You can always change jobs while on workers’ compensation. If you do, though, you may experience a disruption in your benefits. Therefore, it’s best to speak with a lawyer and your doctor before formally accepting a new position.
Why Can Changing Jobs Affect My Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation provides financial relief when you’re unable to work. If you pursue a new job while you’re receiving workers’ compensation, it may indicate that you are able to work. Understand that returning to work may:
- Cause a reduction in your workers’ compensation benefits
- End your workers’ compensation benefits completely
This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t accept a new job. Just know that there are benefits and risks in such a decision.
Am I Entitled to Workers’ Compensation If I Was Injured at Work?
Florida’s Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) explains that “Employers conducting work in the State of Florida are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees.” This includes full-time and part-time employees.
If you meet the criteria of an employee, then you are generally entitled to workers’ compensation. There may be exceptions to this rule. It would be best if you investigated whether the job you’re considering switching to provides workers’ compensation insurance. This could help you decide whether to pursue that job or not.
What Workers’ Compensation Benefits Can I get?
The DWC explains that injured or ill workers should receive coverage for:
- Medical care: This includes all “authorized medically necessary care and treatment related to your injury.” Doctor’s visits, medical tests, physical therapy, and prescription drugs may all be covered.
- Lost wages: The amount of lost wage coverage you receive depends on the extent of your injuries.
- Death benefits: Workers’ compensation in Florida may pay death benefits up to a maximum of $150,000, per the DWC.
There’s no guarantee that you’ll receive the benefits you deserve. However, if you’d like to increase or alter your current benefits, a worker’s comp lawyer can help.
Who Makes Decisions About My Compensation Coverage?
Florida’s Division of Workers’ Compensation must “ensure that anyone interested or involved in the Florida workers’ compensation system has the tools and resources they need to participate.” It may help enforce workers’ compensation laws. However, your employer’s insurer may make decisions specific to your coverage.
Can a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Help with My Comp Claim?
An Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer may be best qualified to help with workers’ compensation issues. Insurance companies represent your employer (and themselves). Florida’s DWC may lack the resources to help as you need them to. An attorney can provide unbiased, personal assistance.
An attorney can:
- Review your specific circumstances: We’ll learn what your current workers’ compensation benefits are. We can speak with your employer’s insurer and determine the potential effects of you starting a new job. We will answer your questions and address each of your concerns.
- Try to increase your current benefits: If the financial strain is causing you to consider a new job, then increasing your current benefits could be worthwhile. We will explore the possibility of higher payments under your current workers’ compensation benefits.
- Advise you on the pros and cons of starting a new job: You can change jobs while receiving workers compensation benefits. After reviewing all relevant details, we’ll give you our advice. We may even explain what we would do under similar circumstances.
Starting a new job is a major decision. Before you make this choice, you must do your due diligence. There’s much to do, from consulting insurance companies to conducting cost-benefit analyses. Our legal team can conduct much – if not all – of this due diligence for you.
Will Changing Jobs Change My Workers Compensation Status?
Not necessarily. Several factors could determine whether you can continue to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Those factors may include:
- The improvement of your injury (or illness) and symptoms at the time that you start your new job versus the time when the injury happened
- The permanence of your symptoms
- The type of work you’ll be completing at your new job
- The number of hours you’ll work at your new job
Insurance companies may have significant leeway to maintain, decrease, or withdraw workers’ compensation benefits. Our firm will gather as much information as possible. Before we advise you in any direction, we’ll present all relevant facts. This will help you make an informed, measured decision about a new job.
Your goals for workers’ compensation are important. But are these benefits that you’d hoped to receive long-term? Or do you view them as a stopgap until you’re able to work again?
A workers’ compensation attorney from our office will flesh out such vital considerations with you.
Contact Our Workers’ Compensation Attorney for a Free Consultation Today
Workers’ compensation may still be foreign to you. While benefits are straightforward enough, the cause-and-effect of changing jobs may not be. The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine will help you make the right decision.
Call us today at 1-800-747-3733 for a free consultation.
We Can Help.