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Florida Supreme Court Weighs Battle Over Workers’ Compensation

Anyone who knows a Coral Springs workers compensation lawyer may hear that workers compensation lawyer talk about a current case before the Florida Supreme Court. The case is important to workers compensation lawyers, as well as employers, insurance companies, government officials and workers. How the Florida Supreme Court rules on the case may profoundly change how the whole Florida workers compensation system is structured.

One issue with which the Florida Supreme Court must decide is whether it should hear the case. The plaintiff in the case alleges that reforms of the Florida workers compensation system in 2003 unconstitutionally reduced benefits for claimants. The reforms were enacted to address Florida employers paying some of the highest workers compensation insurance premiums in the country. The plaintiff in the current case argues that the reforms resulted in benefits being reduced to the point of claimants not being able to receive adequate compensation for their injuries. The defense claims that the reforms were not made arbitrarily or unreasonably.

Florida Workers’ Compensation Law

The constitutionality argument touches on the underlying social contract of the workers compensation system. Claimants forego their right to sue employers for injuries in exchange for the assurance that their medical bills will be taken care of, and that they will be compensated for time lost from work, as long as their injuries are related to their work. Injured workers must exhaust the appeals process within the state workers compensation bureaucracy before they can take their claims to court. If the Florida Supreme Court decides to hear the case, it will have to consider the argument that the workers compensation system, as it exists, violates the underlying agreement between workers and their employers for adequate compensation of injuries sustained in the course of employment.

The defense in the Florida Supreme Court case alleges that the plaintiff is making the constitutionality argument to cover for inadequate evidence and a history of procedural problems in pursuing the injury claim.

If you or someone you know has sustained injuries in the course of employment, you may want to speak with a workers compensation attorney to help you through the workers compensation system and decide if litigation is necessary. Please call Evan M. Ostfeld, P.A. at (866) I SUE YOU (478-3968)

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