There are several factors that determine how much your workers’ compensation case is worth under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. The primary factors that determine case value in workers compensation are:
1. How much money you were making.
2. What body part you injured.
3. What percentage loss of use of that body part you sustained.
Other factors may include:
How long were you off work?
Can you return to work?
What type of medical treatment did you receive?
If you must get a new job, how much does it pay compared to your old one?
Are there permanent restrictions on your ability to work? If so, what are they?
Are you incapable of returning to work?
The Illinois Workers’ Compensation laws assign value to each body part by assigning a certain number of weeks of your average wages as payment for the loss of use of that body part. In many workers compensation cases, the argument between the injured worker and the employer is “how much is the loss of use of the body part”. Loss of use of a body part can range from zero percent up to 100%. The higher the % loss of use, the higher the case value.
For example, suppose you suffered an injury on January 1, 2007 that resulted in a permanent partial loss of your arm. Your employer’s insurance company offers to settle the case for 5% of an arm. The entire arm is worth 253 weeks of benefits and your workers’ compensation rate is $500 per week. The formula set by the workers’ compensation laws would show that your settlement offer is worth 5% x 253 x $500 = $6,325.00. If the loss of use of the arm was determined to by 10% the case value would be $12,650.00 (10% x 253 x $500).
This may be a low settlement offer from the insurance company; however this is the basis for evaluating and calculating a scheduled member injury. Because each client’s injuries, medical treatment, and employment is unique, you should consult with a competent workers’ compensation attorney very early after a work injury. Your employer’s insurance company will only make low offers to you because their interest is in protecting the employer, not in taking care of you.
The attorneys at Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid are committed to representing people who have been seriously injured and incur significant medical expenses as a result of work injuries. Law Offices of Mathys & Schneid continue to handle workers’ compensation and personal injury cases in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Will and Kendall Counties and all throughout the Chicagoland area.