October 24, 2008

Florida Lawyers Can Help Injured Workers Again

On behalf of Florida Lawyers, we are overjoyed to give some great news for workers injured in Florida. The Florida Supreme Court declared the Worker's Compensation Law, enacted by the Florida Legislature in 2003, to be ambiguous. finding that claimant's attorneys are entitled to recover a "reasonable” attorney’s fee. This decision will allow workers injured on the job in Florida to hire lawyers to assist them when their worker's compensation carrier fails to live up to their obligations to provide medical and lost wage benefits.

The prior law resulted in injured claimants having great difficulty pursuing claims to pursue desperately needed Workers’ Compensation benefits, when they were wrongfully delayed or denied. Those difficulties allowed many insurance companies to improperly treat the injured workers without fear of being sued. Now, carriers will have to think twice before denying or delaying an injured worker's rightful benefits.

We commend the Florida Supreme Court in stepping up to protect our injured workers. Considering the limitations of worker's compensation law, workers should not be barred from seeking assistance when their limited rights are denied.