Temporary Total Disability Benefits for Injured UPS Drivers
UPS drivers spend many hours on the road at risk of being injured in a traffic accident. They can also find themselves suffering from injuries caused by lifting and delivering packages. The potential injuries range from minor to severe, and can even be fatal. Minor injuries can make it impossible for a UPS driver to drive or lift packages. It may be necessary to take days off work to rest. Through the Illinois workers’ compensation system, a worker may be able to obtain benefits to help weather these difficulties. If you are concerned about temporary total disability benefits for injured UPS drivers, you should consult the legal team at Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. Our experienced Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers can answer your questions, and go over the facts of your case to help you understand your legal rights and potential next steps.Temporary Total Disability Benefits for Injured UPS Drivers
If you are hurt on the job as an employee of UPS (not as an independent contractor), you are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Among these benefits are medical care, temporary total disability benefits, permanent total disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation.
Temporary total disability benefits are governed by section 8(b) of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. Temporary total disability benefits are meant to compensate an injured worker through a period of temporary disability. You can keep getting payments until you are able to go back to work or until you reach maximum medical improvement.
Maximum medical improvement means you have recovered as much as you are going to recover. This doesn’t necessarily mean you can go back to work. It could mean you are permanently disabled from your work injuries. If you reach maximum medical improvement and you can’t go back to your job, you may be able to get permanent total disability benefits and vocational rehabilitation benefits. In some cases a lump sum settlement of these benefits can be paid instead of a weekly installment payment.
Sometimes injuries result in work restrictions. For example, you may need to stay off your feet if you suffer a herniated disc. As another example, you may need to avoid lifting anything over five pounds. If you have restrictions that prevent you from going back to work or you have restrictions that can’t be accommodated by your employer, you can obtain temporary total disability benefits. Ordinarily you can’t obtain temporary total disability benefits for the first three missed days of work. However, you can obtain benefits for those first three days if you are disabled for 14 days.How Much Are Temporary Total Disability Benefits?
Disability benefits are only a percentage of your income. Temporary total disability benefits are 66 2/3% of your gross average weekly wage earned over the 52 weeks before the injury. This benefit is not taxable. While some workers have easily calculable average weekly wages, others have fluctuating wages, which can make the calculation of benefits more difficult.Obtaining Temporary Total Disability Benefits
You may believe that because your injury was sustained on the job, you will be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits without any trouble. However, workers’ compensation insurers do deny valid claims. In some cases, this is because of lack of access to certain records or because of a disagreement with your treating doctor. If your claim for temporary total disability benefits is denied, or you suspect it will be denied down the road, it’s advisable to retain an experienced attorney to represent you through this process.Third Party Lawsuit
If you were injured in a traffic accident while driving for UPS, and the accident was caused by another, you may be able to obtain damages, including the full amount of your lost wages, through a personal injury lawsuit filed in civil court. In this kind of case you would have to prove negligence on the part of the defendant(s), which involves establishing that the responsible party or parties breached a duty of care that they owed you, causing your injuries and damages.Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Serving Chicago
If you have questions about temporary total disability benefits for injured UPS drivers in Chicago, you should discuss your situation with the seasoned workers’ compensation attorneys of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. We are available to represent UPS drivers with claims for benefits Quincy, Champaign, Aurora and Rockford, along with Winnebago, Kane, Adams, Sangamon, and Cook Counties. Contact us at 312-263-6330 or 800-444-1525 or via our online form.