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DuPage Workers’ Compensation – Wheaton Industrial Commission

DuPage Workers’ Compensation – Wheaton Industrial Commission

If you are injured on the job in DuPage County and you have trouble getting your benefits, you do not file a lawsuit. Instead, you file a claim with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission in Wheaton.

The commission has many locations throughout the state. Your claim is assigned to the location closest to the site of the injury. If you suffer a work-related injury in DuPage County, your claim will be assigned to an arbitrator at the DuPage County Government Center in Wheaton, located at 421 N. County Farm Road, 1-500A JTK Bldg. If you are injured out of state, your claim will be assigned to the location closest to your home. So if you are injured in Indiana, but you live in DuPage County, your case will still be assigned to the government center in Wheaton.

You should file a claim with the Commission as soon as possible after an injury. There are strict time limits on notifying your employer and filing claims in these cases. It is important not to miss the deadline because you may lose your only chance to file a claim. The time limit for filing a claim is generally three years from the date of the injury, but be sure to check with an experienced attorney.

Your claim will be assigned to an arbitrator in Wheaton. Once every two months your case will be up for review by the arbitrator. These are called status hearings, where both parties and their attorneys appear before the arbitrator to discuss the status of the case. This process goes on until there is either a settlement or a trial. A trial can be requested by either side during a status hearing.

If the case goes on for too long without progress – generally three years – the arbitrator can dismiss the claim. The arbitrators are very busy, with possibly a thousand cases or more, so it is your responsibility, and your attorney’s, to move the case forward and take action when there is a problem.

If the parties reach a settlement, the arbitrator must approve it before it becomes final. If there is a trial, the arbitrator will make a decision within 60 days after the trial ends. The process may take a couple of years. However, emergency hearings are available in certain situations, such as when medical payments or lost time are involved.

The commission is neutral, just like a court, so I recommend hiring an attorney to fight for you. I believe you will get the best results with an attorney who specializes in work injuries, who appears before the DuPage County arbitrators regularly, and who is respected by the insurance companies.

There are attorneys all over the state who take work injury cases. However, the majority of attorneys who specialize exclusively in work injuries are located in Chicago. In fact, if you go to the Workers’ Compensation Commission in Wheaton, approximately 90% of the attorneys you will see are not DuPage work injury lawyers, but rather based out of Chicago. This is unlike other areas of law such as divorce and criminal defense.

Lawyer fees in Illinois work injury cases are limited to 20% of what you recover, but that usually excludes recovery for medical bills or your time off of work. That means that you won’t pay for travel costs for hiring an attorney to represent you.