FAQs: Workers’ Comp Claims during COVID Emergency

Aug. 20, 2020

The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission has released Frequently Asked Questions to address changes to workers’ compensation claims during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Public Act 101-0633 amends the Workers’ Occupational Diseases Act to create a rebuttable presumption for first-responders and front-line workers who are exposed to and contract COVID-19 through the course of employment. The law is effective for all cases in which a diagnosis of COVID-19 was made between March 9, 2020 and Dec. 31, 2020. Employers may challenge the assumption that COVID-19 was contracted at work by presenting certain evidence, as outlined in the Act. First-responders and front-line workers include:

  • All individuals employed as police, fire personnel, emergency medical technicians, or paramedics;   
  • All individuals employed and considered as first responders;   
  • All workers for healthcare providers, including nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities and home care workers;   
  • Corrections officers; and   
  • Any individuals employed by essential businesses and operations as defined in Executive Order 2020-10 dated March 20, 2020, as long as employees encounter members of the general public or to work in employment locations of more than 15 employees.

An employee’s home or place of residence is not a place of employment, except for home care workers.