Be sure that you are properly compensated for your loss of income due to
an on the job injury, and that you are aware of and receive all health
benefits to which you are entitled. James R. Parris, P.A. in Jacksonville,
Florida, can help. We specialize workers' compensation law.
James R. Parris, P.A. represents you when you are hurt on the job and have
been denied medical or lost wage benefits. While every case is different,
if a benefit has been wrongly withheld, we start the process by filing
a claim to initiate benefits. We keep you informed throughout the entire
process and we make sure you are aware of any court proceedings, depositions,
mediations or any other issue concerning your claim.
Once retained, we notify your employer and insurance carrier that we have
assumed representation of your claim and instruct them to communicate
through us. This is to ensure that your rights are preserved and to alleviate
any concerns of being misled by your employer or insurance company concerning
your benefits. And best of all, there is no charge unless we prevail or
you elect to settle your claim.
When you are injured on the job or in an accident, make sure you understand
your right to medical care and wage loss benefits as early as possible.
Untimely action may result in a delay of benefits or a denial of a claim
altogether. James R. Parris, P.A. is here to help you understand your rights.
Contact James R. Parris, P.A. for a free consultation about your workers’
compensation claim or motor vehicle accident. During your consultation,
you will speak directly with an attorney, who will inform you of your
rights under Florida law. You pay nothing unless a recovery is obtained.
FIVE THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW IF YOU ARE INJURED ON THE JOB:
1. Workers’ compensation attorneys are paid on a contingency basis.
This means you do not have to pay fees for attorney services unless the
attorney procures a recovery, so there is no risk for you to have an attorney.
Upon hiring us, the amount of fees you will ultimately pay will be 25%
of the total value of all benefits and/or settlement obtained in your
workers' compensation case, depending on the amount of the recovery,
and the fee must be reviewed and approved by a judge. Considering all
the complexities of the Workers’ Compensation Act, it makes sense
to let an experienced attorney guide you through the process. Insurance
companies always have the benefit of legal advice at their immediate disposal,
and so should you!
2. Your injury need only arise out of the course and scope of your employment
to trigger your eligibility for benefits. This means you do not have to
prove your injury was due to someone’s fault. Unlike regular civil
lawsuits (eg., car accidents), workers’ compensation is designed
to ensure that injured workers are provided with appropriate medical care
so they may return to gainful employment as quickly as possible. If an
injured worker is unable to work while recovering from an injury, he may
be entitled to indemnity (wage loss) benefits until he recovers sufficiently
to resume employment.
3. Your eligibility for wage loss benefits does not begin until you miss
eight consecutive days from work because of your injury. Simply put, a
workers’ injury must be disabling enough that it will force him
to miss eight consecutive days before wage loss benefits kick in. The
eight-day grace period is intended to deter frivolous wage loss claims
for non-disabling injuries. You may use sick leave during this time period.
Wage loss benefits are approximately 2/3 of an injured worker’s
average weekly earnings, before deductions.
4. Only workers’ compensation approved physicians may provide medical
opinions about your injury. Without question, a physician’s assessment
of your work injury will have a significant impact on how your case is
handled by the insurance company, and some injuries do not become apparent
until much later. For this reason, it is extremely important that you
notify your supervisor or whoever administers employee benefits at your
place of employment if you suspect you have sustained a work related injury,
and insist that they arrange a medical appointment with an approved workers’
compensation physician. If you are treating with your own private physician
for an injury whose cause you are unsure of and he tells you that it is
related to your work, immediately notify your supervisor. Do this in writing.
5. A false statement, whether verbal or in writing, made to anyone involved
in your claim may result in a dismissal of all benefits, and may subject
you to criminal prosecution. First, it is important to know that you are
not required to give a recorded statement to an insurance company, and
you should not do so. Recently, the workers’ compensation appellate
court determined that verbally misrepresenting the severity of your symptoms
could be considered a false statement if your physician determines that
your complaints are wholly inconsistent with his clinical observations
or diagnostic reports. Also, be mindful that insurance companies routinely
hire private investigators to conduct video surveillance of injured workers
in the hopes of catching someone performing activities they claim they
are unable to perform. Don’t let this happen to you!