Workers’ Compensation Claims in Illinois
According to the Fiscal Year 2014 Annual Report by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, there were over 200,000 work-related injuries reported to employers across the state in that year alone. While the workers’ compensation system is supposed to protect the worker in circumstances involving workplace injury (which, as these statistics show, happens often among workers in Illinois), navigating the claims process can be difficult. For this reason, you should contact a workers’ compensation attorney right away for your injury claim – particularly if you think that your claim may involve temporary total disability benefits.
Benefits of Workers’ Compensation
According to Illinois state workers’ compensation laws, the following benefits may be entitled to victims of workplace injuries:
- Medical care for the injuries suffered;
- Temporary partial disability if the worker needs a modified workload while recovering, but is still able to work;
- Temporary total disability if the worker is unable to work during recovery;
- Permanent partial disability if the worker is still able to work, but the injuries lead to permanent disabilities; and
- Permanent total disability if the worker is unable to continue to work altogether.
While much can be said about each of these benefits, temporary total disability (TTD) is one of the most commonly utilized benefits, and will be discussed here.
Temporary Total Disability – The Facts
Temporary total disability benefits are paid to the injured employee who must lose time from work to recover from a work-related injury or disease. Unlike in claims that qualify for temporary partial disability, the worker is unable to work (even at a reduced or lightened workload) during the recovery period. Rather, the employee is entitled to collect TTD benefits until he or she is able to return to work duties that are reasonably available to him or her.
At Malman Law, our workers’ compensation attorneys often hear the following questions regarding TTD benefits and eligibility. Keep in mind that, while this information is intended to be informative, it should only be used in conjunction with legal advice specific to you or your family’s situation.
How Are TTD Benefits Calculated?
TTD benefits are calculated to be two-thirds (66 2/3%) of the employee’s gross average weekly wage, which is still subject to certain limits. The average is based on the employee’s wages during the year before the injury or exposure. The rate is fixed at the time of the injury, and does not change, even if the employee’s salary or statewide average weekly wages change.
How Are TTD Benefits Paid?
TTD benefits are paid at the same interval by which the employee was paid before the injury or exposure. It may take as long as 14 days from the time when the employer received notice of the injury before payments begin.
TTD payments are not paid for the three work days lost to a work-related injury or disease, unless the disability continues for 14 or more calendar days.
Is it Possible to Collect TTD Benefits if I Have More Than One Job?
If an employee was working for two or more different jobs, the TTD rate may be based on the combined gross income from all jobs. This will only apply if the employer for whom he or she was working at the time of the accident had prior knowledge that the employee was working another job.
Is Overtime Included in TTD Benefits?
Overtime is generally not included in the calculation of the average weekly wage. Overtime pay is included, however, under the Worker’s Occupational Diseases Act.
What Obligations Are Employees Under to Pay TTD Benefits to Eligible Employees?
If the employer stops or withholds payment of TTD benefits before the employee returns to work, the employer must give the employee a written explanation on the date of the last TTD payment. Furthermore, the employer may be subject to penalties for failure to provide the employee with written notice.
TTD Benefits Questions? Contact Malman Law Today
If you’ve been injured while at work and think that you may qualify for temporary total disability benefits, or any of the other potential workers’ compensation benefits listed above, then contact the team at Malman Law now. The compassionate attorneys of Malman Law have handled many cases involving workers’ compensation claims, and can help you and your family seek rightful compensation for your disability – whether it be temporary or permanent. Do not delay in contacting us – you may be owed compensation from your employer for the pain and suffering, loss of income, and hardship that your injury has brought.
When you contact us, you can trust that we will work with you every step of the way by answering your TTD benefits questions, filling out the necessary paperwork, and ensuring that your claim is met with a just response from your employer. We offer free, no-obligation initial consultations and are available 24/7 to provide complete transparency throughout the legal process for victims of workplace injuries and diseases. Call our offices or contact us online today.