Following our prior post regarding this piece of legislation, we can now report that on March 14, 2019, the Illinois House of Representatives passed SB1596 on a 70-40-1partisan roll call. Several key issues that Rep. Jay Hoffman (D-Collinsville), one of the sponsors of the Bill, clarified in debate were: 1) the legislation only applies to individuals diagnosed after the 25-year statute of repose; 2) there is no impact on the statute of limitations in the Illinois Workers’ Compensation and Occupational Diseases Acts, and the civil action statute of limitations also applies; and 3) there will not be any double-recovery. However, the above-noted clarifications from Rep. Hoffman are not specified in the Bill, so it remains to be seen if they would be followed by the Courts if the Bill becomes law.
IL SB1596 now goes to Governor Pritzker. Various business groups, including the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, will be requesting a veto of the Bill and suggesting the Governor convene a meeting of the stakeholders to resolve the issues within the Illinois workers’ compensation system and the potential adverse effects the Bill will have on employers, which we have described in a previous blog post.on this issue.
We will continue to keep you updated on the status of this legislation.