The Chicago Employment Law Blog

Illinois Lawmakers To Reform Workers' Comp

Illinois state senators are hashing out their differences as they tackle a statewide reform of the workers' comp system, according to The Alton Telegraph. As part of the negotiations, lawmakers also are working on changes to the state Medicaid program for low-income people.

Meanwhile, business leaders have complained for years that the high cost of workers' compensation insurance premiums and settlements have discouraged businesses from locating in Illinois.

Illinois Chamber of Commerce lobbyist Todd Maisch, who believes inaction hurts job growth, said he hopes legislators can come to an agreement soon:

"The Legislature has been saying for three years now that jobs is their top priority, and now it's time to demonstrate that."

One of the issues he would like to see addressed in any reform measure includes a process for distinguishing between an on-the-job injury and a degenerative physical condition. Todd Maisch said he also would like to see more objective physical impairment guidelines for the determination of compensation.

Filing a workers' compensation claim, which pays workers who are injured on the job, is a complicated process best explained by Chicago workers' compensation attorneys.

In response to the Chamber, Sean Stott of the Laborers' International Union of North America, said he's concerned that business interests will try to lower costs at the expense of inadequate coverage:

"Those are things we're going to fight tooth-and-nail to protect working people in the state of Illinois."

Michael Carrigan, president of the Illinois AFL-CIO, said he's confident the two sides (labor and management) can come to an amicable agreement for workers' compensation reform.

The Illinois Senate has until Jan. 3 to complete its reforms.

Need to file a workers' compensation claim and not sure where to begin? Check FindLaw's extensive directory of Illinois workers' compensation attorneys for help.

Related Resources: