Duty Disability Benefits – Work-Related Injury

If you are a City of Chicago employee who: (1) is an active member of the Laborers’ and Retirement Board Employees’ Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago (“LABF”), and (2) has filed a claim with the City of Chicago (“City”) that establishes that you became injured while preforming your job duties, you may be entitled to receive Duty Disability (“DD”) benefits from LABF. 

DD benefits from LABF are designed to work in conjunction with the City’s Workers’ Compensation (“WC”) benefits to provide you 75% of your salary at the date of injury, subject to certain adjustments that may be necessary to account for outside income.  While receiving DD benefits from LABF, pension contributions will be made on your behalf and you will continue to earn pension credit toward your retirement.

 

What to do if you are injured on the job:

  • File an incident/accident report with your department.Your supervisor will submit a report of injury to initiate your WC claim.
  • Seek medical treatment or be evaluated by a physician. Illinois law allows you to choose your own physician.
  • Complete all necessary documentation for your WC claim.
  • Contact the City’s Benefits Service Center at: (877) 299-5111 to arrange direct pay for health insurance premiums (and life insurance, if applicable). Do this immediately. It is very difficult to reinstate health insurance after a lapse in coverage.
  • Confirm your contact information with your department and the City’s Benefits Service Center.
  • Inform your union of your injury and arrange to pay your dues, if applicable.
  • Apply for DD benefits with the LABF.
NOTE: WC claims may take approximately 4 to 6 weeks to process. WC benefits may not be payable for the first 3 lost working days unless the lost time is 14 or more days.

 

How to apply for LABF DD Benefits:

  • Call LABF at (312) 236-2065 to request a DD application.
  • Submit your signed application along with all required documentation. Refer to the bottom of this page for complete list of possible documents required. Each case varies; LABF will inform you of the documents required at the time you apply.
NOTE: Provided your WC claim has been approved AND your LABF DD application is complete, LABF will take approximately 4 to 6 additional weeks to process your DD claim.
The application process is time sensitive. Failure to act in a timely manner may result in loss of benefits.

 

LABF Approval Process:

  • LABF will confirm your WC claim has been approved and will verify your WC claim payment status.
  • An LABF-appointed physician will review your application and make a recommendation to the Board of Trustees (“Board”).
  • Upon recommendation from the LABF-appointed physician, your DD claim will be presented to the Board. The Board only considers DD applications once a month.
  • Upon the Board’s approval, the LABF will send you a Board approval letter regarding your disability benefits.

 

DD Benefit Payment:

  • The Board approval letter includes a questionnaire (referred to as a “warrant”) regarding your employment status. This warrant must be returned to the LABF in order for the LABF to release any payments.
  • The warrant must be completed in its entirety and returned after the 20thof the month. Failure to answer all questions will result in delay or suspension of your payment(s). All outside income must be reported to the LABF.
  • DO NOT THROW AWAY YOUR PAYMENT STUBS. It serves as the warrant for your next payment.
  • Payments are mailed on the last working day of the month provided your completed warrant has been received and accepted.
  • Upon return to work, it is your responsibility to notify the LABF to prevent an overpayment of DD benefits.If an overpayment occurs for any reason, you are obligated to repay all overpayments to the LABF. If the overpayment is not repaid upon your return to work, LABF reserves the right to offset any amount owed to LABF against any future payment owed to you.

 

Extension of DD Benefits:

  • Re-examination of the injury is required for continuation of benefits.
  • If you are eligible for an extension, notification will be mailed to you along with corresponding paperwork that is to be completed by your physician and returned to the LABF by the due date stated in the notice of extension.
  • Upon the LABF’s receipt of the required documentation,the LABF-appointed physician will review the documents.
  • The Board’s approval is required to continue benefits. (See: LABF Approval Process)

 

Important Notes:

  • Members must apply in order to begin accruing DD benefits from the LABF (subject to the Board’s approval).
  • Members must submit an application for DD benefits to the LABF within one year of the injury date.
  • Members shall only be eligible to receive pension credit for periods for which they have received DD benefits from the LABF.
  • DD payments received from the LABF are not taxable, therefore, members will not receive a 1099R from the LABF.
  • DD payments received from the LABF do not have to be repaid unless an overpayment occurs.
  • If WC approves a coronary-related condition, the member is not entitled to any monetary benefit from the LABF, however, the member must still go through the LABF application and approval process to continue to receive pension credit.
  • DD benefits for Tier 2 members are subject to certain restrictions. Contact the LABF for details.
  • Additional benefits may be due to members with children under the age of 18.

 

Complete list of possible documents required to apply for DD benefits.
Please submit original documents of the following unless otherwise specified:

  • DD Application
  • Most Recent Physician or Mercy Works Report
  • Attending Physician’s Report
  • Incident / Accident Report
  • State or County Certified Record of Birth or Naturalization
  1. Member
  2. Children (under the age of 18)
  • Beneficiary Designation Form
    (Must be notarized. Scratch-outs or white-outs are not acceptable.)
  • Membership Information Form
  • Social Security Card(s) (photocopies are acceptable)
  1. Member
  2. Children (under the age of 18)

Please note, all original documents will be returned to you. Applications for benefits from the LABF cannot be processed until all required documents are received.

 

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