Publications

Section Newsletter Articles on Workers' Compensation Law

When is a “bonus” not really a bonus and included in the average weekly wage? When is “overtime” included? By Lawrence A. Scordino Workers' Compensation Law, April 2012 The Illinois Appellate Court, First District, recently revisited the issue of the inclusion of bonus and overtime in the average weekly wage in Arcelor Mittal Steel, v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and Robert Common. The Court found that the Commission did not err in it’s inclusion of both “Production Bonuses” and “Scheduled Overtime” in the average weekly wage.
2011 year in review—A summary of appellate case law By Cameron B. Clark and Catherine Krenz Doan Workers' Compensation Law, January 2012 A brief summary of the past year's issues and holdings of the appellate court in 30 court opinions.
Lessons learned on the eighth floor By Jerry Jutila Workers' Compensation Law, January 2012 Arbitrator Jerry Jutila shares his advice for those young attorneys who have asked for his help and are looking to improve their skills.
Should the Legislature consider further changes to the Act? By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, January 2012 The years 2012 and 2013 will determine what effects the changes in the Workers’ Compensation Act will have upon the injured worker, the employer, the insurance companies and the cost of doing business in the state of Illinois. The author argues that it's just too soon to implement any additional changes.
Appellate court cites WC settlement contract as basis for PSEBA & PEDA benefits; Collateral estoppel uses WC findings to establish other causes of action By John P. O’Grady Workers' Compensation Law, November 2011 A summary of the recent decision of Frank H. Richter v. Village of Oak Brook and its ramifications.
Attorney fees on MSA funds confirmed in N.J. By Brad E. Bleakney Workers' Compensation Law, November 2011 The New Jersey Superior Court recently considered whether Medicare regulations and CMS allowed an attorney to recover attorney fees for creating a settlement obtained on behalf of a client in a civil suit from the Medicare set aside funds itself.
Chairman Mitch Weisz interview By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, November 2011 Learn more about the various procedural and substantive changes that have come about as a result of the workers’ compensation reform signed by Governor Quinn on June 28, 2011.
If you call it a bonus, is it necessarily excluded from the calculation of average weekly wage? And when do you include overtime in the calculation of average weekly wage? By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, November 2011 The court stated that there is a distinction between incentive-based pay, which an employee receives in consideration for specific work performed as a matter of contractual right and a bonus which an employee receives for no consideration or in consideration for overall performance a,t the sole discretion of the employer.
Involuntary merger of 8(e) specific loss into 8(d)1 wage differential award By Brad E. Bleakney Workers' Compensation Law, November 2011 Even where there is competent medical evidence presented of a full duty return to work accompanied by a medical opinion stating that the condition of ill being was in fact permanent and causally related to the first date of accident, it may not be enough to sustain a separate award for specific loss under 8(e) where there is a finding of subsequent, intervening accidents to the same part of the body that subsequently resulted in a wage a reduction.
Returning to the course of employment By Noah A. Frank Workers' Compensation Law, November 2011 Employers who have policies regarding personal deviations should enforce those policies. A pattern and practice of discipline demonstrates that policy violation is not tolerated, and that the employee has removed himself from the sphere of employment.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, August 2011 News updates of interest to workers' compensation lawyers, from editor Rich Hannigan.
Summary of workers’ compensation legislation By Darrell Widen Administrative Law, August 2011 A summary of the major provisions of the recently passed Workers' Compensation reform legislation.
The two doctor rule—The genesis of the referral has no bearing on the issue so long as the treating doctor makes the referral By John W. Powers Workers' Compensation Law, August 2011 A look at the recent case of Absolute Cleaning v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Comm’n.
Who has jurisdiction over workers’ compensation fraud? By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, August 2011 Because the petitioner’s case involved questions of fact and not law, the circuit court lacked jurisdiction to hear the fraud complaint and found that the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is the proper jurisdiction.
How to avoid the “penalty box” By Christine M. Ory Workers' Compensation Law, June 2011 Respondents can be tagged for penalties under Sections 19k, 19l and attorneys’ fees under 16 if they do not have justification for delaying or denying benefits. To defeat penalties, respondents must put forth a legitimate dispute.
Interview with Arbitrator Peter O’Malley Workers' Compensation Law, June 2011 An interview between attorney Catherine Mafee Levine and Arbitrator Peter O’Malley.
New limitation applied to recovery of medical payments under Section 8(a) By Arnold G. Rubin and Catherine Krenz Doan Workers' Compensation Law, June 2011 Tower Automotive v. Illinois Workers Compensation Commission is an extremely significant case, and will have a significant impact on those claims for medical benefits prior to February 1, 2006, the effective date of the amendment to Section 8(a) in 2005. 820 ILCS 305/8(a).
Wage differentials: Is it all just speculation? By Carol A. Hartline Workers' Compensation Law, June 2011 A look at the recent case of United Airlines v. Workers' Compensation Comm'n, which addressed what could be allowed in as evidence to determine an 8(d)(1) award.
Warning! Section 12 may be hazardous to your health and not compensable under the Act By William R. Gallagher Workers' Compensation Law, June 2011 The recent case of Menard v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission appears to determine that an injury in connection with a Section 12 examination is not compensable. However, a careful reading of that case indicates that it may not be the final adjudication of this issue.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, February 2011 An introduction to the issue from Editor Richard D. Hannigan.
Jeffrey Cox v. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission By Rita E. Mulcahy Workers' Compensation Law, February 2011 The First District Appellate Court ruled that an injury that occurs while a traveling employee, driving a company vehicle, is in the process of returning to his route home arises out of and in the course of employment.
Workers’ Compensation Reform in the December 2010 veto session By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, February 2011 A summary of the recent discussions within the Illinois House and Senate Committee meetings on Workers' Compensation Reform.
10/14/10 interview with Arbitrator Robert Lammie By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 A little insight into Arbitrator Lammie.
Alleviating the “headache” of the permanent total disability case By Michelle L. LaFayette Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 An overview of the permanent total disability claim and applicable legal standards.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 What's new in workers' compensation law.
John Adams. Who is he and why should I get to know him? By Richard D. Hannigan Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 John Adams is the person behind the minimum continuing legal education seminars that are presented by the ISBA twice a year.
Peter Corti reports on certification/specialization of workers’ compensation attorneys By Peter Corti and Brad E. Bleakney Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 The Workers' Compensation Section's notes on the status of the issue of certification of a workers’ compensation attorney verses a designation by the ISBA that an attorney “specializes” in workers’ compensation.
A procedural look at the exclusive remedy defense By Kingshuk K. Roy Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 A brief overview of the exclusive remedy defense and examination of its procedural application in light of Reed v. White.
Recruits who are injured while training to become Chicago police officers are entitled to benefits under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act By T. Fritz Levenhagen Workers' Compensation Law, December 2010 A review of the Dodaro v. Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission case.
Appeals from the Commission to the Circuit Court—A potential procedural minefield By William R. Gallagher and Harry J. Nichols Workers' Compensation Law, September 2010 The Esquivel v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission decision teaches that when an appeal is taken from the Commission to the Circuit Court you must make absolutely certain that you (1) tender payment of the probable cost of the record to the Commission and (2) file either the receipt or the affidavit of payment with the Circuit Court at the time you file the request for summons.