Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

Law Office in Tampa, FL


    Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

    Law Office in Tampa, FL


      Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

      Law Office in Tampa, FL


      In addition to experiencing the misery of dealing with an injury, those who have been injured at work might be feeling frustrated and uncertain. It is sometimes life-altering injuries that bring people to search for Florida workers’ compensation attorneys to represent them. They are looking for some relief for this misery. If you have found yourself in a situation where you were harmed in an accident at work, please do not hesitate to call our office as soon as possible to get set up with a free initial consultation.

        Outstanding Legal Knowledge

        Tonya is a true expert in the field of workers compensation, including cases involving cardiac and pulmonary claims of first responders. She is an excellent trial attorney and demonstrates both outstanding legal knowledge and ethical standards.

        Anonymous

        Flawless Representation

        Jason was there for me from the beginning, Kept me informed at all times of my cases status, worked tirelessly during mediations to ensure maximum benefits were obtained, and most of all treated me like family rather than a client!

        James

        Thank You So Much For Getting Me Here

        The last year and a half have been exhausting, both physically and emotionally. Right from the start, I stressed over leaving a career behind that I loved with nothing to show for it. I know my law enforcement career was over, but had no idea what I was deserving of. Despite my case being about as clear-cut as they come, I knew I needed help and guidance…that’s where you and your firm came in. Despite my lack of patience, you explained clearly what needed to happen and how to get there.  I am SO GLAD this is over, and I thank you so much for getting me here.

        Anonymous

        Excellent Workers Compensation Attorney

        Jason Fox has been the best attorney that I have ever had. He handled my very complicated case very professionally. He not only did an outstanding job when it came to the legal aspects of the case , but was very thoughtful on how it personally affected me and my family. He also attended city council meetings, doctors appointment, etc. even when it was not legally needed. He stood by my side every step of they way, and was willing to fight all the way to the Supreme Court. Most Lawyers would not have put the time or effort. This was not a big money making case for a lawyer but he was standing up to a system and a City that treated an injured worker very poorly. He is a smart and determined person who is willing to go the extra mile for what is right. I would 100% recommend him.

        Dawn
        7 Mistakes First Responders Make With a Workers' Compensation Claim

        7 Mistakes First Responders Make with a Workers’ Compensation Claim

        Download our FREE book and start learning what not to do after a work injury.

        Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

        In addition to experiencing the misery of dealing with an injury, those who have been injured at work might be feeling frustrated and uncertain. It is sometimes life-altering injuries that bring people to search for Florida workers’ compensation attorneys to represent them. They are looking for some relief for this misery. If you have found yourself in a situation where you were harmed in an accident at work, please do not hesitate to call our office as soon as possible to get set up with a free initial consultation.

        What Workers’ Compensation Provides

        Workers’ compensation is, as its name suggests, meant to compensate a worker if they are hurt within the scope of their workplace. That might be a grocery store shelf stocker who slipped and hit their head and suffered a TBI, a lifeguard who tore a rotator cuff while rescuing someone, a firefighter who developed lung cancer, an EMT with PTSD, or a construction worker with a broken leg after a fall from a height. The workers’ compensation is meant to provide financial relief for things like medical costs, rehabilitation, therapy, lost wages from time off of work, etc. This compensation is meant to help you get back to work.

        There are many different ways someone might need workers’ compensation. There are things like repetition injuries. That might be someone like a cashier who does the same grab, swipe, and place motion for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. Eventually, this repetition motion could lead to arthritis, tendinitis, etc. They are nagging injuries that require rest, which might mean that this person cannot be a cashier while they heal or they push through and make their injuries worse because they cannot afford to take the time they need to heal from this.

        There are also acute injuries that you might think of when you hear the term workers’ compensation. This would be more along the lines of a construction accident in which someone is hit with debris or scaffolding falls and someone gets hurt, or even if someone tripped over wires that were carelessly placed in a heavy foot traffic area of an office.

