There are more remote workers in Tampa today than ever before. With the COVID-19 pandemic came an entire restructuring of numerous companies. They couldn’t afford to shut down operations. Instead, they found a way for their employees to work from home.
One would think that this would have decreased the number of workers’ compensation claims. However, that isn’t necessarily true. Just because somebody works from home, that doesn’t mean they’re immune to workplace accidents. It just means that Tampa workers comp attorneys have to work twice as hard to prove a remote employee’s workers’ compensation case.
Here, we will describe the telecommuting phenomenon that has occurred in the U.S. We will also explain why remote workers are still eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. If you still have questions after reading this article, feel free to contact our office directly.
You can schedule a date and time to meet with one of our skilled Tampa workers comp attorneys. We offer our clients a free, initial consultation. This gives you the chance to learn if your claim is valid.
COVID-19 Increased the Number of Remote Workers in Tampa
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic touching down in the United States, only the lucky few were able to work remotely. Since then, however, the number of remote workers in Tampa has dramatically increased.
This means that our Tampa workers comp attorneys are handling a fair share of cases involving employees who work from home. Some people don’t think it’s possible for someone to suffer a workplace injury if they work from home. However, there are a number of hazards that even remote workers have to worry about.
If you have ever worked from home, then you know how easy it is to get hurt on the job. People assume that remote workers in Tampa sit on a couch or bed and work from a laptop. They don’t realize just how many people have restructured their homes to make room for a home office.
Very few people can afford to hire experts to come in and build or design their workspace. This means that many of our clients are vulnerable to new work-related injuries that they never saw possible.
You Can Still File for Workers Comp Benefits if You Work from Home
Regardless of the nature and extent of your injuries, remote workers in Tampa are allowed to file a workers’ compensation claim. As long as your Tampa workers comp attorney can prove that your injuries were, in fact, related to your job, you should be entitled to benefits. The hardest part about filing for workers’ comp benefits is proving that your injuries were job-related and not personal.
Some of the more familiar injuries remote workers in Tampa experience include the following:
- Neck and back injuries from working at a desk all day
- Falls or trips due to wires, carpet, or stairs in need of repair
- Carpal tunnel syndrome from typing
- Vision loss due to the harsh computer lights and glare
- Pain in various parts of the body due to non-ergonomic chairs
- Potential fire or burn injuries
With the exception of people who perform manual labor, things are not so different at home than they are in the office. If you are a remote worker in Tampa and suffer a work-related injury, contact one of our Tampa workers comp attorneys immediately.
Your Attorney Must Prove That Your Injuries Were Caused While You Were Working
Unlike a traditional workers’ compensation case, cases involving remote workers in Tampa are a bit more difficult. Not only do you have to prove that your client meets the requirements for workers’ comp benefits, but you also have to prove causation. It is so easy for a person’s employer (or insurance company) to claim that a remote worker’s injuries occurred during their personal time.
Our Tampa workers comp attorneys have to gather specific evidence to prove that you were, in fact, working at the time of your injuries. What they need to demonstrate is that your injuries occurred while you were acting within the scope of your employment.
If they are unable to prove this critical element, your workers’ compensation claim will be denied. If that happens, your lawyer will certainly file an appeal. It will all come down to the strength of your evidence.
Your Employer Should Provide Remote Workers in Tampa with a Safety Checklist
While it is your Tampa workers comp attorney’s responsibility to prove that you qualify for workers comp, your employer can help. OSHA provides companies with specific information for them to offer their remote workers in Tampa. These safety tips are meant to decrease the odds of your getting hurt while working at home.
Some of the safety tips offered by the government include the following:
- Make sure you have power strips or surge protectors, so you don’t suffer an electrical fire
- Ensure that your carpets don’t have pulls or holes so as to avoid a dangerous fall
- Clear your halls and workspaces clean of debris
- Purchase an ergonomic chair so you don’t suffer from neck and back pain
Of course, this is not a complete list. There are other safety tips that will help you avoid work-related injuries while working from home.
Call a Tampa Workers Comp Attorney if Your Workers Compensation Claim is Denied
If you’re a remote worker in Tampa and your workers’ compensation claim has been denied, call our office right away. Our attorneys have decades of combined experience handling workers’ compensation cases. When it comes to remote workers, there are specific challenges our Florida workers’ comp lawyers face.
Over the last couple of years, they have navigated the workers’ compensation system in Florida. They now know what it takes to prove that their clients are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. If your claim has already been denied, our Tampa workers’ comp attorneys will file an appeal. If need be, they will even file suit on your behalf.
Since we offer our clients a free, initial consultation, it makes sense to call and schedule your first appointment.