Illinois employers finally have some good news when it comes to workers comp. In 2011 the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act was amended, giving employers some needed ammunition to battle frivolous workers comp claims. Briefly, at the time of an accident, drugs or a blood alcohol level of .08 or higher is considered to be proximate cause of the accident and the claim can be dismissed. That is, the burden of proof shifts from the employer to the employee. Rather than the employer having to defend, it is now up to the employee to prove that the accident was unrelated to the substances in his blood and is entirely the fault of the employer. It used to be the other way around.
This is a BIG DEAL FOR EMPLOYERS. It’s always been important to have a well-designed drug and alcohol policy in place, but it’s even more critical now. Make sure your substance abuse policy includes post-accident testing for drugs and alcohol.
Even better, implement a random testing program, and lower the chances of an accident to begin with.