Have You Been Injured on the Job?
A recent accident illustrates the dangers that certain employees face while on the job. When people are injured at their place of employment, they can typically file a workers’ compensation claim regardless of fault. Coral Springs Workers Compensation attorney Evan M. Ostfeld, Esq. at the Law Offices of Evan M. Ostfeld, P.A., tries to help such people anywhere, in order to pursue the workers’ benefits that they deserve. If our office cannot help, we’ll try to find you another lawyer that may.
State of FL Employee Hit by Two Vehicles
Recently, a landscaper was trimming trees along the Ronald Reagan Turnpike, also known as the Florida Turnpike. For some unknown reason, the 29-year-old employee attempted to cross the highway. Tragically a Chevrolet cargo van struck him after he stepped into its path. The collision then caused the employee to be thrown through the air and into the path of a Dodge Ram truck heading in the opposite direction. FHP responded and applied medical care until emergency responders arrived at the scene. The unfortunate man was airlifted to Ryder Trauma Center and was listed in critical condition. Although neither driver was found at fault, the injured employee may still have a valid claim for workers’ compensation benefits.
How Florida Workers’ Compensation Works
Under Florida’s Workers’ Compensation Law, companies with four or more employees must carry workers’ compensation insurance. That’s true even if some of them were part-time or seasonal workers. Additionally, construction companies must carry workers’ compensation coverage even if they have only one employee!
People who are injured on the job can file workers’ compensation claims in order to try and recover benefits regardless if they are at fault or not. In exchange, employees traditionally can’t file personal injury lawsuits directly against their employers for negligence. Workers’ compensation covers an employee’s medical expenses and a portion of one’s lost wages.
If the employee is left with a disability, they can also recover impairment benefits.
Requirements for Florida Workers’ Compensation Coverage
Under § 440.185, Fla. Stat. (2022), better known as chapter 440, injured employees must report their work-related injuries or illnesses to their employers no later than 30 days after they occur or within 7 days of when the employee first learns that their condition is related to their job.
If not done timely, the claim may be denied. Regardless, one should always seek out legal advice immediately. That way you can be informed of your rights and obligations under the Florida Workers’ Compensation system. If you are so inclined, our workers’ compensation law firm offers a no obligation case evaluation.
Workers’ compensation coverage however is not available to independent contractors and or person’s using their own company’s tax identification number. Similarly, volunteers, maritime workers, and government employees are not covered under Florida’s workers’ compensation law. Maritime workers, Seamen, Longshoremen and or federal employees can file claims if they were injured on the job, but are covered under different federal statutes, e.g. Jones Act.
In fact, those laws provide even greater benefits than Florida’s system. Although the Law Offices of Evan M. Ostfeld, P.A. does not handle such matters, we’ll gladly refer you to some of our colleagues who may be able to assist.
There are also certain situations under which a worker’s injuries may not be covered.
For instance, employees who are injured in fights with co-workers, those who are hurt after engaging in horseplay, incidents that happen in a parking lot at or near the company, people traveling to and from the office, or an employee who suffers an injury while working at home are just a few examples. Since the law is quite confusing in these circumstances, one should always contact a workers’ compensation attorney who can provide guidance in possibly filing a claim. Don’t simply listen to your employer or co-workers saying “it’s not covered!”
Consult an Experienced Coral Springs Workers Compensation Attorney
While Florida Workers’ Compensation provides a safety net for people who are injured on the job, some insurance companies and employers delay, defend, deny and diminish valid claims to save their organizations money and at your expense! Don’t let them take advantage of you.
If you, a family member or a friend have suffered from an accident or illness on the job, contact Evan and his legal team as soon as possible. The Law Offices of Evan M. Ostfeld, P.A. has more than 29 years of experience and provides free advice. In fact, our information brochure, “Everything that you wanted to know about workers’ compensation but were afraid to ask” is provided as a courtesy to the public. Should you do hire us, there are no attorney’s fees and/or costs due unless there is a recovery or court award. Contact us today at (866) I SUE YOU, (478-3968, (954) 998-0075 text or firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here to help!