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.
The essential idea behind the workers’ compensation system is that it provides employees injured on the job with fast, uncomplicated, and fair resolutions of claims, without any consideration of whether the employee was “at fault” for the injury. If an employee is injured, the employee receives compensation. The trade-off is that injured employees could not go to court and sue their employers. The workers’ compensation process is their “exclusive remedy.”