Publications

Section Newsletter Articles on Workers' Compensation Law

Calculation of AWW when considering future earning per a union contract By Megan Kivisto and Peter Corti Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 In addition to setting forth a clear rule regarding calculation of wage differential benefits, the case of United Airlines, Inc. v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission reminds us that speculative evidence has no place in our practice.
Custodial parent entitled to percentage of lump-sum workers’ compensation settlement as child support Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 The question on appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court was “whether the Trials Courts have discretion, in awarding child support, to apportion a [workers’] compensation settlement that is intended, by its terms, as a life-time disability award to equitably meet all parties’ needs.”
Editor’s comments By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 Updates of interest to Workers' Compensation Law practitioners from newsletter editor Rich Hannigan.
Intervening accident does not preclude permanency award on first accident By Stephen G. Baime Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 The case of National Freight Industries v. IWCC et al 2013 IL app. (5th) 120043WC stands for the proposition that an intervening accident does not preclude a permanency award for injuries sustained in the first accident. This is a most interesting case, and complicated, but the ruling of the Illinois Appellate Court is just.
Is the refusal to participate in Respondent’s chosen multidisciplinary pain management program equal to an injurious practice under The Act? What, if anything, does that have to do with the issue of Causal Connection? By Lawrence A. Scordino Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 Clearly, the long line of cases from numerous jurisdictions regarding the inability of the Commission to force a claimant to undergo a specific treatment remains unbroken. The no benefits “unless and until” the treatment is finished approach was rebuffed by the Court in Bryon Kawa v. IWCC.
The mailbox rule and Section 19(f)(1) By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 On August 1, 2013, the Supreme Court of the State of Illinois issued its decision in Gruszeczka v. IWCC. The issue in this case was whether a proceeding for judicial review of a Commission decision under section 19(f)(1) begins or is started when the Request for Summons and the proof of payment of the probable cost of the record are placed in a mailbox or when they are file stamped by the Clerk of the Circuit Court.
There is little interest in interest under the present WC Act By Christine M. Ory Workers' Compensation Law, August 2013 If P.A. 83-1051 went into effect in July 1984, interest payments on an arbitrator’s award would have accrued at the rate of 9% per annum under §19(n). As of December 2008, the prime rate dropped to 3.25% where it remains. Therefore, if P.A. 83-1051 had gone into effect, the present interest rate on the arbitrator’s award would be at 4.25% per annum. This is nowhere near as good as it was in July 1984 and not as good as the 6% flat rate, but it certainly is better than what we have today.
Delay in seeking treatment does not bar recovery for “mental-mental” injury By Mark P. Matranga Workers' Compensation Law, June 2013 A summary of Chicago Transit Authority v. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission et al.
Early lessons from a post-AMA world By Robert J. Finley Workers' Compensation Law, June 2013 With several Commission decisions on the horizon, what impact might these early post-reform AMA decisions have on practitioners?
Stipulation binding when signed By Shuaib Ahmed Workers' Compensation Law, June 2013 In Ingrassia Interior Elements v. IWCC, the Appellate Court held that when a transcript is not filed within the time period specified by section 19(b) of the Act, the Commission is not deprived of its jurisdiction to review the Arbitrator’s Decision.
A worker’s compensation primer for non-work comp attorneys By Paul R. Popovic Young Lawyers Division, February 2013 This primer gives you an idea of how workers’ compensation works, why we have it, and to whom it applies. At the very least, you will have a response the next time a friend, family member or client asks you about their injury at work.
Appellate court reverses Commission’s finding “arising out of” to be against the manifest weight of the evidence By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 In another Rule 23 case, Illinois State Treasurer, as ex officio Custodian of the Injured Workers Benefit Fund v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission (Joseph Mese), the Appellate Court reversed the IWCC’s finding that the petitioner’s injuries arose out of and in the course of her employment.
Bank teller’s alleged intentional-tort claim is “held up” by exclusivity provision of the Act By Cameron B. Clark Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 In Glasgow v. Associated Banc-Corp., a bank teller who was allegedly injured during a bank robbery brought an intentional tort action against the bank and branch where she worked.
Person as a whole vs. 8(d)(1) wage differential, a Rule 23 decision By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 In Illinois Tool Works v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, filed January 3, 2012, the claimant injured his low back on March 21, 2003 and underwent a lumbar diskectomy at L4-5 on March 22, 2004.
