You go to work to earn a living and, in most cases, do your best to take care of your bills, family and goals. Nobody goes to work intending to get hurt, but sometimes accidents occur and you find yourself hurt on the job. When this happens, the process of resolving the issues can bevery confusing and stressful.

Unfortunately, even an employer that has been good to you in the past may suddenly decide not to do what’s right to take care of you. They may be trying to avoid liability publicly, avoid paying for your injuries, avoid raising insurance costs or they may just simply not want to be bothered with the situation.

If this scenario sounds familiar, contact the DeFuniak Springs personal injury law firm of Powell, Powell & Powell. Our attorneys can help you understand your employer’s responsibilities.

Workers' Compensation

In Florida, the Division of Workers' Compensation sets rules for employers to ensure that employees are protected in case of an accident — but not all employers are subject to these rules and not all employers follow them.

If your employer is not a construction company and has four or more employees, they are required to carry workers' compensation insurance. If your employer is in the construction business, there only needs to be one employee to require the business to carry workers' compensation coverage. For farmer employers, the number of employees needed under the law is a little higher and also include seasonal thresholds.

As long as you report your injury to your employer within 30 days —although sooner is better —your employer is responsible for reporting your injuries to the workers' compensation insurance carrier and getting you the help you need.

However, when this reporting fails to happen or when your employer or the insurer won’t address your expenses appropriately, you need a personal injury law firm on your side.

Drug Tests

Keep in mind that after a workplace injury occurs, one of your employer’s responsibilities may include issuing a drug test to you. It’s good to be aware of two things when this happens. A failed drug test is likely to hurt your claim or even result in full denial -- especially if you don’t have an aggressive lawyer on your side. The other thing to remember is that while no one can force you to submit to drug testing in certain instances, you may find your case goes more smoothly if you comply with the insurance regulations of your employer.

Catastrophic Injuries

Catastrophic injuries are those that are severe or crippling. Many times, accidents that happen on construction sites are catastrophic in nature and may include head or spinal injuries, loss of limbs or digits, loss of movement or feeling and serious psychological trauma. Afterwards, you may be unable to work for a very long time —if ever again.

In such cases, your employer may be responsible for emergency services like an ambulance, hospital bills, surgeries, follow-up doctor’s visits and physical rehabilitation, prescriptions, in-home care, medical devices and more.

Additionally, when injuries are catastrophic, your employer may also be responsible for damages relating to lost income far into the future. A lifetime of earning isn’t the least of your losses in a situation like this —some victims of catastrophic injury could have earned money for another 30 to 40 years if they hadn’t been hurt.

If you have been the victim of an injury on the job, please contact our personal injury law firm for help today. We are here to assist you in working towards getting the compensation you deserve.