Claims of permanent total disability benefits can be challenging because of the stringent legal definitions of permanent disability and the legal requirements of proving permanent incapacity to work due to catastrophic injuries suffered on the job. At Carlson Meissner & Hayslett, our trusted and compassionate long-term disability lawyers in Tampa will evaluate your case for free. We are determined to pursue the strongest legal strategy and advocate for your rights to permanent disability benefits in Florida to help ensure a financially secure future for you and your dependents.

Applying For PTD Benefits in Florida

You may qualify for permanent total disability (PTD) benefits under the Florida Workers’ Compensation Act if you can demonstrate that you cannot engage in gainful employment within a 50-mile radius of your home due to the workers’ compensation accident.

This is a demanding and strict standard, especially if you live in a large metropolitan area. PTD is a combination of physical capabilities and a claimant's vocational background. Physical restrictions apply to your residual abilities to engage in certain physical activities, while vocational preparation considers your work experience and educational background.

Eligibility for Permanent Total Disability Benefits in FL

Next, you must determine whether you are permanently disabled under the Florida Workers’ Compensation Act. Claimants with one or more catastrophic injuries are allowed to file for PTD benefits. Under the Florida Statutes section 440.15, a claimant is considered totally disabled only if:

  • They have limb amputation
  • Suffered severe head trauma or brain injury
  • Experienced communication, sensory, or motor disturbances
  • Spinal cord injury that results in trunk or limb paralysis
  • Episodic neurological disorder
  • Are considered totally blind
  • Sustained second- or third-degree burns covering at least 25% of your body
  • Sustained third-degree burns covering at least 5% of your face and hands

Your specific field of work may also determine your eligibility for PTD benefits. For instance, a loss of vision for a mechanic may prevent them from ever working as a mechanic again.

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Receiving PTD Benefits in Florida

You must file a workers’ compensation claim for receiving PTD benefits and notify your employer of the injury within 30 days. You will first receive temporary disability payments of 66.67% of the weekly wages. This will be for the initial six weeks.

Once you have attained maximum medical improvement (MMI), you can file for permanent impairment benefits. Your physician will assign an impairment rating to your condition, determining the length and amount of these payments.

Each impairment percentage point provides three weeks of pay until you pass away. It can get incredibly complicated to file for permanent total disability benefits after navigating all the requirements making it essential to work with a capable workers’ compensation attorney.

Our Trusted Permanent Disability Benefits Lawyers are Ready to Fight for Your Rights – Book Your Free Consultation Today

Our experienced Tampa long-term disability attorneys at Carlson Meissner & Hayslett can help determine whether you qualify for permanent total disability benefits. We will ensure that your workers’ compensation claim for PTD benefits is complete and accurate on all accounts. You can also count on us to present your claim and potential appeals in the most persuasive manner before Florida’s First District Court of Appeals or a Judge of Compensation Claims (JCC). To set up your free consultation with our lawyers, call 877-728-9653 or reach us online.

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