        Then there are injuries that happen over time and can be permanent and are due to the environment in which the employee works. There are people who are in high-stress workplaces, such as law enforcement or emergency medical services, where there is consistent emotional highs and lows that can result in heart issues as well as psychiatric issues. We see these types of cases a lot and sometimes these workers are so work-oriented they do not want to file for compensation because they just can’t slow down. We urge you to reach out to our Florida workers’ compensation attorneys so we can help you get the compensation you deserve so you can focus on getting better.

        Immediately After Your Injury

        When you are injured in the workplace, it is essential to your case that you tell your employer that you were hurt as soon as you possibly can after the injury happens. They need to have knowledge that something happened to you in the scope of the workplace. They have a duty to report your injury and make documentation that it happened. This is what you need to do immediately after you have been hurt at work.

        Now, you don’t have to get a hold of the head of the company, if you were hurt at a big corporation. It can be a supervisor or manager who works closer to you. That’s not to say you can just tell a coworker you got hurt and then leave the scene. You need to tell someone who has the authority to make an accident report and who can get this officially documented. Also, be sure that you can get a copy of the report.

        What Comes Next?

        As soon as you can, assure that a report has been filed and has details about the event in question. Make sure that it is correct because it will be used by us later in the process of getting you the results you deserve. We will be able to determine what we believe the compensation for your injuries should be based on how badly hurt you are and how much your life has been impacted by the event. It is also based on your wages or salary.

        Right after you report your injury and head to a hospital or urgent care center is the ideal time to reach out to Florida workers’ compensation attorneys to set up a free consultation. We urge you to make that call sooner rather than later because these types of cases, like other personal injury cases (like car accidents), are time-sensitive. You are more likely to get the results you deserve if you act quickly in hiring a lawyer.

        Make sure you prioritize your health during this time because you don’t get a second chance with your health. You need to get your injuries taken care of right away. We also need to know what your recovery is going to look like. The longer you delay seeking medical attention, the longer your recovery is going to be.

        If you were to wait to seek medical attention, that would be a huge mistake. You are not only putting your health at risk here, you are also more likely to run into problems with the insurance company. The insurance company will see that there was a delay in seeking medical care and they will likely do one of two things. They will either say you lied about when you got hurt (which would allow them to throw away your claim) or they will say that you lied about the severity of the injury (which would allow them to attempt to reduce the compensation they give you). It is always best for you to seek immediate medical attention.

        Workers Compensation Benefits

        There can be a lot of complications related to your workplace injury that you may not be ready for and have trouble keeping up with. That might be something like a surgery or no longer being able to physically keep up with your daily tasks or physically do the same type of work you did before the injury. This is particularly true for those who have jobs that demand physical labor such as construction workers, nurses, firefighters, law enforcement, etc. Sometimes, it takes a while to recover from these workplace injuries and sometimes you are permanently affected by it.

        We want to be able to support you through this difficult time so that you can focus on learning how to live your new normal. It is a terrible reality, but we want to make sure you don’t have to worry about getting the justice you deserve. We know that the insurance companies tend to be stingy and they will low ball you. We take care of the obstacles like this on the path to your full compensation. Our Florida workers’ compensation attorneys are here to help you through this every step of the way, keeping you informed but letting you know with confidence we have this handled for you.

        Call Our Florida Workers Compensation Attorneys Today

        When you call us looking for help, you are going to be treated with urgency and priority. We don’t want to just get you in and out of the door to finish up with your case as soon as we can. We take the time necessary to help you with the results that you deserve, and sometimes that takes a little bit of time. You are important to us. You are not just a case file to us; you are someone who needs our help. We know that this is a difficult time for you and you need someone to ease the burden for you. We aim to make this entire process smoother for you. We want you to be informed and supported the whole way to justice, but we do the heavy lifting so you can feel relieved.

        If you choose to hire us to represent your workers’ compensation case, we are going to treat you like family. We fight for your justice the way we would fight for the justice of our own families. We don’t settle for low ball offers from the insurance companies. We push to get you the results that we believe to be full and know to be fair. Call us today to set up your free consultation.

        Frequently Asked Workers’ Compensation Questions

        Workers' Comp Coverage for First Responders

        What will workers’ compensation cover for first responders in Florida?

