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Gainesville Workplace Injury Attorney

When people are hurt at work, they typically think their only option is to file a workers’ compensation claim. However, there are times when workers’ compensation is not the only avenue to pursue for financial relief, even when the accident occurred on the job.

In some instances, workers may be able to file a personal injury claim against a negligent party that was not their employer. These are known as third-party claims.

If you’ve been injured on the job, a third-party personal injury claim can result in additional compensation beyond workers’ comp benefits because you can seek additional losses. These claims can be complicated, though, so you should speak to a Gainesville workplace injury attorney at Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano, P.A., today about your legal rights.

With more than 100 years of combined legal experience handling these complex claims, our firm has the skills and the resources to fight for maximum compensation for you. Schedule your free case review now.

Can I Sue My Employer for Workplace Injury in Florida?

Florida, like every other state, has a workers’ compensation insurance system in place to ensure employees injured on the job get monetary benefits. This system acts like insurance that is paid for by the employer. When an employee is hurt or injured, they are able to file a claim on this policy.

However, employees benefiting from workers’ compensation are forfeiting their privilege to initiate a personal injury lawsuit against their employer. That being said, every case is different and there are some exceptions. This is why it is imperative that you call our attorneys in Gainesville, Florida to discuss what options are available to you and your unique case.

When Can I Sue After a Workplace Injury?

There are situations in which you can file a lawsuit after suffering a workplace injury. These involve accidents that are the fault of a third party ─ individuals or companies that are not your employer, a co-worker, or a contractor that hired you.

For example:

  • If a defective piece of equipment caused an injury at work, you could sue the manufacturer.
  • You could also sue if you worked as a courier and a negligent driver caused an accident on the road.
  • If you are injured at a job site where many different companies or contractors are all working, and your injury was caused by someone who is not affiliated with your company, you could file a personal injury claim with an industrial accident lawyer.

If you have been hurt on the job and are ready to discuss your legal options, contact our Gainesville workplace injury law firm now.

How Long Do I Have to Sue for Work-Related Injuries?

All personal injury cases in Florida have a statute of limitations. This is the time limit injured individuals have to file their claim. In Florida, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of the accident.

Before filing your claim, you will need to collect evidence from the scene such as pictures, eyewitness statements, and physical evidence, such as debris from a traffic accident. This evidence is crucial to your claim, but it takes time to collect.

It is best to speak to a Gainesville personal injury lawyer who can help you preserve the evidence and begin building your case as soon as possible.

Can You Be Fired While on Workers’ Comp in Florida?

Florida follows the “at-will” rule, meaning your employer can let you go at any time, for any reason or even no reason at all. However, if you’re let go while using workers’ compensation benefits, it’s important to make sure your benefits continue as they should. If you feel your dismissal is because of your injury or claim, it’s best to speak to our workers’ compensation lawyers to ensure your rights are protected.

Do I Need a Workplace Injury Attorney?

After a workplace accident in Gainesville, you may be unsure of whether you need an attorney or whether you can negotiate a personal injury settlement on your own. Working with an experienced attorney will take the pressure off of you, allow you to understand what maximum compensation should be in your case, and ensure you do not make mistakes that could hurt your claim.

When you decide to work with the team at Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano, P.A., your attorney will:

  • Work quickly to determine who (outside your employer) is liable for compensating you
  • Walk you through what to expect and answer all your questions
  • Document the full extent of your damages
  • Call on expert witnesses to support your claim
  • Negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf
  • Fight for you at trial, if necessary

Throughout your entire claim, your attorney will act as your advocate and ensure your rights are upheld while working hard to demand the full amount of compensation you deserve.

Recovered Damages for My Work Injuries

While workers’ compensation benefits provide some relief, they often don’t fully address the financial burdens faced by injured workers. Workers’ compensation might cover the basics, but through a personal injury claim, you can recover damages more comprehensively, including compensation for medical bills and:

  • Cost of future medical care
  • Household expenses, like home cleaning or lawn care, if you’re incapacitated
  • Lost income
  • Loss of future earnings and diminished earning capacity
  • Loss of services and support
  • Loss of consortium
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress

Ultimately, a personal injury claim is intended to help you receive total compensation for all of your losses.

Lost Wages

In Florida, the workers’ compensation program provides benefits for the wages an injured worker misses out on if their work-related injuries prevent them from returning to work, whether temporarily or permanently. There are primarily four categories of workers’ compensation benefits concerning lost wages:

  • Temporary Total Disability
  • Temporary Partial Disability
  • Impairment Income Benefits
  • Permanent Total Disability

The classification and amount of benefits allocated will be influenced by several considerations, including injury specifics, imposed work limitations, and your typical earnings.

Medical Treatment

Receiving medical treatment via workers’ compensation comes at no charge to the employee. Florida’s regulations permit employees to maintain their workers’ compensation claims indefinitely. This allows the employee to access medical treatment related to their workplace injury for their entire life.

What Are the Different Types of Work Injuries?

Accidents on the job can happen at any time; however, workplace injuries often see a spike during the holiday season. This is likely due to increased demands, hurried schedules, and distractions. Regardless of when they occur, these injuries require prolonged recovery periods.

There are many different types of workplace injuries that can have long-lasting effects on workers and their families. Some of the most common include:

  • Amputations: These can happen when workers operate mechanical equipment, power tools, or work around unguarded machinery or equipment that isn’t adequately safeguarded.
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI): The most common TBI in the workplace is a concussion, but workers can also suffer penetration injuries, contusions, and more.
  • Spinal cord injury: Most spinal cord injuries in the workplace occur due to unsafe work environments. These injuries include slipped or ruptured discs, sprains, and strains.
  • Crushed or mangled limbs: These injuries typically occur when workers become trapped in heavy equipment and machinery.
  • Broken bones: Falls are one of the most common causes of broken bone injuries in the workplace.
  • Burns: Fire, steam, hot liquids, and hot objects can cause burns. Chemicals and radiation exposure are also other common causes of burn injuries.
  • Electrical shocks: These injuries are devastating and can occur when people work around electrical wires, outlets, power lines, and even electrical appliances.

If someone outside of your job was responsible for your injury, it’s important to hire an attorney right away to discuss all of your options for pursuing the compensation you need to recover.

Who Can Be Held Liable for the Damages

Under Florida’s shared responsibility rule, accountability is distributed among all responsible parties. Unfortunately, taking direct legal action against your employer or fellow employees is off the table.

Third parties you can pursue claims against may include:

  • Property owners
  • General contractors
  • Subcontractors
  • Negligent drivers
  • Companies responsible for maintaining work equipment
  • Manufacturers of defective products in a product liability case
  • Engineers and designers

Contact an Experienced Work Injury Attorney Today

At Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano, P.A., we fight for the rights of accident victims. Our attorneys in Gainesville advocate for workers who deserve more than workers’ compensation benefits after an accident on the job.

Contact our Gainesville workplace injury law offices today to schedule your free consultation.