In the state of Illinois, most workers who sustain an injury on the job are entitled to workers’ compensation. Furthermore, employers legally have to cover the cost of workers’ compensation benefits. This includes benefits for both permanent total disability or temporary total disability.
Temporary Total Disability
Some of the benefits workers’ comp pays for include:
- Medical expenses resulting from an injury on the job.
- Temporary total disability (TTD) benefits while the employee is recovering from injury.
- Permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits in cases where an employee has sustained a permanent disability or disfigurement but can still work.
- Permanent total disability (PTD) benefits in cases where an employee is permanently unable to work.
- Death benefits for surviving family members of an employee killed on the job.
Let’s look at TTD benefits in more detail.
What Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Covers
In the state of Illinois, TTD benefits provide two-thirds (66%) of the employee’s average weekly wage (AWW) in cases where the employee is (a) temporarily unable to return to work because of their injuries as indicated by a doctor, or (b) able to do light-duty work, but the employer is unable to accommodate the employee.
How To Calculate TTD Benefits and How Long They Last
TTD benefits rely on weekly minimum and maximum limits, so the amount a person will receive will vary. The employee’s average weekly wage is generally based on gross (pre-tax) wages for the 52-week period prior to the date of the injury. In other words, they look at the wages a person has earned in the past year to determine their benefit amount.
Other factors could also impact the wages a person will receive. These include whether the person had more than one job at the time of the injury. Plus, how consistently the person worked during the prior 52-week period.
Once a person notifies their employer of their injury, the employer has to make the first TTD payment within 14 days of receiving the notice. The best way to ensure an employer makes the payment promptly is to send them a written notice. Also, ensure you include a doctor’s note detailing the injury.
Five Leading Causes Of Paralysis Injuries
Nearly one in 50 Americans is living with paralysis today and many of those people were paralyzed by injuries. Therefore, understanding the causes of paralysis injuries and the legal options available to accident victims can help them obtain the support and resources they need to face the challenges their condition may pose.
Spinal cord injuries are the number two cause of paralysis and are responsible for about 27.3 percent of paralysis cases. Common causes of paralysis injuries such as spinal cord injuries include:
- Automobile crashes – 27 percent
- Physical labor-related injuries – 21 percent
- Falls – 11 percent
- Victim of violence – 6 percent
- Sports accidents – 4 percent
Unfortunately, paralysis often prevents men and women living with this condition from earning a living. Furthermore, just 15.5 percent of individuals are employed. Therefore, they and their families often face great financial hardships. Individuals paralyzed as a result of another person’s negligence or wrongdoing need the help of an accident lawyer to obtain the compensation they need and deserve.
Types and Causes of Spinal Injuries
A spinal injury will often lead to the loss of the ability to feel or move. Such an injury could be either complete or incomplete. In the event that you suffer from a complete spinal injury, you are likely to lose your nerve function as well as the ability to control your movements below the injury. This will often include your inability to control your legs, bladder, and bowels.
On the flip side, an incomplete injury will not sever your entire ability to feel or move. While each case is essentially different, most victims of incomplete spinal injury will experience feelings below the spinal injury, while retaining some capacity to move.
Apart from the injury that is caused by disease, spinal cord injuries usually occur when trauma to the spine leads to a fracture or crushes or dislocates the vertebrae. Spinal cord injuries are generally permanent, but some mild cases experience a certain degree of recovery.
How to Sue for Spinal Cord Injuries
If your spinal cord injury is a permanent total disability that resulted from another person’s actions or negligence, you are entitled to bring a personal injury claim. Personal injury often encompasses the theories of strict liability, negligence, and intentional torts. Negligence refers to a person’s failure in acting as a rational and prudent person would in similar circumstances.
Determination of Fault
Car accidents are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries, especially among individuals under the age of 65. It is, however, not uncommon to find that most claims do not go to trial, as negotiations will often take place out of court with the liable party’s insurance company.
Such a situation will not require you to provide the kind of evidence that a trial court requires. Even so, it’s essential that you seek legal assistance. This will ensure you don’t accept an inadequate settlement by the other party’s insurance company.
In the event that the case goes into court, fault will be established through a review of the police accident report. This demonstrates that the other party violated a law. Alternatively, the report will show that the type of accident in question, including a rear-end collision, establishes fault automatically.
If you can establish that the other person was negligent, you’ll be eligible to receive damages for the spinal injury. It’s imperative that you seek recovery for your spinal cord injury before the statute of limitations bars your claim.
Failure to file a claim within the time limit will prevent you from taking any future legal action. Therefore, timely filing of the spinal cord injury claim may qualify you for general damages for pain and suffering. This includes emotional and physical pain, medical expenses, lost earnings, and special damages.
Unfortunately, employers often delay or dispute disability payments which can create significant financial hardship for injured employees and their families.
If you’ve been injured on the job and your disability payments have been delayed, denied or you’re not receiving adequate compensation, the expert attorneys at Marc J. Shuman & Associates, LTD. can help.