Pipe-fitter fits the role of a traveling employee By Catherine Krenz Doan Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 A summary of Venture-Newberg Perini Stone and Webster v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.
Prior stipulation by employer dooms its jurisdictional argument By Cameron B. Clark Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 IIngrassia Interior Elements v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, the claimant filed a Petition for Review of the Arbitrator’s decision denying his claim pursuant to the Act.
Truck driver hauls in the necessary evidence to establish an employer-employee relationship and employer loses jurisdictional argument due to service on the Commission By Cameron B. Clark Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 In Labuz v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, both the claimant, a truck driver, and his purported employer sought review of the decision of the Commission awarding claimant certain benefits for neck, back and left shoulder injuries.
W.B. Olson v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission: The appellate court once again relies on the dictionary for interpretation of the Workers’ Compensation Act By Joseph K. Guyette Workers' Compensation Law, January 2013 Rather than settling the law on a confusing issue, this case is likely to cause further confusion and litigation regarding a petitioner’s ability to return to work.
Intoxication: Proposed testing rules and certain crimes defense By Robert J. Finley Workers' Compensation Law, September 2012 Practitioners who are handling claims involving drug or alcohol intoxication for injuries occurring after September 1, 2011 should read Section 11 of the Workers’ Compensation Act carefully.
Taking the “headache” out of the settlement process By Michelle L. LaFayette Workers' Compensation Law, September 2012 As part of the Commission’s judicial training program this past April, the author was invited to speak before the arbitrators and commissioners about settlements from the attorney’s perspective.
What are the duties and obligations of the parties with respect to initiating vocational rehabilitation? By Anita M. DeCarlo and Deborah A. Benzing Workers' Compensation Law, September 2012 As is evidenced by the contradicting case law detailed in this article, there are many unanswered questions with respect to vocational rehabilitation.
Workers’ compensation is an injured employee’s sole remedy By Robert T. Park Civil Practice and Procedure, September 2012 The recent decision in Rodriguez v. Frankie’s Beef/Pasta & Catering illustrates the use of the Workers’ Compensation Act as a defense to a negligence suit.
Black lung: Do I file in the federal court pursuant to the Black Lung Benefits Act or the IWCC pursuant to the Occupational Disease Act? And if choosing one over the other, does that create collateral estoppel? By Kenneth F. Werts Workers' Compensation Law, July 2012 In the case of Donald Edmonds v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, the Appellate Court looked at when the doctrine of collateral estoppel will apply to a state claim based upon an earlier decision made on an issue by the Department of Labor.
Penalties for delay in authorization for medical treatment? No dice. A respondent’s perspective By Shuaib Ahmed Workers' Compensation Law, July 2012 IHollywood Casino v. IWCC, the Appellate Court affirmed the Circuit Court and upheld that there is no legal basis for assessing penalties and fees against the employer for delay in authorization and/or pre-authorization of medical treatment.
Third party immune from liability pursuant to Section 5(a) of the Act By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, July 2012 IMockdee et. al. v. Humphrey Manlift Company et.al. an injured employee filed a civil complaint against three entities for the injuries she sustained, arguing that either one or a combination of those three entities breached a duty of care by failing to note the need for a guardrail and or facilitating a guardrail.
What consequences does an employer face when there is a refusal to authorize treatment? A petitioner’s perspective By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, July 2012 A summary of the recent case of Hollywood Casino – Aurora v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.
Does a shoulder injury entitle one to compensation pursuant to Section 8(d)(2)or a specific loss of use of the arm? By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, April 2012 In finding the injury involved the shoulder, the Appellate Court of Illinois Third District Workers’ Compensation Commission Division ruled that the shoulder is part of a person and not part of the arm.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, April 2012 A message from Newsletter Editor Rich Hannigan.
Lessons learned on the eighth floor By Jerry Jutila Workers' Compensation Law, April 2012 Arbitrator Jerry Jutila shares his advice for those young attorneys who have asked for his help and are looking to improve their skills.
Medicare issues in workers’ compensation cases—What every practitioner should know By Nicole M. Schnoor Workers' Compensation Law, April 2012 Early recognition of Medicare issues and consideration of funding a non-submitted Medicare Set-aside Agreement can help expedite the overall settlement process and remove the element of surprise when a Medicare issue is encountered late in settlement negotiations.