The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission just released new minimum and maximum benefits rates, which they do twice a year. These are the upper and lower limits on the amount you get if you can’t work because of an injury.
You get wage loss benefits called Temporary Total Disability (TTD) if you can’t work while you recover. You also can get TTD if your doctor has given you restrictions and your employer doesn’t have any appropriate work for you. These checks are equal to 2/3 of your average weekly wage. If you earn $600 a week, you would get $400 a week according to Illinois workers’ compensation law. The exact amount varies from person to person, unless the minimum or maximum rate applies to you.
If you are injured on or after July 15, 1014, the maximum TTD rate is $1,341.07. So, if 2/3 of your average weekly wage is more than that, you don’t get the full 2/3. The current minimum TTD rate is $220. The minimum increases if you have a spouse and children and can go up to $330. If you are below the minimum amount, you will get TTD based on what your actual weekly wages are. If 2/3 is less than the minimum, then you get the minimum. The exception is that no matter your wage, the minimum for permanent total disability or death applies as the lowest you can receive.
Here is a list of the updated rates as of July 15, 2014:
Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
Maximum = $1,341.07
Minimum = $220.00 (up to $330 if spouse and children)
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)
Maximum = (will be posted Jan. 2015)
Minimum = $220.00
State Average Weekly Wage = $1,005.80.
Permanent Total Disability (PTD)
Maximum = $1,341.07
Minimum = $502.90
Mileage Rate = $0.56
The mileage rate is what you get if you have to travel to see one of the insurance company doctors, for an IME for example. They need to send you a check for the mileage amount ahead of time. If the insurance company doesn’t pay you, then you don’t have to attend the exam.
It’s important to make sure your average weekly wage is correctly calculated and that you are getting full benefits under Illinois law. Don’t rely on your employer’s calculation or even that of the insurance company. Talk to an experienced Illinois workers’ compensation attorney who knows wage calculations and is familiar with the ways in which insurance companies attempt to get away with paying less than they should.