Palm Beach Gardens Workers’ Comp Lawyer
When you have been injured on the job, you may benefit from talking to a Palm Beach Gardens’ workers’ comp lawyer to explore your options. By doing so, you can also ensure your rights and interests are protected.
For more than a decade, our firm has been helping injured and ill workers across the state of Florida. Whether your own actions resulted in your injuries or those of someone else, workers’ compensation may be available. Guided by our extensive knowledge and experience, we are confident in our ability to secure the results our clients are seeking. If you would like to know more about your legal options, call a workers’ comp lawyer in Palm Beach Gardens today.
Do You Qualify for Workers’ Compensation?
In general, Florida employees will be covered for workers’ comp benefits. The exceptions to this may include the following:
- You are a federal worker
- You are a maritime or railroad worker
If the latter two apply, there are separate programs available. If you don’t know whether you are eligible, you can always ask a Palm Beach Gardens workers’ comp lawyer. In the event you do not qualify for workers’ comp, there may be other legal options available. It might also be true that negligence was a factor, and in this case, you may be able to file a personal injury claim for compensation.
What Makes You a Volunteer, Contractor, or Employee?
A volunteer, a contractor, and an employee are all very different in terms of how the IRS and other legal companies identify them. Volunteers are the easiest to define, as they work for a company and only do very specific tasks or jobs within that company. They are not paid for their time and can work as much or as little as they wish. Sometimes, volunteering is used synonymously with interning, and this is technically untrue of a volunteer-ship.
Sure, you may intern for free, but you are learning life skills and likely putting this on your resume as a job—whereas with volunteer work, you would not put it as a job unless it was something you did for a very long time as a volunteer. Volunteers have very little rights in regards to whether they lose or keep their volunteer position, and whether they receive any workers’ comp.
Contractors are defined as someone who works for the employer, but they are paid per job, a flat fee, or may receive payments in parts—such as half at a time, they are likely a contractor. Contractors, like volunteers, do not have a lot of protection regarding their jobs. They do not receive health insurance or any insurance through the company they work for. Contractors also do not receive help to pay their taxes as employed people do—they are responsible for the full amount of their taxes, where an employed person halves their taxes with their employee. A contractor doesn’t have a ton of paperwork like employees do.
An employee, on the other hand, has legal rights regarding job protection, works a set number of hours a week, is paid a regular wage, receives benefits, has taxes withheld by their employer, their work schedule is wholly dictated by their employer. Full-time employees receive even more protections, such as severance, workers’ comp, anti-discrimination protections, and they have more job security.
However, they both can be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits!
Understanding the difference helps you to understand whether you qualify for workers’ comp.
Workers’ Comp Undocumented Workers
Even if you were not legally working, it may be possible to recover workers’ compensation benefits. Although you might feel unsure about pursuing the matter for fear of repercussions from Immigration, you can talk with a lawyer to find out how you can get your medical bills covered.
When it comes to getting workers’ compensation, there are strict deadlines that must be met. Some of these are just 30 days, and missing this time period could result in a loss of benefits or delays. It is also important that the forms are accurately completed. If you are unsure about how to complete the forms, or you are confused about the process, you can call a Palm Beach Gardens workers’ comp lawyer.
Do You Need a Lawyer?
Technically you, and anyone else who has been injured can file for workers’ compensation. However, the process can be difficult. For example, if your injury was caused by something complicated or led to serious results, you might run into problems. Or, if you made an error during the process, there could be delays. Anyone can reach out to a lawyer; however, if your losses are significant or you are having a challenging time getting anywhere, calling a workers’ comp lawyer in Palm Beach Gardens is recommended.
Workers’ Comp Benefits Lawyer in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
Workers’ comp benefits are intended to provide you with:
- A portion of your wages or salary
- Medical care
- Travel reimbursement
- + More
If you would like to know more about how you can recover your workers’ comp benefits, call a Palm Beach Gardens workers’ comp lawyer from Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt.
Can You Be Fired For Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
Annually, about 2.8 million people are injured on the job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Unfortunately, a good number of people who are injured don’t always report their injuries because they’re worried about what their employer will do. Filing a workers’ compensation claim shouldn’t put your job in jeopardy. It may even protect your job when you have a serious injury. Here’s what to know about workers’ compensation claims.
Can Your Employer Fire You For Filing a Workers’ Comp Claim?
If you work in an at-will employment state, your employer can fire you for just about any reason. An employer cannot discriminate against you for age, race, or any other protected class. Also, an employer cannot fire you for filing a workers’ compensation claim, nor can your employer retaliate against you in some way for filing a claim.
Workers’ Compensation Is No-Fault Insurance
One other thing to know about workers’ compensation insurance is that it doesn’t rely on who was at fault for the injury. You don’t have to prove that the employer caused the accident. In most cases, even if you caused your injuries, workers’ compensation will still pay the claim. If you were intoxicated, you may be disqualified. Most states also disqualify claims that occur in which you were the aggressor. For example, if you punched another employee who then punched you back, you probably wouldn’t get your injuries paid for by workers’ compensation.
