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Important Proposed Legislation Would Protect Injured Police Officers from Termination

Written by Brent Eames

March 1, 2024

Unlike firefighters, downstate police officers have no protections under the Illinois Pension Code which would provide any job security after they suffer a catastrophic injury which would result in the need to file an application for a disability pension. After a serious work-related injury, it is not uncommon for injured police officers to face the threat of termination from a municipality if their injuries are taking a prolonged time to heal. This can result in significantly unfortunate consequences, including officers being forced to go without pay for an extended period of time, and the families of injured police officers being left without health insurance before any disability claims can be fairly and lawfully adjudicated. However, proposed legislation in Springfield seeks to right this wrong. In order to address this inequity, SB2918 is currently pending in Springfield. It was introduced on January 26, 2024 by Sen. Robert F. Martwick. This proposed legislation provides that a physical or mental disability that constitutes, in whole or in part, the basis of an application for benefits under the Downstate Police Article of the Illinois Pension Code may not be used, in whole or in part, as a cause for a municipality to discharge a police officer. Further, the legislation provides that, upon a chief of the police department’s receipt of a certification from the board of trustees under the Downstate Police Article of the Illinois Pension Code that a police officer is no longer disabled and is able to resume the duties of his or her position, the police officer shall report to the chief of the police department. This is a very important bill which first responders should follow closely as it makes its way through the legislative process.

Consult an Illinois Lawyer for Injured First Responder

If you were injured on duty and are wondering what steps to take, our best workers’ compensation attorneys in Chicago at Eames Law Group can help.  Don’t give the claim handlers the chance to take advantage of you. Use this contact form to get your free evaluation or call 312-818-2855 today. The content of this blog is intended for informational purposes only and does constitute or establish an attorney-client relationship, nor constitute legal advice. If you wish to discuss any further aspect of the material contained herein, please contact attorney for first responders, Brent Eames, at Eames Law Group, Ltd.

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