Vocational Rehabilitation for Injured City of Chicago Workers

Attorneys for Employees Hurt On the Job in Chicago

The City of Chicago is self-insured with regard to workers’ compensation benefits. When a city employee suffers on-the-job injuries, the City is supposed to pay for benefits such as medical coverage and disability benefits. In cases involving prolonged disability, the City of Chicago may need to provide vocational rehabilitation to an injured worker under section 8(a) of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. If you have questions about vocational rehabilitation, you can meet with a knowledgeable Chicago workers’ compensation lawyer.

Vocational Rehabilitation for Injured City of Chicago Workers

Work injuries sometimes last a long time. They can cause a worker to be unable to stay at their job. Or they can result in a worker suffering a decrease in his or her wages and ability to make money. The purpose of vocational rehabilitation through workers’ compensation is to put a worker back into an appropriate job after a significant work injury. Once a worker suffers a job-related injury, a worker can get help from a qualified professional to assist them with returning to the workforce. Workers are supposed to take steps to try to get a job, and show that they’re not able to get a job in light of their physical limitations. It is also important to get a medical opinion by a treating doctor or health care provider clarifying that you have long-term work restrictions.

You are entitled to vocational rehabilitation if you suffer a job-related injury that causes a reduction in your earning power, and there’s proof that rehabilitation would increase your earning capacity. There isn’t a specific rigid standard to decide when or what kind of vocational rehabilitation services should be provided to you. Where the insurer doesn’t agree that you should receive these benefits, the decision to provide them goes to an arbitrator. A work injury lawyer can assist you with proceedings of this nature.

Usually employers argue that an employee needs to first take steps in good faith to get a job and show she can’t get a job within her physical limits in order to obtain vocational rehabilitation services. For example, you may need to show that your job search was unsuccessful. You will likely need to show that participating in a particular vocational rehabilitation program will result in you being placed successfully in a job. You’ll likely also need to show that your economic capacity will be greater due to your participation in rehabilitation, or that you’ve not tried rehabilitation before. You might need to present evidence from a vocational rehabilitation expert to show that you need vocational rehabilitation if you’re not able to show that you conducted a job search in good faith.

Vocational Rehabilitation Services

Vocational rehabilitation services for injured City of Chicago workers start out with an assessment of your expectations and skills, as well as your medical care and limitations. The vocational rehabilitation service provider will then develop a plan specific to your needs. You may be able to ask for education or training to do a different job. Other specific services can include counseling, job searches, job modification, and job placement. Benefits may also include coverage for room and board, as well as travel costs for vocational rehabilitation. The effort to put a worker in a new job is an important aspect of vocational rehabilitation, as this is not a cost that should be borne alone by a worker who has been injured on the job. However, it is important for injured workers to cooperate with the program and try to get back to a job. If you don’t comply with rehabilitation, your benefits may be reduced or terminated.

Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Serving Chicago

If you have questions about vocational rehabilitation for injured City of Chicago workers, you can talk to a workers’ compensation attorney. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Eagle, Johnson & Bareck, we represent workers in Quincy, Rockford, Champaign, and Aurora, along with Kane, Sangamon, Winnebago, Cook, and Adams Counties. Call us at 800-444-1525 or at 312-263-6330 or by completing our online form.