Injuries on Domestic Flights

Lawyers for Chicago Airline Industry Workers' Compensation Claims

If you suffered injuries on a domestic flight as an airline worker, you may be able to recover benefits through the Illinois workers' compensation system. Although the workers' compensation system was set up to be easier to navigate than the civil justice system, in practice, it can be challenging for workers to obtain their benefits. The skillful Chicago workers' compensation attorneys of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Eagle, Johnson & Bareck may be able to assist you in your pursuit of coverage for medical bills, lost wages, and other amounts.

Injuries on Domestic Flights

The causes of injuries to crew members and flight attendants on domestic flights vary. They may be the result of turbulence, which can throw those crewmembers that aren't wearing seat belts out of their seats. Sometimes injuries are the result of in-flight accidents, such as those involving baggage falling from an overhead compartment or a slip and fall. Sometimes they are the result of a food cart that rolls out of control or that is slammed into passengers' body parts sticking out in the aisle. However, sometimes injuries are the result of a crash or involve a violent passenger. In those cases, injuries may be catastrophic. While injured passengers may be able to sue the airline for their injuries, anybody who is employed by the airline is limited to recovering benefits from the workers' compensation system.

Disability Benefits

Illinois airlines must buy workers' compensation insurance for their employees. Their insurers will need to fund payment of benefits to workers injured on domestic flights. If there is some sort of dispute about your benefits, the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission is supposed to enforce workers' compensation laws and protect your rights.

Workers' compensation benefits to which you may be entitled include reasonable medical care that is needed to address the effects of the injury, whether those involve not being able to work, medical bills, or even the worker’s death. These benefits are not taxable.

One type of benefit is the temporary disability benefit, which is paid at 66 2/3% of a worker's average weekly wage up to a state maximum, which is updated every 6 months. The temporary disability benefits must be paid after you lose 3 days of work due to disability, unless you miss more than 14 days of work. If you miss more than 14 days of work, you can retroactively be paid the first three days on which you lost wages at the same temporary disability rate.

Sometimes injuries are permanently disabling. In that case, you may be able to obtain permanent disability. Permanent disability benefits are paid at a rate of 66 2/3% of the difference in wages from prior to the injury and after the injury. They can also be calculated by using a schedule. Those people who are disfigured in a domestic flight injury can get up to 162 weeks of benefits at a rate of 60% of their average weekly wage.

How to File a Claim

If you suffered injuries on a domestic flight, you should notify your employer and seek medical care. The notification should be in writing and include the place and date of the accident that caused your injuries, and this notification needs to go to a manager or HR within 45 days of the accident. Generally, if you wait longer, it raises doubts about whether the workplace injury happened on the job or at some later time off the job. Delaying notification can result in a delay of benefits or even loss of benefits, except where you suffer an illness that develops slowly, or a repetitive stress injury. An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can assist you with this step if you have any questions.

In order to file a claim with the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission, you would need to provide your employer with an Application for Adjustment of Claim. This needs to be filed within three years of the injuries you suffered on the job, or within two years of receipt of your last compensation payment. There are exceptions to the rule.

Consult an Airline Industry Workers’ Compensation Attorney in Chicago

If you work in the airline industry in Chicago and you were injured on a domestic flight, a seasoned workers’ compensation lawyer can help you with your claim. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Eagle, Johnson & Bareck, we represent injured pilots and other workers in the airline industry in Rockford, Aurora, Springfield, Champaign, and Quincy, as well as Adams, Sangamon, Cook, Champaign, Winnebago, and Kane Counties. Call us at 312-263-6330 or toll-free at 800-444-1525, or contact us online to get started.