As an employee, you expect that your workplace is safe and free of any dangerous hazards. Unfortunately, accidents can occur at work, leaving employees with costly medical expenses and lost wages. If your accident took place at work, you may be eligible to submit a workers’ compensation claim.
If you are dealing with the financial effects of a work-related injury, an Orlando personal injury lawyer with the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine can assist you throughout the claim process.
Understanding Florida’s Workers’ Compensation Laws As An Employee
Understanding Florida’s workers’ compensation law is important to determine what steps to take following a work-related injury. Florida requires every employer with four or more employees to carry workers’ compensation. While workers’ compensation offers benefits for injured workers, it also prohibits them from filing a workplace injury claim against their employer.
Determining Whether You Have A Florida Workers’ Compensation Benefits Claim
You are eligible to file a Florida workers’ compensation claim if the following apply to your case:
- You were working at the time of the accident.
- The injury occurred during normal work hours, while you were completing work tasks.
- The injury that occurred is compensable (e.g., tripping and scraping your arm is likely not compensable).
- A task at work caused or worsened the injury.
- The employee gave proper notice to the employer following the injury.
- The accident did not result from intoxication, horseplay, criminal activity, or an intention to injure yourself.
Providing Proper Notice Of A Workplace Injury
Notifying your employer of a workplace injury may not be the number one thing on your mind immediately following an accident. However, it is crucial that you inform your employer within 30 days of the date of the accident, according to the Florida Department of Financial Services (DFS). If you fail to do so, your employer might deny your claim. It can also make it more difficult to connect the injury to a work-related task.
Seeking Medical Care For On-the-Job Injuries
It is also important to seek medical care as soon as you can. Failing to seek medical attention following an injury can make it difficult, if not impossible, to determine that the work accident actually led to the injury. To treat your injuries and to link them to your accident, see a medical provider immediately following a work-related accident.
Submitting Your Workers’ Comp Claim
You must file a workers’ compensation claim within two years of the date you were injured or diagnosed with an illness. If possible, it is best to file the claim as soon as possible. Otherwise, it can be challenging to collect the necessary documentation to provide as evidence.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits In Orlando
Workers’ compensation coverage usually pays the following expenses:
- Medical costs (emergency fees, medical transportation, copays, deductibles, surgeries, and prescription costs)
- A portion of your lost income
- A portion of your lost earning capacity if you sustained a partial disability
- Death benefits if you lost a loved one to the workplace accident
Workers’ compensation will not compensate you for your pain and suffering.
How We Can Assist You With A Workers’ Compensation Claim
Handling a worker’s compensation case on your own can require a lot of time and energy, especially if your employer’s insurer is delaying your payments. In any case, a Central Florida workers’ compensation attorney with our law office is ready to assist you so that you can focus on making a full recovery from your injuries.
Give You A Complimentary Initial Consultation When You Call Us
Having a lot of questions following a work-related injury is normal. Once we learn more about your case and the on-the-job injuries you sustained we will be able to better assist you. The complimentary consultation also gives you the chance to ask our legal team any questions you might have about the workers’ compensation claims process.
Assist You With Collecting Payment
The workers’ compensation claims process should be simple. It is in place to provide you with compensation for a work-related injury. Our legal team can assist you with collecting timely payments. We understand that your medical costs can get expensive, and if you are unable to work, it can be difficult to manage household costs.
It is also possible that your employer or its insurance provider wrongly rejects your claim. In that case, we can assist you in appealing a denied claim.
When You Might Be Eligible To File A Third-Party Claim
Workers’ compensation covers many of the medical costs and lost wages associated with a workplace accident. However, depending on the severity of your injury and how long it keeps you out of work, you might miss out on tens of thousands of dollars. Our workers’ compensation attorneys will fight for a fair settlement in your case.
What Happens When A Third Party Is On The Hook For Your Damages
If a third party (i.e., not your employer) caused or is partly responsible for the work-related injury you suffered, you may decide to file a third-party claim. It is essential that we demonstrate the four elements of a personal injury, including duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and actual damages.
Any of the following might be a potentially liable third party:
- Property owners
- Parts manufacturers
- General contractors
If we are successful in your third-party claim, you may be eligible to recover any of the following:
- Any medical bills that workers’ compensation does not cover
- Any lost wages, lost earning capacity, or lost benefits workers’ compensation does not cover
- Miscellaneous expenses (e.g., costs of getting to and from doctor’s appointments, widening a doorway in your home to accommodate your wheelchair, etc.)
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Lost quality of life due to medical condition
If you lost a loved one, our wrongful death attorneys can help you recover damages for funeral expenses, medical bills, lost financial support, and/or loss of companionship.
When Workers’ Compensation Claims Turn Into Personal Injury Lawsuits
In the event that we cannot settle with the third party’s insurance company, we are willing to go ahead and file a personal injury lawsuit. Unfortunately, we are limited in how long we can bring this civil action against them.
According to Florida Statutes § 95.11, you have up to two years to file a lawsuit. That goes for both personal injury and wrongful death actions. The deadline can change, but it’s important to get started as soon as possible. Otherwise, your case might be in jeopardy.
Not only could you be barred from collecting compensation, but evidence, such as video surveillance footage and witness testimony, might be sparse. We now encourage you to reach out to us soon so that we can get started.
We Can Handle Your Workers’ Compensation Case In Its Entirety On A Contingency Fee
Right when you hire us, you will receive your Orlando attorney’s phone number, and they can help you schedule appointments while taking care of every other aspect of your workers’ comp claim, including:
- Gathering evidence
- Proving whose negligence caused your injuries
- Negotiating your settlement with the insurance company
- Taking on communication with other parties
- Filing all necessary paperwork on time
- Answering all your questions and emails right away
After reading about these services, it may seem overwhelming due to the costs. However, our workers’ compensation lawyers don’t take anything from you starting up. Instead, their fee comes out of your final award – only if you win one.
Call to Discuss Your Workers’ Compensation Case With Us Today
Florida’s workers’ compensation laws are in place to protect you in the event of a work-related injury. The claims process, however, is not always straightforward. Some things can complicate the process and delay your owed compensation.
Our lawyers are familiar with Orlando’s workers’ compensation laws and can also assist you in determining when a third-party claim may be beneficial. Call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for a free consultation with an experienced attorney. We will go the extra mile for you.
We Can Help.