Regardless of the industry in which you work in Springfield, Illinois, there will always be risks of injuries. The chances of suffering traumatic brain injuries if you fall and hit your head against a hard surface are as high in an office as it would be on a construction site. The same applies for other injury types, and knowing that the Illinois workers' compensation insurance program is there to provide financial assistance might provide some level of comfort.
However, without full knowledge and understanding of the types of available benefits, you might be concerned about your financial stability should you suffer a debilitating workplace injury. The nature and severity of your injury will determine the types of benefits you receive.
Lost-wage benefits only apply in specific circumstances. If your injury allows you to return to work within three to seven days, it qualifies as a medical only injury. This means that the benefits will cover all your medical expenses but no lost wages. The insurer will pay doctors' bills, prescription medicines and other medical costs immediately.
Any injury that causes recoverable disability includes wage-replacement benefits. However, the severity of the injury and the duration of your disability will determine which of the following benefits will apply:
- Temporary Partial Disability: If the nature of your injury disables you from doing your usual job but allows you to fill a position with limited duties and lower wages, the workers' compensation benefits will cover the shortfall as TPD benefits.
- Temporary Total Disability: An illness or injury that prevents you from doing your regular or any other job at the company that employs you will make you eligible for TTD benefits. You will receive wage-replacement benefits until full recovery and your return to work.
In the event of a severe injury that leaves you with a permanent disability even after maximum medical improvement, you might receive permanent disability benefits. These benefits also come in two types:
- Permanent Partial Disability: Your injury might leave you with a permanent impairment that still allows you to pursue a career. If for example, you lose a finger in an amputation injury, you might be able to do another job even if your impairment prevents you from doing your usual duties, and you will receive PPD benefits.
- Permanent Total Disability: This might be the worst-case scenario as far as debilitating injuries go. PTD benefits will provide financial support if you suffer an injury that prevents you from ever working again. It could result from traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries that leave you paralyzed or some other catastrophic injury.
You might also be concerned for the welfare of your family if you should suffer fatal injuries in a work-related accident. The workers' compensation program pays death benefits to eligible surviving family members. If you have no dependents, the benefits will cover end-of-life expenses. Otherwise, your loved ones will receive a financial package to cover day-to-day living expenses.
The claims process could be challenging, but an experienced Springfield attorney who is familiar with the Illinois workers' compensation insurance system can provide the necessary support and guidance.