Workers’ Comp Bill Passed by Fla. House Committee

April 16, 2003

The Florida House State Administration Committee approved H.B. 1837, designed to cut workers’ compensation costs by limiting lawsuits and making it more difficult to prove compensation for injuries, according to the National Association of Independent Insurers (NAII).

“This bill in its current form could have a significant impact on the Florida workers’ comp market,” said James S. Taylor, NAII’s southeastern regional manager, who estimates premium reductions of as much as 15 percent.

H.B. 1827’s main provisions include:
· Limiting the number of corporate officers for which a company can claim workers compensation exemptions.
· Establishing more stringent standards for permanent total disability, which currently is based on the Social Security disability standard.
· Eliminating hourly attorney fees, which business groups said have been used to pay lawyers large amounts of money for pursuing small claims.
· Increasing the death benefit from $100,000 to $150,000, with the funeral benefit rising from $5,000 to $7,500.

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