If you are employed by a staffing agency in Illinois and want to learn about work comp law or just want to find the best attorney for your case, call us at (312) 346-5578 for a free consultation with a lawyer.
One common call we get, especially since Covid has hit, is from employees injured while working at staffing agencies in Illinois. I have found that these employees get lied to more than just about any other worker because they really are seen as disposable. Probably the biggest lie they are told is that they aren’t eligible for work comp benefits. That is, of course, not true. The second you start working in Illinois, you are considered an employee under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act.
Another disturbing trend we’ve seen this year is these employers trying to make all of their hires independent contractors. They think that by doing so they will magically not have to cover any work related injuries. The truth is that you can’t just call an employee a contractor if you maintain control over them. One company we came across went as far to take money out of the paychecks of their former hourly workers as a work comp fee every shift they worked. That is all illegal and since they were truly employees under the law, these staffers are eligible for work comp benefits.
A lot of staffing agency workers tend to get injured for a variety of reasons. The most common is because they are placed in dangerous jobs without proper training. Employers don’t want to spend the time to train someone who might not be there for long. As a result they tend to get injured more easily. Probably the most common injury is hurting your back from lifting when you either aren’t conditioned for it or don’t have proper lifting technique.
We also see temp workers getting hurt because some companies feel it’s alright to place them in unsafe working conditions doing grunt work that nobody else has to do. Imagine being asked to carry vats of hot grease when you’ve barely been given a safety briefing and don’t have anyone with experience helping you out. That happens far too often. Sadly, there are many employers who just don’t value workers that come and go.
A final reason for staffing agency injuries is just the fact that they are often temporary assignments. If you are called in to a project that is on a deadline or only going to last a few weeks, it can get rushed. When workers rush, accidents tend to follow. Again, to me it comes down to employers who don’t look at the workers as human.
It would be bad enough if this happened to only a few workers, but the reality is that there are tens of thousands of temporary workers in Illinois. They are entitled to the same work comp benefits as any full time employee and they can not be forced to waive their rights or made to sit through an eligibility period. That is not legal.
If you are one of these workers, we’d be happy to talk to you for free any time about a work injury. Fill out our contact form or give us a call. We cover all of Illinois.