A reader who was not happy with the settlement offers he was getting or how he was treated sent us the following:
I was treated just awfully by my insurance company any employer during my injury. I went 5 months without a check for no reason. My attorney is telling me that my case is worth around $50,000 if we go to trial. I have already rejected that offer. Can the Arbitrator, after seeing how bad I've been treated, decide to award me more money than the case is normally worth? If that happened would the case be appealed? No human deserves to be treated the way I was.
Unfortunately, Illinois workers' compensation rules don't allow for pain and suffering. An Arbitrator technically could award whatever they want, but if they did it would surely be appealed and reversed.
If the insurance company is not paying benefits without a valid reason, you can file for penalties and fees and that will add a little to the result and punish them for their bad behavior. But in general, workers' compensation is not a windfall unless you are catastrophically injured and no one wants that to happen.
The reader is correct that no one deserves to be treated poorly, but there is also no way to change an award at trial or at settlement because of hurt feelings.
I am sure this response is not what our reader wanted to hear. But any good attorney lives by the motto that I'm going to tell you the truth, not what you want to hear.
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.