If you are a truck driver and get hurt while making a delivery, taking a break, stepping off the truck, etc., there is a great chance that you are at risk of getting screwed over. By far the biggest way this happens is when a company misclassifies you as an owner/operator or independent contractor.
There are literally hundreds of trucking companies operating out of Illinois. Some of them are legit, and some of them open up, close any time there is a problem, and then open up again under a new name. All of them are subject to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act.
Under the Act, it’s a felony not to carry work comp insurance. There’s also a law that says just because they don’t call you an employee doesn’t mean that you aren’t one. In our experience, almost any time these companies pay you as a 1099 it’s actually b.s. and you are an employee. And all employees who get hurt while working are entitled to pursue work comp claims.
The key test is, how much control do they have over you? The more that they have, the more likely it is that we can prove you actually are an employee with work comp rights. So what shows control? Here’s a partial list:
- Do they own the truck?
- Do they tell you where to go?
- Can you turn down work?
- Is their company logo on the truck?
- Do you have a uniform?
- Do they provide you with any other equipment?
- Do they give instructions or demands on how work should be done?
- Are you allowed to drive for other companies?
- Can you set your own schedule?
The more things they control, the more likely it is that you are actually an employee. If we can prove that, which usually we can, you will get the same great Illinois workers compensation benefits every other Illinois employee gets. This includes payment for 100% of your medical care, payment for time off work, and a settlement when you are all better.
This also includes out-of-state truck drivers who get hurt while coming through Illinois. It doesn’t matter if another state would consider you an independent contractor. If you are hurt working in Illinois and the company has enough control over you, we can get you benefits here.
We love helping truck drivers because so many of their employers are ruthless and treat them like garbage. A couple of times a month we talk to drivers who got hurt and then were stranded far away from home. That shows you the terrible mentality of many of these companies which makes going after them so the law is enforced that much better.
There is never a fee to talk with an attorney or to start a case. If you’d like a free consultation about a possible Illinois work comp claim, please call us any time at 312-346-5578.