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The Workers' Compensation Process in Illinois

Illinois Work Comp Lawyers

Workers' Comp Attorneys Serving Cook County, DuPage County, and Surrounding Areas

At Kaiser Hafezi Law, our skilled lawyers assist injured workers in obtaining the benefits available under Illinois law. If you were injured in the course of doing your job, it is important to act quickly so that your rights can be protected. Failure to take immediate action could cause problems with your claim, and it could even be denied outright.

The road to recovering workers' compensation benefits in Illinois consists of a number of necessary steps. Our attorneys are fully equipped to help you at every stage of the process.

Step 1: Treating the Injury

Whenever you get hurt at work, your first step should be to have your injuries examined by a medical professional. You can go to an urgent care facility, emergency room, or doctor's office to get the medical attention you need. Some workplaces even have an on-site clinic or a full-time nurse on staff. Seeking medical attention is important both for your health and for documenting your injuries for the workers' comp claims process.

Step 2: Reporting the Injury

Illinois law gives you 45 days to report a workplace injury to your employer if you hope to collect workers' compensation benefits. There are exceptions, but it is not a good idea to take chances. Report your injuries to your employer as soon as reasonably possible. Your company might also have company-specific reporting protocols that you should also follow to protect your eligibility for benefits. In your report, be sure to include the type of injury you sustained and which body parts were injured.

Step 3: Keep Your Records

As your medical treatment continues, it is important for you to keep a copy of all of your records. Obtain copies of any and all medical reports, bills, physicians' opinions, pharmacy receipts, insurance statements, and other paperwork that is related to your care. You might also wish to keep a diary or journal that documents your pain and the ways in which your injuries are affecting your life.

Step 4: Continue Communicating

If you are out of work due to your injuries, you must keep in regular contact with your employer so that you can receive progress reports on your claim. You will need to ensure that the employer is keeping an accurate accounting of your missed days and wages. Compare your employer's records to your own to be sure that they match. If you are able to work or you went back to work before your benefits were approved, you should still check in with the employer regularly to follow the progress of your claim.

Step 5: Review the Response to Your Claim

Your workers' compensation claim could be approved in full by the employer or the workers' comp insurance carrier. Your claim could also be denied in full or in part. If your benefits claim has been denied, or your benefits are delayed for any reason, one of the skilled lawyers at Kaiser Hafezi Law will help you figure out your next steps.

Step 6: Get the IWCC Involved

If you have done everything right and you are still not receiving the benefits you deserve, you have the option of escalating your claim by requesting an adjustment of claim from the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission (IWCC). Your application for an adjustment must be forwarded to your employer also. After your application is filed, your claim will be assigned an arbitrator by the ICWW, and a hearing will be scheduled. Our lawyers can help you decide whether to ask the arbitrator to help work out a resolution or to ask for a trial.

Call 630-233-9946 for Help

It is hard to pinpoint where reaching out to an attorney should be listed among the steps above, as every case is unique. If you were not hurt too badly, for example, you might call a lawyer after reporting the injury to your employer. On the other hand, if you were seriously injured, talking to an attorney before filing a formal report with your employer might be a better course of action.

For more information about the workers' compensation process in Illinois, contact the office of Kaiser Hafezi Law. Call 630-233-9946 to schedule a free, confidential consultation and case evaluation with a member of our team today. Our workers' comp attorneys help injured employees in Cook County, DuPage County, and the rest of Northern Illinois.

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