When an employee sustains an occupational injury or illness due to a work-related accident, the fallout can be physically and financially devastating. For many employees, the next step to take following an accident is to file a workers’ compensation claim for benefits.
If you were recently injured in an occupational accident, you might be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits to pay for medical treatment or provide a level of income while you recover. The best way to learn what to do after a work accident in Elgin is to consult a trustworthy workers’ compensation attorney.
Common Work-Related Injuries in Elgin
Under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, codified at 820 Illinois Compiled Statutes 305/11, if an employer has to purchase workers’ compensation insurance, they may be required to pay benefits to any employee who suffers an occupational injury or illness that arises out of their employment. Common types of injuries that occur in workplace accidents include:
- Sprains and strains
- Eye injuries
- Abrasions or lacerations
- Brain damage or spinal injuries
Some of the more harmful and potentially fatal injuries to occur in work-related accidents are those suffered by workers in hazardous occupational fields. That includes loggers, farmers, ranchers, fishers, roofers, construction workers, and others who have to work with sharp tools, heavy machinery, or at certain heights. These employees in particular should have a plan in place for what to do after a local workplace accident.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Illinois
In Elgin, if an employee suffers physical harm from a work-related illness or injury, they could receive workers’ compensation benefits by filing a claim with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission (IWCC). However, if a potential complication or detrimental error occurs during the filing process, or an employee fails to file their claim adequately, it could delay or reduce their benefits, or even result in the denial of their claim entirely. A lawyer could advise an individual of what to do after a local work accident.
For instance, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act dictates that a person must provide notice of the accident to their employer as soon as they are able, but no later than 45 days from when the accident occurred. That deadline extends to 90 days if the illness was a result of being exposed to radiological materials or equipment. In cases where an employee loses three scheduled workdays due to their occupational injuries, their employer is required to file an accident report with the IWCC.
What Happens After the Employer Files an IWCC Report?
Once the employer files the report, the employee must apply for benefits with the IWCC within three years from the accident or two years from the last workers’ compensation payment, whichever is later. In cases where someone was exposed to asbestos or radiological material, the employee will have 25 years from their last day of employment. If the injured employee fails to do so, compensation benefits will be barred entirely.
Learn What to Do After a Work Accident in Elgin from an Attorney
Millions of American workers put themselves at risk of potential injury or illness every day due to their occupation. Although state workers’ compensation laws provide benefits to employees who suffer an injury in the course of employment, many who file workman’s comp claims struggle to have their claim approved.
If you sustained an occupational ailment that has led to financial losses, you might be able to file for benefits paid to you by your employer. For more information about what to do after a work accident in Elgin, set up a free consultation with an experienced lawyer.