Types Of Workers’ Compensation Benefits In Illinois
If you are an employee who was injured at work and are looking to file for workers’ compensation benefits, you will need to know the various types of benefits available to you. The following article will discuss some of the various workers’ compensation benefits available for Illinois employees.
Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act
Illinois’ workers’ compensation guidelines are codified at 820 ILCS 305, also known as the “Workers’ Compensation Act.” This statute provides some of the following benefits for injured employees who file workers’ compensation claims:
- Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits: If you cannot work because you are recovering from a work injury, or if you cannot obtain light-duty work that accommodates your physical limitations, you may be entitled to TTD benefits. TTD benefits are two-thirds of your pre-injury average weekly wage and will continue until your doctor states that your condition has improved as much as feasibly possible under your current treatment plan (referred to as “maximum medical improvement” or MMI).
- Permanent Total Disability Benefits: Once you have reached your level of maximum medical improvement, your doctor will determine if your injury has caused any permanent physical disability. You will be considered permanently and totally disabled if you’ve suffered devastating injuries and are either i) unable to do any kind of work or ii) if you’ve lost the use of both eyes, hands, arms, feet, or legs (or any two of those limbs). If so, you will receive permanent total disability benefits for life, at the same rate as your TTD benefits.
- Wage Differential Benefits: If you have returned to work since the time of your injury but are earning less than you were before your injury because of your permanent partial disability, you might be entitled to a tax-free wage differential award. These benefits equal two-thirds of the difference between what you are earning in your new position and what you would have been earning at your pre-injury position. These payments will terminate after five years or when you turn 67, whichever happens later.
- Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) Benefits: If you have reached MMI and are able to return to work full duty you are still entitled to a settlement or award for permanent partial disability benefits. These benefits contemplate the total amount of permanent disability you have sustained as a result of the accident. The amount of PPD you may be entitled varies greatly based upon your average weekly wage at the time of the accident, the body part(s) injured as a result of the accident as well we the extent of treatment you have undergone.
- Disfigurement Benefits: If your work-related injury resulted in a serious and permanent disfigurement to an area of your body that’s commonly visible to the public (i.e. your face, head, neck, upper chest, arms, or lower legs) you may be entitled to receive an award amount equal to 60% of your pre-injury average weekly wage for up to 162 weeks (depending on the severity of the disfigurement).
- Medical Benefits: Workers’ compensation typically covers all reasonably necessary medical treatment stemming from a work injury, so long as the treatment is authorized
- Vocational Rehabilitation Benefits: If you are unable to return to work and need job counseling, training, or education to find another job, workers’ compensation will provide a maintenance benefit in the same amount as your TTD rate (as long as you are enrolled in an approved vocational rehabilitation program).
- Death/ Burial Benefits: If an employee dies as a result of a work-related injury, the surviving family members can receive certain death benefits. These benefits include an amount which is two-thirds of the employee’s average weekly wage, as well as up to $8,000 in burial expenses.
Do You Have Questions about Workers’ Compensation? Contact our Firm
If you have additional questions regarding workers’ compensation benefits, Connolly Injury Law can help. Our Chicago workers’ compensation lawyer are ready to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have. Schedule a free consultation with our office today by calling or texting us at (312)-780-0816 or by using our online form.