Amendment would extend COVID-19 presumptions

Illinois lawmakers on Thursday filed an amendment to extend the presumption of compensability for workers who acquire COVID-19 on the job.

House Amendment 1 would modify H.B. 782, which was signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker in June, to extend the state’s COVID-19 rebuttable presumption, which expired at the end of 2020, to June 30, 2021.

The presumption law presumes first responders, frontline and essential workers who contract COVID-19 did so on the job, and also provides death benefits for first responders who were presumably infected with COVID-19 on duty.

Under the law, employers can rebut claims under certain conditions, including if they can demonstrate the workplace was following current public health guidelines for two weeks prior to when the employee claims they contracted the virus; can provide proof that the employee was exposed by another source outside of the workplace; or the employee was working from home for at least 14 days prior to the injury claim.

The amendment has been read twice on the House floor, and if signed into law, would take effect immediately and be retroactive to Dec. 31, 2020.

This article was first published in Business Insurance.

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