Injuries Caused by Turbulence
Many workers' compensation insurers for airlines turn down claims for therapy, surgery, and other medical treatment following injuries caused by turbulence. They may argue that a claimant has a pre-existing condition. They may investigate a suspicion that an injury was not in fact caused by turbulence. If you are an airline worker who suffered injuries due to turbulence on a flight, you may be able to obtain workers' compensation benefits. It's supposed to be more straightforward to get benefits through the workers' compensation system than through the civil justice system, but often insurers do deny benefits to those who are entitled to them. Our Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys can help you assert your rights.Injuries Caused by Turbulence
Crewmembers and flight attendants can be harmed by turbulence. Injuries arising out of turbulence may involve a crewmember getting hit by a traveling beverage cart or bags falling as a result of turbulence. If a flight attendant absorbs the blow of a heavy bag and suffers injuries, this keep him or her from working on the next flight.
You may be able to get workers' compensation benefits under the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act (IWCA) if you were injured on a flight you were working and turbulence caused you to be injured. The IWCA permits workers that suffer injuries arising in the course and scope of employment to file a claim for workers' compensation benefits, and a skilled work injury lawyer can help.
Workers' compensation benefits are usually much less than what might be available in a personal injury lawsuit. However, unlike a personal injury lawsuit, you will not need to establish fault to get workers' compensation benefits. What you can recover will not be reduced by the degree to which you were at fault for your own workplace injuries. For example, if you were moving around the cabin when you shouldn't have been and then turbulence knocked you off your feet causing injuries, your benefits are not reduced by the degree to which you were at fault for moving around the cabin when you shouldn't have been so engaged. Instead you are entitled to benefits so long as your injuries are work-related.Workers' Compensation Benefits
If you are able to establish that you have work-related injuries, you can obtain medical coverage for expenses that are reasonably necessary to address your injuries. People disabled by injuries arising out of turbulence may suffer from back, head, shoulder, or other injuries. Your disability may entitle you to different kinds of benefits: temporary partial temporary total, permanent partial or permanent total. Temporary total disability benefits may be appropriate if you are a flight attendant who fractured your ankle during turbulence. On the other hand, if you are hit with baggage containing a bowling ball that causes a traumatic brain injury, you may need permanent total disability benefits.Pre-Existing Conditions
Most accidents that are caused by turbulence are witnessed by many, many people. Even so, some insurers deny claims arising out of injuries caused by turbulence on a flight. For example, if you suffer soft tissue injuries and aggravation of your disc herniation, the insurer may deny the claim by pointing to your pre-existing disc herniation. However, you should be aware that this denial may be invalid. Those who have pre-existing conditions may be eligible for benefits where that condition was exacerbated or triggered by the job. So if you were functional in spite of a herniated disc, and then you fell during turbulence and this aggravated the herniated disc and caused soft tissue injuries, you can potentially still get workers' compensation benefits.Consult an Airline Industry Workers' Compensation Attorney in Chicago
If you are a Chicago airline worker who suffered injuries caused by turbulence, a seasoned workers' compensation lawyer can help you obtain benefits. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca, we represent injured airline workers in Springfield, Rockford, Champaign, Aurora, and Quincy, as well as throughout Cook, Adams, Champaign, Sangamon, Winnebago, and Kane Counties. Call us at 312-263-6330 or toll-free at 800-444-1525, or contact us online to learn more about your rights.