Work injuries can be caused by a disaster known as an act of God. Florida’s workers’ compensation system protects injured and sick employees. So, when work-related wounds or occupational diseases occur, Miami workers’ compensation attorneys help the affected workers get comp benefits. However, not all injuries or illnesses are compensable. Instead, compensable conditions must have arisen in the course of your employment.
However, proving that you sustained an injury while working may not always entitle you to comp benefits. Where your injury results from an act of God, getting workers’ compensation may be challenging. Therefore, it’s always best to hire a Miami workers’ comp lawyer. An excellent attorney can evaluate your claim and determine whether you deserve comp benefits.
What Is an Act of God?
Acts of God refer to the operation of uncontrollable natural circumstances or forces. Here, the natural occurrence is beyond human control. In addition, acts of God are usually not reasonably foreseeable or preventable by reasonable care. This concept is also called “force majeure,” especially when it applies to contracts.
An act of God can frustrate the performance of a contract. For example, the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdowns prevented the execution of several agreements worldwide. However, the defaulting party usually doesn’t bear liability. This is because the action was beyond the control of the defaulting party.
Similarly, if an act of God causes your work injury, this means that the damage is unrelated to your work or unsafe practices. However, this doesn’t automatically release your employer from liability. Let’s first look at some examples of acts of God, though.
Examples of Acts of God
Acts of God can occur in several ways. These natural events can then injure workers. Relevant examples of acts of God include:
- Heavy rains and floods
- Lighting storms
- Trees felled by strong winds
Imagine that heavy rains fall and flood the factory where you work. Then, suppose the flood makes your work floor slippery, and you sustain a slip and fall. In this instance, your work accident resulted from an act of God. This is because the factory ordinarily wouldn’t have been wet but for the unusually heavy rains and flood.
Can I Still Recover Compensation if an Act of God Caused My Work Injury?
Employers and insurance carriers don’t relish paying comp benefits. This is because the more money they withhold, the higher their profits. Therefore, they manufacture several excuses to escape liability. Escaping liability might seem easier if an act of God caused your workplace injury. However, acts of God don’t relieve employers from workers’ comp liability. We’ll explain why below.
Fault-Based Vs. No-Fault Workers’ Compensation
Florida’s workers’ comp system isn’t fault-based, so you don’t have to prove your employer’s negligence to recover comp benefits. You can also recover compensation regardless of your liability. So even if you caused your injuries, you could still get comp benefits. You can only lose them in limited circumstances.
Therefore, you can recover compensation for injuries from acts of God. Your employer cannot deny you benefits because they aren’t responsible. Their responsibility is inconsequential.
Proving Your Right to Comp Benefits
You still have to establish specific facts to get comp benefits for injuries from acts of God. So, you must show that:
- The accident occurred during your employment
- During the natural event, you were at a place you ordinarily were supposed to be
- You were reasonably performing your work functions or incidental activities
If you can prove these factors, you can recover compensation. Speaking to a Miami workers’ comp attorney will also ensure that you get the money you deserve.
What to Do After Act of God Accidents
Accidents from acts of God are often more severe than regular job mishaps. Therefore, the injuries and general damages may be worse. So, it’ll be best to seek medical attention after an accident. You can then report your injury to your employer. Florida gives you thirty days to file this report. Stick to this timeline, so you don’t lose your right to compensation.
Get the Best Miami Workers’ Compensation Attorneys!
Have you sustained a work-related injury or an occupational disease? You may be eligible for workers’ comp benefits if you have. Is your employer avoiding responsibility by claiming your injury resulted from an act of God? Such claims don’t automatically extinguish your right to comp benefits.
However, you’ll need excellent Miami workers’ compensation attorneys. Our lawyers can adequately investigate your work injury to determine its cause and file a claim, if necessary. So, call us today for a FREE initial consultation with one of our attorneys.