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Can I Receive Workers’ Compensation if I Am a Landscaper?

Posted on in Workers' Compensation

IL injury lawyerLandscaping companies are typically the busiest in the summer months since the weather is ideal for working in the yard. Depending on the size of the yard or property, a lot can be done to enhance a landscape. This can include trimming bushes, cutting the grass, and planting trees or flowers. Riding lawn mowers and trimmers are some of the tools of the trade for a landscaper. Powered equipment such as those can break down or potentially cause an accident. In any type of work environment, even outside, an employee can be at risk for injury. If you are hurt while performing duties at your landscaping job, you might be entitled to benefits through workers’ compensation.

Types and Causes of Injuries

According to the National Safety Council, a worker is injured on the job every seven seconds. Injuries in the landscaping field can be related to faulty equipment or machines, improper maintenance, or negligent property owners. Some of these injuries can include:

  • Broken bones or fractures
  • Severed body parts
  • Concussions
  • Heat stroke
  • Back or neck strain

Some landscaping duties require workers to climb ladders to trim tall trees. If the ladder is not properly positioned, an employee can lose his or her balance and fall to the ground. This can cause significant head trauma or a broken arm or leg, not to mention a serious back or neck injury.

Power tools such as clippers, edgers, and riding lawnmowers can be dangerous if they malfunction. In certain cases, an accident can be caused by a defective or expired part. The owner of the landscaping company should ensure all machines are in proper working order.

In addition, many landscapers travel to different locations in a truck or van. This can lead to being involved in an accident with another motorist, which could result in whiplash. An injury such as that can have lasting effects that might prevent an employee from working for weeks or even months.

Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Illinois law requires employers to provide workers' compensation insurance for almost everyone who is hired, injured, or whose employment is localized in Illinois. The landscaping company’s workers’ comp insurance policy should cover most injuries sustained on the job. However, if you are working as an independent contractor, you are typically not eligible for workers' compensation benefits in Illinois. Under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, though, you can still be found to be an employee even if you file a 1099 for tax purposes. In some cases, the more control an employer has over you as a contractor, the more likely it is that you will be eligible for benefits if you are injured on the job. It is best to consult with an experienced workplace injury attorney to find out if you are covered financially in the event you miss work due to injuries.

Contact a DuPage County Workplace Injury Lawyer

In the unfortunate event you are injured while working as a landscaper, you should consult a legal team to find out if you are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Regardless if you are a regular employee or an independent contractor, you may be entitled to compensation. A knowledgeable Wheaton workers’ compensation attorney can help guide you through the process of filing a claim. Call our office at 630-665-5678 today.

 

Sources:

https://www.nsc.org/work-safety/tools-resources/infographics/workplace-injuries

https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/iwcc/about/Pages/insurance.aspx

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