Most of the shady moves in Illinois workers’ compensation cases happen by insurance companies. They’ll do things like deny your medical benefits without a reason, send a nurse case manager to your doctor’s appointments, or lie and say the case is “under investigation” with the hopes that you will just go away.
Some employers can act in a bad way too. The worst, in my opinion, are staffing agencies. They seem to not view their workers as people and are clearly more concerned about keeping their clients happy than looking out for the best interests of their workers. It’s likely due to the lack of day-to-day interaction and greed.
One temp service went beyond anything I’ve seen before. A worker sustained a leg injury on his staffed job. While he was at a factory, the actual employer is the temp agency. So he had to report the injury to them. He did so and they refused to let him fill out an accident report.
As far as I can gather, this illegal action was done by some clueless manager who was worried about his own statistics and keeping the client happy. Staffing agencies tend to have a lot of injuries to their workers because many aren’t trained properly or are just thrown into work they aren’t familiar with. I actually blame the companies that hire the staffing agencies because they too seem to treat these workers like cattle. By not hiring them as actual employees, there can be a real disconnect.
But back to this injured worker. What do you do if an employer won’t fill out an accident report?
While technically illegal, this bad action shouldn’t affect the case in any way. The first thing to do is get medical care and report to the doctor that the injury is work-related. Your health is number one and getting care also puts the case in motion. After that, the problem can be solved by a lawyer who will officially file the case with the State. Doing so forces the employer to report it to their insurance and acts as an injury report.
Ironically, this bad boss is actually doing the worker a favor. He still is going to get the treatment he needs and since the case is being filed by a lawyer, it will prevent the insurance company from talking to the worker directly. This will stop any bogus “under investigation” tactics and will also prevent them from doing things that aren’t in your best interests like taking a recorded statement.
So it’s a bother that this is happening, but in the long run, it shouldn’t hurt your case if you are looking out for yourself.
As always, if you have any questions related to workers’ compensation law, you can fill out our contact form or call us at 888-705-1766 to speak with a lawyer for free.