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Do your actions or negligence limit your claim to workers’ compensation?

Workers in just about any industry can be injured on the job. Whether you work in a factory, an office or a restaurant, the duties of your job put you at risk for both work-acquired illnesses and injuries.

Like most states, Illinois has regulations that limit what workers’ compensation benefits people can ask for and the circumstances in which they have the right to file a claim. If you contribute to your injury, does that mean that you can’t get benefits or that you will receive reduced benefits?

Comparative fault or contributory negligence don’t matter at work

People often don’t understand that different insurance and liability rules apply to different circumstances. The idea of comparative fault or contributory negligence might make someone think they can’t file for workers’ compensation.

Comparative fault and contributory negligence are terms that refer to an injured person having at least partial fault for their injury. An example would be a crash caused by a drunk driver where the person who was hit didn’t use their turn signal. Although they didn’t cause the crash, they played a role in it occurring. The court may limit what they receive in a personal injury claim according to their amount of fault.

However, such limits do not apply in a workers’ compensation claim. The only exception to this rule is when testing indicates that you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol on the job. In almost every other workplace injuries scenario, you can still receive the workers’ compensation benefits that you need, even if you are partially responsible for your condition.