Workers across all industries in Illinois are entitled to claim insurance benefits to help them cope with the financial consequences of a work-related injury. Workers' compensation is a no-fault system that does not typically focus on who was to blame for an injury. Employees are generally barred from suing their employers for a workplace injury, though exceptions are made when evidence suggests an employer's gross negligence caused on-the-job injuries.
This does not mean that all claims for workers' compensation benefits will be successful. It is not uncommon for business owners or insurers to attempt to avoid paying by rejecting benefits claims. Even if a worker's own negligence or error caused the circumstances that led to an injury, he or she would typically be entitled to compensation. This also applies to an occupational injury that is work-related.
However, circumstances that could disqualify an employee from receiving benefits include being under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the workplace accident. Also, if horse-play or fighting caused an injury during working hours, an employer might reject the benefits claim. Any injuries that resulted from non-work-related activities could also result in denied benefits.
Following the correct procedures may prevent the rejection of workers' compensation benefits claims, and this starts with reporting the injury to an employer or supervisor as soon as possible. An experienced Illinois attorney can provide the necessary guidance and support with the legal and administrative procedures of filing benefits claims. He or she can also navigate the complicated appeals process in the event of the initial rejection of a workers' compensation benefits claim.
Source: FindLaw, "Can You Still Get Workers' Comp If You Were at Fault?", Brett Snider, Accessed on Jan. 19, 2018