Top Tips for Filing Your Florida Workers’ Compensation Claim
Following a work injury, or after you learn about having a work-related diagnosis needing medical treatment, the initial steps you take are critical to your Florida workers’ compensation claim and to your ability to recover medical and monetary benefits. Here are my top tips for filing your workers’ compensation claim:
1) Notify your Employer Immediately that you had an injury or your doctor told you your condition was work related. You should not wait to see if your pain and symptoms will go away. Report the work injury to your employer and discuss where you are authorized to go to receive medical attention. Some work-related injuries have symptoms that worsen over 24 hours, and may not be immediately apparent, which makes it critical to timely report any work when it occurs. The longer you wait to report an injury to your employer, the greater the odds become that the workers’ compensation insurance company will deny providing benefits. There are time restrictions in Florida on how long you are able to report your claim and it should be reported within 30 days of when the accident happened. The most important part is that the sooner you report your injury, the sooner you can get authorized, medical treatment and address your ability to work.
2) Complete the Initial Report of Injury and Documents in Full. You will need to cooperate with your employer and complete and return any documentation given to you promptly. Remember, this is the first official notice your employer will have from you about your work accident so it is important you fully describe what happened and include all requested details such as your social security number, email address, time of the injury, description of what happened in the injury, any medical treatment you have already received and contact information for any witnesses. Speak to the person in the office who supplies you with the initial form to turn it back in or ask your human resource to receive the workers’ compensation injury form and keep a copy for your records and for your attorney, should you retain one.
3) Follow all your Workers’ Compensation’s Doctor’s Orders. It is very important that you follow all directions from any authorized workers’ compensation doctors. Please also give your employer a copy of your current work restrictions. If your doctor informs you that you cannot return to work for a period of time, it is best to follow the advice of your workers’ compensation doctor. Just stay in touch with your employer, and insurance adjuster (if known) regarding what your workers’ compensation doctor is telling you and writing down regarding your ability to work. It is critical you keep all appointments set with your workers’ compensation doctors. If you miss appointments, the insurance company can refuse providing you with medical and monetary benefits. Keep the paperwork the doctor gives you (two page yellow forms called DWC-25s) after each appointment, as it can be very helpful to your attorney, should you retain one.
4) Know your rights with your employer following a work accident. Pursuant to Statute 440.105, you cannot be fired, coerced, threatened or reprimanded for filing a workers’ compensation claim. If you believe you are being treated unfairly for filing a workers’ compensation claim, you may very well want to explore this with an attorney to be informed regarding your legal rights.
5) If you are missing time from work, and not getting paid, make sure you are completing your Employee Earnings Reports (DWC-19s) correctly and turning them in on time. This is a document the insurance company uses to decide if they will pay you, how much they will pay you, and when. We can help you complete these properly.
6) If get behind on your bills because of your work accident, have a physical impairment because of the accident and are earning less income because of the work accident, reach out and call and we can discuss of a Motion for Advance may be able to help you obtain up to $2,000.00 in benefits from the insurance company.
If you would like to discuss any of the above workers’ compensation tips, or meet for a free initial consultation, please contact Kendall Mills at Harris Guidi Rosner at (904) 777-7777 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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