No matter how careful a worker may be, factors outside their control may still lead to workplace injuries or illnesses. Fortunately, the law protects employees in case something happens to them as a result of their job. Like most states, Illinois requires employees to maintain workers’ compensation insurance.
Workers’ comp coverage
If an employee sustains an injury or illness in the workplace or while engaging in work activities, they may seek the following compensation under workers’ comp:
- Medical costs: This benefit covers the hospitalization and other medical care necessary to treat the employee’s injury or illness.
- Temporary partial disability benefits: If employees can work only on light tasks or for fewer hours than regular, they can get this benefit.
- Temporary total disability benefits: An employee who cannot work for the time being while recovering from a job-related injury or illness can claim this benefit.
- Permanent partial disability benefits: The Workers’ Compensation Commission awards this benefit to an employee whose disability is permanent but can still work.
- Permanent total disability benefits: Employees permanently unable to work can claim this benefit.
- Survivor benefits: In cases where the employee died due to a work-related injury or illness, their surviving family members may be eligible for survivor benefits.
These benefits are meant to cover treatment expenses and the income lost because of the job-related injury or illness.
The burden of proof is upon the employee
The law protects the employees’ rights to seek compensation for injuries and illnesses they sustained because of their work. But for the claim to push through, claimants must prove certain circumstances, such as the validity of their employment, that their injury or illness is caused by their employment and that they have limited ability or are totally unable to work.
It is important for workers to know their benefits under the law. Understanding the basics of workers’ comp can help employees protect their rights.