Slip and Fall on the Job—Who is at Fault?
While certain occupations carry a much higher degree of risk than others—roofing, fishing, logging, law enforcement, and working in a warehouse or a meat packing facility are some of the more dangerous, for example—everyone is at risk of a slip and fall on the job. A fall can be to the same level or to a lower level. Obviously, falling to a lower level is the most dangerous type of fall, but even a fall to the same level can result in serious or even permanent injury. In fact, falls are so prevalent at the workplace that they make up 26 percent of nonfatal work injuries resulting in days away from work, according to the CDC. When you suffer any type of slip, trip, and fall on the job, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits to cover your lost wages, medical bills, and other expenses, regardless of fault.
Proving Negligence in a Workplace Slip and Fall is Usually Unnecessary
The Florida workers’ compensation system does not require injured workers to prove negligence on behalf of their employer. Unlike a personal injury claim, negligence is not relevant in a workers’ compensation claim. The only elements that must be established include the following:
- The slip and fall happened at work;
- The slip and fall caused the injury in question; and
- The injury caused a certain degree of disability and medical treatment.
The only way that an employer can dispute a workers’ compensation claim for a slip and fall include:
- The injury is exaggerated or made up;
- The injury is merely a pre-existing injury;
- The slip and fall or other injury occurred off the job;
- The worker was intoxicated or using drugs at the time of the slip and fall; and
- The worker was doing something illegal during the slip and fall.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits You Can Collect From a Slip and Fall Case
- Lost Wages—You can collect up to 80 percent of your average weekly paycheck through workers’ compensation benefits. The amount of lost wages you can collect depends on the severity of your disability (total or partial), the permanence of the disability (permanent or temporary), and the type of injury sustained, under Florida statute 440.15.
- Medical Expenses—Your full medical expenses should be covered by your workers’ compensation benefits. This includes the initial trip or stay at the hospital, any ambulance rides you took, and follow up appointments and procedures with a physician approved by your employer’s insurance company.
- Other Expenses—Other expenses can include ongoing care such as physical therapy, prosthetics, future surgeries, transportation expenses to and from medical appointments, at-home care, and funeral/burial expenses.
Suing an Employer
It is very difficult to win a lawsuit against an employer in a slip and fall case, but it can be done in exceptional circumstances. In order to sue an employer, they must have either deliberately caused your injury or have known of the risk by the way of prior similar accidents or explicit warnings specifically identifying a known danger and concealed it from you. By suing an employer, you can collect workers’ compensation benefits in addition to damages from your personal injury claim, which can include full lost wages, lost earning ability, pain and suffering, and much more.
Call an Orlando Slip and Fall Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today
Slip and falls often result in serious injuries, such as fractured hips, broken limbs, concussion, spine injuries, lacerations, and back trauma. To be fairly compensated, you need to work with an experienced Orlando workers’ compensation attorney with the Payer Law Group. Call us today at 866-930-1238 to schedule a free consultation.