Do you work in an industry where you are exposed to harmful substances or conditions? Are you experiencing health problems as a result of your work? If so, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits that can help cover medical expenses and lost wages due to your occupational disease.
However, filing for these benefits can be a complex process. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced Tampa workers’ compensation lawyer on your side who knows how to fight for your rights. We’ll explore the basics of getting workers’ compensation for an occupational disease in Florida.
What Is an Occupational Disease?
Florida Statute 440.151 defines an occupational disease as an illness caused by the nature of your employment. These conditions are often the result of exposure to harmful substances or conditions in the workplace. Many of them develop gradually over time, and may not show symptoms until years after the initial exposure.
Common examples of occupational diseases include mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos, hearing loss due to noisy work environments and carpal tunnel syndrome caused by repetitive motions such as typing or assembly line work.
If you believe that you have developed an occupational disease, it’s crucial to report it to your employer as soon as possible. You should also seek medical attention and consult with a workers’ compensation lawyer who can help guide you through the process of filing a claim for benefits.
Will Workers’ Compensation Cover My Job-Related Illness?
In order to receive workers’ compensation for occupational illness in Florida, you must demonstrate that your job was a significant factor in your developing the condition. This can be challenging since many diseases have multiple causes.
An experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can help gather evidence to support your claim. Additionally, you must report the illness or injury promptly to your employer and seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Failure to do so may result in denial of benefits.
How Do I File a Workers Comp Claim for an Occupational Disease?
If you have contracted an illness or disease as a result of your job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Filing a claim for these benefits can seem overwhelming but it is important to take action quickly.
The first step in filing a claim is notifying your employer of your illness or diagnosis. This should be done as soon as possible to ensure that the necessary paperwork and documentation can be started. There is a 90-day deadline to notify your employer when you develop an occupational disease.
Next, you will need to complete the appropriate forms required by Florida’s workers’ compensation system. These forms include:
- DWC-1 (Employer’s First Report of Injury or Illness)
- DWC-3 (Request for Wage Loss/Temporary Partial Benefits).
It is highly recommended that you seek legal representation from an experienced Tampa workers’ compensation lawyer during this process. A lawyer can help ensure that all necessary information and documentation are provided accurately and efficiently.
Once your claim has been filed with the Division of Workers’ Compensation, there will be an investigation into your case. The insurer may require additional medical exams or records before making a determination on whether they will approve or deny your claim.
Getting workers’ comp benefits for an occupational disease is complex, so you’ll want help from an experienced attorney.
How Long Do I Have to File an Occupational Illness Claim?
If you have been diagnosed with an occupational disease, it is crucial to file a claim for benefits as soon as possible. In the state of Florida, there is a statute of limitations that applies to filing workers’ compensation claims.
Generally speaking, injured workers have up to two years from the date of their injury or diagnosis to file a claim for benefits. However, in cases involving occupational diseases, this timeline may be extended.
It’s important not to wait too long before taking action on filing for benefits. If you are uncertain whether your illness qualifies for coverage, you should reach out to an experienced Tampa workers comp attorney.
How Much Will I Receive in Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
When it comes to workers’ compensation benefits, the amount you receive will depend on a variety of factors. These include the severity of your condition, the type of benefits you are eligible for, and how long you have been out of work.
In general, workers’ compensation benefits for occupational diseases may cover medical expenses related to treatment and recovery, as well as any lost wages due to missed work time. The exact amount you receive will vary depending on your specific circumstances.
It’s important to note that Florida law sets limits on certain types of workers’ compensation benefits. For example, temporary total disability payments cannot exceed 66 2/3% of your average weekly wage. However, there may be other forms of compensation available if this limit is not sufficient.
To get a better idea of what kind and amount of benefits you can expect, it’s best to consult with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer.
Let an Experienced Tampa Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Fight for Your Benefits!
Navigating the workers’ compensation system can be complicated, especially when it comes to occupational disease. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced Tampa workers’ compensation lawyer on your side.
An attorney can help you understand the requirements for filing a claim and ensure that you receive the full amount of benefits you are entitled to. We can also represent you if your claim is denied by your employer or their insurance company.
Don’t wait any longer to seek legal guidance. Contact our Florida workers comp lawyers today to schedule a free case review!