Posted on Feb 26, 2011
After several controversies, including an investigation led by the Belleville News-Democrat, two Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission arbitrators have been put on administrative leave. The actions of 57-year-old John Dibble and 37-year-old Jennifer Teague, both of whom are attorneys who earn six figure salaries as arbitrators, will be examined by Illinois Central Management Services.

First and foremost, an initial investigation has revealed that both Dibble and Teague had applied for workers’ compensation themselves. Dibble has received workers’ comp payment for carpal tunnel syndrome, while Teague had a pending claim for cubital tunnel syndrome, which affects nerves in the elbow.

Secondly, Teague has been accused of trying to keep a recent workers’ compensation case “secret” from the press in exchange for a speedy settlement for her own pending injury case. The workers’ compensation case she was willing to keep quiet was the one involving former Illinois State Trooper Matt Mitchell, who was injured in a police cruiser accident caused by his reckless driving. Two teenaged sisters were also killed in the accident.

Finally, Dibble is under investigation for being the arbitrator in many of the workers’ compensation claims coming out of Menard Correction Center in Chester, Illinois, in which over half of the guards and even the warden received over $10 million in workers’ compensation for a variety of shady claims, many involving carpal tunnel syndrome.

Larger aspects of the Illinois workers’ comp system, including the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

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