In Florida, injured workers can claim workers’ compensation benefits following a work-related injury. The work comp process is easier when you work with a Florida workers’ comp attorney. There are different types of benefits an injured worker can get. We discuss them and more in this article. If you suffer a work-related injury, contact our legal team at Work Injury Rights.
Who Can Receive Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Florida?
In theory, every employee who suffers an injury in the line of duty is entitled to workers’ compensation. However, the work comp system in Florida does not involve government-funded workers comp insurance. Instead, business owners have to buy a workers’ compensation insurance policy from a commercial or private insurance company.
If your employer doesn’t have workers’ comp coverage, getting compensation may be hard but not impossible. In such an instance, you may be able to file a lawsuit against your employer. But generally, the law requires the following Florida employers to have workers’ compensation insurance:
- Businesses in the construction industry with one or more employees
- Businesses outside the construction industry with four or more employees
- Businesses in the agricultural sector with six regular employees or twelve seasonals, who must have worked more than 30 days within a season, but no more than 45 days in a calendar year
What Are the Types of Workers’ Comp Benefits in Florida?
In Florida, injured workers can receive three major types of benefits. They are wage loss benefits, medical benefits, and additional benefits. Our Florida work comp lawyers discuss them one after the other.
Wage Loss Benefits
Injured workers who are unable to return to work immediately are eligible to receive wage loss benefits. However, you will not get paid for the first seven days of your disability. Then, you will only get paid for those days if your disability gets to 21 days. The amount you’ll receive as compensation depends on the type of disability suffered.
Below, we look at the different disability classes.
Temporary Total Disability Benefits (TTD):
This covers the compensation you get when your injury keeps you from working, but you are expected to recover and return to work. You can receive up to 80% of your wage, depending on the severity of your injury. TTD ends when you reach maximum medical improvement (MMI).
Temporary Partial Disability Benefits (TPD):
This compensation is for those who can return to work in a limited capacity. To qualify for this benefit, your current income must not be 80% more than the amount you earned before the injury.
Permanent Total Disability Benefits (PTD):
As the name implies, this is the benefit you get when your injury keeps you from working indefinitely. You start receiving this benefit once you’ve attained MMI. PTD benefits continue until you’re 75 or until you die. In addition, the amount you’ll get depends on the impairment rating assigned by your doctor.
Permanent Partial Disability Benefits:
This compensation is for those who, although permanently disabled, can still do some type of work. Again, the amount you receive as lost wages depends on your impairment rating.
Under Florida law, injured workers do not cover the cost of their medical treatment themselves. Instead, their employer’s work comp insurance covers all medical expenses. The latter includes doctor visits, medications, physical therapy, etc. If you paid for emergency care, your employer is obligated to return to you the amount paid. However, note that your treating doctor is the one chosen by your employer. Therefore, if you use a doctor of your choice, you may have your claim denied.
Workers’ compensation in Florida also entitles injured employees to additional benefits. Two of such benefits are:
If you die from a work-related injury or illness, your eligible surviving family member will receive death benefits. However, this benefit is only available to workers who die a year after the workplace accident or five years after a continuous disability. In Florida, surviving family members can receive funeral expenses of up to $7,500.
Depending on your age, work history, or education, you may take advantage of Florida’s reemployment services. The programs assist injured workers with:
- Transferable skills analysis
- Vocational counseling
- Training and education
- Job seeking skills training
- Selective job placement
Let Experienced Florida Work Comp Lawyers Help You Get Your Benefits
If you suffered an injury while performing your job duties, our legal team at Work Injury Rights would help you get the compensation you deserve. In addition, we will protect your rights throughout the claims process. Contact us today for a free case review.