When people who live in Florida get hurt at work, they’re able to turn to the workers compensation system for help. This program is meant to help injured workers while they’re recovering from their injuries. Not only does workers comp cover your medical care, but it also provides you with replacement wages while you’re out of work recuperating.
However, the only way you’ll receive these benefits is if you meet certain criteria. A Fort Lauderdale workers comp attorney can help make sure you meet necessary requirements to have your workers compensation claim approved
Workers compensation attorneys meet with clients every week who have had their workers compensation claim denied. The first thing they ask is why the insurance company denied their claim. Depending on their answer, they may be willing to represent you in a lawsuit against your employer. However, if you did something that jeopardized your workers compensation claim, your attorney can only do so much to convince the court that you deserve benefits.
Here, we’ll talk about the mistakes people make when it comes to workplace accidents. You want to avoid these mistakes at all costs. The bigger the mistake, the harder it will be for your Ft. Lauderdale, Florida personal injury lawyer.
You Don’t File a Workers Compensation Claim to Report Your Workplace Accident
Everybody should know that you must report your workplace accident to your manager or Human Resources department. Not only is this the law in Florida, but it’s also something your employer includes in their employee handbook. When you are first hired at your place of business, you go through orientation.
Almost every company covers its workplace injury policy during orientation. If you don’t report your injury, there’s a good chance your workers compensation claim will be denied. If you do end up pursuing your employer for damages, they’ll argue that something other than a workplace accident caused your injuries. If you didn’t report the injury, it’ll be your word against your employer’s.
You Were Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol at the Time of Your Injury
One of the reasons employers demand that their workers submit to a drug test immediately following a workplace accident is to screen them for drugs or alcohol. If you refuse to take this drug test, your workers compensation claim is going to be denied. Employers have the right to know if a workplace accident involved an intoxicated employee.
Before you receive any medical treatment, they’re going to test your blood or urine for drugs and alcohol. If you were using either of these things at the time of the accident, be honest about it. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to keep your job. Your employer may even be willing to pay for you to go to rehab if you’ve been with them for a long time.
You Refuse to Be Treated by a State-Approved Workers Compensation Doctor
Like it or not, you don’t get to choose a doctor to treat your workplace injury if your workers compensation claim has been approved. The State of Florida has a list of qualified doctors that you’re able to choose from. The list is not very long. If you refuse to be treated by one of these physicians, your medical care won’t be covered. You’ll probably also lose your replacement wages.
The point of workers compensation is to assist you while you’re recovering from your workplace injuries. If you refuse to participate in your treatment, you can’t expect to receive benefits and your workers compensation claim will be rejected.
You Work Another Job While Out on Workers Comp
A surefire way to get your workers comp benefits in Florida terminated is to work another job while you’re collecting benefits. If the Division of Workers’ Compensation learns that you’re working at another job while out on workers comp, you’re going to have a big problem.
Not only will your benefits be terminated, but you’ll also be ordered to pay back any benefits you’ve already received. There’s also a good chance you’ll have to reimburse the insurance company for any medical care they’ve paid for.
You Don’t Show Up for Your Doctor’s Appointments
One of the biggest mistakes some of our clients make is they don’t show up for their doctor’s appointments. There is no excuse for this sort of thing. If you get hurt at work and file a workers compensation claim, your employer’s insurance company is going to cover your medical care. It’s not as if it will cost you anything to go see your doctor. If their office is far away, your workers comp benefits will include reimbursement for your travel expenses.
When we ask our clients why they didn’t comply with their medical treatment, they never have a good answer. Usually, they say they just didn’t feel like going to their appointments. Or they may say they don’t think their physical therapy is helping them. Unfortunately, you don’t get to determine when you’ve reached maximum medical improvement. Your workers compensation doctor does.
Contact an Experienced Ft. Lauderdale Workers Compensation Attorney Right Away
If you’ve done something that caused your employer to deny your workers compensation claim, you’re going to need a Ft. Lauderdale workers compensation attorney. You want to make sure you’re upfront and honest about why your workers compensation claim was denied. If you made a mistake and it cost you your workers comp benefits, there may be something your lawyer can do to fix that. It all depends on the facts of your case and how big your mistake was.
If you’re worried that your workers compensation claim is going to be denied, don’t wait to talk to an attorney. Call our office and talk to a Fort Lauderdale, Florida personal injury lawyer. They can get to the bottom of why your workers compensation claim was denied and see what they can do to help.
We suggest you call our office as soon as possible after your workplace accident and schedule your free, initial consultation. The good news is that you don’t have to pay your attorney until you settle your case. The sooner you call, the sooner your Fort Lauderdale workers compensation attorney can get started on your case.