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Orlando Personal Injury Attorneys / Blog / Workers Compensation / What Workers’ Compensation Does & Does Not Cover

What Workers’ Compensation Does & Does Not Cover


Workers’ compensation insurance is intended to pay medical bills and lost wages for an injured employee. However, there are very often misconceptions as to what expenses will and will not be covered, and for whom they will and will not be covered. It is crucial to be aware of exactly what you can count on when you have been injured at work, lest you get a nasty surprise further down the line.

Employees Only … Usually

First and foremost, it is important to realize that in Florida, workers’ compensation benefits are usually only available to employees – independent contractors and freelancers are, with rare exceptions, excluded. This also applies to workers in some industries at very small businesses – for example, agricultural businesses with fewer than 6 regular employees, or fewer than 12 seasonal employees who work a certain number of days in the calendar year, are not required to carry workers’ compensation coverage.

Sometimes, an employer is not strictly responsible for workers’ compensation coverage, but for ensuring their underlings obtain their own. For example, construction contractors are responsible for ensuring that all subcontractors carry the appropriate coverage, and if they fail to do so, it will be the contractor who winds up on the proverbial hook for workers’ injuries, rather than the subcontractor directly.

Only Physical Injuries On The Premises … Usually

Even if a person has the right status to be allowed to claim workers’ compensation benefits after an injury, not every work-related injury will be compensable. Some types of injuries are either implicitly or explicitly excluded from coverage under most workers’ compensation policies, usually because of the specifics of how the injury happened. Some examples may include:

  • Injuries related to stress or other mental harm as a result of one’s job, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – only first responders such as police, firefighters, and paramedics are entitled to benefits for such an injury;
  • Injuries sustained at optional events like company picnics (though injuries at mandatory events are usually covered);
  • Injuries sustained during one’s commute to or from work; and
  • Illnesses caught at work, unless the illness is unique to workers in that specific industry and is more likely to occur as a result of work in that industry.

There are even more potential exceptions that will be covered under workers’ compensation insurance, but they are dependent either on the injured employee’s specific duties, on the employee’s intent or state of mind, or on other intangible factors.

Contact An Orlando Workers’ Compensation Attorney

If you are uncertain as to whether or not your work injury is compensable, it is a good idea to consult an Orlando workers’ compensation attorney as quickly as possible – there is a 30 day limit in which a work injury must be reported in Florida. An experienced attorney from the Hornsby Law Group can help to guide you through the legal process, and hopefully increase your odds of receiving the benefits you need. Contact our office today for a free consultation.



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