Florida workers' compensation or workman's compensation laws require most employers in the state of Florida to provide workers' compensation benefits to employees who are injured or who contract a disease while in the normal course of employment. Workers' compensation laws generally apply to Florida employers who have four or more employees. Agricultural workers generally do have to provide workers' compensation coverage in Florida, but there are exceptions.
Workers' compensation has been created to provide immediate medical benefits and wage loss compensation to qualifying employees, without the injured employee having to file a personal injury claim against the employer and proving the employer's negligence caused their work injury. There are trade-offs for both the employer and the employee. The employee receives immediate compensation, while the employer, although forced to pay for lost wages and medical care, may potentially avoid a lengthy legal battle.
Workers' compensation laws in Florida vary from other state's laws. Some employees may need to contact a Florida workers' compensation lawyer for help, especially if an employer is refusing to make payments or if the employee has suffered a severe physical injury.
Not all Florida worker injuries are covered under Florida workman's compensation. If an employee has been injured but they were intoxicated by drugs or alcohol, engaged in horseplay, a voluntary activity or not following their company's policies or procedures, they may not be awarded workman's compensation in Florida.
Work injuries or diseases that are covered are generally a direct result of a worker's job responsibilities. Common work injuries are frequently caused by exposure to toxic chemicals or physical activities that must be performed by a repetitive action. Common Florida work injuries include:
Florida work injuries occur every day, and they can vary depending on a worker's job requirements. Even with increased regulations from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration employers throughout the United States must deal with severe work injuries.
Florida workman's compensation may include medical benefits and/or wage loss compensation.
Medical Benefits - Medical benefits are provided to injured workers in Florida. Medical treatment is provided at the expense of the employer and can include treatment by an “authorized treating physician” who is chosen by the insurance company, not the employee. In some cases the selection may be made by the employee from a list supplied by the insurance carrier or the managed care organization.
Under Florida workers' comp law the employee may be allowed to change doctors one time while they are receiving treatment. Contact your employer prior to seeing a doctor for a Florida workers' compensation injury. Other types of compensated medical treatment may include surgeries, hospital stays, medical supplies, prescription medication, MRIs and x-rays.
Types of Lost Wage Compensation - There is a 7 day waiting period to receive lost wage compensation. Workers whose work injury lasts for 21 days may be compensated for the first 7 days of their disability.
Many workers are able to get their own workers' compensation awards without the assistance of a Florida workers' compensation lawyer. Unfortunately, however, there are a percentage of workers who are denied Florida workman's compensation benefits, who have severe or permanent work injuries or who have questions and are not getting the answers they need from their employers. Contact a Florida workers' compensation lawyer for more information about how to get the help you need for your work injury.
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