Workers’ Compensation Hearings for Amazon Workers
Amazon employees are involved in many different kinds of activities from programming and corporate work to stocking, picking, and packing at fulfillment centers. The hectic pace at which Amazon workers must fulfill their quotas, particularly in fulfillment centers, can lead to serious injuries. Although the pay and benefits can be good at Amazon, speed may take precedence over safety. Illinois employees are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for work-related injuries. Unfortunately, insurers may deny valid claims. You may need to request a hearing before the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. If you have questions about workers’ compensation hearings for Amazon workers, you should ask the seasoned Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys at Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca.Job-Related Injuries at Amazon
There many ways in which Amazon workers can be injured. As a programmer, for instance, you may suffer a repetitive stress injury from spending long hours at a desk. If you work in a fulfillment center, you may experience an acute injury while working alongside robots trying to quickly sort and transport packages. The Illinois workers’ compensation system is a no-fault system of benefits. Under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, you’re allowed to obtain benefits, including partial wage replacement and medical care, if you sustained a job-related injury, whether it’s a minor repetitive stress injury or a catastrophic injury like paralysis. You are entitled to benefits as soon as you start the job.Workers’ Compensation Hearings for Amazon Workers
In order to obtain benefits under the workers’ compensation law, you’ll need to show it’s more likely than not the injury happened in the course of your employment and arose out of your employment with Amazon. If Amazon’s insurer denies your claim, it should provide you with a written explanation of the reason for the denial. Denials are often issued because notice was untimely or because an employer or insurer believes the injury wasn’t work-related, doesn’t require the treatment that’s being requested, or doesn’t require time off work.
You can file an Application for Adjustment of Claim with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission even if you are receiving benefits. This will allow you to obtain a hearing more quickly if your benefits are unexpectedly terminated. If you receive a denial but don’t have an application on file, you’ll need to file one before you can request a hearing.
Once the application is filed, an arbitrator will be assigned to your case. Your case will come up for routine status hearings every 60 days until you request a hearing because you have a dispute with the insurer.
An arbitrator will serve as a judge for your dispute with the insurer. Several different arbitrators hear cases that arise in Chicago. Other arbitrators are assigned depending on where the claim is filed in Illinois.
Hearings can be held to determine whether you’re entitled to medical benefits at all. For instance, they may need to be conducted because Amazon and its insurer dispute that your injuries are work-related. However, hearings can also be held to determine discrete issues such as whether surgery is reasonable and necessary or whether you’re entitled to permanent total disability benefits.
You may be asked to testify as to what caused your injuries and what limitations you face. Both you and the insurer will need to present medical evidence for your positions. Evidence can consist of medical records, live testimony or depositions. If there’s a disagreement about medical issues, the arbitrator will determine which position is more credible.Immediate Hearing
You may be able to request an immediate hearing under Section 19(b) for certain issues such as a sudden termination of benefits. A petition for immediate hearing may be filed in connection with medical bills, temporary total disability benefits, or a denial issued because Amazon’s insurer believes your injuries are not work-related. The 19(b) process expedites the process of getting a decision about benefits.Hire a Seasoned Chicago Lawyer
Many Amazon workers struggle after a job-related injury. When you need to fight an unfair denial of your claim, having an experienced attorney by your side can help protect your rights during workers’ compensation hearings for Amazon workers. The lawyers of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca handle the claims of injured Amazon workers in Quincy, Aurora, Champaign, and Rockford. We also represent Amazon workers in Winnebago, Cook, Adams, Sangamon, and Kane Counties. Call us at 800-444-1525 or 312-263-6330 or complete our online form.