Teachers in Illinois do an incredible job. For many of them the work is very rewarding. It can also at times be a thankless, dangerous job. We have helped hundreds of Illinois teachers and other school workers such as janitors, teacher’s aides, school nurses, administrators, etc. with their Illinois workers’ compensation claims.

There are so many different reasons that teachers get injured on the job. It can be as simple as throwing out your back or shoulder while lifting school materials. We often see teachers hurt this way. It doesn’t even have to happen on school property. If you bring home a big box/bag of papers to grade and hurt yourself while lifting them at home, that would be a workers comp case because it’s part of your job to do this.

Another common way teachers get hurt is breaking up fights between students or even being attacked by a student. It’s not uncommon for someone to get hit trying to break up a fight and we actually see a lot of knee, ankle and arm/wrist injuries from falls that happen while breaking up a fight. And there have been a lot of concussion cases we’ve helped with from teachers and other school workers who have been hit by students.

Some of the other big causes of teacher injuries include slip and falls from wet floors, tripping over cords, being hurt picking up a kid, falling over loose carpet and trying to hang with the kids at various activities. The last one happens a lot. I’ve seen a lot of blown out Achilles injuries from school workers playing basketball, tag or other games with the kids. Those injuries, since it benefits the school, are almost always covered.

While generally speaking you can’t get work comp in Illinois for the general stress of working in a tough school environment or not being supported by your administration, there are a lot of mental health related work injury cases we’ve seen. The compensable ones are typically from one time events such as seeing a student pull a gun on someone or even being present for a school shooting. In those cases we can usually make sure you get the psychological care you need with no out of pocket expenses. And if that doctor believes you are not mentally ready to return to work due to PTSD or some other issue, you should be paid TTD benefits for your time off work.

Speaking of teacher pay, we’ve seen a lot of teachers get shorted what they are actually owed for weekly pay as well as for their eventual settlement. Those payments are based on your average weekly wage (AWW) which for most workers is 52 weeks of pay, but for teachers should be actual weeks worked. Not having an attorney who has experience with this issue could literally cost you tens of thousands of dollars.

And while there are many great teacher’s unions in Illinois and some not so great ones, being in a union doesn’t change what rights you have under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. So even if you are a contract employee who is non union or working at a private school, you all have the same rights.

If you have any questions, want representation or even just want to see if you have a case, contact us for free any time at 888-705-1766. We cover all of Illinois.