If a member of the workforce in the United States suffers an occupational injury or illness in the course of their employment, their employer could pay out benefits to cover expenses that resulted from the injury. This is called a workers’ compensation claim. However, if an employee fails to file a claim properly or their injury is not compensable under state law, then their claim for benefits will be denied.
If you sustained injuries in an accident arising out of your job, then you could be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits. For assistance with filing and pursuing this claim, contact an Elgin workers’ compensation lawyer. A dedicated personal injury attorney could make sure you follow the correct procedures to keep your claim valid.
What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that many employers carry, which provides benefits such as costs for medical care, rehabilitation, and loss of income to employees for their work-related injury or illness. It can also provide death or survivor’s benefits to the surviving family members in the event of a wrongful death accident. State law regulates these benefits, which means the process for filing a claim can vary depending on the state. Employees in Illinois are provided workers’ compensation benefits under the Workers’ Compensation Act, codified at 820 Illinois Compiled Statutes 305, and Workers’ Occupational Diseases Act, codified at 820 ILCS 310, which are governed by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission (IWCC).
Nearly all employers conducting business or enterprise within the state of Illinois are required by law to purchase workers’ compensation insurance. Alternatively, they may self-insure with permission from the IWCC, even if they only have one employee. If an employer is required to purchase workers’ compensation insurance and fails to do so, they could face penalties, ranging from criminal charges and hefty fines to having their business shut down until they have purchased the insurance.
Additionally, when a worker sustains an occupational injury, and their employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, the employer will lose the protections afforded under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. That allows the employee to bring a civil action against their employer who may be held personally liable for damages, which they could do with the aid of an Elgin workers’ comp attorney.
Common Causes of Workplace Injuries in Workers’ Compensation Claims
Regardless of what an employee’s work environment or job duties may be, a workplace accident can occur anywhere at any time. Some of the more common causes of severe work-related injuries and illnesses include the following:
- Exposure to hazardous substances and materials
- Slip and falls
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Machinery accidents
Any of these accidents can also lead to death. In cases where an employee suffers a fatal injury in a workplace accident, their surviving family members might be eligible to receive death benefits, including the loss of potential future income. A local workers’ compensation lawyer could discuss potential options with a family that has suffered a loss.
Call Today to Find an Elgin Workers’ Compensation Attorney to Help You
While certain occupations may be inherently more hazardous than others, those workers are not the only ones who may be at risk of injury. By obtaining workers’ compensation insurance, employers provide a mutually agreeable alternative for employees who suffer a job-related injury or illness to receive paid benefits rather than having to bring a civil action. However, if an employer fails to provide worker’s comp or an employee’s claim for benefits is wrongfully denied, they should consider taking legal action against their employer.
If you were involved in a workplace accident and suffered an injury or illness as a result, you might have a compensable workers’ compensation claim. Call today to learn more about your options and what an Elgin workers’ compensation lawyer could do for you.