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Etzler Lawhead Legal Group, PC

Contractor Accused of Pocketing $1.9 Million That Was Intended to Purchase Comp

By Workers' Compensation No Comments

The owner of a trucking company that contracts with the U.S. Postal Service to help distribute mail was charged with pocketing more than $1.9 million by requesting reimbursement for workers’ compensation coverage that he never purchased, Illinois’ top law enforcement official announced. Keith A. Ratcliff, 53, faces three felony counts of theft, one count of mail fraud and one count…

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Indiana police chief arrested for driving under the influence, involved in multi-car accident

By Personal Injury No Comments

The chief of the Fishers Police Department in Indiana was arrested late Friday evening after he was involved in an accident while driving under the influence. According to a police report, Fishers Police Chief Mitch Thompson was involved in a multiple car accident on Keystone Avenue in Indianapolis just before midnight. The report indicates that Chief Thompson rear-ended a vehicle,…

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Parents of deceased teen respond to employer’s motion to dismiss electrocution suit

By Personal Injury No Comments

The parents of a deceased teen argue that their son’s former employer should be held liable for the negligent work it completed at a home in 2014, which they allege lead to the decedent’s electrocution in 2017. Doug Elliott and Dawn Elliott, as independent co-administrators of the estate of Caleb Elliott, filed their complaint on Nov. 30, 2017, against Viola…

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Emanuel, Burke Sued Over Workers’ Compensation

By Workers' Compensation No Comments

It could be a David versus Goliath legal battle. A longtime political gadfly and a city worker are suing Mayor Rahm Emanuel and powerful Ald. Ed Burke in federal court. Burke, the longtime Finance Committee chairman, controls the city’s controversial and obscure $100 million workers’ compensation program, which has come under scrutiny for years. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit contend…

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Policy Institute Chronicles Cost to City of ‘Modest’ Comp Claims

By Workers' Compensation No Comments

The Illinois Policy Institute says that the city of Belleville, Illinois, has spent $420,000 settling workers’ compensation claims by employees this year, with much of that money going to workers who returned to their jobs the day after the injury. The Policy Institute, which advocates for more business friendly public policies, reported that Belleville pays for workers’ compensation settlements of…

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It’s time to put compensation for injured city workers in the city’s hands

By Workers' Compensation No Comments

Who decides what to pay city staffers after on-the-job injuries? It’s the Finance Committee of the City Council. And, as virtually everyone knows, it shouldn’t be. Pop quiz: Who manages the annual expenditure of more than $100 million to approve and compensate city workers for on-the-job injuries? Is it the head of human resources? Nope. Maybe the city’s top lawyer?…

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St. Clair County man’s lung cancer prompts lawsuit against several manufacturers

By Personal Injury No Comments

A St. Clair County laborer claims several manufacturing companies negligently exposed him to cancer-causing asbestos. Lawrence Ray Jenkins Jr. filed a complaint on July 6 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against the companies, which include Shell Oil, Union Carbide, Chevron and Armstrong Pumps. According to the complaint, Jenkins was exposed to asbestos while hauling and sorting scrap metal from…

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Fall from boat prompts lawsuit against WATCO Companies

By Personal Injury No Comments

A deckhand blames WATCO Companies for creating an unsafe work environment aboard a boat. Sam E. Carson filed a complaint on June 1 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois against WATCO Companies, alleging the vessel owner failed to provide a safe walkway. According to the complaint, Carson was working on the Red Lightning when he…

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Summer jobs come with safety risks for young employees

By Workers' Compensation No Comments

Summer job season is in full swing, with the influx of younger workers creating workplace safety challenges for employers. Broadly speaking, workers between the ages of 14 and 24 are likely to injure themselves on the job because of their inexperience as well as their physical, cognitive and emotional developmental characteristics, according to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration….

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OSHA cites box maker for amputation hazards

By Workers' Compensation No Comments

U.S. workplace safety regulators have cited an Illinois-based cardboard box manufacturer for exposing employees to unprotected machinery and amputation hazards and have proposed penalties of $66,612. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Packaging Corp. of America for failing to provide written procedures to control the release of hazardous energy, exposing employees to struck-by, caught-in and amputation hazards, and…

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