If you are injured at your place of work in the state of Florida, or if you become sick due to conditions at your job, you will probably qualify to receive workers’ compensation benefits.

If you are injured at your job in South Florida, do not procrastinate about getting legal help. You should arrange at once to meet and discuss your rights and options with an experienced West Palm Beach workplace injury attorney.

HOW CAN A WORKPLACE INJURY LAWYER HELP YOU?

A workplace injury attorney can:

1. see to it that your application for benefits is accurate and complete
2. help you avoid missing any deadlines
3. make sure there are no mistakes or misunderstandings that could delay your workers’ compensation benefit payments

The workers’ compensation system protects employers against personal injury lawsuits filed by their employees; the employees benefit because they may qualify for payments without having to go to court and prove that anyone was negligent and liable for their injuries.

Workers’ Comp Claims

A Florida employer may not terminate you, discriminate against you, or retaliate in any way whatsoever against you if you file a claim for worker’s compensation benefits. If you experience any discrimination or retaliation after filing for benefits, tell your attorney immediately.

WHAT BENEFITS ARE PROVIDED BY WORKERS’ COMPENSATION?

Workers’ compensation in this state pays the medical expenses of anyone who is injured at work or in the “course and scope” of employment duties, and it also pays a percentage of an injured worker’s lost wages.

You begin the process of filing a workers’ compensation claim by submitting a written injury report to your employer. Most larger employers have pre-printed injury report forms.

You also must fill out a workers’ compensation claim form. Without it, your employer cannot begin processing your claim. Again, it is best to seek help with the paperwork – promptly – from a south Florida workplace injury lawyer.

WHAT IF YOUR APPLICATION FOR BENEFITS IS REJECTED?

If your workers’ compensation claim is denied, that is not unusual. A large percentage of workers’ compensation claims are initially denied but are later approved when the injured employee files an appeal.

filing a denied worker's comp claim

Workers’ compensation is not exclusively for injuries sustained in workplace accidents. It also covers harder-to-detect, long-term conditions that are work-related such as repetitive stress injuries and diseases caused by on-the-job exposure to dangerous chemicals and substances.

Clearly, these types of conditions are more difficult to prove than accident-related injuries, so do not hesitate to seek a good attorney’s help.

FOR WHAT REASONS ARE WORKERS’ COMPENSATION CLAIMS DENIED?

A workers’ compensation claim could be denied for a trivial reason that is easily remedied – like a missing piece of paperwork or forgetting to include your signature. Claims are also denied for more serious reasons including but not limited to:

1. Your employer’s failure to believe you: Your employer does not believe that you were injured “on the clock,” that is, at work or in the “course and scope” of your job duties; or else your employer disbelieves the extent or existence of your injury.

2. Your failure to meet the reporting deadline: Here in Florida, workers have thirty days to report an accident and injury and file for workers’ comp. If that deadline is missed, a workers’ compensation claim will likely be denied, and a lawyer may not be able to help.

3. Your failure to see an approved healthcare provider: An injured employee must be seen and treated by a workers’ compensation-approved healthcare provider. If treatment is provided by any other party, workers’ comp benefits will probably be denied.

4. Your pre-existing condition: When a pre-existing condition may be a factor in a workplace accident and injury, a workers’ compensation claim can and probably will be denied.

5. Your failure to seek treatment: To obtain any workers’ compensation benefits, an injured employee must seek and follow through with treatment by an approved healthcare provider.

6. Intoxication, fighting, or horseplay: If a worker is injured on the job while fighting, while engaged in practical jokes or “horseplay,” or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a workers’ compensation claim will be denied, and again, a lawyer may not be able to help.

WHEN SHOULD YOU CONTACT A WORKPLACE INJURY ATTORNEY?

In South Florida, if your workers’ compensation claim is denied for one of these reasons – or for any reason – speak immediately to a qualified West Palm Beach workplace injury attorney about pursuing an appeal and fighting for the benefits that you need and deserve.

A good workplace injury attorney routinely helps injured employees successfully appeal workers’ compensation claims which were initially denied.

pursue a worker's comp appeal

However, you’ll need to act immediately. If you miss the deadline for filing an appeal, you will not have another chance, you will receive no worker’s compensation payments, and a lawyer will not be able to help.

Here in Florida, the first appeal of a workers’ compensation claim is usually handled through an arbitration or mediation procedure. A good worker’s compensation lawyer will explain the procedures and see to it that you are thoroughly prepared for either arbitration or mediation.

WILL YOU NEED AN INDEPENDENT MEDICAL EXAMINATION?

If your workers’ compensation claim was purportedly rejected for a medical reason, you may need to have an independent medical exam conducted. If necessary, your lawyer will arrange an exam with an independent medical provider who will be fair and impartial.

The workers’ compensation system in the state of Florida is far from perfect. It is a compromise that attempts to balance the interests of employers and insurance companies with the rights of injured workers – including their right to justice.

workers'rights

Workplace injury lawyers in this state regularly deal with disputed workers’ comp claims and complicated appeals. A good workplace injury lawyer knows what the system requires and what it takes to prevail on your behalf and acquire the benefits you need and deserve.

Workers’ compensation is a complicated system in Florida, and if you are injured at your place of work, you will need an experienced guide from the very beginning – a reliable workplace injury attorney. A good attorney’s help is your right.