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Will County workers compensation attorneysThere is no doubt that certain jobs are more dangerous than others are. For example, a police officer faces the potential for physical injury on a daily basis, while an office or factory worker would not experience the same kinds of risks. However, workplace accidents can occur in any field of work. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) establishes standards and rules that detail the methods that employers must use to protect their employees from dangers and hazardous conditions. OSHA standards regulate construction work, maritime operations, and general industries. Regardless of the type of industry or injury, Illinois employees are generally entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they are hurt on the job.  

Common OSHA Violations

Even though OSHA falls under the U.S. Department of Labor, which is a federally regulated agency, employers or workers sometimes ignore or cut corners on safety standards. According to OSHA and the National Safety Council’s Safety + Health magazine, a few examples of commonly cited OSHA violations include failures related to:

  • Fall protection
  • Control/containment of hazardous materials
  • Scaffolding
  • Respiratory protection
  • Ladders
  • Machine guarding
  • Eye and face protection
  • Powered industrial trucks

The lack of adequate training or maintenance can impact the chances of an accident. In addition, faulty or defective equipment can cause a workplace injury. For instance, if an employer does not provide handrails on elevated platforms, a worker could lose his or her balance and fall. 

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Will County workers compensation attorneysLaw enforcement and firefighting professionals face danger on a regular basis. Their jobs are to protect and save citizens, even if that means putting themselves in peril. This means injuries can be prevalent for individuals in these occupations, especially due to the physical nature of their duties. In certain situations, workers’ compensation benefits can be claimed if one of these workers suffers an injury on the job. In Illinois, first responders can file for workers’ comp benefits, with exceptions for police and firefighters employed by the City of Chicago. 

Common First Responder Injuries 

Police officers have a greater chance of incurring a work-related injury or illness than those in many other occupations. Nonfatal injuries and illnesses that cause officers to miss work may be the result of violence, animal attacks, or even falls while on duty. For example, when serving search warrants, an officer could face a suspect who pulls a gun or a knife. A suspect could also be combative by hitting, kicking, or shooting at law enforcement. Other cause of injury may include vehicle collisions while patrolling the roadways. When making a traffic stop, an offender may try to evade or elude police, which sends the officer on a high-speed chase, which could result in a crash. 

Some of the typical injuries sustained by law enforcement officials include:

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Joliet workers' compensation attorneysAccidents can and do occur at companies and job sites even if every safety precaution is taken. In Illinois, workers’ compensation benefits can help cover medical expenses and lost wages if a worker is hurt while on the job. The majority of workplace injuries involve an employee eventually returning to work after he or she is healed. In certain accidents, however, a worker may sustain injuries so severe that they cause permanent restrictions or disability. If you are permanently disabled as a result of a catastrophic work injury, disability benefits might help you reclaim your life.

Types of Permanent Disability Benefits in Illinois

According to Illinois law, there are two different types of permanent disability benefits depending on the consequences of an injury. Employers are required to pay permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits to an employee who is impaired or disfigured in some way while performing his or her job but who is still able to work in a limited capacity. Sometimes surgery will repair or correct an injury, and the worker can go back to his or her job after attending a rehab facility or doing physical therapy.

Permanent total disability (PTD) benefits are for an employee who is permanently unable to work in any capacity. With extreme cases, amputation may be necessary if a body part has been severed and cannot be reattached. If an employee loses both hands, arms, feet, legs, eyes, or any of these two body parts, that constitutes permanent total disability. This also applies if there is permanent and complete loss of the use of those body parts.

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Will County workers' compensation lawyerAccidents happen, and if you have been injured or fallen ill at work, you may be wondering how you are going to pay all your medical bills. If you are unable to work due to your injury or work-related illness, this can compound your issues, and you are probably worried about the bills that are piling up. Fortunately, you may qualify to receive workers' compensation, but in order to receive these benefits, you must follow the proper procedures. 

What Qualifies As a Work-Related Injury or Illness

According to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, workers’ compensation covers a wide range of issues affecting employees. An injury due to an accident at work is an obvious one, but some people may not realize that they may also be able to receive workers’ comp for gradual injuries, such as those caused by repetitive motions when performing job duties, a heart attack brought on by mental or physical stress at work, or worsening of a pre-existing condition due to work conditions. 

Steps to Take Advantage of Workers’ Compensation

In order to qualify for workers’ compensation, you will need to see a doctor or go to a hospital, as needed, in order to assess the situation and show that it is work-related. If it is, your employer must, by law, cover the costs of your appointments and procedures. So that you can get that coverage, you will need to inform your employer of your condition within 45 days of it happening. Your employer must report any accidents that keep you from work for multiple days.

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