The workers’ compensation program pays benefits to workers who get injured on the job. Employees may get medical care compensation, compensation for lost income, and other financial benefits. To collect these benefits, certain requirements must be met, and you must report your injury to your employer with a specific time frame.
Workers’ compensation system: how does it work?
In Florida, employers must have the workers’ compensation policy, either by getting a state certification to self-insure or buy the policy from a private insurance service provider. The DWC (Florida Division of Worker’s Compensation) oversees all legitimate workers’ compensation claims in the entire state. It is advisable to seek legal help from an Orlando workers’ compensation attorney to increase your chances of getting compensated.
Note that Florida has a no-fault employees’ compensation system. That means you don’t have to show that your employer was negligent or acted recklessly for you to be compensated. As long as the accident happened while you were in official duty and as a result, you got injured, you are eligible for the workers’ compensation benefits. Some of the benefits you are likely to receive include;
- Payment for wage loss and other disability benefits
- Impairment benefits for permanent limitations or amputations
- Vocational rehabilitation. This could include training or education for your new line of work
- Necessary and reasonable medical care
Reporting your injury
Informing your employer about your work-related injury is the first and important step to starting your workers’ compensation claim. The law requires you to report your injury within 30 days from the date the accident happened.
If illness or a condition develops over time, the law requires you to notify your employer within 30 days from the time you discovered its relationship with your current work. Failure to do so means that you will lose some or all of your workers’ compensation benefits.
When notifying your employer, include details about the following;
- The time accident happened
- How you got hurt (give as many details regarding how the accident happened)
- All the symptoms you are experiencing
Once your employer receives your injury report, they should send you to a doctor. The law allows your employer to choose the medical facility and doctor who will treat you unless you need an emergency medical treatment. During diagnosis and treatment, provide accurate details regarding when you got hurt, what happened, and your symptoms. These details will help the medical practitioner offer you the right medical treatment.
What happens after report an injury?
On receiving your injury report, your employer should send the report to their insurance service provider within seven days. If the employer fails to do so, you can contact the insurance company directly. The company will then determine whether or not you have a legitimate claim. This process will involve;
- Analyzing your education level, wages, and work experience
- Reviewing all your relevant medical records
- Requesting a medical examination to assess your health condition
- Sending you (the injured person) for a functional capacity evaluation for a thorough assessment of your ability to perform your duties.
Note that the insurance company can approve or deny your claim. Once your claim has been approved, you can start receiving your benefits. In a case where your claim was denied, you can appeal it with the help of an experienced attorney.