One really misunderstood aspect of Illinois workers compensation law is the belief by many that just because an injury happens while you are on the clock it’s a work comp case. That’s not true. You have to show that your injury arose out of your job. That means your job duties contributed in some way to your accident/injury happening.
So if you have a heart attack or stroke at work, you have to show that something about the job contributed to it happening. The same is true when you pass out or faint at work.
Sometimes people just faint. If I get up too fast I will often get dizzy. Some people have vertigo. Others pass out because they have an underlying illness, are dehydrated, or have some other reason. If that happens to you and there is no explanation as to why you passed out, that’s not likely a workers’ compensation case in Illinois.
On the other hand, we’ve helped a lot of people who have passed out and been injured because they were working outside on a really hot day. Clearly, in those cases the job conditions, working in the heat, contributed to them falling down. We’ve seen similar situations when it’s hot inside, a worker isn’t allowed a water break, or a worker passed out after a 20-hour shift.
But there is one circumstance that is more common than any other for successful Illinois workers comp claims when someone passes out and the work didn’t cause you to pass out. How is that possible? I just said something different.
The answer is you have to remember that it’s a case if something about the job duties contributed to the injury. So the case we see a lot is someone fainting while on a ladder, or coming out of a truck, on a platform, etc. When your job requires you to be in an elevated position, it increases your chance of injury if you were to fall, faint or pass out.
So if you are five feet high up on a ladder at work and faint and break your wrist, your job duties increased the chances of that happening. If you are a truck driver and open your door and get up quickly and pass out, if you sustain a concussion from hitting your head that’s a work comp case. That’s because the height increased the risk of injury.
The bottom line is that if you ever get hurt at work from passing out or anything else, you should have a case review with a lawyer to see what your options are. If you’d like a free one with one of our attorneys, you can start a chat, fill out our contact form, or call us any time at 312-346-5578. We help everywhere in Illinois with our state-wide network of attorneys.