First point, it’s illegal to fire someone for pursuing a workers’ compensation claim in Illinois. We’ve seen cases where that’s happened and the fired worker has sued and won millions. But that’s not what this post is about.
What I’m talking about is when you are hurt at work and get let go because the company is so small that they need to replace you or they are downsizing or you are back at work and screw up somehow that gives them reason to let you go. In other words, firings that would have happened with or without the work injury.
If you are receiving medical care for a work related injury and get fired, even if it’s for a big screw up on your part, you don’t lose your benefits.
You also can’t lose your right to a settlement down the road.
The biggest issue is when you are back at work under restrictions from the doctor and get let go from work. If this happens, you are supposed to be paid TTD benefits until you have no restrictions at all. This is true even if you have been working for them with restrictions for a long time.
If your restrictions are permanent then you would have to start looking for a new job within your restrictions and/or get assistance from the insurance company in finding new work (vocational rehabilitation). During this time they’d have to pay you maintenance benefits which is the same thing as TTD essentially.
Big picture point is that if you do get let go, don’t freak out. It shouldn’t hurt your case and in some matters it actually makes it worth more because there’s no job for you to return to and the insurance company isn’t worried about a re-injury if you go back to work.
Did we explain this well? Are you confused? Questions about something else? Call or e-mail us at any time to talk to a lawyer for free. We handle cases everywhere in Illinois.