Workers compensation is a no-fault system of benefits paid by employers to workers who experience work-related injuries or diseases. This system allows qualifying employees to receive benefits for injuries that arose in the scope of their employment.
Workers compensation cases are different from personal injury claims because workers compensation claims are not decided in a court. Rather, these claims are brought before the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission. The Arbitrator resolves disputes between employees and employers regarding work-related injuries and illnesses.
Often workers compensation claims are resolved via settlement where the parties agree that that worker has a valid claim and they agree to the value of that claim; however, when settlement cannot be reached, the claim will be brought to trial before an arbitrator.
Employees are allowed to present evidence before an arbitrator that they were injured in the course of their employment and the extent of their injuries. Employers will present evidence of their defense to the employees claim.
A case is first tried by an arbitrator, whose decision may be reviewed by a panel of three commissioners. Cases may then be appealed to the circuit court, Appellate Court, and Illinois Supreme Court. Like most court systems, the vast majority of disputes are resolved by settlement.
Contact the attorneys at KOEPKE, HILTABRAND & SCHUTTE to discuss your workers compensation issues.