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Florida Work Accidents: How does an injured worker get his benefits?

 Receiving Medical and Wage Benefits in Your Florida Worker’s Compensation Case

            Although retaining an experienced worker’s compensation attorney will help make sure you receive all the workers comp benefits to which you are entitled,  injured workers (and their family caregivers) must still shoulder important responsibilities to help their cases move smoothly through the system.

Your handling of various tasks can directly affect your long-term job security and ability to fully heal from your injuries. For example, you or your attorney must notify your employer about your accident or injury within 30 days of its occurrence. Should that fail to happen, it may prevent you from receiving the benefits you need – when you need them the most.    Even if you notify your employer, if you don’t hear from a workers comp insurance company within a few days, there is a possibility your employer did not contact the WC insurance company.     Here are some additional responsibilities you must handle while seeking medical help for your injuries. Be sure to ask your Florida worker’s compensation attorney if you have any questions regarding any of these tasks.

  • Once you’ve notified your employer about your injury, you must obtain the best medical care available to you. In order to have your employer cover the costs of your medical care, a timely claim for benefits must be filed. You must also ask your employer, or the workers compensation insurance company, for the name of a treating physician – someone authorized under your employer’s worker’s compensation insurance policy.  Most insurance companies, once notified of an on the job accident, will automatically schedule your initial doctors appointment.;
  • Be prepared to give your assigned doctor a full and accurate description of your accident and injuries.   Make sure you tell the doctor about ANY AND ALL  injuries, no matter how significant you think it may be.   The doctor will also ask you for a prior medical history.  Your failure to provide an accurate medical history may allow the insurance company to try and deny you benefits.   It is also important to obtain something in writing from the doctor, before you leave the office, about whether you may return to work, even if only on a part-time or light duty basis.   Be sure to ask questions about any work restrictions you have, and make sure the doctor writes them in detail so there is no dispute later on with your employer;

  • Be sure to stay in touch with your employer about your medical condition and ability to work.   If the doctor says you can return to work, even if it is with restrictions or on a part time basis, you should notify your employer.  It is up to the employer to let you know if it has a job within your restrictions.  If the employer does not have a job that fits your work restrictions imposed by the workers comp doctor, the insurance company must pay you wage benefits.
  • Provide Your Lawyer with all documents you get from the doctor or insurance company.   If your Florida workers compensation attorney is aware of what your doctors are recommending, it will speed up receiving all the medical and wage benefits you are supposed to receive;
  • Be sure you handle all of your responsibilities in an honest and truthful manner. Insurance companies love to argue that injured workers in Florida are not truthful about their injuries, their work abilities, and prior medical histories.  Be truthful and honest when speaking with your doctors to avoid allowing the insurance companies to challenge you receiving all the benefits you deserve.

If you’ve suffered a serious worker’s compensation injury, contact the Maus Law Firm to learn more about your rights.  The Maus Law Firm has offices in Fort Lauderdale, Pompano Beach and the Florida Keys, and handles accident and injury claims throughout Miami-Dade, Monroe, Collier, Lee, Broward and Palm Beach counties.  You’ll need the help of an experienced South Florida worker’s compensation attorney on your side. Call Toll Free today at: (855) 999-LAWS, or locally at (954) 784-6310.