Understanding Your Medical Care After Being Hurt on the Job in Fort Lauderdale
Florida’s workers’ compensation rules can be found in Chapter 440 of Florida Statutes. The rules can be very confusing and difficult to understand. One of the most perplexing aspects is the rules considering your medical care. This is why it’s of utmost importance that injured workers consult with a Fort Lauderdale workman’s comp attorney soon after a work accident to avoid any costly mistake.
Medical Care After a Job is Often Free and Can Last a Lifetime
The main worker’s compensation rule is that if you are injured on the job in Florida you are entitled to seek workers’ compensation benefits from your employer. Medical care through workers’ compensation is free to the employee. In fact, Florida’s workers’ compensation rules allow for an employee to keep their claim open for the rest of their life and use the insurance coverage to obtain medical care for whatever injury the employee suffered on the job.
Wage Benefits and Impairment Ratings
Florida rules also require your employer’s insurance company to pay the employee wage benefits if the employer is unable to return to work due to the work related injury. If your treating physician says that your injury prevents you from returning to work temporarily the insurance company is required to pay you 66⅔% of your averages wages. For instance, if you are earning $400.00 per week prior to your date of accident, and your doctor holds you out of work after your accident, Workers’ Compensation rules state that you are entitled to be paid $300.00 (66⅔%) of your wages.
Once you have finished treating with your authorized doctor, the doctor is required to assign an impairment rating which generally correlates to how severe an injury you suffered and whether you have been left with any permanent restrictions. The law states that you are entitled to additional money, called an Impairment Benefit, based upon the impairment rating that you receive. The insurance company is suppose to pay you this money once you finish your treatment with the doctor.
You Are Allowed to Change Doctors While Receiving Medical Care
One final rule that many people do not know about in workers’ comp is that you can change your doctor while you are receiving medical care. However, you should change your doctor only after careful consideration. Every worker receiving medical care through workers’ compensation is allowed to change his/her doctor once, and only once. If you are dissatisfied with the doctor you are receiving medical care from, and you request a one time change of doctor, you may get a doctor that you are more satisfied with, or less satisfied. You should consult with an experienced attorney to thoroughly discuss the facts of your case, and status of your medical care, before making that decision. The one time change of doctor is a very valuable rule that injured workers need to evaluate carefully.
Discuss Your Worker’s Compensation Treatment Options with the Maus Law Firm
Medical care often leads to questions and concerns for injured workers. Some issues may arise once you’ve started your claim. Before you make a decision that could reduce your potential compensation, contact a worker’s compensation attorney at the Maus Law Firm today.