If you got hurt on the job or developed a work-related illness in Melbourne, Florida, you might be eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits. A Workers’ Compensation lawyer in Melbourne, FL can help you go after the compensation you deserve. You can call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine today at 1-800-747-3733 for a free consultation. We can answer your questions and evaluate whether you might qualify for benefits.
Florida Employers Who Have to Provide Workers’ Compensation Coverage
You can only receive workers’ compensation benefits if your employer participates in this program. The vast majority of Florida employers have to carry workers’ compensation coverage. Your boss must participate in the Florida Worker’s Compensation program if you work for:
- State or local government
- Any employer who has at least four full-time or part-time employees
- A construction company that employs at least one person
- Farmers with at least five regular workers, or at least 12 seasonal employees who work at least 30 days
Employers Who Do Not Have to Participate in Florida’s Workers’ Compensation Program
Many of the employers who do not have to provide Florida Worker’s Compensation coverage still offer benefits for employees with work-related illnesses or injuries through federal workers’ compensation programs. A workers’ compensation lawyer in Melbourne, FL can explain how those systems work and handle claims for you if you are a:
- Railroad employee
- Harbor worker
- Defense contractor employee
- Employee of the federal government
Time is Critical to Protect Your Right to Benefits
The Florida Workers’ Compensation program will deny claims that do not adhere to strict roles, including the deadline for reporting a work-related illness or injury. From the date the incident occurred or that a doctor told you that your condition was related to your job, you only have 30 days to report your illness or injury to your employer.
Make sure that you give your injury or illness notice in writing so that you have proof that you complied with the deadline rule. Also, you need to make sure that you use the correct form when reporting your work-related injury or illness. We can answer your questions and walk you through this process.
The 30-day deadline is not the only rule that you have to follow in pursuing a Florida Workers’ Compensation claim. The insurance carrier from whom your employer buys the workers’ compensation coverage will jump on any opportunity to deny your claim, even if their refusal to pay your claim is based on procedural grounds. It is essential that you talk with us right away so that we can protect your right to compensation.
How a Lawyer Can Help You with Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
Florida law does not require you to have a lawyer help you with your workers’ compensation claim, but when you consider what is at stake, it can give you peace of mind to know that someone is looking out for your interests. Trying to take on an insurance company by yourself can be overwhelming.
You go into the process at a disadvantage because the workers’ compensation insurance carrier has decades of experience in denying claims and finding ways to pay as little money as possible to people who got injured on the job or developed a work-related illness. When we handle your workers’ compensation claim, we deal directly with the insurance companies so that you do not have to. Instead, you get to focus on getting well and rebuilding your life.
Some of the early steps that we take in many of our workers’ compensation claims include:
- Evaluating your eligibility for benefits
- Letting you know what will happen in the different stages of the claims process
- Verifying that your employer reported your illness or injury to the workers’ compensation carrier
- Reporting your claim to the insurance company if your employer did not do so
After those initial steps, we can:
- Get records from your employer and your healthcare provider to build your claim.
- Determine the appropriate amount of compensation
- Negotiate with the workers’ compensation insurance carrier on your behalf
- Review and analyze the settlement documents.
Your employer’s coverage for workers’ compensation has to include these things:
- Medical treatment
- Hospital bills
- Doctor visits
- Prescription drugs
- Prosthetic devices
- Diagnostic testing
- Physical therapy
One of the most important things you need to know about the medical coverage of workers’ compensation insurance in Florida is that you cannot go to your regular doctor for your medical treatment. Your employer is allowed to approve one visit to your regular doctor right after the injury or illness, but after that, you have to get your medical care from one of the workers’ compensation insurance company’s doctors. The carrier will not compensate you for unapproved physician bills or treatment.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Lost Wages and Disability
You can get benefits to help replace the income that you missed because of the work-related illness or injury. Florida’s Worker’s Compensation system provides four types of income replacement:
Temporary total disability (TTD). This benefit can pay between 66 2/3 and 80 percent of your regular wages up to the state limit if you cannot work at all right now, but the physician expects you to return to work eventually.
Temporary partial disability (TPD). TPD benefits can help make up some of the difference in income if, because of a work-related injury or illness, you can only perform limited work that pays less than 80 percent of your previous income on a temporary basis. These benefits can last for up to 104 weeks.
Impairment income benefits (IIB). You will receive a rating when you reach as much physical improvement as your doctor expects you to achieve. The rating will include a number that represents the percentage of your permanent impairment. The evaluator will then calculate how much money you will get based on this rating.
Permanent total disability (PTD). If you will never again be able to perform any type of work because of a work-related injury or illness, you might be eligible for PTD benefits.
Death Benefits for a Work-Related Illness or Injury
If your loved one died from a work-related injury or illness within one year of the initial incident or within five years of continuous disability, the qualified survivors can receive up to a total of $150,000 in benefits, including:
- $7,500 for funeral expenses
- Surviving spouse education benefits
- Compensation to the dependents
Getting Legal Help for Your Melbourne, Florida Workers’ Compensation Claim
When a workers’ compensation lawyer in Melbourne, FL at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine handles your Melbourne, Florida claim for a work-related injury or illness, you can count on these things:
- We will listen to you and answer your questions.
- We will treat you with respect.
- We work hard to get you all the money you deserve.
You can call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine at 1-800-747-3733 today to get a free consultation. There is no obligation. When we take care of your legal matters, you can focus on getting well.