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Injured at work? The clock is ticking

In several articles on our website, we discuss the fact that workers' compensation laws in Illinois have undergone some big changes in recent years and more could be on the way. In one article, which can be read by clicking here, we discuss certain Senate- and House-proposed measure that could limit the amount of benefits available and who is eligible for workers' compensation benefits.

One thing that remains the same, however, is the fact that workers have certain deadlines that must be met in order to qualify for benefits. 

For example, injured workers have a small window of time to notify an employer of an injury. According to the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act, such incidents should be reported as soon as possible, but more specifically, notification must be given no later than 45 days after an injury has been suffered, though there are certain exceptions.

Workers then have three years after an accident to file a claim. However, if a person has been receiving compensation for the injury, he or she only has two years following the last payment date to file a claim with the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission. 

If an initial claim for compensation is denied, an appeal can be filed for a review of that decision. A motion for an appeal must be filed within 20 of receiving notice of the denied claim.

There are also several legal deadlines that must be met in regards to filing certain motions and submitting paperwork that can affect whether a person is eligible for benefits.

Of course there are extenuating circumstances and exceptions to these deadlines based on several factors, but what readers should take away from this post is that it can be crucial to act swiftly after a work-related injury has been suffered. Discussing specific claims and circumstances with an attorney can help workers understand what they need to do -- and when it needs to be done -- in order to pursue benefits.

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