Chicago Medical Expenses Lawyers
Trust an Experienced Chicago Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If you’ve been injured, did you know that you may be eligible for payment for necessary medical expenses? Our capable Chicago Workers' Compensation lawyers can walk you through the legal details involved with your medical bills and expenses.
With decades of collective experience, our team has the knowledge and resources to devote to your case. We take the time to develop a personal relationship with each and every one of our clients. Since 1995, we have obtained more than $500 million in Workers' Compensation trial awards and settlements.
Section 8(a) of the IL Workers’ Compensation Act
Section 8(a) of the Illinois Workers' Compensation act governs the payment of causally related reasonable and necessary medical expenses. This benefit allows the injured worker to seek treatment from two doctors independent of any referrals from one another as well as doctors or therapists in the chain of referral from these two doctors.
The treatment must be reasonable and necessary and aid in the injured worker's recovery. It cannot be excessive or unrelated to the injured worker's injury.
Amendments to the Act Governing Medical Expenses
New amendments to the Act give the employer 30 days to respond to a written demand for payment of medical bills by the injured worker or his attorney. The injured worker should conduct a thorough investigation to determine if any unpaid charges remain once his or her treatment is completed.
Failure to do so could lead to unpaid bills arising months or years following the settlement or trial of a claim. If this is the case the injured worker could find himself/herself liable for these charges.
Let Leonard Law Group Handle Your Case!
Leonard Law Group will conduct a thorough search with all providers to make sure all charges are paid prior to settlement of your claim. Please note, with the amendments to the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act that took effect June 28, 2011, the employee no longer has two choices of medical providers if the employer has a preferred provider program in place on the date of the employee's injury.
Begin a free second opinion case review by contacting Chicago our firm today!
Medical Expenses FAQ
Q: Are prescriptions covered by medical benefits?
A: Any medical treatment or care that is required to help you recover from your work-related injury should be fully covered by Workers’ Compensation insurance, including prescription costs. If for whatever reason you have to pay for a prescription when picking it up, which has been known to happen due to insurance mix-ups, then you should be able to request reimbursement for what you paid.
Q: Do you have to pay copay costs when visiting the doctor for a work injury?
A: You are probably used to paying copay whenever you see the doctor. However, if you are going to a doctor’s appointment that has been scheduled to treat your work injury, then there should be no copay cost that comes out of your pocket. The insurance company or your employer should have already arranged to have all costs fully covered before you arrive, including copays.
Q: Is it true you can get reimbursed for healthcare-related travel costs?
A: Yes, you can be reimbursed for fuel costs spent to travel to doctor’s appointments to treat your work injury. The current reimbursement rate in Illinois is 56 centers per mile driven (circa 2021). This amount can change each year depending on aggregate expenditure data collected and analyzed by the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, though.
Q: How far can you be required to drive to see the doctor?
A: When you are seeing a doctor for your work injury and that has been selected by your employer or their insurance provider, you should not have to travel too far. The medical provider should be the nearest one to you who can treat your injuries. If you have to travel outside of your hometown, then it should be a “reasonable” amount.
Also, all travel requirements should acknowledge and accommodate your work injury and any limitations it might have created. For example, you might be unable to drive yourself to the doctor if you suffered a back injury, so the insurance provider should arrange for an ambulette to take you to and from appointments as necessary.
Q: Do you get more Workers’ Compensationif your injury worsens months or years later?
A: It is important to realize that Workers’ Compensation benefits are not set in stone once they are decided and provided. If your work injury worsens with time and you need additional medical care, then it should be provided through your Workers’ Compensation insurance benefits, too.
You will likely need to go through further medical evaluations before new or expanded benefits are improved, though. You could also run into serious trouble if it is uncovered that you did not follow your doctor’s orders as well as you could have, which might have worsened your injury.
Q: Can you get medical treatment coverage if you didn’t see the doctor right away?
A: Yes, you can still file for Workers’ Compensation and all of its benefits even if you did not immediately go to the doctor after getting hurt at work. Typically, you have up to 90 days in Illinois to inform your employer that you were hurt while acting in the scope of your employment.
As long as you inform them before that window closes, you should be able to get medical treatments paid by the workers’ comp insurance provider. But if you wait too long, then your case could be denied outright.