Workplace accidents usually catch workers totally unprepared for the loss of income they will suffer. Due to the recent economic downturn and other events, many workers are living paycheck to paycheck. The sudden loss of the ability to earn a living due to an injury can throw a family into spiraling debt as they struggle to recover.
If you have suffered a workplace accident, then obviously your first priority should be to immediately seek out medical treatment. You should also notify your employer just as soon as you can. For your next step, you may want to consider consulting with an Illinois workers compensation attorney. Your attorney can assist you with filing your injury claims.
Illinois law allows injured workers to file for injury claims up to three years from the date of your accident. Despite that rather lengthy time frame, it's still a good idea to move forward quickly with your claims. Perhaps one of the best reasons for this is because although you may have been injured at work, there is never a guarantee that you will receive workers' compensation benefits.
Your employer, or his or her insurer, may challenge whether your injury was caused by your workplace accident and not a pre-existing condition. They may even require you to submit to an independent review of your physical injuries. This is why having an attorney can be extremely beneficial to your cause. For example, your attorney can represent you at any workers' compensation hearing. This is indispensable in situations where your employer or his or her insurers are challenging your medical benefits.
Additionally, your attorney can fight to get you partial wage replacement payments if your injury has prevented you from returning to work. You might also qualify for vocational retraining in some cases where your injury is so severe that it makes it impractical to return to work in your previous capacity. The sooner you get started with your workers' compensation claims, the sooner you can begin healing and moving forward with your life.
Based in Chicago, our law firm has over 30 years of experience representing personal injury and workers' compensation clients in Cook County and throughout Illinois. Prospective clients should know that we will work quickly to get them the benefits they deserve. Our office does not charge fees to meet with prospective clients during their initial consultations.