Workers’ Compensation For Auto Accidents In Florida
A 2017 study ranked Orlando in the top 15 percent of cities with the worst traffic in the world, and this has persisted to this day, though there are many more delivery drivers and rideshare cars on the road than there used to be. When someone who is on the clock is involved in a traffic accident, they might think that their best course of action is to file suit against the driver that allegedly caused the accident. However, it may be possible for them to receive workers’ compensation for their injuries, which can make things more complex. Calling an attorney well versed in these cases can be a huge help.
Was It On The Clock?
In Florida, a worker who is acting within the “course and scope” of their employment and suffers “accidental compensable injury” can receive compensation or benefits from their employer. Workers’ compensation is meant to cover all possible on-the-job injuries in Florida, in exchange for the injured employee giving up any right they would have to file suit against their employer. (There are times when an injured employee can sue their employer in Florida, but they are extremely limited and usually involve the employer displaying actual malice in their actions.)
Cases that involve an automobile accident while an employee is (in theory) on the clock are sometimes difficult to process, in terms of whether or not compensation is appropriate. In some cases it can be difficult to actually determine whether an employee is acting within the “course and scope of their employment” – for example, accidents while commuting to and from work are not generally covered, but one that occurs on a personal trip punctuated by a work delivery might be covered. If you are furthering some purpose of your employer’s, your accident is likely to be compensable.
How To Proceed?
While injuries stemming from work-related car crashes are generally eligible for workers compensation, in some cases you may also be able to file a claim with your no-fault insurer as well. While your employer may be on the proverbial hook for your bills because of your workers’ compensation agreement, Florida law still allows you to seek compensation from the third-party driver who allegedly caused the accident (if there is one). Florida is a no-fault state, so in most cases, you may not be able to sue the driver, but you can make a claim under your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. It will cover 80 percent of all “reasonable expenses” for medically necessary care.
In spite of this, be advised that if you file a personal injury lawsuit or make a claim with your PIP insurer and receive compensation, your employer will have a lien of sorts, called a workers’ compensation lien, on any proceeds you receive that are greater than the cost of your medical care. Sometimes, using your PIP coverage can be advantageous, because it may cover things more quickly than workers’ compensation, but sometimes, simply using workers’ compensation coverage can make things more streamlined and less confusing. Each case is different, and speaking to an experienced attorney can help.
Call An Orlando Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If you have been injured in an auto accident in Florida while you were on the clock, you need to act fast. The Orlando workers’ compensation lawyers at the Hornsby Law Group can help you determine how best to proceed so that you can get compensation for the injuries you have suffered. Contact our office today for a free consultation.