What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ Compensation is a system of benefits created by Illinois law for employees who have suffered work-related injuries or diseases. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is responsible for administering the law, providing information and assistance to employees and employers, and resolving any disputes regarding employees’ entitlement to benefits. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission does not pay benefits – this is the sole responsibility of the employer and the employer’s insurance company.
What injuries are covered?
In most instances, Workers’ Compensation benefits are paid for accidental injuries that are caused, in whole or in part, by the employee’s work. Workers may also be compensated for aggravation of a pre-existing condition. For example re-injuries to an employee’s back while on the job would be covered by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. Injuries are accidental if they happen without plan or design. This may include injuries brought on by the repetitive use of a part of the body such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
What Should I do if I’m injured on the job?
If you are injured on the job, you should seek immediate medical treatment. You should also report any injury, even if it does not appear to be serious, as soon as the incident occurs. This is especially true about neck and back injuries which may not appear to be serious at the time of the injury, but may become disabling within hours or days after the injury. It is important to notify any doctor that you see that you are being treated for a work-related injury. You should immediately report the incident to your supervisor, foreman, boss or any other person in charge. Also, ask to fill out an incident report. In addition, it is a very good idea to keep a diary or log of the benefits you receive, the days you miss from work, the medical treatment you receive, and any pain you experience.