Dan DeBias


This comment will demonstrate why using an AMA impairment rating as the sole determinant in evaluating an injured worker's disability would be a fundamentally unfair concept. Part II of this comment will discuss the history of compensation remedies for injured workers, both federally and in Illinois. Part II will also explain Illinois' calculation of permanent partial disability benefits, the 2011 amendments to the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act ("Act"), and the recently proposed changes to the Act concerning the AMA Guides. Part III will analyze the AMA Guides in more detail, including research into its flaws, the constitutionality of its inclusion in the workers' compensation system, and the financial impact that they have on the injured worker and the workers' compensation system. Part IV will propose that the AMA Guides are unlikely to have any substantial impact on insurance premiums in Illinois. It will also propose an alternate system for disability calculation.