Workers’ compensation disfigurement benefits are intended to provide financial relief to employees for scarring or permanent changes in their appearance resulting from injuries sustained while on the job. Determining the extent of disfigurement, as well as any impairment to bodily functions, is crucial for evaluating the eligibility of such benefits.
Workers’ Compensation Disfigurement Benefits in Illinois
According to the Illinois Supreme Court, a scar is considered a permanent disfigurement if it impairs the beauty, symmetry, or appearance of a person or thing. In other words, it renders them unsightly, misshapen, imperfect, or deformed in some way.
For a person to claim disfigurement, the scar must be both permanent and serious. However, the severity of the injury is subjective, and the location of the scar is also a determining factor. Compensation can be for any type of injury, including recovering compensation for conveyor belt injuries if it leads to disfigurement.
How much money do you get for a scar from workers’ compensation? Workers are entitled to a maximum of 162 weeks of benefits. The number of weeks depends on the severity of the injury, which is usually assessed by a doctor, or negotiated with an insurance company. The number of weeks is then multiplied by 60% of the employee’s average weekly wage.
What Is the Evaluation Process for Disfigurement Benefits?
To evaluate disfigurement benefits, the employer’s insurance company negotiates you’re your workers’ compensation attorney six months after the injury. This is to ensure that the scar is permanent, and assess its impact. You should know what kind of information a workers’ compensation lawyer needs for effective negotiation.
The severity, location, and impact on daily activities determine compensation for permanent disability due to scarring and disfigurement. Emotional suffering and raised or keloid scars also affect the amount of compensation awarded, with facial scarring considered the most serious.
Types of Disfigurements Covered by Workers’ Compensation
Under Illinois laws, workers are qualified to receive compensation for any permanent disfigurement or serious scarring they suffer to the following body parts: hands, head, face, neck, arms, legs (below the knee), and chest (above the axillary line). The law does not specify the type of disfigurement or scarring that qualifies for compensation, but common examples include serious scars resulting from burn injuries or lacerations.