We get a lot of good questions. Here is a compilation of some that have come in to our office recently.

-What are the time limits for bring a work comp case?

Typically it’s the later of three years from the date of his accident or knowledge of the injury or two years from the last payment of compensation related to the case. Note, there are some exceptions to this rule.

-When does an employee, under Illinois law, become covered by Illinois workers’ compensation?

An employee is covered by workers’ compensation the second he begins his employment. You might even be covered if you are injured in a pre-employment physical.

-Can an employee lose his job for filing an Illinois workers’ compensation claim?

No, under Illinois law, an employer cannot fire an employee for filing such a claim.

-Can a worker file for Illinois workers’ compensation benefits if they do not live in Illinois?

Yes as long as they can show that Illinois has jurisdiction over their case. They can show this by proving that the accident happened in Illinois, the principal place of employment is in Illinois or the contract for hire was inIllinois. If the accident was in Illinois then the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission will have jurisdiction. For the other factors an analysis by an Illinois workers compensation lawyer is required.

-Why can’t I sue my employer in Illinois courts for my injury?

Employers provide workers compensation to their employees as an exchange for the employees giving up their rights to sue the employer. Employees receive the benefits of the workers compensation plans instead of being able to sue. Please note that in rare exceptions you can sue employer so it is always best to check with an Illinois attorney before determining that you can’t sue your employer. If a third party hurts you while working (e.g. you are hit by a car while working) then you can sue them.

-Am I covered going to and from my place of employment?

If the travel is in the course of your employment and it arises out of your employment then you will be covered. Usually in Illinois if you are just driving to or from work and have an accident it will not be considered a workers comp case. However, there are many exceptions to this rule so always consult with an Illinois lawyer if you are hurt going to or from a job.

-What is "permanent total disability" (PTD)?

Permanent total disability is a lasting, permanent disability that is the result of the work injury sustained by the worker and prevents the injured Illinois worker from returning to any gainful employment.

If you have questions, just click on our contact link and ask or give us a call.  We are happy to answer anything.

By Michael Helfand