Did you know that in the 2018-2019 fiscal year, Florida’s workers’ compensation system handled 257,667 claims totaling $531 million?
Whether you’re an employer or employee, there’s always a chance of work-related injuries and illness happening in Florida.
Understanding how the workers’ comp in Florida works will help you know how to handle an injury case when it happens.
Read along as we discuss six things you should know about workers’ compensation.
1. How Much Does Workers Comp Pay in Florida
The amount of workers’ compensation that one is eligible for varies from person to person based on their weekly pay. The least amount one is eligible for is $20 per week. No matter what you earn, the most amount as of 1st January 2021 is $1011 per week.
The total amount of compensation one receives can be further limited to the type of benefit that one is eligible for. There are several types of compensation benefits available in Florida.
Temporary Total Disability (TTD)
This compensation is available to those who cannot return to work due to injuries or sickness sustained in the line of work. In this case, one is entitled to two-thirds of their regular wage as compensation.
Temporary Partial Disability (TPD)
On the other hand, if a person can return to work with limited capabilities, they may still be eligible for compensation. However, they have to be unable to make 80% of the amount they were making at the time of injury or sickness.
Impairment Income Benefits (IIB)
One is eligible for these benefits when they achieve maximum medical improvement, and the condition can’t further improve. The doctor then evaluates the person and gives a permanent working restriction and an impairment rating.
When one has a greater than 0% rating, they are eligible for impairment income benefits.
Permanent Total Disability (PTD)
This compensation is for when one becomes totally and permanently disabled due to injuries sustained while at work and is unable to work.
While receiving PTD benefits, one shouldn’t be able to work even in a small capacity.
2. Statute of Limitations on Workers’ Comp in Florida
When someone is injured or becomes ill while performing their work duties in Florida, they are entitled to compensation. If the company or insurance provider fails to provide workers’ compensation, you can file a lawsuit against them.
However, according to Florida laws, the given time frame for bringing the case is two years from the date of injury. If this time frame lapses without any filed claim, the statute of limitations expires. Workers’ comp insurance companies in Florida can ask the court to dismiss cases filed after the expiry.
There is an exemption as to when the two-year statute of limitation starts. If one gets injured and the severity of the injuries seems minor only to manifest later on, what next?
In such a case, the statute of limitations would start when the injuries begin causing significant problems.
3. Not All Workers Are Entitled to Work-Related Sickness or Injuries Benefits
Are you asking yourself, “how do I get workers comp exemption in Florida?” well, that depends on the industry you’re in, who needs workers comp in Florida, and the number of employees.
In the construction industry, all companies need to provide workers’ compensation in Florida. This means even if a company has one employee, they must have compensation insurance. This includes companies that offer similar services like plumbing, electrical works, and landscaping.
Nonagricultural companies with less than four employees need not have workers’ comp insurance. Agricultural businesses with fewer than six full-time employees are also exempted.
4. How Does Workers Comp Work in Florida?
For a worker to qualify for workers’ compensation in Florida, the employee must have suffered the illness or injury from the line of work. If the injury or illness sustained doesn’t come from the work duties, chances are the employee may not be eligible.
When the employee gets injured, the workers’ compensation insurance will compensate for crucial benefits like medical care.
It also helps cover for lost wages due to the employee’s inabilities to perform their duties. In permanent injuries cases or even death, the insurance policy can help cover the costs.
To understand more about how workers’ comp works in Florida, find more information here.
5. Work-Related Illnesses or Injuries Must Be Reported on Time
A workers comp claim starts when you report the claim. In Florida, any work-related injuries or illnesses must be reported to the employer within thirty days. Failing to report the injury or illness on time can lead to you losing some or all your benefits.
The employer is the one that can recommend a doctor unless it’s a severe case requiring immediate medical attention. When with a doctor, ensure you give them as much information about the injury as possible.
6. Fair Compensation Should Cover All Damages
The sole reason the workers’ comp in Florida exists is to ensure the smooth continuation of a worker’s life in case of a work-related injury. However, some unscrupulous employers and insurance companies won’t always want to compensate. As such, they offer little to no compensation, which makes it hard for the injured worker to go on about their daily life.
Fair compensation should seek to cover all the damages that a worker suffers due to the injury.
Make an Informed Decision on Workers’ Comp in Florida
Use this guide on what you should know about workers’ comp in Florida. Understanding workers’ comp will help you make the best possible decision for you or your workers.
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