Can engineer living in Indiana & injured in Missouri obtain Illinois Workers Compensation?

The workers compensation lawyers at Lipkin & Apter represented a 45 year old Field Service Engineer and resident of Northeast Indiana who came to us with a history of back problems, having undergone spinal fusion surgery when he was 24 years old. While installing a motor weighing 250 pounds at a customer’s plant in St. Louis, Missouri, our client suffered an aggravation of his old back problem when the forklift supporting the motor jerked suddenly and caused our client to bear the weight of the motor in his lower back. His injuries required a second spinal fusion.

Our client began working for his present employer approximately 16 months earlier and though experiencing occasional periods of back pain, sought no medical treatment and took no time off from work. As a result of the second spinal fusion our client incurred medical bills of more than $83,000. The employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance company denied the claim, citing the client’s previous history of back problems and the unclear circumstances of the accident. Our client was left with no income and a disabling back condition that prevented him from earning a living and supporting his wife and three children.

After investigating the facts of the accident, the personal injury attorneys of Lipkin & Apter went to St. Louis and deposed two co-workers. We then had in-depth discussions with our client’s neurosurgeon, a resident of Northeast Indiana, about the circumstances of his accident and his back injury. We obtained a favorable medical report from the neurosurgeon, in which she stated that our client’s work accident was a contributing cause to the fusion surgery she performed. Under the law, an on-the-job-accident does not have to be the sole (or even primary) cause of injury so long as it plays some role in causing injury.

Because our client had no income and was desperate for earnings, Lipkin & Apter brought an emergency petition for trial to determine whether or not he was entitled to the benefits provided by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. The employer tried to transfer the case to Missouri from Illinois, claiming that the trial should occur in the state where the accident occurred. The Court agreed with us that the case should remain in Illinois.

Our client worked for a company based in Schaumburg, Illinois at the time of the occurrence and received his work instructions from his employer at the Schaumburg office.

Successful Resolution: $199,000

On the eve of trial, the employer’s insurance company gave up and offered our client all back pay owed, payment of all medical expenses and the compensation for permanent disability that we had demanded. Our client has returned to his job with his company.

Lipkin & Apter represents clients from all walks of life on their Illinois Workers’ Compensation claims. To determine how our personal injury attorneys may be able to assist you or someone you love, contact us to schedule a free, no-cost-to you, consultation in our offices or by phone.