        I’m often asked by injured workers what benefits would be provided by workers’ compensation and if it’s worthwhile to file a workers’ comp claim. Workers’ comp provides medical care and lost wages, and then impairment benefits if you do have an injury. What that means is they provide a doctor, a primary care physician, specialist, the testing, anything that you may require until you’re placed at maximum medical improvement and they pay it at 100%. While a doctor has you on light duty or no work, they have to pay part of your income, and that’s temporary total or temporary partial disability benefits. It alleviates the need to use your own sick/vacation time, PTO time. It’s time that and money benefits that the statute that the legislature has granted to you as well as with impairment benefits – they pay you for your injury.

        Impairment benefits can be relatively small or significant sums, over six-figures. Also, if you’re unable to return to work and enter the workforce in any capacity, you may be entitled to permanent total disability, which means the employer or the insurance company may need to continue paying you until your age 75. There are many benefits that are available and need to be taken or acted upon while they are right and available, as if you don’t act, the statute of limitations may run and you may not have the ability to make a claim later when you realize how bad your injury actually is.

        At Oliver and Fox, we’d be very happy to review this with you, review what benefits are available to you, and if it makes sense for you to file a claim regarding your career and how it may impact it. Please call us for a free evaluation. We’d be happy to speak with you.

        What are the benefits for workers’ compensation for first responders in Florida?

        We were speaking to a first responder the other day, and he indicated that he believed everything in his claim had been handled appropriately by workers’ compensation. In Florida, first responders who also have workers’ compensation injuries are entitled to benefits. Those benefits include not only medical care and treatment, indemnity, impairment and potentially permanent benefits, but it’s important for first responders to ensure that all those benefits are being provided to them timely as well.

        At Oliver and Fox, we invite you to call us so that we can ensure that all your benefits are being paid correctly and on time.

        What is temporary partial disability and temporary total disability?

        Oftentimes our first responders ask us how they get paid following a workers’ compensation injury. In workers’ compensation there’s several categories of indemnity or monetary benefits. We have broken those down into three specific indemnity benefits – temporary total disability benefits, temporary partial disability benefits, impairment benefits, and a fourth category called permanent total disability benefits.

        Temporary total and temporary partial disability benefits are very similar benefits where you’re either temporarily unable to return to duty as a first responder or you’re allowed to return to light duty but are not earning your full wages, which would result in temporary partial disability benefits to make you whole or to make your wages whole.

        Impairment benefits are benefits after you’re at maximum medical improvement and a doctor has said that you are as good as you’re going to get as a result of your injury. Workers’ compensation has an impairment guidebook that delineates an impairment rating for each type of injury, and that rating translates into monetary benefits.

        Permanent total disability benefits, again, are benefits that are post-MMI, or maximum medical improvement, and are benefits when an injured worker is permanently and totally disabled from returning back to work in any capacity.

        At Oliver and Fox, we can discuss with you your monetary benefits as it applies to temporary total, temporary partial impairment, and permanent total disability benefits. We invite you to call our office so that we can discuss that with you.

        What is important to know about impairment benefits relative to first responder workers’ compensation?

        I’m often asked by potential clients and first responders whether or not they may have a claim, or whether they settled their claim because they received impairment benefits. Impairment benefits are a statutory benefit that’s provided to you and it does not settle or close out your case, and it is not a restriction in your case. Impairment benefits are based on a rating that a doctor gives you, based on a whole book, and it’s put into a formula and we calculate how many weeks of benefits you receive for having your diagnosis or your injury. It is not a restriction. You can have no restrictions but still receive an impairment rating and receive impairment benefits.

        Furthermore, if your employer does not pay your impairment benefits correctly, which happens quite a bit of the time, your statute of limitations may not have run and you may be able to reopen or re-investigate any old claim where your employer is telling you that your statute of limitations may have run or you’re not entitled to benefits. If you would like, please call us at Oliver and Fox and we’d be happy to review your impairment benefits, what have been paid, if they’ve been paid appropriately, and whether or not your case remains open.

        Paid Medical Bills for First Responders

        If I am injured while on duty, what medical bills are paid for first responders?

