Workers’ compensation insurance companies often do not make it easy to recover payment for medical bills and other costs after your work injury, and yet these companies sometimes claim they have overpaid for a workers’ compensation claim. If you are facing an employer’s or worker’s compensation insurer’s claim of overpayment, you may have legal options available to you. The seasoned Wheaton and Schaumburg workers’ compensation attorneys at Therman Law Offices have successfully resolved cases involving overpayment claims, and can potentially apply our knowledge to your case.Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ compensation is an insurance program required under state law that provides benefits to employees who are hurt in the scope and course of employment. Employers are required to pay the entire premium for workers’ compensation insurance, and it is completely free for employees. In fact, it is illegal for an employer to ask workers to pay for the premiums.
Under the Illinois workers’ compensation program, if you are hurt on the job, your employer’s workers’ compensation coverage pays for your medical bills, lost wages, an award based on the level of your permanent disability, and other benefits. For example, if you slip and fall at work or hurt yourself due to a defective machine, your injury will be covered by workers’ compensation. When workers are killed on their job, their surviving family members may be entitled to collect death benefits.
A worker should report even seemingly minor injuries because, often times, many serious medical conditions develop from injuries that initially seem minor. Thus, you should report all injuries and accidents regardless of how big or small. Generally speaking, your commute to and from work is not covered by workers’ compensation, though there are some exceptions.Notice Requirements
The Illinois workers’ compensation law requires that you give notice to your employer within 45 days of the date of the accident, although it is generally best to report the injury as soon as you can. Notice may be provided to the employer either verbally or in writing. In the cases of an occupational illness, you must inform your employer as soon as it is practically possible after you become aware of the condition. It is important to note that an injured worker needs to inform a manager or supervisor of the injury, and not a co-worker.Overpayment of Benefits
An overpayment of benefits occurs when the employer or insurance company has made benefit payments that have exceeded its legal obligation. Under Illinois law, employers are eligible to receive credits when they have overpaid benefits to workers who are hurt on the job. Put another way, when there has been an overpayment, the employer or insurance company is relieved of the obligation to make payments until the overpayment is rectified.
Just because the insurance company says you must repay the entire overpayment does not mean the insurance company actually has the right to recover the entire overpayment amount. However, failing to get legal help in a timely manner could result in the insurance company recouping the entire amount through withholding benefits. The plan administrator is in the advantageous position in these cases, and can simply stop paying you to recover the claimed overpayment.
In some cases, employers or insurance companies may even ask an injured worker to reimburse monies through a personal check. However, an overpayment should be corrected by a reduction of future payments rather than through reimbursement payments made by personal check. Our attorneys will thoroughly examine the facts of your case and help you understand your rights and options.Trusted Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Wheaton and Schaumburg
If you have received notice stating that there has been an overpayment in your worker’s compensation case, there should be a sense of urgency to seek help. At Therman Law Offices, our hard-working Wheaton and Schaumburg lawyers can review every detail of your case and help you create a legal strategy accordingly. We proudly take on clients from communities including Bloomingdale, Roselle, Addison, Glendale Heights, Lombard, Carol Stream, Villa Park, and Elmhurst. Contact us for a free consultation, call us at 312-588-1900 or contact us online.