Your Job Isn’t Completely Safe
Although you cannot be fired for filing a workers’ comp claim, an employer can fire you for misconduct on the job. If you were injured for not following proper cleaning protocols, you can file a workers’ compensation claim to cover your injuries. Your employer could still decide to fire you for not following the rules. You could face other consequences for not following protocols. It depends on many factors. If you are released for light duty but refuse to take the assignment, your employer may also release you.
Workers’ compensation or personal injury claim?
When you are hoping to receive compensation for injuries you suffered from on the job, filing a workers’ compensation claim is going to be your best bet. It is true that you could file a personal injury claim in some circumstances, especially if you were injured at work by a third party. If you are unsure about which one is better in this instance, you should speak with your attorney to determine whether you should file a workers’ compensation claim or whether it would be more appropriate to file a personal injury claim.
Preparing Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
When you decide to file your claim, your attorney can help you gather what you need. You will need to notify your employer as soon as possible—within 30 days of finding out that your injury or illness is due to work circumstances—and give them a few details of what is going on.
Once you have notified your employer, under Florida law they need to send you to a doctor of their choosing.
What if my employer will not notify insurance of my injury?
If for any reason your employer refuses to listen about your injury and chooses not to talk with the workers’ compensation insurance agent, you have the right to contact them and notify them. Once an agent is on your case, they will work to examine all of the evidence (including medical records, ordering additional medical exams, and determining whether you can go back to work or not in the same capacity) and decide whether you will receive workers’ compensation and how much you will receive.
What happens next?
If the insurance agent approves your claim, you should expect to start receiving your benefits shortly. When, if, and in what capacity you go back to work will be up to your treating physician. If you received a workers’ compensation denial letter, this is not the end of the road. You can speak with your attorney about appealing a denied claim.
Protect Your Job
If your employer is threatening to fire you if you file a claim or if you’re just concerned about losing your job over a workers’ compensation claim, talk to an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer who can help you protect your benefits and job. You may be able to file for medical leave under FMLA to protect your job while you negotiate with your employer.
Make an appointment with an employment lawyer who can help you understand your rights and responsibilities. Our workers’ comp lawyer in Palm Beach Gardens is here for you.
Types of Workers’ Comp Benefits
To get a full list of workers’ comp benefits reach out to a Palm Beach Gardens Workers Comp Lawyer at the Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt today.
Workers’ payment pays 100% of all medical costs and treatment related to any job-related accident in Florida. Any medical claims connected to a work injury are paid right away. These advantages consist of physician’s consultations, emergency clinic visits, healthcare facility stays, medications, physical treatment, and rehab treatments. Medical devices such as crutches and wheelchairs are likewise covered under employees’ compensation medical advantages.
Frequently, the medical expenses are the only payment required for an accident or illness that is work-related. Numerous work-related injuries are not severe enough to trigger an employee to be not able to work, but still require medical attention. It is important to keep in mind that employer workers’ compensation strategies have different levels of protection. Depending upon your company’s strategy, specific suppliers or treatments might not be covered.
Physical Rehabilitation Benefits
Comparable to medical advantages, rehab benefits assist spend for therapeutic care such as physical therapy. Rehab and physical treatment can typically assist a staff member recuperate from a job-related accident, injury, or health problem.
If you are unsure of your benefits you may need to reach out to a Palm Beach Gardens Workers’ Comp Lawyer.
Vocational Rehabilitation Benefits
Another of the types of employees’ settlement benefits in Florida you could receive is occupation rehabilitation advantages. If an employee suffering from a job-related injury or disease is not able to go back to the type of work they formerly performed, they may qualify for trade rehab advantages under workers’ compensation insurance. The Florida Division of Vocational Rehabilitation will cover the cost for an employee to discover a new ability so that they can go back to work doing a different type of task. Tuition, expert or academic training, and accreditations might all be covered under vocational rehab employees’ settlement advantages.
Numerous workers’ payment insurance coverage programs permit two years of trade rehab, which can assist the worker discover other abilities and work. During the time of professional rehabilitation, a handicapped worker might still receive wage payment for lost earnings.
If the injury or illness you suffered while dealing with the job resulted in a special need that prevents you from working either briefly or completely, you might receive wage settlement due to your disability. The quantity of wage payment you get through employees’ payment will depend upon your kind of impairment.
- Short-term Total Disability. This kind of impairment is used when you can not return to work because of their injuries. During the time you are on short-term overall disability, you need to get compensation totaling two-thirds of your regular earnings.
- Temporary Partial Disability. If you have the ability to go back to work but can only work with certain limitations such as limited hours, limited movement, or limited type of work, then you might qualify for short-term partial disability. If you are not able to earn at least 80% of your previous regular earnings, you will get approved for temporary partial special needs and receive additional compensation.
Call a Palm Beach Gardens Workers’ Comp Lawyer at the Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt today.
