The Ford Motor Company is the second largest car manufacturer in the US. Chicago, Illinois is home to one of their assembly line facilities and Chicago Heights, Illinois is home to one of their stamping facilities. Combined these two plants employ close to 5,000 Illinois workers.
Ford Motor Company is self-insured which means they administer and fund their Workers’ Compensation Insurance. When a Ford employee is injured on-the-job, they are immediately placed at a disadvantage than other Illinois employees because of how Ford handles their workers compensation claims.
All Ford workers’ compensation claims are handled “in-house.” The first doctor an injured employee is forced to see is the Ford plant doctor, even though the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act provides for an employee to be treated by their own doctor. The Ford doctor does not have the injured employee’s best interests at heart. Instead he or she places Ford’s financial interests first. This is done often times by denying treatment to an injured employee, telling the injured employee they aren’t in-fact injured, ignoring the employee’s treating doctor’s orders and denying the injured employee time-off to recuperate from their injuries.
Ford will use intimidation, harassment and will often times threaten to fire employees if they do not return to work even though their doctor’s tell them they should be off work due to their injuries.
Another practice at Ford is to tell an injured employee to apply for short term disability or “Unicare” instead of filing for workers’ compensation benefits. The benefits paid under short term disability are a fraction of what the injured employee should be receiving. Under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, an injured employee, while off from work and under doctor’s care, should be receiving sixty-six percent (66%) of their gross salary.
Due to the unfairness in the way Ford handles their workers’ compensation claims, we believe that every Ford worker who has sustained an injury at work, should immediately retain an aggressive attorney who is experienced in handling workers’ compensation claims against the Ford Motor Company.
For over 40 years we have been representing UAW workers and Ford employees throughout the State of Illinois. It is through this experience that we understand the difficulties Ford employees face when they are injured on the job. If you are a Ford employee or a UAW worker and you have been injured-on-the job, contact our office at 800-437-2571 for a free, confidential, no obligation consultation or use the Free Case Evaluation form on our web site. We will fight to get you the benefits you deserve and ensure that your rights are protected under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act.