The Law Offices of Michael J. Helfand L.L.C.

Latest from The Law Offices of Michael J. Helfand L.L.C.

When you are hurt on the job in Illinois and hire an attorney, every lawyer uses the same attorney representation agreement.  Here is what it looks like. Under Illinois law, attorney fees can not exceed 20% of what is recovered and for almost every case that means 20% of the eventual settlement they get you when you are all better.  But that contract does state that the lawyer can take 20% of “any compensation for…
Nobody wants to think about divorced or get divorced, but it happens.  If it happens to you, it’s really important that you get someone in your corner who can be an objective advocate for you.  A good Illinois divorce attorney will help you set goals, prioritize them and get you thinking not just about what you want now, but six months from now, five years from now and 20 years from now.  That could relate…
One thing I vowed to do when I opened up my own firm in 2001, is to give clients and potential clients the type of customer service I like to get.  That means a few things: 1. Talk in plain English. 2. Don’t act like a phony. 3. Be very direct and honest. 4. Don’t be a jerk. 5. Return calls and emails promptly. I come across a lot of lawyers who violate many of…
A caller to my office had a really good question about a very frustrating scenario he was in. He is an industrial painter and does a lot of overhead lifting and work in general.  One day, he felt a sharp pain in his shoulder while bringing down some items from a scaffold.  This was witnessed, and nobody disputes that he was hurt at work.  All of his time off has been paid, as have his…
Sunday is St. Patrick’s Day which is celebrated through out the world, but is like New Years and the 4th of July rolled in to one in Chicago.  There are tons of parades, parties and bar specials this weekend.  When you add in college basketball, the occasional warm weather and Opening Day around the corner, it’s a really big party. With big parties come criminal activities.  I’m in my 22nd year as a lawyer so…
Illinois work comp law is pretty worker friendly, but not every injury that happens while you are working is a case.  For example, if you are walking down the hallway and your leg buckles for no reason or if you faint, it’s typically not a claim because nothing about the job increased your risk of having an accident. In the same way, if you get stung by a bee at work, unless you are a…
We are Chicago based workers’ compensation attorneys who help with job injury cases all over.  If you have any questions, fill out our contact form, call us or click on the chat button.  We will always talk to you for free and do whatever we can to help you. We talk to people in plain English and are very approachable.  Hopefully this makes people comfortable and they can ask me whatever questions they want to. …
Employers in Illinois are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance if they have one or more employees.  It’s a felony not to do so.  The only exception to this is if you work for yourself or are the owner of a company. In those cases you can opt out and don’t have to cover yourself. Of course if you are working, even if you are the owner, and get injured, not having insurance could really…
Many Illinois employers are looking to “game the system” or find what they think are creative ways to avoid taxes.  Sometimes they do this by paying cash under the table.  Other times they do it by calling an employee an independent contractor. While their main goal is usually to avoid payroll taxes, if you get hurt while working for them they will try to deny you benefits by saying that you didn’t really work for…
One of the great things about Illinois workers’ compensation law is that it’s a no fault law.  That means you don’t need to prove that your employer was negligent to win your case.  So if your back went out on you because you used bad form when lifting or if you new the floor was just waxed, but walked on it anyway, you can still get work comp benefits even though you are partially at…