The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission has adopted an emergency rule regarding claims brought by “COVID-19 First Responders and Front-Line Workers" under the Illinois Occupational Diseases and Workers’ Compensation Acts.
Commission Rule Section 9030.70(a)(1) is amended to state that in cases where a COVID-19 First Responder or Front-Line worker is injured or has a period of incapacity resulting from exposure to COVID-19, the exposure will be "rebuttably presumed" to have arose out of and in the course of the employment, and will further be "rebuttably presumed" to be causally connected to the “hazards or exposures” of the petitioner’s COVID-19 First Responder or Front-Line Worker employment.
Section 9030.70(a)(2) defines “COVID-19 First Responder or Front-Line Worker” to include police, fire personnel, emergency medical technicians, paramedics, along with workers identified as "crucial personnel" under Section 1 Part 12 of Executive Order 2020-10 dated March 20, 2020.
This rule change is expected to significantly expand the compensability of COVID-19 related claims brought by employees in a variety of industries identified as "crucial personnel" in the governor's executive order including those in :
- Stores that sell groceries and medicine
- Food, beverage, and cannabis production and agriculture
- Organization that provide charitable and social services
- Gas stations and businesses needed for transportation
- Financial institutions
- Hardware and supplies stores
- Critical trades
- Mail, post, shipping, logistics, delivery and pick up services
- Educational institutions
- Laundry services
- Restaurants for consumption off-premises
- Supplies to work from home
- Supplies for essential businesses and operations
- Home-based care and services
- Residential facilities and shelters
- Professional services
- Day care centers for employees exempted by executive order
- Manufacture, distribution, and supply chain for critical products and industries
- Critical labor union functions
- Hotels and motels
- Funeral services
You can access a PDF of the Notice by clicking the link below.
This is a fast developing situation, and Brady, Connolly & Masuda, P.C. will update and advise you as more information becomes available.