Todd Gates, a member the Florida Chamber Board of Directors and Chair of Southwest Florida Regional Board, talks about the workers’ compensation system, rate hikes and the challenges it presents to job creators in this installation of the Florida Chamber’s Series on Free Enterprise Podcast.
“When it was first developed it had a good purpose. But, by the time you allow government to take over it and attorneys to get involved, it has been completely run amuck,” Gates said. “The cost of doing business – especially for small or medium-sized businesses – to carry the workers’ comp is incredible. It is outrageous, to be honest with you as far as the cost.”
Gates explains how the Castellanos Supreme Court case that eliminated the limits on attorneys fees has had a major impact on businesses and the proposed 9.5 percent workers’ comp rate decrease is only temporary.
“Our industry has seen a huge increase in claims cost as well as an uncertainty in the system itself. When you have uncertainty in this type of business, it becomes very challenging to actually do business,” Gates said. “The decrease is kind of a fallacy. The rate decrease is only using 2014 and 2015 data. It basically ended roughly six months before the Castellanos court decision. The rates are still 14.5 percent higher as a result of the court decision despite the decrease.”
The Florida Chamber of Commerce Workers’ Comp Task Force is committed to fighting for Florida business leaders like you. Click here to learn more about the Florida Chamber’s Workers’ Comp Task Force.