Q. What Are Your Rights?
A.No matter how careful you may be while you are working, accidents happen. If an accident happens to you, you need to know what your basic rights and obligations are.
In Illinois, an injured worker is entitled to a variety of benefits which are granted under the Workers' Compensation Act.
There are Three Basic Types of Benefits Available to a Worker Injured in the Course of His Employment:
1.The right to reasonable and necessary medical care.
2.The right to weekly payment for the time the worker is temporarily totally disabled.
3.The right to compensation for any permanent disability the worker may suffer.
It is important that the injured worker understand what each of these benefits entails.
Q: What is Workers Compensation?
A.In Illinois, the Workers' Compensation Law was put into place in the early 1900s to protect injured workers. It was a trade off between the civil tort system that required an injured party to prove negligence, but possibly recover higher amounts. In most situations, if you are injured on the job the only recourse you have is to file a Workers' Compensation claim against your employer.
Q: What should I do immediately after my injury?
A.Give notice to of your accident to your employer. As soon as possible after your accident, let your employer know orally and in writing of your accident. Keep a copy of the notice in your records. Be sure it includes information about how your accident happened and that it lists all your injuries. Under the Workers' Compensation Act you are given 45 days to notify your employer, but your case will be stronger if you give notice within 24 hours of the accident.
See a doctor. No one will appreciate your heroic effort if you continue working in pain after your injury. Go to the emergency room or a doctor you are confident can keep your best interests in mind. Be sure to give the doctor a thorough and accurate account of how the accident happened and details of all your complaints. This will help your doctor and help your workers' compensation claim.
See an attorney. Choose an attorney who practices Workers' Compensation Law. They will know the requirements of the law and how to best protect your rights.