I Did Not Report My Injury On Time: Now What?
When you get hurt on the job, it can be difficult to focus on anything except getting the medical care you need and dealing with the physical and emotional consequences of your injury. Our Sunrise workers’ compensation lawyers know you might not realize that you need to report your injury to your employer quickly, or that failing to report your injury can jeopardize your eligibility for benefits. Florida workers’ compensation law requires that an injured worker report the injury to their employer within 30 days from the date of the injury. If you have not yet reported your injury and more than 30 days have passed, what should you do? Do not hesitate to get in touch with a workers’ compensation attorney at our firm to find out if an exception may apply to your case and if you still may be eligible to seek workers’ compensation benefits.
Notice Requirements Under Florida Workers’ Compensation Law
Florida workers’ compensation law requires workers to report injuries within 30 days. The law specifically states the following:
“An employee who suffers an injury arising out of and in the course of employment shall advise his or her employer of the injury within 30 days after the date of or initial manifestation of the injury. Failure to advise the employer shall bar a petition under the chapter unless” an exception applies.
To be clear, if you get hurt at work, you must report the accident and your injury to your employer within 30 days. If you are planning to file an occupational disease claim, you must report the occupational disease to your employer within 30 days from the date of its manifestation. As the statute says, if you fail to report the claim within that 30-day window, your employer can bar your workers’ compensation claim unless an exception applies. Accordingly, if you are still within that 30-day time window, it is critical to report the workplace injury or occupational disease to your employer immediately.
Exceptions to the Reporting Requirement
If you did not report your injury on time, you may still be eligible to obtain workers’ compensation benefits if you meet one of the exceptions. Those exceptions are cited in the statute and include the following:
- “The employer or the employer’s agent had actual knowledge of the injury”;
- “The cause of the injury could not be identified without a medical opinion and the employee advised the employer within 30 days after obtaining a medical opinion indicating that the injury arose out of and in the course of employment”;
- “The employer did not ut its employees on notice of the requirements of this section by posting [a required] notice”; or
- “Exceptional circumstances . . . [that] justify such a failure.”
If you need help showing that exceptional circumstances prevented you from reporting the injury, or that you fit into one of the other exceptions, our workers’ compensation lawyers can help.
Contact a Sunrise Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If you have questions about reporting requirements or proving one of the exceptions so that you can receive benefits, you should contact one of the experienced Sunrise workers’ compensation attorneys at the Law Offices of David M. Benenfeld, P.A. for more information.