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Does my employer have to pay my Covid-19 medical bills if I am an essential worker?

Published on May 1st, 2020 by The Illinois Hammer Injury Law Firm

Does my employer have to pay my Covid-19 medical bills if I am an essential worker? 

Yes, if you are an essential worker your employer does have to pay your medical bills if you have contracted Covid-19. In Illinois, exposed essential workers should have medical bills covered such as

  • The doctor’s visit to diagnose the virus
  • Treatment for the virus
  • Relief from the effects of the virus (such as medicine and even therapy)
  • Emergency room visits due to the virus

Illinois law also gives essential workers the right to choose the doctor they want. An essential worker can pick whichever primary doctor they feel is best. The insurance company is required to pay for any reasonable treatment. They also pay any costs incurred from a referral to another facility.

When to Alert Your Doctor that You are an Essential Worker

Essential workers should alert their doctor immediately that their appointment is for a work-related illness. This is done so the doctor knows to bill the employer’s insurance company and not the employee. If the doctor’s office does send the bill to the sick essential worker, the essential worker can forward this bill to their employer’s insurance company. The employer’s insurance company is responsible for negotiating and/or paying the bill.

The law gives special protection to sick essential workers. This protection prevents doctors from sending a medical bill related to a workplace sickness to a collection’s agency.

If a Medical Bill is Disputed

Should an employer’s insurance company dispute the claim an essential worker can submit any medical bills received to their personal insurance. If an essential worker hires an attorney, the attorney will seek reimbursement on the medical bills. It is recommended that a sick essential worker get treatment first. Straighten out the issues of insurance coverage once treatment is done. The priority is recovery.

Sometimes there are issues with an employer covering Covid-19 related medical bills. A Workers’ Compensation law firm, such as at the Illinois Hammer Injury Law Firm, will more than likely include reimbursement of medical bills paid by the essential worker in their claim against the insurance company. An experienced attorney may also seek payment for future medical bills the essential worker is likely to incur, such as ongoing therapy or medication.

With over 25 years of injury law experience, the Illinois Hammer Injury Law Firm is dynamic in the area of Workers’ Compensation law and workers’ rights. If you are an essential worker that contracted Covid-19 and you’ve been put on a ventilator, or if you have questions about your rights after contracting Covid-19, please don’t hesitate to call us.

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