Second Injury While on Crutches
Workers’ compensation provides a remedy for employees who have suffered a job-related injury. The aftermath of a workplace accident may pose financial and psychological stress, since both the injured individual and their family may face mounting medical costs and missed wages from work. Most workers may seek and receive workers’ compensation benefits under Illinois law. When workers suffer a second injury while recovering, they may be covered for the second injury as well. Proving causation and connecting the second injury to the primary, work-related accident is critical. At Katz, Friedman, Eagle, Eisenstein, Johnson & Bareck, our Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers help injured employees understand their legal rights. As litigators and skilled negotiators, we are capable of presenting strong claims while our clients focus on the healing process.Pursuing Benefits for a Second Injury While on Crutches
Benefits for injuries sustained on the job are provided by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. When a worker is recovering from an injury and on crutches, a second injury may also be covered. The focus of the legal inquiry is whether the second injury was connected to or caused by the first injury.
The Workers’ Compensation Commission and the Illinois Appellate Court have ruled that a second injury while on crutches may be compensable. When a worker is injured and, “but for” the first injury, would not have been on crutches, the second accident was a natural consequence flowing from the first accident. For example, if an employee uses crutches after injuring his leg at work and then slips and falls on crutches outside the doctor’s office on a follow-up visit, he may be able to recover workers’ compensation benefits for this second injury.
To prove that a secondary injury on crutches was connected to or caused by the first injury, an injured employee must present medical documentation and records, as well as clear details on the advised treatment for the initial injury. The complexity in proving that the second injury was due to the earlier workplace accident is not only that the second accident may not have occurred on the employer's premises but also that an employer or its insurance company may argue that there is no connection between the two injuries.
The policy behind workers’ compensation benefits serves to protect and help injured workers who are returning to the workforce following a job-related injury. Crutches are one method used to treat workplace injuries, and when an injured employee on crutches suffers another injury, this prolongs their treatment and may delay their return to the workforce. If an injured worker suffers another injury during their treatment, they may recover for the entire injury sustained.Contact a Knowledgeable Workers’ Compensation Lawyer in Chicago
A second injury while on crutches should not negatively affect your benefits for the original injury, and it may lead to additional compensation. The nuances within the workers’ compensation system may be confusing, and while the main goal of workers’ compensation is to help employees heal and return to the job, the reality is that insurance companies often attempt to deny benefits. At Katz, Friedman, Eagle, Eisenstein, Johnson & Bareck, our Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys are experienced in focusing on the details of each situation and presenting a strong case for benefits. We can represent people who need a job injury attorney in Aurora, Champaign, Rockford, Springfield, Quincy, and other areas of Winnebago, Cook, Cane, Sangamon, and Adams Counties. Contact us for a complimentary, no-obligation consultation online or by calling (800) 444-1515.