Southwest Airlines Workers' Compensation Claims

Job Injury Lawyers Assisting Residents of the Chicago Area

When you go to work on an airplane or in the airport, you do not expect to be injured. Nobody plans to be injured in the workplace, but often people in the aviation industry are exposed to elevated risks. People who are injured on the job in Illinois may be able to obtain workers' compensation benefits. These benefits are critical because they cover medical care, among other things. Medical debt is a leading cause of bankruptcy, so most people find it important to obtain workers' compensation benefits. Unfortunately, some insurers deny claims or partially deny claims for illegitimate reasons. If you believe that you have a claim following an accident on a Southwest Airlines plane or while otherwise working for the airline, you should consult a Chicago Southwest Airlines workers’ compensation lawyer for guidance on your options.

Southwest Airlines Workers' Compensation Claims

Each case has unique nuances. If you believe that an injury that you suffered is related to an earlier work-related injury, you may be able to obtain benefits, but it is crucial to consult a workers' compensation attorney about your situation.

For example, in 2018, a Southwest Airlines worker slipped outside work and was injured. Even though there was a gap between this injury and a work injury involving disc herniation and right leg radiculopathy years earlier, a court ruled that the earlier work injury was a proximate cause of the second injury. The first injury caused him to slip and fall often. In his second slip and fall, another disc was herniated. An administrative board found that the earlier work injury was a legal cause of the second injury, and an appellate court affirmed the decision. Although this decision is being appealed by Southwest, it shows how it is crucial to consider all of the possible sources of compensation after an accident that may be job-related. A Southwest Airlines workers’ compensation attorney at our Chicago firm will give your case the thorough attention that it deserves.

Most people do not have sufficient savings to pay for medical treatment or to take time off from work. Many people do not have health insurance, or they may have a huge deductible. People who cannot work due to an injury may not have money to pay the deductible or copay. When injuries are serious, it may be necessary to undergo surgery and go through physical therapy. You may even need to be retrained to enter another job if the injuries are such that you can no longer work for an airline.

The Illinois workers' compensation system was set up to make it easier for injured workers to obtain benefits. Among the benefits are disability benefits for permanent partial, permanent total, temporary partial, and temporary total disabilities. If you temporarily cannot work at all after suffering a job injury while working for Southwest Airlines, and you qualify to get Illinois workers' compensation benefits, a Chicago Southwest Airlines workers’ compensation attorney should be able to help you get two-thirds of your average weekly wage in benefits checks. These checks should arrive regularly. The average weekly wage is calculated by looking at an injured employee's gross pay over the 52 weeks before being injured and dividing by 52. This is not a simple calculation, however, if your pay varies significantly or includes bonuses or overtime. Additionally, the law sets minimums and maximums for disability pay.

Temporary total disability benefits do not start on the day when you were first injured on the job. Instead, these benefits start only after you have missed three days of work due to your injury. You will only get paid retroactively for the first three days that you missed work after you miss 14 days. Thus, this benefit will not apply to someone who suffers a minor injury and is back to work after a day off. In some cases, employers have light-duty work available, and if that light-duty work pays less than the regular position, you can receive benefits equal to two-thirds of the difference.

Consult a Southwest Airlines Workers’ Compensation Lawyer in Chicago

If you believe that you may have a Southwest Airlines workers' compensation claim, you should consult an experienced work injury attorney. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Eagle, Johnson & Bareck, we represent accident victims in Chicago, Champaign, Quincy, Aurora, Rockford, and Springfield, as well as other areas of Cook, Adams, Sangamon, Champaign, Winnebago, and Kane Counties. Call us at 312-263-6330 or toll-free at 800-444-1525 for a free consultation.