A work injury can be a life-altering event. Workers’ compensation is in place to assist those who get injured on the job. However, navigating the workers comp process in Florida can be complicated.
There are many reasons why you should consider hiring a lawyer to represent your interests. Our Florida workers’ compensation attorneys can assist with filing your claim, negotiate with the insurance company, and represent you in hearings if your claim is initially denied.
Understanding Florida’s Workers’ Compensation Law
Florida’s Workers’ Compensation Law is a system that provides benefits to workers who are injured or contract a disease during the course of their employment. The benefits can include medical expenses, lost wages, death benefits, and retraining support.
Most employers in Florida are required to purchase workers’ compensation coverage.
When to Hire a Workers Compensation Lawyer
It’s always wise to consult with a workers comp lawyer after being injured on the job. Navigating the claim process alone can be overwhelming. Hiring an attorney significantly improves your chances of getting benefits.
Hiring a lawyer is especially critical in the following situations.
Your claim is contested or rejected by your employer or the insurance company.
If your employer or their insurance company disputes your claim or denies it outright, you should seek legal representation. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and guide you through the appeals process.
Your work injury is severe, life-changing, and/or permanent.
If your injuries are severe and have long-term implications on your ability to work or quality of life, it’s crucial to have a lawyer on your side. They can ensure that you receive the full benefits you’re entitled to.
You are uncertain about the fairness of a settlement offer.
If you’ve received a settlement offer but aren’t sure if it’s fair, a lawyer can provide valuable advice. They can help you understand the implications of the settlement and whether it adequately covers your medical expenses and lost wages.
You are unable to reach an agreement on a workers’ compensation settlement with the insurance company.
If negotiations with the insurance company have reached a standstill, a lawyer can help move things forward. They can negotiate on your behalf and represent you in any necessary legal proceedings.
The Legal Process After a Work Injury
Under Florida law, an employee who experiences an injury that is both caused by and occurs during their employment is required to inform their employer about the injury within 30 days from the date of the injury or when it was discovered.
Missing the deadline could mean you lose out on benefits.
The employer must report any such injury or death to its insurance carrier within 7 days after becoming aware of it. Following this, the carrier has a 14-day window, starting from the employer’s receipt of the injury report form, to file this information with the department.
How Can a Workers Comp Lawyer Help?
A Florida work injury lawyer can guide you through this entire process. They can provide assistance with:
Communicating with the Workers’ Comp Insurer
A lawyer can communicate with the workers’ comp insurer on your behalf. This includes handling all correspondence, submitting necessary paperwork, and ensuring that all deadlines are met.
Gathering Medical Evidence
A crucial part of any workers’ comp claim is the medical evidence. A lawyer can help gather medical evidence that supports your claim. This may involve obtaining medical records, arranging or recommending treatment with certain doctors, obtaining medical opinions, and arranging for independent medical examinations.
Negotiating a Settlement
One of the most important roles of a workers’ comp lawyer is negotiating a settlement. A lawyer can help ensure that you receive the most money possible for your injuries. They can also write a settlement agreement that accurately reflects your needs and protects your rights.
Representing You at Hearings
If your claim is denied or if there are disputes about your benefits, your case may go before a judge. A lawyer can represent you at your workers’ comp hearing, presenting evidence, cross-examining witnesses, and making legal arguments on your behalf.
Assessing the True Value of Your Claim
A lawyer can assess the true value of your claim, taking into consideration medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and potential long-term effects of the injury. This ensures that you don’t settle for less than what your claim is worth.
Call Work Injury Rights for a Free Case Review
Having an experienced lawyer by your side can make all the difference in your workers comp case. Remember, it’s not just about getting compensation; it’s about getting the right compensation for your injuries and ensuring your rights are protected.