COVID-19 Update: How We Are Serving and Protecting Our Clients

Common Injuries in the Airline Industry

Chicago Lawyers for Workers’ Compensation Claims

Airline workers may be employed as baggage handlers, flight attendants, receptionists, and pilots, among other positions. There are many ways airline workers can be injured on the job, depending on their particular duties and titles. Injuries may be the result of ever-present hazards, but they can also be the result of wholly unexpected accidents. If you have suffered any of the common injuries that can occur in the airline industry, you may be able to recover benefits. Sometimes valid workers’ compensation claims are denied. It’s important to consult an experienced Chicago workers’ compensation attorney if you have questions about your claim.

Common Injuries in the Airline Industry

Different injuries are common to airline workers depending on what they do for the airline. For example, flight attendants may sustain neck, back, and spinal injuries due to hard seats, turbulence, or lifting heavy baggage. Sometimes baggage needs to be lifted into an overhead bin, and this can cause muscle strain.

Similarly, baggage handlers do a significant amount of lifting. They may experience shoulder and back pain due to these repetitive, strenuous motions. Sometimes vehicles are out on the runway, and a baggage handler could be involved in a vehicle accident that results in paralysis, broken bones, amputations, bruises, lacerations, or disfigurement.

Airline office staff may suffer repetitive stress injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome, muscle and joint aches, and other strains and sprains. Eye strain and headaches are also common injuries for office staff. If an office worker has a pre-existing condition such as a herniated disc, this may be exacerbated due to extended periods of time spent hunched over a desk or lifting boxes or other items in the office.

Ground service workers may also suffer serious injuries while performing janitorial work. There may be a slip and fall that causes broken bones or fractures, bruises, or contusions. Clearing debris from the runway might result in cuts or wounds. Like baggage handlers, ground service workers may be injured in vehicle accidents on the runway.

Workers’ Compensation Benefits

In Illinois, you may obtain a range of workers’ compensation benefits if you are injured as an airline industry worker, and a dedicated work injury lawyer can help you pursue them. These benefits can include any reasonable medical care that is needed to treat or relieve the impact of your injury. What constitutes reasonable medical care depends on the circumstances. Sometimes insurers do not agree with a treating provider about what reasonable care would be for a particular injury. You may be asked to undergo an independent medical exam (IME) in order for the workers’ compensation insurer to assess the extent of your medical needs.

Other benefits to which you may be entitled include temporary total or partial disability benefits, permanent partial or total disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation. For example, if you sustain a fracture because you are a flight attendant who falls during turbulence, you may be able to obtain temporary total disability benefits. Temporary disability benefits can be paid at a rate of 66 2/3% of your average weekly wage up to the state maximum. These benefits will only be paid once you miss three days of work. However, if you miss more than 14 days of work, the first three days you missed will be retroactively paid.

On the other hand, if you suffered a traumatic brain injury, which is not a common injury in the airline industry, and can no longer work in your job, you might be able to obtain permanent total disability benefits. Permanent disability benefits may be paid according to a schedule of injuries or by looking at 66 2/3% of the difference in your wages before and after you were injured.

Scars and disfigurement are also common after a serious accident in the airline industry. If you suffer disfigurement, you may be able to obtain 162 weeks of benefits at a rate of 60% of the average weekly wage.

If your loved one died as a result of an airline industry accident, you might be able to obtain death benefits.

Workers’ Compensation Attorneys for Chicago Airline Employees

If you have suffered one of the more common injuries that can happen in the airline industry in Chicago, you may be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits that could be important to your well-being. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck and Bertuca, our seasoned workers’ compensation lawyers can represent those disabled in Quincy, Champaign, Aurora, and Rockford, as well as throughout Kane, Sangamon, Adams, Winnebago, and Cook Counties. Contact us at 312-263-6330 or 800-444-1525 or via our online form.