Illinois is a great and fair state for injured workers. We are surrounded by Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Iowa and Wisconsin. All of those states have worse benefits for workers than we do. Indiana is especially bad.

The reality is that a lot of Illinois residents will take jobs in other states. And people from those states will come to work here. A lot of people think that your work comp case has to be brought in the state where you are hurt. That’s not true. To bring a case in Illinois you need to show one of three things:

  1. You were hurt in Illinois; or
  2. You primarily work out of Illinois;
  3. The last act to hire you took place in Illinois.

It’s the third one that I want to talk about because it’s the least known. In plain English it means they offered you the job and you were physically in Illinois when they did so and you didn’t need to do anything else.

For example, if you are a truck driver who lives in Joliet and get offered a job to drive for a New Jersey company over the phone, if you start working without doing anything else, you can bring your case in Illinois if you get hurt. On the other hand, if they make you travel out of state for a physical that has to be passed before you start working, you’d be out of luck.

This is common for truck drivers and union workers although it applies to everyone. In a case we investigated recently, a union worker out of Illinois sustained a significant back injury after working a few months on the job in another state. It’s a state that caps the amount of time you can be off of work and really hurts employees like him with serious injuries. Fortunately, he was hired directly out of his union hall. The company contacted the union asking for a certain amount of workers who had the skills he possessed.  There was a Zoom call and he and some others were offered the job.

He literally went to the other state and began working the first day. He filled out some paperwork when he was there, but none of it was required in order to determine if he could be hired. “You’ve got the job” was said to him while he was in Illinois.

The insurance company is of course trying to make him take benefits from the crappy state. He doesn’t have to take that nonsense. A case like this will probably require a trial, but since it’s a one issue case, the trial will likely be very quick and probably won’t even require testimony from a doctor. Nobody is disputing he’s hurt, it’s just a question of can he bring his case in Illinois. To me it’s a clear yes.

The bottom line is that you don’t have to be hurt in Illinois to bring a case here. If you want a free, confidential consultation to see your options, we are happy to talk to you any time.