Workers’ compensation laws began going into effect in the United States at the beginning of the 20th century. At that time, railroad employees had high-risk, dangerous jobs and needed some form of aid to deal with oftentimes life-altering injuries.
The efforts to secure compensation for workplace injuries culminated in 1990 with the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Today, American workers are guaranteed legal protection from employment termination due to a workplace injury.
If you have been injured on the job, you need to know what type of injuries are covered under workers’ compensation benefits and how to apply for monetary compensation during the recovery process.
Malfunctions with industrial pieces of machinery and workplace equipment can result in devastating injuries. At WorkInjuryRights.com, we fight for those who have experienced accidents with the following equipment (and more):
The other common category of cases we handle includes incidents that may not necessarily be the result of equipment failure. Some of the workplace disasters that fall into this category include:
These lists are not exhaustive—there is no way to categorize every case that passes through our doors. Above all, however, we are dedicated to fighting for those who have been injured in the workplace through no fault of their own.
The legal services for workers’ compensation claims are on a contingency fee basis, meaning you pay nothing unless we secure a settlement or jury award on your behalf.
With 30 years of collective legal experience, we are ready to take on your claim while providing the knowledgeable counsel you need. Several of our attorneys have previously represented insurance companies in workers’ compensation claims. We know their tactics and their mindset. Your employer and their insurance company have an attorney working for them, and so should you. Our dedicated team of trial attorneys is prepared to take your case to trial, if necessary.
The firm provides the highest quality of legal specialization both inside and out of the courtroom. We represent only injured parties – never insurance companies.
The Fort Meyers office is located to the east of the Caloosahatchee River. It is 20 miles north of Fort Meyers Beach, at the cross section of I-75 and State Roads 82 and 93. Surrounded by dozen of golf courses and near both the river and forests, our Fort Meyers office is located in a central location to many residential areas, as well.
Some of the surrounding neighborhoods we provide service to include:
WorkInjuryRights.com takes pride in having multiple locations that allow us to take on clients throughout Florida. Make sure to check our contact page for a list of our locations to figure out if the Ft. Myers office is the closest to your area!
Employers are legally obligated to report injuries to their insurance companies. In fact, OSHA laws require any serious injuries (typically a situation that requires hospitalization) to be documented and reported.
For many states, there is a small window of opportunity to formally report an injury. In some cases, employees have only days after the injury to make sure it’s reported. If your employer hasn’t reported your injury to the insurance company, you can typically call the Department of Labor and they will help you find the correct forms to submit to insurance. Additionally, you can contact the employee resources center to try and talk to someone from your employer who can make sure the report gets done on time.
The exact definition of a workplace injury varies from state to state. For the most part, a work-related injury is one that happens because of or during employment activities. This could mean an accident that occurred on a remote worksite while a job was being performed. It could also refer to an injury that happened due to faulty work equipment.
For workers’ compensation benefits to cover employees in all different professions, the definition of a work-related injury is intentionally vague. This allows employers to provide benefits to their employees and avoid lengthy and expensive litigation. On the flip side, it also means that employers and insurance companies can deny workers’ compensation cases because the language is so vague.
Some of the most common workplace injuries include: muscle strains/sprains, lacerations, broken bones, and head injuries.
For the most part, no—you cannot sue your employer after receiving workers’ compensation. By nature, workers’ compensation laws are designed to ensure employees’ right to medical assistance while protecting employers from litigation.
Both parties strike a “compensation bargain,” wherein employees will receive benefits for any work-related injuries but they cannot sue the employers in return. Employers pay regular insurance fees to ensure that they can always afford the medical expenses of employees in case of an accident. When the employment contract is signed, employees waive their right to file lawsuits.
Overall, your medical expenses and at least a portion of your lost pay should be covered while you recover from your injury.
Yes, it’s possible to sue third-parties in the event of a workplace injury. There are many situations where this could be possible. For example, if a third-party inspection company failed to notify your employer of faulty machinery or equipment, resulting in an unsafe working environment, you could sue them.
The most common example of this is when employees are in motor vehicle accidents while working. Although your employer would cover your expenses via workers’ compensation benefits, you can still sue the other driver if the accident was their fault. This could open you up to being able to secure legal damages for the accident, beyond your workers’ compensation.
Yes, it is possible to receive both workers’ compensation and Social Security benefits at the same time. Overall, the type and impact of your injury will determine whether or not you can.
Social Security benefits are designed to help people who have debilitating barriers to securing a job. This could be chronic illnesses, psychological disorders, or physical disabilities. For the sake of this program, you are either able or unable to work. There really aren’t any in-between circumstances.
Meanwhile, workers’ compensation is a benefit that really only covers the lifespan of your recovery. For some people, workplace accidents result in life-altering disabilities that make them eligible for these benefits long-term.
No, you cannot receive both workers’ compensation and unemployment benefits following a workplace injury. The two programs cover different situations.
To be eligible for unemployment benefits, you have to be physically and mentally able to perform the duties of a job. On the other hand, workers’ compensation is for paying medical bills and lost productivity hours while you recover.
If you have to change careers following a workplace injury, you may be able to collect unemployment, as long as you can demonstrate your ability to do a different type of work. When people manage to earn unemployment while out for an injury, it can decrease the overall amount they receive from workers’ compensation. Overall, though, this is a rare situation for most people.
No, employers cannot terminate employment contracts due to injury or workers’ compensation circumstances. This is not to say that employers can’t fire you while you’re on out for an injury, if the termination is for non-injury reasons.
If you have been let go after filing for workers’ compensation benefits, make sure you have a complete understanding of why. The employer may have just cause to fire you if you’ve had poor performance reviews, written warnings, etc., or if you broke any company policies. You can hire a lawyer to help you file a wrongful termination lawsuit if you believe that the termination had anything to do with your injury.
No, your employer does not have to hold your position while you are recovering from a workplace injury. Most states in the country do not require employers to do so, mainly because you may have a business-critical position that has to be filled in your absence.
For the most part, it is more beneficial for employers to hold a position. For one, the onboarding and training costs for hiring new employees often outweighs the loss of experience for employees on leave. Also, when employees are let go while they’re on injury leave, it can create the appearance that the employee was terminated because of their injury, which is illegal.