If you were injured while performing a job-related task in Florida, you may be thinking that you’ll be covered under the state’s workers’ compensation laws. You may be thinking that your employer will provide coverage for medical expenses, as well as lost wages and even disability benefits if you suffered a debilitating accident. However, you may be in for a shock.
Below are a few things every workplace accident victim should know about workers’ comp in The Sunshine State.
Not all employers in Florida carry workers’ compensation insurance
In Florida, not every employer needs to provide workers’ comp insurance. The law only requires employers with four or more people in their employment to obtain coverage. This can be an extremely difficult and daunting discovery for many victims. If you were hurt on the job, the first thing you need to do is seek medical treatment. Then, notify your employer about the accident and specifically ask them if they carry workman’s comp insurance. Luckily, even if your employer isn’t covered, you may still be able to file a personal injury claim with the help of an attorney.
The claim filing process has a deadline
From the moment you were injured, the clock is counting down. If you wait too long to inform your employer of what’s transpired, you may be denied the benefits you deserve – even if your employer does have an insurance policy. In Florida, job accident victims only have 30 days from the time of injury or from the moment a doctor diagnoses the injury to seek compensation. If you are unable to notify your boss yourself, try to have a loved one or legal representative reach out to them on your behalf and be sure to obtain acknowledgment from your employer that the accident was reported.
Insurance companies are not on your side
Though workers’ compensation laws were put in place to help victims, claims are all too often denied. Insurance companies may try to contest a case, alleging there is insufficient evidence to prove the injuries were due to job-related factors or may even try to downplay the extent of the injuries. If this happens to you, don’t worry, you’re not the only one. Speak with a Florida workers’ compensation lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your options. An experienced workers’ comp attorney will know what to do and will take the burden of going up against insurance providers off your shoulders.