Wow. This one is a doozy.

For years, the assumption about the Statute of Limitations (SOL) was “form over substance.”  A Claimant has 2 years from the date of accident and then 1 year from the last date of provided benefits to file a PFB.  If he fails to comply within those time periods, he is barred forever from bringing a claim against the E/C.  This was one of the first blog entries I wrote.  You can read about the basics of SOL here.  (For a video reference, click here.)

If you read s. 440.19 (the SOL statute) not once does it mention that the SOL tolls over a claim for attorney’s fees.  The whole premise is based on giving the E/C and Claimant a ticking clock from the last date of benefits.  Attorneys fees have nothing to do with the SOL.

Except now. . . (more…)

Once again, here is another video that I conducted with Andrew Roberts of Black Bear Insurance Agency.  It is part 2 of our discussion on the Statute of Limitations. 

You can check out their site here along with their very informative sister site,

This past week I was fortunate enough to produce a few educational videos for and Black Bear Insurance Agency.  The idea was to capture the same educational feel as this blog. was kind enough to post an article of mine.  For those employers seeking information about WC law and insurance you can check their website here.

As for the video, enjoy part 1 on the Statute of Limitations:

They key to the Statute of Limitations is knowing your dates.  Without the date of accident, the date of last paid benefit, and the date of the filing of Petition of Benefits, an E/C cannot turn a succesful SOL defense.

However, it also important to know the date an unintentional benefit is paid. . . (more…)

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…)

For many of the changes in Workers’ Compensation, the saying would go “the legislature giveth, the legislature taketh.”  That saying remains true.  . . until the First DCA says otherwise.

In another precedent setting case, the Court finds that, for accidents after the 1994 changes, an implantation of a prosthetic device continuously tolls the Statute of Limitations since it is “remedial treatment.” 

But, what’s that you say?  Didn’t the Legislature specifically, and intentionally, remove prosthetic devices from s. 440.19 back in 1994?  Once again, that remains true. . . until the First DCA says otherwise.


While everyone gets ready for “Comp Camp” next month at the FWCI Convention in Orlando, with all of its catered meals, live music, and open bars, we must not forget that things actually get done at the Convention.  For example, the Division of Administration Hearings (DOAH) has proposed changes to the Rules of Procedure for W/C Adjudications and will be presenting them at a hearing at the Convention on August 18, from 8 am to 9:30 am.

These changes reflect the desire to transfer all legal pleadings to towards e-filing, as well as streamline the mediation process.  However, buried within these procedural changes is a whopper of a rule change that can affect every claims professional and HR person handling W/C files:  

Finally, DOAH is placing a Statute of Limitations on motions for Claimant attorney fees. (more…)

This is a doozy.  For as favorable as the First DCA has been towards E/C’s and the Statute of Limitations, this ruling is as unfavorable.  While I agree with the premise of having the Workers’ Compensation system be a “self-executing” one (that is, the E/C has the burden to provide benefits to Claimants), I disagree applying the reasoning to this specific fact pattern.

Anyway, shall we analyze Gauthier v Florida International University? (more…)

The Statute of Limitations is the one disputed area of Workers’ Comp law that never gets old.  At least the First DCA thinks so.  Over the past few years the Court has been proactive in fine tuning section 440.19.  My own experience is evidence to that. 

Now comes a new wrinkle that adjusters must be aware of.


Considering the results of my first appeal were less than celebratory, I am happy to write my second appeal. . . and first win!  You can view the case, MedPartners/SRS v. Zenith here.

The issue was a contribution claim between two Carriers with the same Employer spanning two dates of accidents.  I represented the Carrier of the first accident (Carrier #1).  The Carrier of the second accident (Carrier #2) sued us for contribution, claiming that all of the medical care for the second accident was wholly related to the first accident. 

My defense was the Statute of Limitations; that it ran against Claimant and therefore prevented Carrier #2 from seeking contribution against Carrier #1. 

(More after the jump.) (more…)