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b2ap3_thumbnail_rear-end-crash_20210606-173800_1.jpgFor many employees, driving is an important part of their work responsibilities. Commercial truck drivers, delivery drivers, employees who travel between work sites, and even employees who occasionally run errands for their employer during the workday will often find themselves on the road, and this comes with exposure to the risk of serious injury in a motor vehicle accident. If you are injured while driving for work, it is important to understand your options for recovering compensation.

Workers’ Compensation Through Your Employer

In many cases, a person who is injured in an accident while driving for work is entitled to Illinois workers’ compensation benefits through their employer. Workers’ compensation claims do not require a demonstration of fault or negligence on the part of your employer, but in order to be eligible for benefits, the following must be true:

  • You must be classified as an employee, rather than as an independent contractor.
  • The injury must have occurred during the course of your work. Usually, this excludes accidents that occur during the commute to and from work.
  • The injury must not have been the result of your intoxication or a serious criminal violation on your part.

If you are approved for workers’ compensation, the benefits will cover all medical expenses related to your injuries. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you could also qualify for temporary or permanent disability benefits to compensate for a portion of your lost wages.

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IL injury lawyerWhile some professions are inherently more dangerous than others, the risk of injury at work exists for all employees. Some injuries are caused by a single traumatic event such as falling or being crushed by equipment. Others, such as repetitive motion injuries, occur slowly over time. If you were hurt at work, you may be left wondering how you will pay for medical expenses and other losses resulting from your injury. Workers’ compensation and/or a third-party claim may allow you to recover compensation.

Workers’ Compensation for Injured Employees in Illinois

In Illinois, employers with one or more employees must carry workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance reimburses an injured worker for the financial losses he or she suffers because of a work accident. Typically, two-thirds of an injured worker’s wages are recoverable through a workers’ compensation claim. Medical bills including emergency medical treatment, doctor’s appointments, surgery, and rehabilitative care are also covered under workers’ compensation. Although Illinois law mandates workers’ compensation insurance for exactly this purpose, injured workers can sometimes face obstacles getting the compensation they need. The insurer may offer much less than the worker actually needs to cover his or her expenses, miscalculate the worker’s income, or deny the claim altogether. A workers’ compensation lawyer can be a valuable source of advocacy in situations like these.

A Third-Party Claim May Secure Further Compensation

Workers’ compensation laws prevent employees from suing their employers. However, injured workers may still have the chance to file a personal injury lawsuit and collect damages. If the actions of another party such as a property owner, general contractor, or negligent driver caused the injury, the worker may bring a personal injury claim against that party. The worker may be able to secure compensation above and beyond workers’ compensation including his or her full lost wages. Unlike a workers’ compensation claim, a personal injury claim may also allow for the recovery of non-economic damages like physical pain, emotional and mental suffering, and disfigurement.

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Libertyville construction accident lawyer fatal injuryA recent on-the-job tragedy reminded workers across the United States of the inherent dangers of working in the construction industry. On August 23rd, 2018, a 27-year-old construction worker was fatally injured while he and his construction team were working on a private preparatory school in northeast Maryland. The accident occurred as the construction team was attempting to move a portable building, and the worker was struck during the move. The Maryland Occupational Safety and Health Department are conducting an ongoing investigation in hopes of gaining further insight into how the accident occurred. 

In 2016 alone, 5,190 American workers were killed while at work. Over 20% of American workers that suffered fatal injuries in 2016 were involved in construction accidents. While the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has worked extensively to minimize workplace fatalities, work injuries continue to plague a number of American industries, none more so than the construction industry. If you or a member of your family suffer an injury while at work, a knowledgeable workers' compensation attorney can help you receive the financial benefits you deserve. 

Why Are Construction Fatalities So Common? 

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Gurnee workers' comp benefits attorneyIn 2016 alone, insurance companies billed out over $45,000,000 in workers’ compensation claims throughout the United States. While the financial numbers for workers’ compensation nationwide only increased by 0.6%, there has been a massive uptick in workers’ compensation claims since 2010. The Insurance Information Institute estimates that in the span between 2010 and 2016, insurance claims for workers’ compensation have increased by over 30%. 

At Salvi & Maher, L.L.C., our personal injury attorneys assist with filing workers' compensation claims and addressing the denial of benefits. We put our decades of experience to work to help clients receive the compensation they deserve. 

Workers’ Compensation Statistics 

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Waukegan personal injury attorneys, workers’ compensation, workplace fatalities, workplace injuries, workplace safetyAccording to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), workplace injuries are on the decline. The incident rate within the private sector workforce has declined from 4.4 cases per 100 full-time workers in 2006, to 2.9 cases in 2016.

In the state of Illinois, the average of 2.7 injuries per 100 full-time workers lies below the national average. Moreover, Illinois is ranked as the 9th safest state to work in throughout the United States.

A look at the long term trend in workplace safety shows that the commitment to improving worker safety has been a success. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), there were 10.9 worker accidents or illnesses per 100 workers annually in 1972 compared to 3.0 per 100 workers in 2015.

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Avvo Elite Lawyer 10 Best 2016 ASLA 2017 Nation's Top One Percent American Justice Institute Top 10 Chicago Bar Association DuPage County Bar Association Illinois State Bar Association Kane County Bar Association Illinois Trial Lawyers Association Lake County Bar Association McHenry County Bar Association Workers Compensation Lawyers Association Martindale Hubbell 2018 Martindale Hubbell 2018
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