Workers who are injured at work in Illinois will likely have benefits coming through the state’s workers’ compensation program. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is the state agency that serves as an impartial administrative entity when workers and employers aren’t able to work things out on their own. Questions about workers’ comp? Here are the answers to some of the most common questions that people have regarding workers’ compensation:
Are employers required to have workers’ compensation coverage?
All employers in Illinois are required to have workers’ compensation coverage if they have at least one employee. There are some exceptions to this, but those are few and far between. Employers who don’t have the required coverage can face serious penalties. Your employer should have a notice up in the workspace regarding the workers’ compensation coverage information.
What is the time limit for filing for workers’ compensation?
You have 45 days after an accident to inform your employer about an accident or injury. You have three years to file a claim for benefits with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. There are some exceptions to these limits. For example, you have a longer time to file claims that are related to asbestos exposure. The limit in these cases is 25 years after the date of the last exposure to the toxic substance.
Will the benefits pay for my lost wages?
Whether you qualify for partial wage replacement or not depends on how much time you have to miss from work. If you have to miss more than three days, you might be eligible for temporary disability benefits. These are calculated based on your average weekly pay and are paid out at a rate of 66.6 percent of your average pay. With the exception of permanent disability benefits, there are limits to how long you can receive these wage replacement benefits.
Where can I seek medical care?
Swansea, IL employees can seek medical care from any doctor of their choice. It doesn’t matter if the doctor is in the insurance company’s network or not. There is a two-doctor limit. This means you can only choose two doctors on your own. If you choose a third, the workers’ compensation insurance might not cover the cost.
The two-doctor limit doesn’t include doctors to whom you are referred. This means that you can see your family doctor, who counts as one doctor choice. If that doctor refers you to a specialist, the specialist doesn’t count as your second chosen doctor. If you see your family doctor and then seek a second opinion from another doctor to whom you weren’t referred, you have seen both doctors in the two-doctor limit.