Gesmer & Reynolds, P.C.

Rockford Illinois Workers' Compensation Law Blog

New rule will make English ability irrelevant to disability determination

On April 27, a revised Social Security regulation will take effect that will remove a person's limited English proficiency (LEP) from consideration as a factor in disability claims for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This is likely to make some in a certain population of older disabled people eligible for benefits who would otherwise have been ineligible if their limited English ability could still be considered as it has been for similar people since 1978.

New rule will make English ability irrelevant to disability determination

On April 27, a revised Social Security regulation will take effect that will remove a person's limited English proficiency (LEP) from consideration as a factor in disability claims for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This is likely to make some in a certain population of older disabled people ineligible for benefits who would otherwise have been if their limited English ability could still be considered as it has been for similar people since 1978.

Stand Up: Grain worker injury risk in Illinois

Illinois has a prominent position within the Midwest farm belt, with high production of corn, soybeans, wheat, rye, oats and sorghum. With such high grain yields, farm and agricultural employees who work with grain are at risk of serious injury and even death from grain-related accidents.

Social Security Administration may tighten disability evaluations

Since 1978, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has taken what you might say is a whole-person view of when someone is disabled from working for purposes of eligibility for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) - at least at older ages. What this means is that for an SSDI or SSI claimant whose impairment does not meet or equal in severity one on an official list of disabling medical conditions and who cannot return to work previously performed, the agency not only looks at medical limitations, but also at other vocational factors.

2018 US data: Transportation mishaps highest cause of work deaths

On Dec. 17, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics(BLS), part of the Department of Labor, issued a news release about 2018 government data detailing aspects of on-the-job work fatalities that year. According to the agency, there were 5,250 work-related deaths in 2018 - 2% higher than in 2017.

In Illinois alone, there were 184 occupational fatalities in 2018, up from 163 in 2017.

When anxiety becomes disabling, SSDI or SSI may be a safety net

Anyone who has experienced anxiety that has risen to the level of a medical disorder knows that its not "just stress." Our society has come a long way in understanding and recognizing that anxiety can be a medical condition with severe symptoms and a sometimes-devastating impact on quality of life and even on daily functioning.

Anxiety presents itself in several forms, but the common theme is persistent, intrusive feelings of worry, dread, fear, doom or terror that can be incapacitating. Typically, the high level of stress is out of proportion to the seriousness of the cause of the worry.

Worker silicosis from cutting real and artificial stone countertops

Across America, fancy countertops are all the rage. Tragically, some of the workers who cut these slabs of granite, marble and engineered stone are getting silicosis, a lung disease from inhaling crystalline silica dust generated during the cutting, shaping, grinding or polishing processes.

Illinois winter raises risk of weather-related work injury and illness

Winter blew in with a vengeance in many parts of Illinois this year and with it, the danger of injuries related to extreme cold, ice, snow and wind to workers in jobs requiring outside work or driving. Even if a person's job duties do not require them to drive for work or perform duties outdoors, they may sustain injury walking into the work premises from a parking lot, for example.

Merger of companies complicates workers' compensation liability

At our Rockford, Illinois, law firm, we represent injured or ill workers in the surrounding region whose impairments are work related in their claims for workers' compensation. It is a good idea to consult with an experienced workers' compensation lawyer as soon as possible after an injury for a thorough assessment of the workers' compensation claim and guidance about any legal issues that could arise.

While some cases are straightforward, sometimes complicated legal or factual issues can arise that a seasoned lawyer may pick up on and help to resolve.

Proposal to raise resource limits for SSI eligibility

At Gesmer & Reynolds, P.C., in Rockford, Illinois, our attorneys represent people in the region, including suburban Chicago and southern Wisconsin, in their applications for benefits available through the Social Security Administration, or SSA. Readers may be more familiar with Social Security Disability Insurance, called SSDI, which is public disability insurance. People earn SSDI coverage through their history of Social Security payroll deductions.

For those who do not have enough work history for SSDI eligibility, the Supplemental Security Income program, known as SSI, should be considered. SSI is a monthly governmental payment based on disability, blindness or older age combined with low income and assets.

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Rockford, IL 61107

Phone: 815-216-9471
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