Workers compensation settlements- some similar injuries are worth much less

We've blogged on it before, but I'd like to offer a different spin.  The number 1 question we get is "What's my case worth?"  You can search our site to see the other posts, but I've left something important out.  Three things actually:

1. What an Illinois workers' compensation claim is worth can depend on the Arbitrator that the claim is assigned to.  Some Arbitrators are very worker friendly and others seem to favor the employers.  So in some similar cases we can get more money for a client than the case might be worth in front of another Arbitrator.  Outside of Chicago, we know who the Arbitrator will be before we file the case so that does help in predicting the result once we have seen the medical records.

2. When a case is settled, it's not typically settled for what it would go for if you won at trial.  Settling is a compromise.   Sometimes you actually get more than you could get at trial because you are closing out your medical rights if you settle.  Other times you get less.  This needs to be considered when making settlement demands because . . .

3. The range of what a case is worth can be all over the board.  If you break your finger the range isn't huge if you have a good recovery, but on major injuries or when you might need more medical treatment, the range can be huge.  For example, we recently were involved in a case that settled for $220,000.00.  We obtained this settlement because we proved that if we went to trial our client would likely get wage differential.  That said, there was a chance we could have lost.  We determined that the range of a settlement was between $75,000 and $230,000.  We didn't get every last penny, but boy did we come close.  Had that client not had an attorney they certainly would have been at the low end of the range.  Most cases are like that and you can bet your bottom that the insurance company is always targeting the low end of the range.  Remember, they make money by saving money.  Period.

We are workers' compensation attorneys that help people with Illinois work injuries anywhere in IL via our statewide network of attorneys.  Contact us and we will answer your questions or find the right lawyer for your situation.

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Comments (5) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
jason barlow - March 14, 2012 11:02 PM

ihave a broken fibea or leg i was in a cast for 8 weeks and still is not healing my company is asking me every week to get the doc to cut me lose to go back to work it has now gone as far as the doc having il pull my cdl so he nos im not working because the have contacked him asking for me to come back to work dose that help my case when this is done and ive lost all that i have worked for the last 3 years is there any thing i can do about that

WE REPLY: Having your doctor in your corner always helps. If you lose your career because of a permanent injury that leaves you with restrictions, the law protects you. Call us if you want our help.

John - April 25, 2012 5:17 PM

My doctor kept telling me an injury I received at work was healed enough to go back to work with no restriction's. I kept telling him I was in pain but to no avail. I was in a eighteen wheeler and involved in a crash on the job. After a few x-ray's and an internal medical examiner's 3 minute and 38 second exam I was still told I was fine. After a MRI was done the source of my pain was discovered. I have a Kartboon Fracture and a helisac lesion in my left shoulder. Which require's surgery to repair. But my Worker's Comp. insurance provider is denying any surgery. I am not able to sleep due to this injury and am forced to work with this injury. Do I have a case to fight to get this resolved?

WE REPLY: You certainly should fight this and it may just require a talk with your doctor. If you want our help let us know.

Joe Borgman - February 6, 2013 3:29 PM

I broke both knees at work,been off for a little over a year.All bills are being paid,receiving my work comp checks on time.The only thing wrong is my employer is trying to get me back to work to soon.He basicly told me if I don't go back now he might not have anything for me later.How do you think I should handle it?

Mike - February 7, 2013 10:16 AM

You need to follow the restrictions set by the doctor and not let your employer pressure you and risk your health. If you need our help let us know.

robert - June 12, 2014 1:12 AM

I been out of work since February 5 2014. I had slipped and fell, braking both bones in my leg. I seperated both bones fron ankle and ankle from the foot. I have had two surgeries. Dr told me will have problens with arthritis in my ankle/foot. I have recieved weekly compensation from workers comp. This has all taken place in the great state of Illinois. What should i get as a decent offer from this company? Should i get a lawer?

WE REPLY: Given the long term effects of the serious injury and the fact that you'll never get more on a case like this without an attorney than with one, it would be foolish not to hire someone, especially with the 2011 law changes. If you want our help call us at (312) 346-5578 for a free, no commitment consultation.

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