Joe and his friends knew the risks of working on the construction of a new building. They had done this kind of work for several years and enjoyed the excitement and opportunities. However, one day a large scaffolding collapsed. Several people were seriously injured with one worker passing away because of his injuries. The workers who had known that construction sites are dangerous now had to learn how to navigate the workers’ comp system.
What Is Workers’ Compensation?
The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act (the “Act”) requires most employers in Illinois to purchase workers’ comp insurance. Most employees who are injured or develop an occupational disease because of their job are covered by workers’ comp.
Who Can Get Workers’ Comp Benefits?
Most workers in Illinois are eligible for workers’ comp. However, the injury or occupational disease must have happened because of the worker’s employment. In addition, the injured person must have an employee-employer relationship with their employer. Independent contractors are not covered by workers’ comp because they do not have that employee-employer relationship. However, beware of employers who mislabel employees as independent contractors.
Also, the injured worker must meet all deadlines. This includes reporting the injury or disease to their employer promptly after the incident or diagnosis.
What Type of Benefits Are Available?
First, the injured person can receive medical treatment paid by their employer’s insurance provider. While off work, the employee can receive benefits based on type of disability:
- Temporary total disability,
- Temporary partial disability,
- Permanent partial disability, and
- Permanent total disability.
In addition, workers may receive vocational rehabilitation care and maintenance benefits to workers who participate in an approved vocational rehabilitation program.
Finally, death benefits may be paid to the surviving family members of a deceased worker.
Final Thoughts About Construction Sites and Workers’ Comp
Construction sites may be some of the most dangerous workplaces. However, most workers on these sites are eligible for workers’ comp, just like people who work in safer environments.
Have you or a loved one been injured while working at a construction site? It’s important to talk to an attorney to preserve your rights for compensation.
With over 20 years’ experience, Osvaldo Rodriguez has the skills to handle your case from start to finish. To schedule your free initial consultation, or just ask a question, call us at 708-716-3441 or fill out the form on the Contact Us page.
At Osvaldo Rodriguez, P.C., we represent clients throughout the state of Illinois. This includes Chicago, Addison, Bellwood, Bensenville, Berwyn, Chicago, Cicero, Elmwood Park, Franklin Park, Maywood, Melrose Park, Northlake and Cook, DuPage, Will, and Kane Counties.
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