The Florida Supreme Court docketed the Richardson case and labeled it “Of Great Public Importance”. Case number 14-738 was ordered to file our Initial Brief on 11/7/2014 after the Oral argument in the Castellanos case on 11/5/2014.
Retired Judge Richard Ervin helped write the challenge to the workers compensation fee caps. The insurance industry has used the fee caps as a weapon to suppress workers compensation claims while they pocket excess profits. The Initial brief was filed on 12/1/2014.
The data we put in the trial record conclusively proved the injustice of the rigid fee caps as they were used to confiscate the time, energy and talents of the claimant’s bar. The chilling effect of the fee caps caused a 60% drop in aggregate injury claims over a 10 year period, allowing the insurance industry to wage a war of attrition on the smaller claims. When a claim cannot be economically pursued, it makes the benefits given by the statute largely illusory and encourages wrongful denials by adjusters.
A level playing field will reduce litigation, because the law in it’s present form rewards insurance & employer lawyers for excessive litigation tactics against injured workers.
We are hopeful the Supreme Court will push back against the Legislative attacks on inherent judicial authority under a separation of powers approach that allows injured workers and their lawyers to be rewarded for their industry.