State laws require that all employers offer their employees workers’ compensation payments on a no-fault basis, meaning that a business does not have to be found liable for an injured party to receive benefits. There are many things that a worker must do to apply for this compensation, including notifying their employer within 45 days of an accident.
If an employee fails to notify their employer of an incident or does not complete the application steps correctly, they will likely lose their eligibility to collect benefits. However, a knowledgeable worker’s compensation attorney could help you understand the process and follow the proper steps in the application. Call a lawyer today to learn more about how to apply for workers’ compensation in Joliet.
What Steps Should an Employee Take After a Workplace Injury?
After a workplace injury, there are three vital steps an employee must take before they may apply for workers’ compensation benefits:
- Seek immediate medical care and inform their healthcare provider that an injury occurred on the job
- Report the injury or illness to an employer’s human resources manager
- Begin filing a workers’ compensation claim as soon as possible
If an employee misses three or more days of work due to a job-related injury, state statute requires employers to do one of the following:
- Begin paying workers’ compensation benefits
- Advise the employee of requirements and needed documentation for benefits
- Provide an employee with a written explanation regarding their denial of benefits
A skilled attorney in Joliet could provide an injured employee with information about how to begin applying for workers’ benefits.
How to File an Application for Workers’ Comp Benefits
Once an employee notifies their employer of an accident, they may collect payments within three years of the accident. A worker can apply for benefits by completing and submitting an “Application for Adjustment of Claim,” including the “Proof of Service” portion on the back.
After answering all questions on the form, they must mail a copy to their employer and send three copies to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. A seasoned lawyer could help an injured worker applying for benefits fill out necessary application forms quickly and accurately.
What are the Different Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
Workers’ compensation benefits will depend on the extent of an employee’s injuries and the number of days they missed work. Potential workers’ compensation benefits include:
Replacement of Wages
A replacement of benefits offers a worker coverage for most of an their wages until they return to work. Decision makers will use a specific formula to determine the average amount that an employer pays a worker per week and base their benefits off that number.
Medical Care Coverage for Injuries
An employer typically pays all medical expenses stemming from a work-related injury through workers’ compensation. Costs that workers’ compensation will pay include emergency room visits, prescription medications, and physical therapy expenses until an employee makes a full recovery.
Specific injuries may prevent an employee from returning to work for longer than others. For example, a team member may have the option to collect disability coverage for short or long-term debilitating injuries. To learn more about how to apply for worker’s compensation benefits, contact an experienced attorney in Joliet.
What Must an Employer do When a Worker Applies for Benefits?
Employers that fail to comply with a state’s workers’ compensation benefits laws will likely face penalties. According to Illinois Compiled Statutes 820 ILCS 305/4, if an employer or insurance agency fails to comply with workers’ benefits laws, they may be subject to a civil lawsuit.
A civil claim will enable an employee to recover damages for all unpaid costs resulting from a workplace injury. Non-payment by a business after the civil judgment may even result in criminal prosecution. A lawyer in Joliet with knowledge about how to apply for workers’ compensation could review a case and ensure the worker and their employer comply with employee benefits laws.
Meet With a Seasoned Worker’s Compensation Attorney in Joliet
If you were hurt at work, you may be eligible to collect workers’ compensation benefits. However, it can be challenging to reach an agreement without the help of a hardworking legal professional.
An attorney could help you apply for benefits, file an appeal, and ensure the business you work for is following the worker’s compensation statute. Call a diligent lawyer today for more information about how to apply for workers’ compensation in Joliet.