Port St. Lucie Temporary and Total Disability Benefits

The workers’ compensation system can be complicated, leaving injured workers with questions about whether they are eligible to receive coverage. Port St. Lucie residents serve in a wide variety of occupations, with sales and office administration comprising the largest categories of employment. This leaves a large group of residents susceptible to certain types of injuries, including back injuries, repetitive injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome, and car accidents on the job. Port St. Lucie is located on the Atlantic coastline, which makes it a great destination for tourists. It is also home to many golf courses. As a result, many other residents work in food service or tourism support industries. At Donaldson & Weston, our Port St. Lucie workers’ compensation attorneys pride ourselves on providing knowledgeable legal counsel to injured workers across many different industries. We are ready to help you seek temporary and total disability benefits, among other forms of benefits.

Understanding the Workers’ Compensation Benefits System

If you are involved in a sudden accident on the job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits as well as compensation for your medical expenses. This can include a sudden back injury, falling objects that struck you in the head or another area of your body, or a slip and fall accident. The workers’ compensation system also provides coverage for injuries that develop over time, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, but these can be more difficult to identify and diagnose. A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you determine whether your injury is a result of your job duties and whether you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.

If you believe that your injury is related to your job, you should notify your employer immediately so that it can initiate a claim with its workers’ compensation carrier. The next step involves undergoing a medical examination with an approved health care provider. During this examination, the physician will determine whether your injury is temporary or permanent and whether it is partial or total. A temporary injury is expected to heal over time, while a permanent injury is not expected to heal and may prevent the injured worker from returning to their usual job duties. Partial injuries are injuries that affect only a portion of the victim’s body or well-being, while a total injury constitutes a complete physical impairment.

The amount of benefits that you are entitled to receive is based on the doctor’s conclusions during the initial medical examination. Florida has enacted a schedule of benefit payments that provides a certain percentage of the injured employee’s wages each week, depending on the severity and longevity of the injury. An injured worker who suffers a temporary and total disability, for example, can receive up to 104 weeks of benefit payments to supplement their lost wages. The benefit payment usually constitutes two-thirds of the worker’s average weekly wages at the time that they were injured. If the injury is considered critical, which happens frequently in construction accident claims, the injured worker is entitled to receive 80 percent of their weekly wages for up to six months following the date of the injury.

Florida statutes have placed a cap on the amount of weekly wages that an injured worker can receive, which is $866 as of January 2017. A committed and knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer can assist you with determining whether you have suffered a temporary and total disability.