When someone in Lake County has been injured in a workplace accident or has been diagnosed with a work-related illness, that person may not understand what they are entitled to. Every Illinois workers compensation lawyer is familiar with the devastating consequences of job-related accidents and knows how important it is for people to receive the benefits they need. National and state workers’ compensation law is designed to protect disabled employees and provide them with sufficient income and medical care. No two injury cases are exactly alike. Illinois law offers four different kinds of compensation for a range of medical and vocational situations.
Option 1: Temporary partial disability
Some injured workers can still report to work for light duty or modified duty. In these cases, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission may choose to award temporary partial disability benefits until the employee is able to return to regular duty. This short-term arrangement is a common solution for workers who have suffered muscle strains or other minor injuries but are still able to work in a modified capacity. TPD benefits are calculated as two-thirds of the difference between current post-accident pay and regular pay before the accident.
Option 2: Temporary total disability
According to records kept by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, American workers missed 1,162,210 days of work in 2013 because of occupational injury or illness. When an employee is completely unable to work after a workplace accident, the employer is required to offer temporary total disability for the period of absence. TTD benefits are calculated as two-thirds of the regular average wage during the past year, paid on a weekly basis as long as total disability continues. These payments must begin as soon as possible after the worker has missed three entire days of work. TTD cases normally require the written testimony of a doctor to confirm the disabling nature of the injury.
Option 3: Permanent partial disability
An Illinois workers compensation lawyer is often asked what happens if workplace injuries do not heal completely. In these cases, the worker can seek permanent partial disability. PPD may be paid in all of the following situations:
- Loss of any body part
- Total or partial loss of use of any body part or sense (such as a hand, a leg, sight or hearing)
- Total or partial loss of use of the whole body
PPD payments consist of two-thirds of the wages lost by the accident and are issued on a permanent basis.
Option 4: Permanent total disability
In the most serious cases, when a worker is permanently disabled and must retire after a workplace injury, Illinois law provides for permanent total disability. PTD benefits consist of two-thirds of average former wages for life. Disability benefits can be a complex topic. If you have been hurt on the job, you might find it useful to speak with an Illinois workers compensation lawyer.