October 2010


A common misconception in Chapter 440 is that, per  s. 440.20(12)(c), a Claimant cannot get a $2000 advance from the E/C if Claimant cannot pay the E/C back.  For example, many E/C’s would refuse to give a $2,000 advance to a Claimant who was at MMI.  The reasoning being that Claimant is no longer eligible for indemnity benefits, so the E/C cannot recoup the advance from future 20% deductions in indemnity payments, per s. 440.15(12).

Chalk this up to one of the unanswered scenarios that the Legislature never resolved, but if a Claimant can prove the one of the three factors of s. 440.20(12)(c), she can get a $2,000 advance even with the possibility that an E/C may never recoup the advance.  

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It was too good to be true.  This past July, I wrote of a proposed change by DOAH to the Rules of Procedure for W/C Adjudications that would put a time limit of when Claimant attorneys could file a Motion for Attorney’s Fees against an E/C.  The proposed rule change, specifically to Rule 60Q-6.107, was as follows:

“(4) Any party seeking an order determing the entitlement to or amount of attorney’s fees or costs shall file the motion therfor within 365 days after the provision of benefits, dismissal of claim, judicial order, or appellate mandate from which the movant claims attorney’s fees or costs are due.  Untimely motions or petitions for attorney’s fees or costs will be dismissed.”

It looks like a compromise was made and, effective October 31, there will be a new wrinkle towards Claimant attorney fee claims. (more…)

UPDATED! I forgot to include the this link to the video of my oral arguments.  I believe you need Windows Media Player to watch.  Enjoy!

In my last blog entry, I wrote of a pending oral argument for an appeal I was handled.  I did not want to publicly comment on the issue since it was a pending matter before the First DCA.  So, allow me some space to explain what the issues were.

At issue was the amount of a Carrier paid fee to a Claimant attorney where the only efforts to secure any benefits was simply filing a Petition. (more…)