Since 2001 we have helped thousands of truck drivers who had questions about Illinois workers compensation law or who needed to find the right legal representation. There is probably no other industry that is as shady as trucking when it comes to work comp claims.
I say that because many trucking outfits are fly by night operations and they don’t give a crap about their employees based on how they treat them. One of the biggest ways they do that is by mis-classifying drivers as independent contractors. If you aren’t called an employee they avoid payroll taxes, they can break wage laws and they think they can avoid paying anything if you get hurt while working.
I’m not a labor lawyer so I won’t comment on wages or payroll taxes. But when it comes to work comp, calling you an independent contractor or an owner-operator doesn’t get them out of having to provide work comp benefits.
If you are an owner operator, you really own the truck and make decisions about when you will drive, what you will haul, how much you will charge, the route you will take. You can turn down work if you want. You are in control of yourself.
That is way different than what happens in most cases. The trucking company has you sign a contract that says you don’t work for them, but then they tell you that you can only drive for them, set your pay rate, tell you what to do, etc
Control is the most important factor when determining whether or not you are truly an employee at the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. The more control they have, the more likely it is you prove you really are an employee and entitled to work comp benefits.
These companies lie about your true status out of greed. They save money by paying you less and if they aren’t responsible for your work injury then they don’t have to pay your medical bills, lost time or give you a settlement. We are there to make sure that you don’t get taken advantage of and that the law is followed.
If you are a truck driver injured while working, either hurt in Illinois, hired in Illinois or based out of Illinois, we would be happy to talk to you for free to see if you have a case. We only get paid if we make a recovery for you. Call 312-346-5578 to speak with a lawyer or fill out our contact form and we will call you.