Florida Chamber Fights for Workers’ Comp Attorney Fee Caps in Supreme Court

By: Carolyn Johnson

When the Florida Supreme Court heard oral arguments today in a high profile workers’ comp case (Castellanos v. Next Door Company,) a Florida Chamber of Commerce and Florida Justice Reform Institute joint amicus brief served as a defense tool in a battle to maintain caps on attorneys’ fees in workers’ comp cases.

Former Justice Raoul Cantero, arguing on behalf of employer Next Door Company, cited the Florida Chamber/Justice Reform Institute joint amicus brief to refute arguments the petitioners made regarding the reasonability of attorneys’ fee caps.

Florida Chamber Executive Vice President David Hart, and I attended the proceedings on behalf of Florida’s employers.

This is the third workers’ comp case currently before the Florida Supreme Court challenging the constitutionality of the workers’ comp system. Another case is pending before the Third District Court of Appeal.

The Florida Chamber and our partners at the Florida Justice Reform Institute have filed an amicus curiae brief on each of these cases. These cases challenge the gap between temporary and total permanent disability, whether bad faith applies in workers’ comp and whether workers’ comp should serve as an exclusive remedy.

A decision against the business community in any one of these cases could have a significant impact on workers’ comp rates.

Oral arguments have been completed on each of the three cases before the Florida Supreme Court, and it is not clear on when the Supreme Court will make a decision. The Florida Chamber is committed to fighting on behalf of Florida employers. We are actively involved and monitoring these cases closely and are ready to take action when a decision is made.

Are Workers’ Comp Issues Impacting Your Business?

We want to hear from you. Share your workers’ comp story by emailing me at cjohnson@flchamber.com.