The popularity of rideshare companies has increased over the years. People don’t think twice before ordering a ride on their cell phones. Unfortunately, the people who work as Uber drivers are normally not entitled to Florida workers comp benefits.
When they come to meet with one of our Riverview workers comp attorneys, they’re looking for help.
Here, we’ll discuss what Uber drivers are supposed to do if they get hurt while on the job. We’ll also explain what options may be available to you.
Only Actual Employees Are Entitled to Florida Workers Compensation Benefits
In Florida, the only people who are entitled to workers compensation benefits are employees. If you’re classified as anything but an employee, there’s a good chance you won’t be eligible for benefits.
In the days following your workplace accident, you should call an experienced Riverview workers comp attorney. They can listen to your story and give you a better idea of what you are entitled to.
A Riverview Workers Comp Lawyer Cannot Get You Benefits if You’re an Independent Contractor
One of the tricky things about being an Uber driver is that it can be a double-edged sword. It’s great because you make your own schedule and decide how many hours you want to work.
When a passenger notifies that app that they’re looking for a ride, you have the option of grabbing that rider or not.
At the same time, you aren’t entitled to the same kind of benefits other employees are. For example, you won’t be entitled to overtime if you work for Uber. Nor will you be entitled to things like health benefits and dental. It’s the tradeoff you make.
The biggest tradeoff may be the fact that independent contractors in Florida aren’t entitled to workers compensation.
Are Uber Drivers Categorized as Employees or Independent Contractors?
Historically, Uber drivers have been classified as independent contractors – not employees. What this means is that, if you do get hurt on the job, you won’t be able to apply for workers compensation benefits.
You can talk to a workers compensation lawyer in Riverview to find out where you stand. If you work for Uber in any capacity other than a driver, there may be a chance that you’re entitled to benefits.
However, if you’re a rideshare driver, you won’t be able to count on workers comp to get you through your injury and recovery.
Riverview Workers Comp Attorneys Are Familiar With the Factors That Affect Your Employment Status
Some of our clients insist that, even though they’re Uber drivers, they aren’t independent contractors. Perhaps they were told something different when they were hired by Uber. Or they may have simply misunderstood their contract.
When you talk to a Riverview workers comp attorney, they can clarify things for you. They can tell you if the language of your contract dictates that you’re an independent contractor. If this is the case, then you won’t be about to rely on workers’ compensation benefits to see you through.
If you believe you don’t meet the definition of an independent contractor as outlined below, you should contact our attorneys right away. We offer a free case evaluation.
How Much Control Does the Company Have Over Your Work?
One of the most important determining factors when it comes to your employment status is control. Does the company you work for have control over your work? Or do they simply wait until a project is due and let you work on your own?
If the person you report to has substantive control over your work, there is a chance your Riverview workers comp attorney can argue you’re an employee, rather than an independent contractor.
Just keep in mind – when it comes to Uber drivers, you have ultimate control. For example, you decide when you will work. You also choose which fares you want to accept and which ones you pass over.
Are You Entitled to Normal Employee Benefits?
Another critical factor is whether you’re entitled to the same benefits as company employees. Do you have access to healthcare benefits? Are you allowed to participate in the company’s 401k program?
Some of the other considerations that will help determine whether you are an employee versus an independent contractor include the following:
- Do you accrue personal or sick time?
- Do you get paid for holidays?
- Do you have access to dental, vision, and health insurance?
- Do you get annual reviews with the potential for a raise?
- Are you eligible for company promotions?
These are the questions your Riverview workers comp lawyer will ask when they review your case.
Do You Have to File Your Own 1099 Come Tax Time?
When you’re an employee, your company will provide you with a W-2 at the end of the year. This is the documentation you’ll need to file your income taxes. Your W-2 will include your wage and withholding information.
Independent contractors, on the other hand, are responsible for their own taxes. They are required to file a 1099 which lists their income. They are expected to track their own withholdings, income, and other information.
Rideshare Drivers Are Almost Always Categorized as Independent Contractors
In Florida, rideshare drivers are considered independent contractors. You make your own hours and have total control over your work. You aren’t entitled to company benefits and you are required to handle your own taxes.
Your Riverview workers comp attorney will confirm this when you first meet.
You Can Sign Up for Uber’s Driver Injury Protection Coverage
When you work as an Uber driver, you do have the option of purchasing something called, Injury Protection Insurance. This works similarly to workers compensation in the sense that it offers you various benefits in the event of a workplace injury.
You will be entitled to compensation for your medical records as well as lost wages. In addition, if you pass away as a result of a workplace accident, your family will be entitled to survivor benefits.
Reach Out to an Experienced Riverview Workers Comp Lawyer
If you’re an Uber driver and have been injured on the job, you’re probably quite scared. You may be wondering how you’re going to pay your medical bills. Our Florida workers comp attorneys understand how difficult it can be to manage without access to workers compensation benefits.
Independent contractors aren’t entitled to workers compensation benefits in Florida. Rideshare drivers are generally classified as independent contractors. But you may feel that your situation better fits the criteria for being classified as an employee.
We suggest that you contact our office as soon as possible after your accident. We offer a free, initial consultation. Talk to one of our Riverview workers comp lawyers. They’ll review your case and let you know what options are available to you.