Port St. Lucie Permanent and Total Disability Benefits

With a population of nearly 200,000 residents and an expanding economic presence, Port St. Lucie hosts a wide variety of occupations. The most common industry for residents is sales and office administration, with food service and hospitality occupations making up another large percentage of the workforce. The city is seen as a popular tourist destination, featuring water sports and recreational activities like golf courses. Statistics also show that Port St. Lucie has a large segment of individuals working in the construction industry, as well as in health care. Each of these diverse industries makes Port St. Lucie a wonderful place to live, but it is also possible that residents will suffer a work-related accident that leaves them injured and unable to work. At Donaldson & Weston, our Port St. Lucie workers’ compensation attorneys have provided strong legal counsel to injured workers in a wide variety of occupations. We are well-versed in the laws that apply to your claim and can pursue permanent and total disability benefits on your behalf if that is appropriate.

Assessing Your Injury and Determining Your Entitlement to Benefits

An on-the-job injury can occur in a number of ways. Whether you are involved in a car accident on the job or suffer a back injury when picking up a heavy object, or even if you sustain injuries that develop over time through repetitive motions like typing, your work-related injury may be compensable through Florida’s workers’ compensation system. The first step in securing your right to benefits is to let your employer know that you have been injured on the job. This may involve providing emergency medical services or transportation to the hospital to address your immediate medical needs.

It is critical that you undergo any immediate care that is necessary to ensure that you do not worsen the injury. Once your immediate medical needs have been addressed, the employer will notify its workers’ compensation insurance carrier, which will then assign an adjuster to your file. The adjuster will serve as your point person and oversee the administration and review of your claim. You will need to work with the adjuster to ensure that they receive the information and documents necessary to assess your injuries. In some unfortunate circumstances, however, insurance companies fail to keep the injured employee’s best interests in mind and make decisions based on their own financial gain instead. Retaining an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can help ensure that the insurance company plays by the rules and that you obtain the full amount of benefits that you deserve.

The first thing that the adjuster will do is ask you to undergo a medical examination with an approved health care provider. During this examination, the health care provider will determine two factors: first, whether your injury is partial or total, and second, whether your injury is temporary or permanent. These factors are used to determine the amount of benefits that you are entitled to receive based on a pre-determined schedule of payments provided in Florida’s workers’ compensation statutes. The most severe injuries are usually classified as permanent and total disabilities, while limited injuries that are expected to resolve or that will not fully impede the worker from returning to work give rise to partial disability benefits. Permanent and total disability benefits are the only type of long-term payment offered to injured workers under Florida’s laws. The injured worker must have sustained an injury listed on a specific schedule of injuries, which includes conditions like spinal cord damage, neurological disorders, and devastating burn injuries. An employee can qualify for permanent and total disability benefits if they are able to prove that they are not able to perform even sedentary work within a 50-mile radius of their home.