I read in a recent Orlando Sentinel article that the community has come together to raise a substantial sum of money to help the Orlando Police Officer who was injured when two young men drove over him with their car. This is a great demonstration of our local, community outreach and willingness to help others in our community. When I read this, I wondered why the fundraising was necessary? Having represented injured workers for over 30 years, I realized that it is necessary because the Florida Legislature has slashed benefits to injured workers for the last 35 years. They have slashed the benefits to the point that, if you are injured on the job and unable to work, you are going to lose much of what you have worked for over the years. We have had clients that have lost their homes and their cars; sold property to try to pay bills, even borrowing money from relatives and friends, just survive. In addition, injured workers have no choice in the doctors that treat them. The insurance companies are the ones with the power to pick the doctors who will be authorized to treat injured workers. Does anyone think that insurance companies should be able to decide which doctors will treat us? Our health insurance companies give us a list of doctors to choose from, Medicare has a list from which we can choose, but this is not the case in workers compensation.
Is it necessary for the community to come together to help this Officer who was injured while trying to protect our community, without a doubt. But what about the thousands of injured workers, whose names you will never hear about in the newspaper or on TV? Don’t they deserve to be treated fairly as well? Call your Senators and Representatives to make your voice known. Ask them to restore the benefits to injured workers that they have taken away from them over the past 35 years.
If you, a friend or loved one are in need of a workers compensation attorney, please do not hesitate to contact us at 407-841-7699. For additional resources, keep checking our blog, LIKE us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more helpful hints and to always be informed about best practices in law.