When a worker is injured on the job, they will work with their attorney and employer or insurance provider to determine how much their workers’ compensation claim is worth. Once an agreeable amount is determined, formal documents will be submitted to the judge, showing the amount of the settlement, associated attorney’s fees and any child support that is owed by the worker who was injured.
All documents are required to be submitted for the judge to enter an order before settlement funds are released to the person who was injured. When a worker who was injured has a lawyer, the judge will not consider the facts of the case related to the amount of settlement they are receiving. They will only approve the total amount of child support and attorney’s fees owned and to be paid out, if any. This will not apply in cases where an injured worker does not have legal representation.
In the past 14 fiscal years, the child support that has been recovered due to the settlement of workers’ compensation cases in the state of Florida has been more than $150 million. Even though this program is important, the provisions result in many people being caught off guard when reaching a settlement for their case.
The Process Used to Determine Child Support Arrears in Workers’ Compensation Cases
A workers’ compensation attorney who is representing an injured worker can submit the Child Support Request through the judge’s office. This will then result in a report that details the amount owed to the Florida County Clerk’s office or the Department of Revenue. This amount is then used to determine the amount of child support being paid out of the settlement that is received.
How Much of a Workers’ Compensation Settlement Can be Paid for Child Support?
In most cases, 50 percent of the net recovery the injured party receives can be kept from the settlement and sent to the proper agency by either the attorney for the injured worker or the attorney for the carrier/employer.
What Happens to the Workers’ Compensation Settlement if Child Support is Owed in Another State?
When a settlement is finalized, the claimant (injured party) is required to sign an affidavit that states they do not owe support (besides what is shown on the report from the state of Florida). If it is discovered that additional support is owed in other states down the road, the individual may face additional legal action.
Being informed and understanding what is required when settling a workers’ compensation claim is important. This is why it is highly recommended that all injured workers find and hire a Florida workers’ compensation attorney to provide assistance information regarding their particular case or situation.
More information about child support and how it can affect a workers’ compensation settlement can be found by contacting the attorneys at Sternberg & Associates by calling 561-687-5660. There is no reason to try and handle this alone when legal help is available.