Lump Sum Settlements
Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Representing Employees in Wheaton and Schaumburg
If you have been hurt in an accident at your workplace, even if it exacerbated a pre-existing condition, you may be able to recover compensation for your harm. At Therman Law Offices, our Wheaton and Schaumburg workers’ compensation attorneys understand the nuances of this area of law and can put our knowledge to use in your case. Sometimes a lump sum settlement is a good solution for an injured worker, but it may not always be right for a victim’s circumstances. We can help you determine whether a lump sum settlement is right for you or whether you would be better served by receiving periodic payments.
Evaluating a Lump Sum Settlement
Illinois law sets forth a remedy for workers who are injured on the job or sustain a job-related illness. Under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, injured employees have a legal right to seek benefits through their employer. The system is comprised of an insurance policy that is paid wholly by the employer and is free for the employee. Workers’ compensation is an “exclusive remedy,” meaning that a worker who is injured on the job generally cannot sue the employer.
Depending on the severity and nature of the injury or illness, the employee may be entitled to a number of benefits, such as medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, and different types of disability. An injured worker can seek temporary total disability (TTD) benefits if they are unable to work; temporary partial disability (TPD) while they are recovering but are able to perform light work for decreased pay; permanent partial disability (PPD) if they have a permanent disability but can still work; and permanent total disability (PTD) if they are completely unable to work.
In certain situations, although not all, a lump sum settlement may be in the injured worker’s best interest. Lump sum settlements pay injured workers in a single payment as opposed to payments made in installments over time. According to the Workers’ Compensation Act, however, other rights may be waived if a worker accepts a lump sum settlement. In fact, employers and their insurance carriers often aim to offer a lump sum settlement because it usually terminates any further payments to the employee for their injury and can cost less in the long term. This is why it is critical to read and understand a settlement contract properly, since the employee usually will not be able to pursue medical expenses or cash payments after accepting such a settlement.
There are pros and cons to accepting a lump sum settlement that should be considered. For example, in some cases, an employee may risk not recovering any benefits or fewer benefits than the settlement amount if the claim is disputed, in which case accepting the settlement would be beneficial. This can happen in cases in which it is difficult to establish that the injury or illness was caused on the job. On the other hand, a possible downside of accepting a lump sum settlement is that the injured party would no longer be able to obtain additional medical benefits even if their condition worsens or transitions from a temporary total to a permanent total disability.
Seek Assistance from an Attorney in Wheaton or Schaumburg Following an Accident on the Job
Whenever a lump sum settlement is offered to you to cover an on-the-job injury or illness, you need to consider all of your options carefully before making a decision. At Therman Law Offices, our attorneys understand the value of such cases and can help you determine whether the settlement offered is fair. You can rest assured that we will explore the facts of your case and advise you accordingly. These matters can be complex, and having a capable attorney on your side can make all of the difference in your case. We represent victims in communities such as Schaumburg, Wheaton, Norwood Park, Edison Park, Harwood Heights, Norridge, Elmwood Park, Park Ridge, Des Plaines, Rosemont, Elk Grove Village, and Mt. Prospect. For more information, feel free to call us at 312-588-1900 or contact us online.