COVID-19 Update: How We Are Serving and Protecting Our Clients

THE EFFECT OF COVID 19 RESTRICTIONS ON THE RIGHTS OF THOSE INJURED

We have been fighting  for real clients with real injuries against real employers or real insurance companies. The legal system  is still only partially open with  very few cases being set for trial. Most  justice is virtual and this is  causing real difficulties for our clients.

In the past three months this  lawyer has taken two depositions via Zoom.  Doctors were cross examined on  the computer.  This lawyer  has covered the Rockford status call for  the firm’s cases. This lawyer has had four pretrials where the arbitrator discussed the case with the lawyers and attempted to get the employer to offer more and get us to take less in  an effort to have the parties reach a compromise and avoid trial. These pre trials were done though Webex,  which, like Zoom, allows  parties to see each other and  talk  with each  other even though they are  not  in  the same room. This lawyer has also had four Social Security Disability hearings.  These  were held by telephone as there have been no in person hearings  since  early March.

These virtual hearings are not  perfect but they are much  better than  doing nothing. Any way we can  move our clients cases forward is good.

These are  the baby steps towards a full slate of  activities for a trial lawyer.  It is unknown when more cases can be set for  trials at the Workers’ Compensation  Commission without special protocols for  social distancing, mask  wearing, limiting  the number  of  people allowed in the building and  in  the room. When  insurance companies deny our clients  benefits we have  always known that  we can  go to trial and fight for  our clients. Taking  trials  away from  a lawyer is  like taking ammunition  away from a soldier.

We will use whatever ammunition  we have in  fighting  for  our clients and are making  sure those cases are ready for  trial when  we can get to trial.  We are working from  the office and  from  home. We are  starting to  return  to union halls and  are meeting  clients via Zoom  or at a reasonable  distance at union halls or  our conference  room. We are starting to return  to Rockford,, Quincy, Decatur, Mt.  Vernon and all the towns across the State  of Illinois where people,  lift and  work and  need  the services of a workers’ compensation  lawyer If we still cannot get to your town  we can  set  up a meeting  via Zoom or we can talk on  the  phone or we can exchange  e-mail.  We are still working even  if we are not  sitting  in the same room with you..

We are aware that Covid-19 is not  just a roadblock to  getting our clients cases to trial. It is a risk for  the “essential workers” who have been going to work all through the pandemic. If you have contracted the virus and think it happened at  work we can talk with you about your rights. You may have a legitimate claim under  the Workers Occupational  Diseases Act if  you have Covid-19. This protection  is not  limited to  front line workers like healthcare workers, nursing  home staff and law enforcement. Workers at  restaurants,  grocery stores, retail stores and factories  are also put at an increased risk of  catching the virus even  if they use  masks or  other  protection.

If you think you have  contracted Covid-19 at  work give us a call. We will  find a way to meet with  you whether  it is real or  virtual. We can  answer  your questions and  can  fight for  you with whatever  ammunition we are allowed to use.  One of the members of our team can help you and  can give you  answers.

Contact Information