Many people get hurt or injured on the job every day. No matter where you work, you are faced with the possibility of getting injured at work. If you are a worker who got injured on the job in our Miami Gardens workers’ compensation lawyers are here to help your through the claims process.
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What Is Workers Compensation?
Worker’s compensation is coverage for job-related employee injuries paid for by the business/employer. Florida’s statute 440.09 states that employees are eligible for compensation if they suffer death or an accidental compensable injury resulting from an accident while on the job or in employment.
The laws of Florida require most businesses/employers to obtain worker’s compensation coverage. Worker’s compensation policies compensate employees for occupationally incurred injuries no matter who was at fault. Additionally, employees can receive compensation for their work injury-related absence. Finally, workers’ compensation benefits are not taxable.
What Should I Do if I’m Hurt On The Job?
If an employee is injured while working, we advise them to do the following to protect their legal right to workers’ compensation benefits:
Tell Your Employer You are Hurt
After getting hurt or injured on the job, it’s vital to let your employer or workplace supervisor know immediately since it’s your employer’s job to file a workers’ compensation claim with their insurer on your behalf.
Get Medical Attention
You should see a physician promptly for treatment even after getting first aid. Usually, the doctor you see is authorized by the business/employer and its workers’ compensation carrier unless it is an emergency.
You are entitled to see a different doctor if the first one doesn’t satisfy you. However, workers’ compensation won’t pay for you to see another doctor.
Keep Records of Your Injury and Symptoms
Record written statements about the accident, your injuries, and symptoms. Make sure to capture crucial details like the date of the incident and the names of witnesses. Make a detailed account of the accident and keep it safe.
Take Photographs of Your Injury, if Possible
Sometimes, your employer may deny that you got injured on the job. So, you will want to take as many photographs and videos of your injuries and the scene of the incident.
File a Workers’ Compensation Claim With the Assistance of an Attorney
Before you file a workers’ compensation claim, consult an attorney. A workers’ compensation attorney has all the experience needed to handle a workers’ compensation claim.
What are the Most Common Workplace Accident Injuries?
You face the risk of getting workplace accident injuries in almost any work environment in Miami Gardens, Florida. The odds of suffering an injury on the job tend to be higher in specific workplaces. But anyone can suffer an injury at work.
Ten most common workplace accident injuries:
- Back / Neck Injuries: Most workplace accident injuries affect the neck and mostly the spine.
- Burns: Another common injury in workplace burns. Employees whose jobs involve working with fire or heat get burnt more often than not.
- Fractures: Many workplace injury victims end up with bone fractures. It may result from getting hit by machinery/equipment at work or by slipping and falling. There are multiple ways in which bone fractures can happen while you are on the job.
- Amputations: We have had many cases of employees getting their limbs torn away from their bodies. Dismemberment in the workplace is common in job environments where heavy machinery is used. Freak accidents can also cause amputation.
- Hearing Loss: Hearing loss is also a common workplace injury. It is mostly associated with the loudness of the construction industry, where loud equipment like dynamite, earth drills, etc., is used.
- Joint Pain: Many employees suffer joint pains in the workplace due to exerting too much pressure on the joints when they do the heavy lifting.
- Slip and Falls: Slip and fall injuries vary but may include traumatic brain injury, broken bones, spinal cord injury, and soft tissue damage.
- Construction Accidents: Construction-related injuries and fatalities mostly result from falls, electrocution, being struck by objects, and getting caught between objects in the construction site.
- Accidents While Traveling for Business: When employees get into accidents while traveling for company business like running errands for their boss or making deliveries, it counts as a workplace injury.
- Machine Accidents: A workplace accident can happen to anyone operating heavy machinery. A machine becomes a safety hazard if it isn’t guarded properly.
Why Should I Hire a Miami Gardens Workers’ Compensation Lawyer?
Lawyers understand the claims process. Our attorneys know the ropes to everything in a workers’ compensation claim. We will be able to work towards compensation much faster. We can help in the following manners:
Attorneys Gather Evidence
We will gather all the evidence you need to win your workers’ compensation claim, like medical evidence, vocational evidence, and witness statements. The medical evidence will include medical bills and records, while the vocational evidence includes testimony about how your job duties are affected by your new status.
Negotiate the Best Possible Workers’ Compensation Settlement
Our experienced attorneys will know what offer to accept or reject depending on the extent of your injuries. We can also help you calculate your lost income and negotiate a fair and reasonable workers’ compensation settlement.
Appeal Your Case if Your Claim is Denied
We will help you understand your legal position and explain why your claim was denied. We will scrutinize your case and formulate a plan to appeal (overturn) the denial.
Pursue Potential Third-Party Claims
Our credible lawyers can also help you recover money for a work-related accident from someone other than your employer. If an entity like an individual, piece of equipment, or manufacturer that is separate from your company was involved, our attorneys could help you file third-party personal injury claims to recover maximum compensation for your workplace accident.