Palm Beach Gardens Workers Comp Lawyer
After a serious work injury, it is in your best interest to contact a Palm Beach Gardens workers comp lawyer to help you through your case. No one should have to go through it alone and you are no different. It is in your best interest as it can help you have the best possible outcome for your claim. This area of the law is highly complex and specialized, and in general, it can get complicated quickly.
That is why the team here at Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt wants you to know that we are here to help. We have dedicated workers’ compensation lawyers that understand the law and how to best help you get the composition you deserve.
How to Find the Right Lawyer for You
Finding the right lawyer for you is going to make all the difference. You shouldn’t settle for the first lawyer you come across no matter what you do. What you should do is start looking for one that will be able to do the most for you.
In general, you want someone who has experience in the field of workers’ comp and not just a general lawyer. You wouldn’t hire your general practitioner to do brain surgery so why should you settle for someone with less experience with the law.
You will have to find a few firms that interest you and then you can set up a consultation. That is where the real choice is going to be made.
Questions for the Initial Consultation
Remember, you are searching for someone who can do a job for you. You are the employer and while they may have the great success you want but they could still not be the right match for you. That is why setting up a consultation is key, and asking questions is needed. Here are just a few questions that you should ask your lawyer during your consultation:
- How many years do you have behind handling worker’s compensation claims?
- What percentage of your practice is devoted to workers’ comp?
- Do you have any references such as former clients or colleagues in the legal community?
- Will you work on my case personally or will legal assistants or paralegals handle the bulk of the work?
- Can you explain the process the case will take?
- How do you estimate the value of my case?
- What is your communication style like and when can I expect responses from you if I have questions?
These are just a few questions to ask. What you want to do is make sure that the lawyer you are with is responding and not just talking about themselves over your questions. A lawyer who doesn’t listen is one that can hurt your case. You also shouldn’t settle on someone just because they have good experience. If they don’t take the time to listen and help you with your case then move on to someone who will.
If you or a loved one have been seriously hurt at work it is time to start looking for a Palm Beach Gardens workers comp lawyer today. The dedicated team at Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt know what it takes to handle a case and is ready to listen to your claim. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to reach out today.
What Kinds of Accidents Result in Workers Compensation?
You may be wondering if your injury can qualify for workers compensation. The good news is that any injury can be a basis for claiming workers compensation. Whether your injury developed while sitting behind a desk all day, at a construction site, or out in the field, you may be covered if your employer knew that there was a hazard and failed to act. Unfortunately even if it is evident that your employer failed to act and it resulted in your injury, there can be many hurdles to successfully filing a claim. Employers and insurance companies don’t necessarily have your best interest in mind. An employer may want to safeguard the company or agency you work for and an insurance company often wants to protect their bottom line.
Having an experienced Palm Beach Gardens workers comp lawyer on your side can make all the difference in winning your case. Oftentimes, hiring a lawyer can increase the amount of compensation you receive. That’s why you should call the Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt today. We will set up a free and confidential consultation to hear about your case and help you understand your legal options. Common types of worker compensation cases are:
- Vehicle Accidents Although it may seem benign, driving is dangerous and the workplace is no exception. Even at a low speed vehicle collisions can result in lots of damage. And these damages aren’t limited to a car. Semi trucks, heavy equipment machinery, boats, and aircraft all have hazards associated with them and your employer is responsible for taking measures to ensure that the equipment is running properly. In the case of vehicle accidents, even when precautions were taken, you still might be able to receive workers compensation if you were injured.
- Slips, Trips, and Falls Slips, trips, and falls are one of the most common types of workplace injuries. Sometimes they result in injuries that can be serious. Some examples include a worker slipping on the floor and hitting their head because of leaky machinery, an office worker tripping on an uneven surface in the office, or a tower worker falling several feet to the ground because of faulty personal protection equipment. In all of these scenarios, if your employer was aware of the hazard, but failed to properly address it, they should pay for your damages.
- Loud Noise Exposure Your hearing is precious. Hearing damage is often permanent and can impede your ability to work and live without equipment like hearing aids. Hearing aid care and equipment can be costly, and if you lost your hearing as a result of your job, you deserve to receive compensation for your damages so you can continue to support yourself and your loved ones. Hearing loss cases are tricky. A good Palm Beach Gardens workers comp lawyer from a firm like the Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt will know what evidence to gather and whether expert witnesses can buffer your case.
- Repetitive Strain Injury Most people think of typing on a computer when repetitive strain injury (RSI) is mentioned, but they can result from many work activities. A construction worker who hammers a lot or a factory worker who does the same motion constantly can both develop RSI’s. Since they don’t occur suddenly, repetitive strain injuries can be challenging to prove the injury was a result of your job. As a result, employers and insurance companies often try to prove that these injuries were the result of extracurricular activities. Having the help of a lawyer in this scenario can be invaluable.
There are many more examples of accidents that result in workers compensation. For help understanding your case, call the Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt for a Palm Beach Gardens workers comp lawyer that will fight for you.