So here’s an interesting story, at least as far as Illinois work comp law goes.
This really nice guy called me after getting a back injury at work. He’s done EVERYTHING right. He reported the accident right away. He got medical treatment right away. He told the doctor he was hurt at work. He has been following closely the doctor’s orders of no lifting more than 30 pounds.
He’s off work for at least six weeks. His wife was going to visit a family member in Florida and wanting to get out of the cold and bored at home, he joined her. Doing everything right, he packed a suitcase that can’t hold more than 25 pounds and headed on his trip. He’s in pain, but not crippled. He’s doing his physical therapy partly by Zoom so he won’t be missing any of his scheduled medical appointments. This guy is a rule follower and wants to do EVERYTHING right, get healthy and get back to work.
He also wants to live life. So while on this trip with his wife he took a stroll on the beach and took a really nice photo while the sun was setting. He then went and posted it on his Facebook page. As you can probably guess, somebody at work didn’t like a guy who is hurt being able to have fun in the sun while they were working. So now they are threatening to cut off his work comp benefits.
Even though this guy tries to do all the right things, one mistake he made was not staying off social media. If you have a case you can expect that people from the insurance company will be stalking you, hoping that they can show you lying or take something out of context to hurt you. This is one of the first thing most lawyers tell their clients when they sign up a case.
All that said, being on TTD benefits or having medical restrictions does not require you to be a prisoner in your own home. You can go to dinner, the grocery store and even take vacations. All you need to do is make sure you aren’t violating medical restrictions or missing important medical care that can aid in your recovery.
This great worker was doing nothing to harm his health. He was on a plane for a couple of hours and then walking around in warm weather with his wife. There is nothing wrong about that no matter what some jealous or vindictive co-worker thinks. He’s not gaming the system. He’s getting better and living his life.
Illinois work comp benefits don’t make you a prisoner in your own home or invalid or anything that anyone else thinks you should be. And the good news is that while this was a scare for him, nothing is going to happen because he did nothing wrong.