When it comes to navigating the Illinois workers’ compensation system, it can be confusing to understand your rights and how you should proceed after suffering a work-related injury. At Therman Law Offices, our seasoned team of lawyers have handled a wide variety of job-related accidents and are ready to assist you.
In a recent Illinois court opinion, an injured worker sued his employer, a railroad company, claiming that he was injured as a result of his employer’s negligence. According to his complaint, the plaintiff was working as a railroad track switch lever operator when he suffered a spinal injury. At the time the injury occurred, the plaintiff was unaware that the employer had installed a new type of device. This lack of knowledge is what led him to suffer the back injury.
The jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff, concluding that there was a causal link between the employer’s conduct and the resulting injuries. The jury also concluded that the plaintiff was partially at fault for the injuries that he sustained and reduced the final judgment by the percent of the plaintiff’s negligence. The ultimate verdict in the plaintiff’s favor amounted to $37,500. Following trial, the parties entered into a dispute regarding how the judgment should be satisfied. The plaintiff’s lawyers claimed that the final award should be used to satisfy the fees and costs they incurred in the litigation. The defendant, however, alleged that the judgment should be used to repay the railroad money that it provided to the plaintiff regarding his injury before the litigation was initiated. The lower court agreed with the defendant and entered an order reflecting the same. The plaintiff appealed.