Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coral Springs
11555 Heron Bay Blvd
Coral Springs, FL 33076
Phone: (954) 289-6233
Call Now to Start Your Claim! (954) 289-6233
¡LOS ABOGADOS DE COMPENSACIÓN LABORAL HABLAN ESPAÑOL!
The aim of a workers compensation lawyer in Coral Springs, Florida is to make sure that injured employees are provided compensation and benefits after being hurt while on the job. With a couple of exceptions, most workers in the state of Florida are covered by the workers compensation policies provided by employers. If someone is hurt at work, it is important to know which steps to take, which steps to avoid, and what to expect in the process of filing a claim and seeking fair compensation and benefits.
An Overview of the Process of Claiming Workers’ Compensation in Coral Springs, Florida
From missile manufacturers to technical industries, and the many prestigious tourist-related jobs, Florida is a bustling state with a diverse array of positions of employment. With all jobs come the risks for injury. When an injury occurs in the workplace, workers must know what to do in order to claim the benefits and compensation they are legally entitled to.
Does the Employer Offer Workers Compensation Insurance?
The most important thing to consider if a worker is hurt on the job is whether or not the employer offers workers compensation benefits. For instance, employers in the state’s construction industry are obligated to offer such workers insurance coverage if they have one or more workers, part-time or full-time. Also, agricultural employees are entitled to workers’ compensation coverage if the employer has either 12 seasonal employees that work for a period of 30 days, or six regular employees. The general rule in Coral Springs, Florida is that an employer with four or more workers must have workers’ compensation insurance. If your employer does not carry the legally required workers compensation insurance then make sure you contact us to speak with one of our experienced workers compensation lawyers today.
What to Do When an Injury Occurs at Work
Once injured, an employee must report their injury to the employer within 30 days of the injury occurring in order to qualify for benefits. Once the injury has been reported, it is up to the employer to report it to their insurance provider within seven days. If they fail to do so within the time limit specified, they may incur penalties and fines.
Soon after the employer has submitted the required information to their insurance carrier, the employee should receive the necessary information from the Employee Assistance Office of the Division of Workers’ Compensation in Florida about their rights to benefits, along with an accident report and several forms to sign, including the right to release the worker’s medical records and a fraud statement.
Once the compensation claim has been filed, the worker must go to a doctor that has been chosen by the employer and their insurance company. During the medical examination, the employee must give the doctor a complete description of the injury, how it happened, and how it is work-related.
Insurance Company Review
Along with the report of the initial claim and the doctor’s medical report, the employer’s insurance carrier will then review everything and determine whether or not the worker’s injury happened on the job and what type of benefits he or she may be entitled to. It is at this point that the worker’s claim may be approved or denied. If the benefits are approved, the employer will cover the worker’s medical treatment, and the worker may be able to receive compensation for time missed from work due to the injury as well as further possible benefits if the injury rendered the worker disabled in any way.
Ideally, a workers’ compensation claim should be quick and easy. However, there may be times when the carrier for an employer’s insurance will deny the claim for a number of reasons, or they offer a claim that may not seem fair to the employee. If the claim is denied, the worker should seek the help of a skilled workers’ compensation attorney who will assist with filing an appeal that will then be heard in front of a judge.
Workers are also allowed to have legal representation to guide them through the general process of claiming compensation.
Can Compensation Be Recovered for a Car Accident-Related Injury at Work? And Can a Worker Be Fired for Filing a Workers Comp Claim?
If a worker files or attempts to file a workers compensation claim, it is against the law for the employer to fire him or her. There are some states where, if a worker can prove that his or her employer either fired him or her or forced an injured employee to resign in retaliation for filing a claim, the worker may be able to file a civil lawsuit against the employer for such action. Such a suit could lead to substantial damages being awarded to the employee and employers are aware of this. This is where the expertise of our of our workers compensation lawyers comes in handy.
In the event of a car accident-related injury at work, if someone other than a co-worker or employer is responsible for the accident, such as the driver of the car that hit the employee, a third-party lawsuit may be filed for additional financial damages. It should be noted that civil personal injury claims and workers’ compensation claims are not mutually exclusive, and since compensation does not cover an injured worker for something such as pain and suffering, the worker is more likely to get a complete recovery by suing the driver who caused the accident. In this case, there will be two claims to make: the personal injury claim against the driver who was responsible for the accident and the worker’s permanent injuries, if any were suffered; and a workers’ compensation claim for lost wages and medical expenses since the accident occurred while on the job.
Typically, there will be lien imposed by the insurance company that is responsible for workers’ compensation against any recovery the worker may receive from the responsible driver. This is sometimes referred to as a subrogation claim. The purpose of the lien is to provide reimbursement to the workers’ compensation insurance carrier and is usually a percentage of the benefits that the employee recovers in his or her civil claim. So, it must be noted that the injured worker does not receive double the benefits and that the workers’ compensation insurance carrier is entitled to be reimbursed for what it had paid out to the employee.
Can A Worker Who Receives Workers Compensation and Is Unable to Work Due to the Injuries Be Fired?
Many workers’ compensation statutes only prohibit an employee’s termination in retaliation for filing or even attempting to file a workers’ compensation claim in Florida, or for testifying at such a hearing. An employee should be able to carry out his or her core responsibilities of their employment position in order for an employer to be obliged to provide employment for that person that falls within restrictions due to the on-the-job injury.
However, if a worker cannot work whatsoever and still receives benefits, the employer will not be permitted to fire them without knowing that they have reached the maximum medical improvement (MMI). If the worker has reached the MMI and is unable to return to his or her previous duties, they may be terminated. But, if they are able to carry out essential duties of their position with some degree of accommodation, and the employer terminates the working relationship due to a disabling condition, the employee could have recourse to claim as a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
It must be noted that when a worker is fired, his or her benefits should not be affected. If the person can no longer carry out his or her previous job, they may be able to claim vocational benefits, along with retraining for a different position or career. Typically, the workers’ compensation benefits will continue until the worker can return to work in a position that pays a substantially similar amount to the previous wages.
Before Filing a Workers Compensation Claim in Coral Springs, Florida
Prior to filing a claim for workers’ compensation, workers should consider the following tips.
- The accident or injury must be reported to the employer or a supervisor as early on as possible, but definitely within 30 days of it happening, or they risk the claim being denied. Even if no work is missed, the injury should still be reported.
- Workers must visit a physician that is designated by their employer or the employer’s insurance company. If the worker chooses to see his or her own doctor, they risk not being compensated for such services.
- The employer is compelled to contact their workers’ compensation insurance provider within 7 days of the injury being reported, after which the employee will receive the relevant documentation explaining the claims process and their rights.
- Some of the expenses covered by workers’ compensation include wage replacement, temporary disability, and medical care.
- While it is the intention of compensation to provide immediate compensation and medical care, it is not uncommon for claims to be rejected.
Seek Legal Counsel from an Experienced Workers Compensation Lawyer
Throughout the entire process of claiming compensation, care is necessary to accurately report the accident, file the claim, and pursue benefits the worker is legally entitled to. A skilled workers’ compensation attorney will assist with filing for benefits correctly the first time and ensuring an employee receives fair benefits for the injury they suffered in the workplace.