Feb 19

Courts Continue To Protect Wrongful Acts of Employers

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IT IS ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO ESCAPE THE GRIP OF FLORIDA WORKERS’ COMPENSATION IMMUNITY

My partner, Bob Carroll, recently posted an article highlighting how Missouri’s high court affirmed a jury award against an employer after an employee sustained serious injuries because of the employer’s negligence.  Unfortunately, if the same thing happened in Florida, it is very likely that the employee would be restricted to the limited “benefits” under Florida’s workers’ compensation law.

Under Florida’s workers’ compensation law, injured workers cannot bring a civil lawsuit against the employer who caused their injuries unless they can prove that the employer committed an intentional act that causes the injury or death of the employee. That seems easy, but the law goes further . . .

The injured worker must prove his or her case by clear and convincing evidence (which is harder than the standard injury case). That is making is worse, but the law goes further . . .

In order to prove your case, you must prove either (1) the employer deliberately intended to injury the employee; or (2) the employer engaged in conduct that the employer that the employer know, based on prior similar accidents or on explicit warnings specifically identifying a known danger, was virtually certain to result in injury or death to the employee, AND the employee was not aware of the risk because the danger was not apparent and the employer deliberately concealed or misrepresented the danger so as to prevent the employee from exercising informed judgment about whether to perform the work.

Come on, Florida legislators!! Are they serious?? An injured worker basically has to prove that the employer almost committed a criminal act before they are responsible for anything more than the limited workers’ compensation “benefits.”

If you have been injured in a Florida workers’ compensation accident, it is important that you know your rights and responsibilities under the Florida workers’ compensation law. Attorney Matthew Noyes’ law firm has been representing those involved in Florida work comp claims for over 52 years. To Discuss Your Florida Workers’ Compensation Claim with Attorney Matthew Noyes, Simply Click Here.

  1. Bob Carroll 21 Feb 2007 | reply

    Thanks for continuing the fight for justice in the workplace.
    You are right that an employer would virtually have to intentionally shoot an employee to create legal liability in Florida. Just firing an automatic weapon in the general direction of assembly line workers to test it would probably not break through the immunity.

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