Florida Workers’ Comp Rates Could Be The Highest In The Southeast
The Florida Chamber of Commerce alleges that if a proposed insurance rate increase is approved, Florida will have the highest workers’ comp insurance rates in the southeast. As reported by the Tampa Bay Times, the chamber’s president Mark Wilson said, “A 19.6 percent rate increase will cause uncertainty among job creators and may even force a decline in Florida’s job growth.” Why is the rate for workers’ comp insurance increasing in Florida?
Two Recent Decisions in Workers’ Comp Lawsuits Favor Florida Injured Workers
The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) requested the 19.6 percent increase in Florida’s workers’ comp rates due to two recent Florida Supreme Court rulings that favor employees. Business groups claim the decisions hurt Florida’s economy while attorneys and employee advocates praise the court’s decisions as protecting injured workers.
The first decision by the Florida Supreme Court came in April 2016 involving statutory caps on attorney fees in workers’ comp cases. The court removed the statutory cap on attorney fees in workers’ comp cases. The original cap on attorney fees affected the ability of injured workers to receive fair payments by limiting their ability to hire experienced attorneys to represent them in workers’ comp disputes. In the second court decision announced in June 2016, the Supreme Court stuck down a law that permitted an employer to stop temporary disability benefits after two years.
What Does This Mean for Florida Injured Workers?
The Supreme Court decisions favor injured workers in Florida by striking down two laws that hurt workers’ comp claims. The impact of Florida’s economy is yet to be seen. An increase in workers’ comp insurance rates should not affect injured workers. However, we could see an increase in the number of employers willing to fight workers’ comp claims more aggressively to prevent their rates from increasing even more due to workplace accident claims. Therefore, employees injured on the job should not hesitate to contact a worker’s comp attorney regarding a claim.
The court took steps to ensure that injured workers throughout Florida receive the workers’ comp benefits they are entitled to receive by law. Employers and insurance companies should not have the right to deny injured workers and their families the benefits provided to them by law. Unfortunately, regardless of court decisions, insurance companies will continue to delay and deny valid claims by injured workers. Therefore, workers who are injured on the job should consult with an experienced workers’ comp attorney to ensure their rights are protected.
You have the right to legal counsel when filing a Florida workers’ compensation claim! Take advantage of this right by contacting our office now!
Do not let your employer or its insurance company keep you from consulting an attorney. You have the right to legal counsel when filing a workers’ compensation claim. You are not required to seek legal counsel; however, it is in your best interest to know your rights before you settle a workers’ comp claim.
Boca Raton Workers’ Compensation Law Firm
The Broderick Law Firm, P.L. offers free consultations in workers’ comp cases. Contact our office today 1-800-333-3903 to schedule your free case evaluation.