January 2009


No argument there. It takes a long time to go through the entire Workers Compensation process. Why?

The injured worker has to prove everything. You must prove accident. You must prove your medical bills are related to the accident. You must prove that your medical condition is related to your accident. This is the part of most cases that causes delay.

To prove the medical connection you have to have your doctor’s testimony. This often takes weeks and sometimes months to get on the doctor’s schedule for his testimony. The Workers Compensation insurance company also has the right to have the injured worker examined by its own doctor. This often takes time to arrange and then this doctor must testify. This can drag on for some months.

Once the case goes to trial either side can appeal. This extends the case for at least another year.

This explains why Workers Comp takes so long. It also explains why many cases are settled. It is quicker, and  less expensive to the insurance company. But remember settlement is not always the best answer.

Questions? Call Illinois Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.

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As I mentioned in my last post, Workers Compensation Insurance companies are going to be tighter with their money and settlements.

As an injured worker you need to do everything you can to make your case better. 

One important area to pay attention to is your medical treatment.

You need to go to the doctor as often as necessary to deal with your condition. Consistent treatment shows your condition is bothering you and is serious. If you do not treat for long periods, or treat off and on the Insurance company will argue that your problems improved and you no longer need medical treatment. Or if you wait a long time between treatments, then the Insurance company will say that it is not related to your work injury.

If the Workers Compensation Insurance company denies you treatment and you do not have your own health insurance, then you will have to go to trial to force the Insurance Company to pay for it. This is time consuming and frustrating but you have no choice.

Remember, you must seek medical treatment quickly and as often as needed to protect yourself and your Workers Comp case.

Call Illinois Attorney Dirk May with questions at 309-827-4371.

With economic uncertainty and political uncertainty in Illinois, it is probably safe to project the following for 2009:

  • Workers Comp insurance companies will be even more stingy with settlement offers. They want to keep as much money for themselves as possible.
  • Workers Comp insurance companies will tell their lawyers to appeal more cases. You may win your trial but when the insurance company appeals it will take another 1 to 1.5 years for the case to be decided. The insurance company will get to keep your money while the case is on appeal.
  • Jobs will continue to disappear and be scarce. Some companies will try to intimidate injured workers so that they will not file for Workers Compensation benefits.
  • Politics will have some impact on the Illinois Workers Comp law and the interpretation of the law. The Governor may soon be impeached. This will possibly open the door to a new Chairman, new Commissioners and may trickle down to new policies governing Arbitrators.

Questions about future developments, or what goes on in Illinois Workers Compensation cases? Call me, Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.

Many people are afraid of a Workers’ Compensation trial. They settle their case because they do not want to testify.

There is really nothing to fear. True, you will have to speak in public but it is not that painful for several reasons:

  • There is no jury. Only the Arbitrator or judge makes the decision in your case.
  • Few people will be present. The Arbitrator, the court reporter, the insurance company attorney, your attorney and yourself, and any witnesses.
  • You will go through the potential questions with your lawyer before the trial.
  • The Arbitrator wants to hear your story. That is the Arbitrator’s job. Just tell the truth and it will be fine.

I would be glad to talk with you about your case and whether you should go trial or not. Call Illinois Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371