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Workers’ Compensation Law
The newsletter of the ISBA’s Section on Workers’ Compensation Law

Browse articles by year: 2018 (22) 2017 (34) 2016 (22) 2015 (29) 2014 (29) 2013 (29) 2012 (21) 2011 (21) 2010 (25) 2009 (28) 2008 (28) 2007 (26) 2006 (36) 2005 (21) 2004 (25) 2003 (29) 2002 (19) 2001 (12) 2000 (16) 1999 (13)

Newsletter Articles From 2018

An analysis of In re Estate of Arnold Rexroad Sr. By Michelle D. Porro September 2018 The appellate court looked at whether a workers’ compensation carrier's misconduct can result in a forfeiture of their right to recovery under Section 5(b) of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act in In re Estate of Arnold Rexroad Sr.
Appellate court determines when nine percent judgment interest can and cannot be awarded By Sandra K. Loeb July 2018 The appellate court determined that the proper interest rate to use for calculation of a final payment of a Commission award after judicial review proceedings is the interest rate set forth in the arbitrator’s decision in Dobbs Tire & Auto v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.
Appellate court refuses to find rain-soaked pavement a hazardous condition and denies petitioner benefits using a neutral risk analysis By Guy R. Spayth, Jr January 2018 As the court pointed out in Barbara J. Dukich v. IWCC, an employer cannot ordinarily be held liable to pay compensation for injuries caused by forces of nature which they cannot reasonably foresee or guard against, where the Petitioner is no more subject to injury from these forces than others.
Attorney fees and quantum meruit By Erin M. Sievers May 2018 The appellate court's recent decision in Abel Ponce v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission addresses the apportioning of attorneys’ fees between a law firm originally hired by the claimant and the successor law firm.
Commission interpretations of medical issues in the absence of an expert opinion By Richard D. Hannigan May 2018 The appellate court on numerous occasions has indicated that it will rely on the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission’s expertise when it comes to medical issues. However, the Commission may not interpret an MRI when that interpretation is not supported by a medical expert's opinion.
Consequence of accepting a ride to work from co-employee By Erin M. Sievers January 2018 Peng v. Nardi, et. al. is a case in which the Court addresses the exclusive remedy provision of the Workers’ Compensation Act.
The difference between causal connection and maximum medical improvement By Stephen G. Baime May 2018 The appellate court's decision in Tequila Smith vs. Illinois Workers' Compensation Comm'n explains how to apply the rule of law to the facts when considering causal connection and maximum medical improvement.
The dreaded intervening act By Michael Rom September 2018 Gina Catalanello v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission provides a good primer on how to both defend against claims of intervening acts and what is needed to pursue them as a defense.
Editor’s note By Richard D. Hannigan September 2018 An introduction to the issue from the newsletter editor, Richard D. Hannigan.
Editor’s note By Richard D. Hannigan July 2018 An introduction to the issue from Rich Hannigan.
Editor’s note By Richard D. Hannigan May 2018 An introduction to the issue from Rich Hannigan.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan January 2018 An introduction to the issue from Editor Rich Hannigan.
Legislative update By Michael Rom September 2018 A summary of SB 1737 and SB 904, both of which were amendatorily vetoed by Governor Bruce Rauner last month.
Negotiated rates and third-party carriers By Markham M. Jeep and Graham J. Jeep May 2018 The appellate court ruled in Perez v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission that the negotiated rate — the calculation of a dollar amount owed for medical services — is not limited to a rate negotiated by the employer or the employer’s insurance carrier. 
Overturning factual findings and the stringent manifest weight of the evidence standard By Brent Eames May 2018 Once a factual determination is made by the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission, obtaining a reversal is an uphill battle.
Petition for review must explicitly refer to corrected decision of arbitrator to perfect review after correction of clerical error By Patrick C. Anderson January 2018 The appellate court’s recent decision in Eddards v. Ill. Workers’ Comp. Comm’n reinforces the need for practitioners to exercise care when filing a petition for review of an arbitrator’s decision in the Commission, particularly where a corrected decision is involved
Proving a wage loss differential By Monica J. Kiehl May 2018 Sysco Food Service of Chicago v. Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission underscores not only how much deference the circuit court is required to give the Commission’s determination regarding factual findings,  but also how difficult it is to overcome the manifest weight of the evidence standard.
Rule 23 Order reverses Commission, gives primer on neutral risk analysis By Gina Panepinto July 2018 The reversal of the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission's decision in Nadine Rund v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission shows that injuries arising out of neutral risks, if performed in the course of employment more frequently than the general public, do arise out of employment and are compensable.
Section 5(b) liens will not be deemed waived in third party actions absent very specific contractual language between the parties By Dennis S. O’Brien September 2018 In Timothy Cooley v. Power Construction Company, LLC, the court ruled that absent clear and specific language in an agreement involving defense and indemnification of general contractors by sub-contractors stating that an employer’s Section 5(b) workers’ compensation lien is waived, the lien will not be deemed waived.
What is a petitioner’s burden when it comes to causal connection? By Anita M. DeCarlo July 2018 Rechenberg v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission emphasizes the petitioner’s burden to prove a causal relationship that is more probable than not.
When FCEs bite back: The role of corroborative evidence in FCE findings By Timothy J. O’Gorman July 2018 The appellate court affirmed the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission's findings in Village of Lake Zurich v. Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission.
When is concurrent employment – “gainful employment” for the purposes of Section 10 calculations? By Lawrence A. Scordino January 2018 The Appellate Court recently addressed the issue of concurrent employment and the computation of a claimant’s average weekly wage under Section 10 of the Act, in the case of Bagwell v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Comm’n.