Illinois Workers’ Compensation Reform Has Far-Reaching Effects for Employees

The past legislative session in Illinois has been a duel to get workers’ compensation reform. The bill did pass and is touted by some as a major reform, while others claim it falls short. The bill will go into effect September 1 and the biggest changes involve capping payouts for workers who are hurt and need to change to lower paying jobs. Also, individuals who have carpal tunnel injuries will only receive 28 weeks of benefits, down from the previous 40 weeks. The bill also cuts fees that doctors receive for workers’ compensation injuries by 30 percent, and is estimated to save businesses a minimum of $500 million.

“This is major reform, and it’s nonsense to refer to it as anything but,” said Democratic Senator Kwame Raoul, the bill’s chief Senate sponsor.

The Illinois General Assembly also voted to increase the state’s income tax, which undoubtedly affects businesses. As the state works to keep companies in Illinois, the legislature pushed to save businesses money with the workers’ compensation reform. But some say that the workers’ compensation reform did not go far enough. These opponents want workers to have to prove injuries truly did happen at work in order to make a recovery. Monies saved would help employers lessen these costs and help promote job growth, they claim.

As the Chicago Sun-Times reported, opponents said the measure “was merely a step in the right direction toward improving Illinois’ business climate but that it failed to tackle the root complaint of employers.”

For workers, the legislation still provides them a way to obtain much-needed benefits when a workplace injury occurs. But because of the new guidelines, legal experts say that it’s now more important than ever to have an experienced Chicago workers’ compensation attorney represent their concerns. The bill can have a big impact on how workers’ compensation claims affect an individual, their financial award, and medical treatment.

The Chicago workers’ compensation lawyer Robert I. Briskman, Esq. has been representing individuals in their workers’ compensation cases for decades. The law firm of Briskman Briskman & Greenberg is skilled in working with an employer’s insurance company to get the compensation a worker deserves when they are injured on the job. Their senior-level lawyers will vigilantly uphold a client’s rights to compensation for their medical bills, lost wages, vocational rehabilitation, and other costs.

Robert I. Briskman is a Chicago workers compensation attorney and Chicago workers compensation lawyer with Briskman Briskman & Greenberg. To learn more call 1.877.595.4878 or visit

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