How Much Does It Cost To Hire A Workers’ Compensation Attorney?
The attorneys at Miami Lawyers 360 provide legal representation to workplace accident victims without demanding upfront fees. Instead, we charge a contingency fee whereby we will receive a percentage of the amount that we recover in your settlement on top of what you owe for court fees.
What Should I Do If My Workers Compensation Claim Is Denied?
If your workers’ compensation claim is denied, you need to file some paperwork with the DWC (Department of Workers’ Compensation). First, file a petition for benefits within a year of your last income loss or medical bill or within two years of your injury, whichever comes first.
Unless you have a simple claim, you should consider hiring us to handle your appeal. The insurance carrier will have an attorney, and you may be at a disadvantage if you proceed without a lawyer.
What Responsibility Does the Employee Have In Filing A Workers Comp Claim?
During the claims process, the injured employee has the following responsibilities:
- Working responsibly: Florida employees must be responsible and abide by all the workplace safety protocols.
- Reporting the injury: Florida workers are required to report their injuries to a supervisor, fill out and file an injury report. Additionally, the victim should request a copy of the injury report to ensure that it is accurate.
- Seeking medical attention immediately: The employee is responsible for seeking medical attention or treatment.
- Maintaining accurate records: Another responsibility of employees during the workers’ compensation claims process is to keep track of all correspondence from you, attorneys, doctors, and workers’ compensation insurance carriers.
- Cooperating with their insurance provider: Employees pursuing a workers’ compensation claim should comply with the insurance company and the physician for documentation and medical attention, respectively.
- Acting responsibly after injury: After the accident, employees should manage their behavior and follow the doctor’s instructions to ensure a quick recovery.
What Responsibility Does the Employer Have in the Workers Compensation Process?
Employers have the following responsibilities in a workers’ compensation process:
- Providing a safe work environment: An employer must take precautions to prevent injury and hazardous situations since they are responsible for providing their employees with a safe working environment.
- Filing the First Report of Injury: An employer should fill out and file an injury report and forward it to their workers’ compensation insurance company.
- Respecting employees’ rights: Employers must be careful not to violate the rights of their injured employees. For instance, they must respect the employees’ rights to see a doctor after a workplace accident.
- Cooperating with investigative parties: Employers are required to collaborate with all investigating parties and provide any available documentation like the employee’s personnel file or payroll history.
- Allowing recovered employees to resume their positions: In Florida, it is the employer’s responsibility to recall an employee back to work once they make a full recovery.
Can I be Fired for Claiming a Workers Comp Claim?
No! In Florida, it is a criminal act for an employer to fire or penalize an employee for his/her claims. If you suspect that you’re termination, discrimination, or other forms of harassment at work are linked to filing a workers’ compensation claim, talk to our attorneys today. We can help.
Is There A Time Limit To File A Workers Comp Claim In Miami, Florida?
The statute of limitations in Florida workers’ compensation claims is two (2) years from the date of the accident. However, this period can be extended by one (1) year every time an injured worker receives a medical benefit from the workers’ compensation insurance carrier.
Can I Sue My Employer?
Employees in Florida can’t sue their employers over an accident in the workplace. But the employee can be compensated even if his/her own caused the accident through workers’ comp. However, there are exceptions where an employee files a lawsuit against their employer. The best option is to consult an attorney to review your case to decide the best way to proceed.
Can An Independent Contractor File A Workers Compensation Claim?
Florida law doesn’t require employers to purchase coverage for independent contractors. Talk to a lawyer to understand the specifics.
What Is My Miami Gardens Workers Compensation Claim Worth?
Since coverage amounts for areas such as lost wages can vary from one policy to another, computing the total value of a workers’ compensation claim can be difficult. At the same time, several other factors could affect your claim’s worth.
Workers’ compensation will pay for:
- Your medical bills: Workers’ compensation pays for all medical care required to treat a job-related injury or illness and provided by an authorized treating physician.
- Any rehab costs: Workers’ compensation covers any rehabilitation treatment costs. If you need to retrain for another line of work, workers’ compensation will cater for that as well.
- Lost wages: Typically, workers’ compensation policies in Florida are supposed to cover 60% – 80% of your lost income.
- Prescription medication: Workers’ compensation also covers expenses for prescription medication meant to treat workplace injuries.
- Travel expenses related to the treatment of your injury: You’re also entitled to be compensated for traveling expenses while moving to and from doctor’s appointments.
- Permanent Partial Disability (PPD): Workers’ compensation requires the injured worker to be paid an additional amount of money if the authorized treating doctor issues a disability rating that complies with the American Medical Association Guidelines.
Many people associate workplace injuries with inherently dangerous or handsy jobs such as construction work; However, people in other work environments can also get workplace injuries.
If you were injured in a workplace accident in Florida, speak with a Miami Gardens workers’ compensation attorney about seeking compensation for your injuries. Call our personal injury law firm in Miami at (786) 686-2857 or email to book a free case evaluation.