        Oftentimes we have clients who receive medical bills following a work-related accident. My first responders are often transported to the hospital or to a medical facility, and the hospital bills their group or private health insurance. In Florida, when you’re injured on duty, medical bills are the responsibility of the insurance carriers and should not be billed through your group health insurance. Medical bills related to the injury and those bills that are reasonably and medically necessary for the treatment of your injuries should be paid by the carrier.

        If you are receiving bills either through your group health insurance or from a medical provider, we invite you to call our office so that we can make sure that the insurance company is properly billed and represent you on your claim.

        How do I pay my bills while I’m seriously injured as a first responder?

        We were speaking to a police officer who was shot in the line of duty. That police officer was very concerned about how to maintain his income and salary to provide for his family. In Florida, workers’ compensation provides for indemnity benefits. In addition, your agency for first responders may have additional benefits available to you for catastrophic injuries that prevent you from returning to work. This includes not only workers’ compensation, but potential benefits through pension as well.

        Repetitive Motion Injuries for First Responders

        Are repetitive motion injuries such as carpal tunnel covered for first responders?

        We often find ourselves speaking with first responders in Florida that tell us about repetitive-type injuries that they have and that they haven’t made a claim for. They may not realize that they may be able to make a claim for them. Just like a secretary or phlebotomist or somebody working with their hands may develop carpal tunnel over time, first responders can also develop repetitive-type injuries to their knees, back, or neck.

        We recently assisted an officer who developed severe neck pain and herniations in his neck and required a fusion because of the very awkward position in which he had to have his neck and hands while typing in his squad car. These types of cases can be repetitive trauma, just like a firefighter jumping on and off the truck and climbing ladders with 80+ pounds of gear on his back. The wear and tear that you endure and that your bodies endure is not typical of anyone that’s not a first responder, and it may entitle you to additional benefits and to make a claim.

        Please call us at Oliver and Fox. We’d be happy to evaluate your specific injuries and help you decide if a claim is in your best interest.

        How is presumptive coverage handled to first responders?

        We were recently doing a presentation before a local union, and we were asked how presumptions differ from a regular workers’ compensation injury. Presumptions are unique in the law in that it shifts the burden from the injured worker to the carrier. What that means is once you’ve met the elements of the presumption, the burden then falls on the carrier to prove that it’s not work-related.

        For example, if an individual has a heart attack and is a first responder, they’re entitled to the heart presumption if they meet the four criteria of the protected class, the protected condition, they have a qualifying pre-employment physical, and they have a disability within a definition of workers’ compensation. If they’ve met those four criteria, those four elements, they’ve proved their case and it then falls upon the employer carrier to rebut that presumption with either competent substantial or clear and convincing evidence of a non-work-related cause.

        If you have a presumptive case and would like to discuss your options, please call us at Oliver and Fox and I’ll be happy to explore those options.

        If my first responder workers’ comp case is denied, do I qualify for any benefits while my case is being denied?

        We were recently speaking to a first responder who explained he had a work-related injury, but the benefits had been denied by the employer and the insurance provider. He asked what he was entitled to in the interim and if there’s an option for him. We explained that we can file a petition and take it to the local judge of compensation claims and hopefully have that denial overturned. Simply because you receive a denial is not the end of your case. It may be the beginning of the litigation side of the case, but benefits may still be available.

        When you receive a denial, you may still be able to receive benefits such as unemployment because your employer is saying that the benefits are not work-related. Every case is different, every situation is different, so please call us at Oliver and Fox. We’d be happy to evaluate your case, that denial that you may have received, and whether or not you may be entitled to benefits while we litigate and fight for you.

        Can I be fired or lose my first responder benefits if I file a claim?

        One of our Florida workers’ compensation attorneys was speaking at a union meeting to a group of first responders, and the inquiry came from several members whether or not they could be retaliated against or terminated as a result of filing a workers’ compensation claim. In Florida, if you file a workers’ compensation claim, you cannot be terminated or retaliated against for filing the claim in and of itself. An employer, however, can terminate an employee for cause or for medical inability to return back to work.

        If you feel that you have been terminated and that termination is not for cause, or that you have been retaliated against for filing a workers’ compensation claim, we invite you to contact our office so we can discuss your options with you.

