We Floridians are coming out of one of the most devastating hurricanes to hit our state, Hurricane Ian. It is imperative to first check on our loved ones in the affected areas to ensure they are safe and out of harm’s way and then offer any help they may need. That help might simply be to listen and offer words of encouragement that material belongings can be replaced or throw on gloves and assist in the clean-up. Undoubtedly, we all have family and friends affected by Ian.
Once we ensure our loved ones’ safety, the cleanup begins. It will entail downed power lines, trees, debris, water damage, work on buildings where the storm may have weakened foundations, etc. When dealing with such volatile and dangerous work, you must exercise the utmost caution and practice the best safety protocols. Inevitably, people will sustain injuries when dealing with loose debris, trees, ladders, and other dangerous materials.
Know Your Rights Under Florida Workers’ Compensation
If you suffer an injury while working during or after a hurricane, you could be covered by workers’ compensation. Seek medical attention right away, depending on the severity of your injury. Then, report the accident to your direct supervisor and make sure they complete and submit an incident report to the insurance carrier. Once this step is complete, your employer’s insurance carrier should authorize medical care at no cost to you. They should also pay missed wages if your injuries have harmed you to the degree you cannot work at all or where your employer does not have any light-duty work available.
Often, people perform hurricane-related work through a contractor or sub-contractor that may not carry workers’ compensation insurance. Does this mean you would not be covered under workers’ compensation? No. Suppose you work for a subcontractor that does not have insurance, but that work is being performed under a contractor that carries insurance. In that case, the contractor could be found to be the statutory employer, and their workers’ compensation insurance would cover your medical and missed wage benefits.
Call Lyle; He’ll Go The Extra Mile for Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
At the Law Offices of Lyle B. Masnikoff and Associates, P.A., our workers’ compensation attorneys represent employees for work-related injuries and accidents and employer violations such as unpaid overtime and wrongful termination. Throughout Mr. Masnikoff’s twenty-three-year career, he has represented countless workers who were injured while working either before, during, or after a hurricane. Sadly, in Florida, this is something we see all too often. It is important to be extremely safe and cautious while working through a disaster, but if you or a loved one are injured while working before, during, or after a hurricane and have questions about what to do, please do not hesitate to call. The consultation is always free. We practice throughout Florida, and you can reach any one of our offices at (866) 519-3831. Stay safe, and we will all get through this together!
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