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Archive for the ‘disability’ tag

What Happens to Your Workers’ Compensation Benefits If You Quit Your Job?

March 25th, 2016 at 1:04 pm

quitting job, DuPage County workers' compensation attorneyIf you have been injured on the job, you need to speak with a workers’ compensation lawyer before you make any big decisions. Quitting your job can reduce the benefits you are eligible to receive. In some circumstances, you could lose your benefits entirely.

Medical Benefits

Under Illinois law, the medical benefits you receive under workers’ compensation will continue no matter what your job status. This means that payments for the medical care you need to recover from your workplace injury will continue even if you leave your employment.

Permanent Injuries

When your claim is found to be for a permanent injury, you will be able to receive the compensation for that permanent injury regardless of your employment situation. In the case of a permanent partial disability, your benefits will be set at the end of your case. Quitting your job before the level of your permanent disability benefits have been calculated and set could result in a big reduction in the amount you ultimately receive. As with every major employment decision, make sure to speak with your workers’ compensation lawyer before leaving your job. After the level of your benefits for permanent partial disability has been set and your case has concluded, you will be able to leave your employment and still collect your benefits in most cases.

Temporary Disability

Injuries that result in temporary partial disability means that you may still be able to perform some work with medical restrictions. You may receive compensation for any pay differential if the injury limits how many hours you can work or otherwise affects your pay rate. You may lose this benefit if you quit your job.

If you receive temporary total disability benefits while you are recovering because you cannot perform your old job, the benefits may be contingent on you keeping your job. If you voluntarily leave your job and your employer demonstrates he or she could have accommodated your injury and was willing to do so, you may have a difficult time keeping your benefits.

Quitting your job at any point during a workers’ compensation case can also lower the value of your case. In many instances, the value of your claim is tied to the wages you are losing because you are not able to work. Leaving your job gives the employer, or the employer’s insurance company, the ability to argue that your lost wages are no longer relevant because you took action to leave your job, independent of the injury.

If you have been injured in a workplace accident, you need to understand your rights. You should speak with a knowledgeable and experienced DuPage County 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

Study Finds RTW Programs Key to Injured Workers’ Return to the Job

March 4th, 2015 at 10:47 am

return to work, workplace injury, Chicago workers compensation attorneyA study by GENEX Services, LLC revealed that with the high numbers of workers who are injured on the job each year, returning those injured workers back to work has become a priority. GENEX, which is one of the largest providers of managed care services in the country, found that in 2013 alone, more than three million workers were injured on the job, at a cost of over $1 billion per week.

The study found that implementing return-to-work (RTW) programs is critical in ensuring that injured employees are safely able to go back to work. The longer an injured employee is off the job, the less likely their injuries will allow them to return. The study found that for injured employees who are away from their jobs for six months or longer, the rate of return to work is fifty percent.

The return time for injured employees at companies who have RTW programs is three to four weeks faster than companies without RTW programs. However, even with these programs in place, there are still several barriers that can hinder an injured employee’s return to work. These obstacles may include:

  • The majority of injured workers, almost 80 percent, do not receive medical treatment from top-performing medical providers. Receiving sub-par medical treatment often causes delays in returning to work, as well as additional costs in medical care.
  • The study found that there is a lack of effective case managers overseeing these programs. Many case managers did not utilize all of the resources at their disposal and also did not account for all of the legal and/or medical processes required in worker’s compensation cases.
  • Another serious issue for injured employees is the lack of formal, written RTW policies by companies. Many companies fail to effectively communicate their expectations for returning to work after an injury, often because they do not have a clear policy in place. This can greatly hamper an injured employee’s return to work.
  • The study also discovered that many companies are hesitant to implement temporary modified duty for injured employees. Instead of starting an injured employee off with limited tasks and gradually adding more duties as they heal, many companies see modified duty as a hindrance to the return. Statistics show that modified duty actually improves the amount of time an employee is out on disability by 40 percent.

If you have been injured at work but are not sure whether or not you qualify for benefits, the most important step is to seek the advice of legal counsel. Contact an experienced Chicago workers’ compensation attorney today.

 

 

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