Many employers in Florida carry business liability insurance that provides medical and wage benefits to employees if they get hurt or develop an occupational illness while at work. However, the process is not always straightforward, so it can be challenging to recover appropriate compensation for your injuries and other financial losses.
The Estero personal injury lawyers at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine can protect your rights and help you seek benefits for a work injury claim. You can learn more about your options during a free consultation with our team.
Common Issues Related to Workers’ Compensation Claims in Estero
In most cases, if your injury or illness prevents you from working for more than eight days, your employer must provide workers’ compensation benefits until you can return (up to 104 weeks). Benefits under this system pay for your medical bills, treatment, and lost wages. The amounts vary depending on whether the injury or illness is temporary or permanent or if a disability is partial or total.
Unfortunately, issues could crop up in your Estero workers’ compensation case, making it harder to get the benefits you deserve. Here are a few of the more common issues and questions we regularly encounter:
My Injuries Are Being Blamed on a Pre-Existing Health Condition
Our Estero workers’ compensation attorneys can build investigate your situation and build a strong case for benefits. We can use your medical records and other supporting documents to show the severity of your injuries or illness and how the workplace is involved. Further, if you have a pre-existing health condition, you can still qualify for workers’ compensation benefits if you can show that the accident or other event at work made your condition worse.
Someone Else Other Than My Employer Caused My Injury at Work
In addition to a workers’ compensation claim, you might have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit against a third party. Workers’ compensation doesn’t cover third parties, such as contractors, product manufacturers, at-fault drivers, or property owners. If an error on their part caused your work injury, you could sue them for compensation.
It is worth noting that injury lawsuits include damages for pain and suffering, which are not available under workers’ compensation insurance. However, you will need to prove the liable party’s negligence. Our injury attorneys can review your situation, and if we can help, we will gather and organize everything you need to prove your case.
I’m Worried I’ll Lose My Job In Estero if I File a Workers’ Compensation Claim
While there is no provision under the law for your employer to hold your position open if you cannot return to work until your doctor releases you, it is against the law for them to fire you for making a claim. Additionally, if you feel your employer dismissed you unfairly, our team is on hand to help you understand your legal options.
Claims Denied Due to Clerical Errors and Insufficient Medical Evidence
Simple clerical errors can delay or deny workers’ compensation claims, so it is essential to fill in the forms correctly and include all relevant supporting documentation. Managing case administration while recovering from your injuries can be frustrating and tiring.
As such, we work with you every step of the way to ensure we complete and file all paperwork on time. In addition, where there are issues with medical evidence, we work with independent medical examiners who can provide expert testimony to support your case.
Can I See My Doctor After Being Injured at Work in Florida?
Only doctors your employer’s insurer approves can initially assess your injuries and arrange your treatment. While you may prefer to see your doctor, it is important to follow the requirements outlined in the workers’ compensation guidelines. Typically, you can choose from a selection of doctors approved by your employer’s insurance carrier.
If the insurer does not arrange for you to see a doctor within a reasonable time, or you are unhappy with the treatment you receive, we can help to protect your right to appropriate treatment.
Is Workers’ Compensation Payable for Fatal Workplace Accidents in Florida?
Yes. Workers’ compensation covers death benefits in Florida. Surviving dependents can apply for these benefits, which are paid as a percentage of the decedent’s average weekly wage. The amounts vary depending on your relationship with the decedent.
Our Estero Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Can Help if Your Benefits Claim Was Denied
Most employee claims stem from a work-related accident or occupational illness that develops due to an event or exposure to harm in the workplace. The success of a workers’ compensation claim rests on:
- Establishing a clear connection between your injury and an accident at work, or
- Linking an occupational illness to your workplace environment or conditions
While this may seem pretty straightforward, in many cases, it is not. Insurance companies often delay or deny workers’ compensation claims, adding more stress to an already challenging situation. If you feel your claim should is not being managed as it should, we are here to provide clarity about your legal position and what steps to take to resolve your case by:
- Helping you understand your notification of denial
- Gathering evidence such as medical records and bills, accident reports, employment records, expert testimony, and witness statements to support your case.
- Appealing a benefits claim denial by petitioning the Office of Judges of Compensation Claims (OJCC)
- Representing you during mediation hearings where we will negotiate a settlement agreement on your behalf
- Attending a pretrial hearing on your behalf if mediation is unsuccessful
- Representing you in the First District Court of appeals if the initial trial hearing is unsuccessful
As a final note, remember that insurers have a vested interest in keeping their costs down, so working with our support could help to tilt the scales in your favor.
Get Help Today from Our Local Workers’ Compensation Lawyers in Estero
The Estero workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine are ready to fight for your benefits. We understand the many ways getting hurt or ill in the workplace can affect you and your family. Our legal team will give your case the individual attention and support it deserves.
Whether you are filing a new claim, challenging a claim denial, or want counsel about filing a third-party lawsuit, we can help. Our team is committed to providing the experience, knowledge, and resources you deserve for a fair resolution to your claim. Call and discuss your legal options with us during a free consultation to find out more.
We Can Help.