If I Had A Work Injury, Do I Get Paid?

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July 8  

How Will You Get Paid?

In this article, I wanted to talk about a topic that came up while I was talking to a client yesterday, and basically the question is, “If I was in a work injury, do I get paid so if I get hurt at work, how do I get paid? Do I get paid?” So, it's a common question and I’m going to give you a quick and short answer. A lot of my videos tend to go on and on because I want to explain too much detail to you. Sometimes, the short answer is if you get hurt and you're an employee, then you're covered under workers comp.

Workers’ comp is an Illinois law that covers what an employer owes to an employee if they get hurt while they're working. And one of the things you're entitled to is you're entitled to two-thirds of your pay if you're off with a doctor's note.

The Doctor's Note

The doctor's note is an important part of it, I always tell my clients if you get hurt at work, you got to see a doctor and you got to get an off work note. If you don't plan on going in, there's not much wiggle room for somebody saying, “Well, I’m an adult. I knew I couldn't work well.” The problem is the act requires an actual doctor's note so that's what's required and that's what you need to do.

You're technically entitled to be paid two-thirds of your pay while you are off work, they don't withhold payroll taxes so what you take home is almost identical to what you were taking home before you got hurt.

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Just Because They're Supposed To Pay You, Doesn't Mean They'll Pay You

There are two categories of situations where they refuse to pay you and I would say it's about 50-50, although I’m suspicious about insurance companies because all they like to do is save money. They don't really care about human beings.

So two categories: one is a clerical error a communication error somebody was on vacation and came back from vacation, didn't see a letter, didn't see a doctor's work. Like I said before we have to send them like a doctor's note, they have to have a doctor's note saying “You're off work.” And then they'll institute TTD or they may have come back from vacation or they may have been assigned 20 new files and they haven't read yours.

They set it up in a computer system and that's how you get paid, so that's like the easy thing for me to fix when I get involved in a case. The first thing, I do call the insurance company to find out who the adjuster is, find out what they need. Sometimes, it's just give me a day, whatever the problem is I fix it and that's the most common way for me to get TTD going for a client now.

The second category is what happens if you're not like you have an off work note and they just want to fight the case. They think you didn't really get hurt at work or they think your doctor is a scammer or they think you're exaggerating the injury, because you're mad about something. Like you didn't get a promotion, or you know whatever it is or they reprimanded you for being late. So, you're claiming an injury as revenge which is ridiculous. I’ve never represented anybody who ever did that, but they get these ideas in their head and they decide to take a defense posture on the case.

And then, that means they're going to fight all the way. Now, sometimes I can get them on the phone and schmooze them. Sometimes, I’m like, “Okay fine.” Hire a lawyer, we'll go in front of the arbitrator, the lawyer on the other side for the company, I’ll call him up and say, “Look, here's what's going on. I think we got off on the wrong foot, why don't you talk to your people and send my clients some money.”

That works sometimes and if all else fails, we have to do a 19b or a 19b1 petition, which is an emergency petition that you go in front of the judge, and you tell the judge your side. They say their side, you might have to do a hearing where you approve, you put the doctor's note, the medical records into evidence, and the judge decides about whether you're owed TTD or not. So, those are the options the problem is it's really hard to get in front of a judge quickly. It usually takes six weeks to get in front of a judge or longer, sometimes we get lucky and we can do it quicker other times we can't.

So that’s the way it works are you entitled to get paid while you're off work if you had a work injury, if you're an employee Illinois workers comp then if your answer says “Yes”, I hope that clarifies and fills in some information for you or if you have any questions and if you have questions about any kind of injury case please feel free to give me a call. You may reach me at 312 500 4500 24/7 free consultation.

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About the author - Scott D. DeSalvo

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