness occurred in the course of his or her employment.
Coverage for medical expenses and vocational rehabilitation
If the individual's claim for workers' compensation is successful, the employer - or its workers' compensation insurer - is required to pay the cost of reasonable medical care to cure or relieve the injury or illness. This covered care may include:
- Prosthetic devices and medical equipment
Workers' compensation benefits even may pay for modification to an individual's home, if the work injury caused a disability that requires the modification, such as a ramp or new doors for wheelchair use.
In addition, workers' compensation also provides benefits to help an injured worker regain vocational skills or learn new skills or modifications that allow him or her to return to the workforce.
Compensation for time away from work and disability
Workers' compensation also provides payment for lost wages while the individual is away from work. In general, the amount of this compensation is two-thirds the wages earned before the injury or illness. The four types of these disability benefits are:
Temporary total disability: TTD means the individual is recovering from the injury and not working at all. The individual receives compensation of two-thirds the amount of his or her wages before the injury or illness, and the benefits are paid until he or she returns to work or reaches maximum medical improvement.
Temporary partial disability: TPD means the individual is still recovering but is working light duty in a part-time or full-time position that pays less than he or she earned before the injury or illness. The amount of TPD benefits received is two-thirds of the difference between the individual's pre-injury wages and the current wages, paid until the individual returns to normal work or reaches maximum medical improvement.
Permanent partial disability: PPD means the individual has complete or partial loss of a part of the body, of use of a part of the body, or partial loss of use of the body as a whole, according to the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission. The individual is still able to work in some capacity, though. PPD benefits are two-thirds of the difference between the individual's pre-injury wages and his or her wages in the current job.
Permanent total disability: PTD means the individual has complete loss or loss of use of both hands, arms, feet, legs or eyes, or any two of these parts, such as one hand and one foot. It also can mean the individual has a disability that makes him or her unable to work again. These losses are permanent and complete. In the case of PTD, the individual is entitled to benefits of two-thirds his or her wages before the injury or illness.
Workers' compensation can be awarded for work injuries ranging from a broken ankle, to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, to accidental disfigurement or dismemberment. If you have been injured at work or acquired an illness or disease through your work, contact a personal injury attorney with experience in workers' compensation to discuss your legal options.
Areas We Serve
Attorneys serving Southern and Central IL and the St Louis / Metropolitan area. Cities may include (but are not limited to) Wood River, Alton, Granite City, Edwardsville, Bethalto, Collinsville, Belleville, Jerseyville, Mount Vernon, Madison County, St. Clair County, Jersey County, Macoupin County, Jefferson County and Jackson County, Illinois.