        First Responder Unable to Return to Duty

        What happens if I am unable to return to duty as a first responder?

        We were speaking to a client who was injured on the job and was unable to return to full duty as a firefighter. In Florida, in workers’ comp, we can assist with providing temporary benefits, if you’re unable to return to work on a temporary basis, and permanent benefits, if you’re unable to return not only to work as a firefighter but in all work capacities as a result of your injuries.

        At Oliver and Fox, we invite you to call so that we can discuss your injuries and your work status in a full consultation to determine what benefits you are entitled.

        Is there a cap on my workers’ compensation benefits for first responders?

        We are sometimes asked by first responders in Florida whether or not there’s a cap on the benefits that they receive. The short answer is no. They’re entitled to medical care so long as the original work-related injury remains the major contributing cause of their need for care. On the monetary side, there is a cap in the maximum amount that they’re allowed to receive if they’re receiving lost wages on a weekly basis, and that’s set each year and increases slightly each year.

        In general, the amount of benefits that you’re entitled to are not limited or capped in that fashion. If you are permanently and totally disabled, you can only collect those benefits until you’re 75 years of age, but, again, the medical care would continue. Every case is a little bit different. There are different circumstances, depending on the year it was filed and the age that you are when your case is filed or when you’re injured, so please call us at Oliver and Fox. We’d be happy to listen to your facts and address how the law may affect what limitations there may be on your case.

        Third Party Lawsuits for First Responders

        Are there any third-party lawsuits available for first responders?

        We recently had a client, who was a law enforcement officer and who was injured in a motor vehicle accident. He inquired what benefits were available to him. If a law enforcement officer or first responder is injured in a motor vehicle or third-party action, they may have, in addition to a workers’ compensation claim, a third-party claim against the insured motorist or third-party responsible for the injury.

        How this works is workers’ compensation is required to provide medical and indemnity benefits through workers’ compensation, and there may be a separate third-party claim against the insured at-fault individual or entity. If you have questions about whether you have a workers’ comp claim with third-party involvement, please call our office today. We are happy to discuss those options with you.

        Can I sue my employer or co-worker for causing my injury or illness as a first responder?

        We are often asked by first responders in Florida if they are able to sue an employer or a co-worker for their work-related injury. Usually, the answer is no. There are exceptional circumstances where you may be able to sue or go after an auto policy, for example, or car insurance or a premises liability, if the injury occurred at another location, or if the employer somehow did not properly train you on the equipment or gear to do the job that you’re doing.

        Normally, one of the trade-offs for us not having to prove any type of negligence and having benefits flow almost automatically through workers’ comp is the trade-off that we cannot sue the employer in civil court or outside of workers’ comp for any types of penalties and interest. If you’d like a free evaluation, please call us at Oliver and Fox and we’d be happy to take a look for you.

        FRS, 175, & 185 Pension Plans for First Responders

        What is the difference between the FRS, 175, and 185 pension plans for first responders?

        In Florida, we are often asked by first responders what the difference is between FRS and a 175 or a 185 type of pension plan. In order to be eligible for an FRS type plan, you need to be unable to return to work at all in any type of position. You have to be permanently and totally disabled to be eligible for that benefit. For the 175 or 185 plan, you have to be unable to return to your job as a first responder, so that may be a slightly lower, easier burden to obtain.

        Your department has chosen which type of pension plan you are subscribed to or you are eligible for. We can help with both. We cover the entire state, and we’d be very happy to assess whether or not you may be eligible for this pension plan which provides benefits that are tax-free potentially for the rest of your life.

        Client Reviews

        stars

        “The last year and a half have been exhausting, both physically and emotionally. Right from the start, I stressed over leaving a career behind that I loved with nothing to show for it. I know my law enforcement career was over, but had no idea what I was deserving of. Despite my case being about as clear-cut as they come, I knew I needed help and guidance…that’s where you and your firm came in. Despite my lack of patience, you explained clearly what needed to happen and how to get there.  I am SO GLAD this is over, and I thank you so much for getting me here.”
        – Anonymous.
        Read More Reviews