Tampa Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If you are injured on the job, Florida workers’ compensation insurance is available to you regardless of who was at fault for the accident or injury, whether it was you, your employer, a co-worker or some other reason. Workers’ comp benefits are meant to pay for your medical bills and replace a portion of the wages lost while you are out of work due to disability.
- Workers’ Compensation Claim Process
- Workers’ Compensation Injuries
- Repetitive Motion Injuries
- Fair Debt
- IME & EMA
Unfortunately, Florida workers’ compensation law favors employers and their insurers, and not the injured worker. That’s where we come in. At Kobal Law, our only focus is on you, the injured worker, and helping you get the care and compensation you need after a workplace accident, injury or disease. We know the workers’ compensation claim process inside and out, and we are dedicated to making sure you are treated well and that your claim is fully and promptly paid. Put our 18 years of legal experience to work for you by calling the Tampa workers’ compensation attorneys at Kobal Law for a free consultation after an on-the-job injury in Florida.
What does workers’ compensation insurance pay for?
Workers’ compensation benefits come primarily in the form of medical expenses and wage replacement. Regarding medical expenses, workers’ comp is expected to pay for all of your medical care for as long as it is needed after an on-the-job injury. Your employer’s insurance carrier may dispute how much care you need or for how long, and they may force you to undergo an Independent Medical Examination in an attempt to cut off benefits early. Your workers’ compensation attorney will know how to respond to these attacks on your benefits.
The amount and duration of wage replacement benefits depend on your injury. Common wage loss benefits include:
Temporary Total Disability – TTD benefits equal 66% of your regular wages up to a weekly maximum, for the duration of your disability or up to 104 weeks. In the case of some severe injuries, you can receive as much as 80% of your regular wages for as long as six months.
Temporary Partial Disability – If you are able to work on a restricted or light duty assignment but at lower pay below 80% of your pre-injury wage, TPD benefits will make up the difference.
Once you’ve reached a level of maximum medical improvement, if you are still disabled, you may be eligible for permanent total disability benefits based on your impairment rating. You may be eligible for Social Security Disability as well. SSD benefits are notoriously difficult to obtain, and most people who apply for social security disability are denied. Kobal Law is experienced in both workers’ compensation and social security disability law and can pursue both claims for you where applicable.
Can I sue for damages if someone else is at fault for the accident?
Because there is a workers’ compensation system in place, injured workers are normally kept from filing a personal injury lawsuit, even if the accident was caused by the negligence of the employer or a co-worker. However, there are a few important instances when an injured worker may be able to file a civil lawsuit and recover not only medical expenses but also the full amount of lost wages and other legal damages such as pain and suffering. These situations include:
An uninsured employer – Employers with four or more employees are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. In the construction industry, a construction company must provide workers’ comp with as few as just one employee. If a covered employer was not carrying workers’ compensation insurance when an accident occurred, the injured worker can sue the employer directly.
The employer intentionally caused the injury – An employer can be sued for an intentional tort that causes the injury or death of an employee. This requires proving to a high legal standard that the employer deliberately intended to injure the employee or engaged in conduct the employer knew was virtually certain to result in injury or death to the employee. This situation might arise where an employer forced an employee to work in a highly dangerous area without appropriate safety protections in place, while hiding the danger from the worker. If you think this situation applies to you, call our office to discuss pursuing a case in this challenging area of the law.
Third-party liability – A worker who is injured by the negligence of a third party can sue that third party for the damages caused by that negligence, even if the accident occurred while the employee was working. Examples include car or truck accidents that happen on duty, injuries occurring while working on a third party’s dangerously unsafe premises, or injuries caused by products that were defectively designed or defectively manufactured. If you receive both a personal injury settlement and workers’ compensation benefits, you may be required to pay back workers’ compensation, but you’ll be able to keep the rest and likely be better off than if you had not sued the negligent third party. Kobal Law can represent you in both your personal injury and your workers’ compensation claims and take both cases on a contingency fee, where you only pay if we recover compensation for you.
Tampa Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Dedicated to Serving the Needs of Injured Workers
Our practice at Kobal Law is dedicated to helping injured workers get the care and compensation they need after a workplace accident. If you’ve been injured on the job in Tampa, call Kobal Law at 813-873-2440 for a free consultation and the kind of advice and assistance with your Florida workers’ compensation claim.