28 Apr, 2020
By: Donald W Fohrman
On April 13, 2020, the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission (IWCC) enacted an emergency rule which is designed to protect essential employees should they become ill with COVID 19. The rule creates a “rebuttable presumption” that if an essential employee contracts COVID 19, the contraction occurred during-the-course of his or her employment.
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The meaning of a rebuttable presumption is the “assumption is deemed factual unless rebutted by reliable conflicting evidence.”  For example, if a nurse who has been working with COVID 19 patients contracts the virus, the IWCC will presume the nurse contracted the disease from his or her patients. It will be up to the employer to provide evidence to the contrary. The rule is set to expire 150 days from the date it was enacted. 

Our attorneys have successfully represented scores of Illinois firefighters under the Illinois Firefighter’s Protection Amendment (ILFPA) which was enacted in 2008. The same “rebuttable presumption” rule was applied in this amendment. I believe our experience handling claims under the ILFPA makes our attorneys uniquely qualified to represent Illinois “essential employees”  successfully before the IWCC should the need arise.

Please contact us at 312-661-0450 to speak with one of our attorneys for more information concerning the new rule. 

Donald W. Fohrman & Associates, Ltd. 101 W. Grand Ave., Suite 500 Chicago, IL  60654 P: 312-661-0450 F: 312-661-0953

About The Author

Photo of Donald W Fohrman
After completing law school Donald became an assistant Attorney General for 7 years and was assigned to the Industrial Commission Division. During that time he spent evenings establishing his own firm. Donald became a founding partner of a large workers’ compensation/personal injury firm but decided to leave the firm in 1990 to start a smaller “boutique” firm with the belief that bigger isn’t always better!
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