Florida Workers’ Compensation Benefits For Minors
When we think about workplace injuries in West Palm Beach and throughout South Florida more generally, we often imagine an injured worker as an adult who is supporting himself or herself, and often is supporting a family with income from the job. Yet workers in Florida also include minors, such as high schoolers who are aged 16 or 17 and are working part-time jobs after school, on the weekends, and during school breaks or vacations. If a minor gets hurt on the job in Florida, is that minor entitled to the same workers’ compensation benefits as an adult? In short, the answer is yes. Our South Florida workers’ compensation lawyers can say more.
Employees Include Minors for Workers’ Compensation Purposes
Under Florida workers’ compensation law, the statute does not distinguish minors from other people who are employees and thus are eligible to seek workers’ compensation benefits. The statute defines an employee as:
“[A]ny person who receives remuneration from an employer for the performance of any work or service while engaged in any employment under any appointment or contract for hire or apprenticeship, express or implied, oral or written, whether lawfully or unlawfully employed, and includes, but is not limited to, aliens and minors.”
To be clear, minors are employees under Florida law and can work with an attorney to obtain workers’ compensation benefits for an on-the-job injury as long as any other requirements have been met.
Injury Must Have Arisen Out of the Minor’s Employment
Just like any other employee who is eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, a minor who is seeking workers’ compensation benefits must be able to show that his or her injury arose out of the employee’s job, or in the course of employment. Generally speaking, the employee must have been on the clock and doing his or her job in order to seek compensation.
Workplace Accident and Injury Must Be Reported in a Timely Manner
Just like other employees who are adults who sustain injuries in workplace accidents, minors who sustain workplace injuries will need to report the accident to their employer within 30 days and will need to seek medical attention. A minor can find out more about health care providers from the employer and can take follow-up steps with help from a workers’ compensation lawyer in West Palm Beach.
Employer Must Have Workers’ Compensation Coverage
While most employers in South Florida are required by law to have workers’ compensation coverage, it is critical for minors and their parents to know that workers’ compensation benefits will only be available if the employer is in fact required to have workers’ compensation insurance. Generally speaking, any employer with four or more employees—even if those employees are part-time workers—must have workers’ compensation coverage.
Seek Advice from a Workers’ Compensation Attorney in West Palm Beach
If you or your teenager sustained a work-related injury and you have questions about seeking compensation for minors, one of our experienced West Palm Beach workers’ compensation attorneys can speak with you today. Contact the Law Offices of David M. Benenfeld, P.A. to learn more about our services.