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Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Scarring and Disfigurement

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scarring, Chicago Workers' Compensation AttorneyWorkers’ compensation law is designed to protect workers who are hurt while on the job. Many benefits are geared towards replacing lost income from missed work. But, some injuries such as burns and scars leave workers able to complete their jobs, but take a terrible mental toll. These kinds of injuries are known as disfigurement and scarring injuries under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act and there are special considerations in getting compensated for them.

Types of Disfigurement and Scarring Injuries

Disfigurement and scarring represent a broad category of injuries under workers’ compensation law. Some of these injuries may totally or partially interfere with the execution of normal job duties, while others may not interfere with the worker’s job at all, but cause significant mental anguish.

Some common types of disfigurement and scarring injuries include:

  • Loss of a finger or toe;
  • Lacerations;
  • Burns;
  • Nerve damage to face;
  • Nerve damage that limits use of limbs;
  • Loss of a limb;
  • Loss of an eye or ear; and
  • Damage to the retina, cornea, or other parts of the eye.

The Claims Process

While there are strict reporting requirements that mandate a worker to report an accident to his or her employer as quickly as possible, a settlement for workers’ compensation benefits when dealing with disfigurement and scarring injuries does not typically take place until at least six months of healing has taken place. The amount of benefits awarded will depend on the location of the disfigurement or scarring, if the injury is permanent, the degree the injury interferes with bodily function, and the part of the body the disfigurement or scarring is located.

Because the law dealing with scarring and disfigurement injuries is complicated, it is important that you have an experienced workers’ compensation helping you negotiate your claim. Even though formal negotiations often do not start until six months after your injury, the sooner you involve a lawyer, the better prepared your case can be when it is time to discuss settlement. If you wait too long to process your claim, you may lose out on the right to get any benefits for your injuries.

Disfigurement and scarring benefits are usually paid out in lump-sum payments. Some cases, however, may require payments to be made over time.

If you have been involved in a workplace accident, you need to understand your rights. You should speak with a skilled and tough Illinois workers’ compensation lawyer right away. Call the Law Offices of Frank J. Discipio at 630-574-2288 to schedule a consultation. You may only have a short time to take action.

Sources:

http://www.iwcc.il.gov/handbook020106.pdf

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