Workers' compensation benefits are meant to be a financial lifeline for those who are injured on the job and must take an extended leave from work while they recover from their injuries. Being unable to work often means no paycheck, which can cause a worker significant hardship. Workers' compensation in Illinois provides benefits to qualifying workers in such situations, so they need not worry about how to afford their daily living expenses while they cannot work.
Workers' compensation is generally available to those classified as employees who are injured in the course of their work duties. This may be the case even if the employee's own negligence contributed to the incident that led to their injury. However, in exchange for receiving workers' compensation benefits, workers relinquish the right to pursue a lawsuit against their employer based on their injury, although a lawsuit may be sought against any third parties responsible for the incident that led to the injury.
In general, there are various types of workers' compensation benefits that an employee can seek. Employees can seek coverage for their medical expenses. Partial or total disability benefits can be sought, as can temporary or permanent benefits, depending on the situation. Vocational rehabilitation benefits can be sought if the worker cannot perform their previous work duties and needs to learn new skills to obtain a job. Finally, if the worker is killed in a workplace accident, his or her survivors may be eligible for death benefits.
There are a variety of benefits that can be sought from the workers' compensation system. However, every worker's situation is unique. Those who want to pursue workers' compensation will want to make sure they are fully informed on what benefits are available in their specific situation before proceeding.