What is it?
Worker’s compensation provides monetary compensation to a worker who is injured or becomes ill as a result of his or her employment. Some common types of workplace injuries include:
- Back injuries or other muscular injuries due to heavy lifting or twisting
- Injury accidents due to unsafe equipment or working conditions, including brain injuries
- Repetitive motion stress injuries such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or Tendonitis
- Illnesses resulting from exposure to harmful chemicals or materials such as asbestos
Compensation may include some or all of the following:
- Wage loss benefits equivalent to 2/3 your normal salary
- Coverage of medical treatment, including doctor and hospital bills, medication, physical therapy, and mileage to and from doctor’s visits
- Vocational rehabilitation/retraining
- Compensation for any permanent impairment resulting from the injury
- Reimbursement for living expenses if the injured person is unable to resume work
- Death benefits and/or funeral expenses in cases of fatal injury
What does it involve?
The first step in getting Worker’s Compensation is to document the injury in a complete and timely manner. This includes:
- Reporting the accident or injury to a supervisor. Insist on having an accident report filled out. Under Florida state law this report must be filed within 30 days of the injury.
- Seeking immediate medical care and making medical personnel aware that the injury is work-related.
- Securing witnesses. Gather complete contact information for anyone who saw or was otherwise connected to the injury and can corroborate the claim.
- Maintaining a file with all medical reports bills, and other evidence of the injury and circumstances thereof.
The intent of worker’s compensation legislation is to insure that any workplace injury is handled in a just and timely manner and that the worker is treated fairly. But in reality, the claims process can be confusing and many employers and insurance companies find ways to delay or deny coverage, or otherwise make it difficult for the worker to receive just compensation. They may threaten the worker with retaliation or firing if he files a claim.
If the worker is in the country illegally, the employer may threaten to report them to immigration authorities, or claim that they don’t owe compensation to illegal immigrants. In fact, all that is required to qualify for workman’s compensation is proof that the injured worker was hired, not proof of legal residency.
What’s more, a worker’s employment status may be in question. In some cases, workers are treated as independent contractors when, legally, they should be considered employees. Even if your employer insists you are an independent contractor, a lawyer can help to determine the correct status of your employment and thus your eligibility for benefits.
At Jacobs & Goodman,
You always get an attorney, never a case manager like at other firms.
We take a personal interest in your case, and help you through every aspect, including helping you deal with medical liens and debts.
We work on a contingency basis, which means if we don’t win your case, you don’t pay.
If you’ve been injured or become ill in the line of work, you may be eligible for Worker’s Compensation. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.