Workers Compensation FAQ
Questions & Answers on Workers Compensation Cases
At Carlson & Meissner, we know if you or a family member is injured on the job, the stress and uncertainty can affect every aspect of your life. It is the responsibility of your employer or its workers compensation insurance carrier to provide appropriate medical care and compensation for lost wages when you are injured on the job. Unfortunately, many employers and their insurance carriers resist paying claims.
Below is a complied list of commonly asked questions, and our responses about workers’ compensation cases.
General Workers Compensation Questions
Q: Am I entitled to workers’ compensation benefits?
A: Under Florida Law, employers are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance to pay benefits to injured workers who lose earnings and require expensive medical care because of job injuries.
Q: Do I have to use the insurance company’s doctor?
A: Florida workers’ compensation law provides the exclusive remedy for wage loss, medical treatment, and death benefits for workers injured on the job. The law required that all medical treatment and prescription medicine be authorized by the workers’ compensation carrier and treatment must come from authorized physicians under the plan. However, if you are not satisfied with the treating physician, we can file a petition to get authorization for treatment by another physician.
Q: I had a second job when I got hurt, but my workers' compensation benefits only include the wages from one job. Is that right?
A: Not necessarily. If your second job has workers' compensation coverage then your wages from the second job are also calculated into your average weekly wage if you not able to work at your second job after your injury. If your second job does not have workers' compensation coverage, then those wages are not included. If you have a question as to whether or not your second job should be included in your wages, please contact us to review this information with you.
Q: I want to be retrained to do something else. Can I get this paid for as part of my workers' compensation benefits?
A: After you attain maximum medical improvement, you can apply to the division of vocational rehabilitation. This organization is run by the state, so neither you nor the insurance company have control over your acceptance. If they accept you into the program, the state of Florida pays for your train, your books, etc. With some limitations, the insurance company pays your lost wages while you are in training. Please contact our office for the telephone number of the facility closest to you.
Q: My doctor says I have reached MMI. What does that mean?
A: It means that you have reached a point where your doctor can no longer do anything else to make you better from a medical stantpoint. You may require additional treatment, but that treatment is to help your pain, not actually correct anything, like a surgery would. When you reach MMI (maximum medical improvement) that does not mean that you cannot see the doctor after that. Your case is still open and you can make an appointment and return to the doctor whenever you need to do so. It may cost you a $10.00 copay, but that is well worth it to keep your case open. The insurance company will still pay for everything else, including prescriptions that the doctor recommends. ALWAYS REMEMBER, YOU MUST CONTINUE TO TREAT WITH YOUR AUTHORIZED WORKERS' COMPENSATION DOCTOR AT LEAST ONCE A YEAR. IF YOU GO 365 DAYS WITHOUT SEEING THE DOCTOR, THE INSURANCE COMPANY MAY CLOSE YOUR CASE AND YOU MAY NOT BE ENTITLED TO ANY ADDITIONAL BENEFITS! Often times, a claimant may want to settle their case after they reach MMI. If you thing you may want to take a lump sum instead of keeping your case open and continuing to treat with their doctor, please contact us so that we can help you negotiate the best possible settlement for you.