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Florida’s Workers’ Comp System Goes Back to the Future . . . at the Expense of Your Premiums

On April 16, 2016, the Florida Supreme Court will hear another in a long line of cases brought by plaintiffs’ lawyers trying to turn the clock back on Florida’s Workers’ Compensation Law. Before 2003, employers in Florida had some of the highest insurance costs in the entire country. Despite the high premiums, employees arguably received the least in benefits actually paid. During the subsequent years, numerous challenges to the 2003 reforms began working their way through the system.

Florida Court finds Workers' Compensation Statute Unconstitutional

Executive Summary: Circuit Judge Jorge E. Cueto of the 11th Judicial Circuit in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida has found that Section 440.11 of Florida's Workers' Compensation Act (the "Act"), which makes the Act the "exclusive" remedy available to injured workers, their spouses, children and their estates for injuries or death on the job, is unconstitutional because it does not provide adequate medical care for injured workers or dollars to replace lost wages for injured workers. In striking down the exclusive remedy provision of the Act, the court held that the 2003 amendments to the Act, which removed compensation for partial loss of wage earning capacity, made the Act an inadequate exclusive replacement remedy in place of common law tort claims as required by the 14th Amendment to the U. S. Constitution or by the Florida Constitution.
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