Common Workers’ Compensation Questions, Answered
As an attorney with 27 years of experience, I receive questions all the time about workers’ compensation in Florida. On this page, I’ve provided answers to some of the most common questions clients ask me. After reading, I invite you to contact my firm, the Law Office of Michael T. Keough and ask me your own questions during a free initial consultation.
My accident happened months ago. Can I still file a claim?
The statute of limitations for filing a claim is two years in Florida. However, the injury needs to be reported to your employer within 30 days. If you missed that 30-day reporting window, a judge may excuse it if you had an understandable reason for doing so. Perhaps symptoms took a long time to appear, or you didn’t think your case was eligible for workers’ compensation.
If seeking an exemption, it’s a good idea to work with an experienced lawyer like me who can help you present a strong argument to the judge. Prompt reporting is always the best course of action, but don’t assume that you have no case just because you missed the window.
Should I visit my own doctor before I file a claim?
No, because the doctor you see needs to be approved to treat workers’ comp patients, and your doctor may not be approved to do so. If you go to an approved doctor from the very beginning, you likely won’t have to worry about complications with billing and claims going through your own insurance. You’ll also have all medical records in one place, making the claims process easier.
If you already saw your own doctor, I can likely help you sort things out. But if you’re early in the process, it is most practical to get treated by an approved physician.
Can I still qualify for workers’ comp benefits if the accident was partly my fault?
Yes, in most cases. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. On rare occasions, certain acts of negligence on your part could cause your benefits to be reduced by 25%.
Before you admit to any blame, please discuss your case with an attorney. You may be cheating yourself out of benefits for something that wasn’t actually your fault.
I reported my accident on time, but my employer hasn’t reported it to the insurance company. What can I do?
Consult my office immediately!
What kind of wage loss benefits will I receive while I’m unable to work?
Your wage loss benefits will be a percentage of your average weekly wage for the 13 weeks prior to your accident. In most cases, your benefits will be two-thirds (66.66%) of this weekly average. There are, of course, always caveats and exceptions, but this is generally what you can expect.
Do I need to hire an attorney for help with my claim? If not, should I hire one?
Due to the complex nature of the worker’s compensation system, anyone with a serious injury should consult an attorney. My firm offers free consultations. After meeting with me, if you decide to hire me you will enter into a contingency contract which means no fees paid by you unless we obtain a settlement. At which time my fee comes from the settlement proceeds.
Ask Me Your Own Questions During A Free Consultation
The Law Office of Michael T. Keough is based in New Port Richey, Florida, and I serve clients in Pasco County, throughout the Bay area and have out of state clients injured under Florida Worker’s Compensation Law. To schedule a free initial consultation about your workers’ comp matter, call my office at 727-435-8716 or submit an online contact form.