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clock July 9, 2020

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Florida Workers’ Compensation: What Changes Have Been Made for 2020?

Believe it or not, there were almost 49 million net premiums written within the year 2018 alone. So, if you are wondering how Florida workers’ compensation policies have changed for 2020, the chances are that you are not alone.

Want to learn more about Florida workers’ compensation laws?

If so, we’ve got the 4-1-1 on the latest Florida workers’ compensation law updates. Take a look at this guide to understand the changes for 2020 better!

Why You Need Workers’ Compensation Coverage

For those of you who are unaware, workers’ compensation is an insurance policy that covers wages and fees for those who get sick or injured at work. Naturally, these laws change depending on what state you live in.

Considered to be “social insurance,” workers’ compensation protects employers from civil lawsuits. Bought by companies, the company’s insurance agency underwrites workers’ compensation policies.

Here’s how it works. Essentially, workers’ compensation is made to protect employees and employers at the same time.

You might be wondering: what does workers’ compensation cover, anyway? We are happy that you asked.

Typically, workers’ compensation can cover things such as:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Rehabilitation costs 
  • Death benefits

So, what does this have to do with workers’ compensation laws in Florida?

Put simply, purchasing a workers’ compensation insurance plan will protect you and your employees in the long run. As a matter of fact, your investment will save your workforce from “out-of-pocket expenses” if they happen to get injured on the job. Not to mention that’ll give them back any lost wages as well!

Changes to Workers’ Compensation in Florida

When it comes to changes to workers’ compensation in Florida, we’ve got you covered. Although most workers’ compensation Florida laws aren’t in the injured person’s favor, the newest batch of laws is. First of all, the rate for workers’ compensation was dropped by 7.5 percent at the beginning of this year.

Although the region’s insurance carriers asked for a reduction of 5.4 percent, the state of Florida rejected their request. Instead, they ordered the National Council on Compensation Insurance to reduce rates even more.

On top of that, the rate of workplace injuries in Florida has dropped significantly over the years. As a matter of fact, fewer people than ever are making workers’ comp claims in the state of Florida due to:

  • Safer workplaces
  • Enhanced workplace efficiencies
  • Increased automation use
  • Modern technologies

Even better, the Florida government expects this trend to continue for the better in the future as well. Despite the spiking claims a few years ago, workers’ comp rates in Florida have gone down once again. For those of you aren’t great at math, this 7.5 percent cut means that rates have dropped by almost a third since the last couple of years.

Let’s face it: with workers’ comp claims on the decline, employers are practically rejoicing. However, some businesses and lawmakers are worried about the fallout from a particular ruling called “Castellanos v. Next Door Co.”

In it, an attorney gave workers’ compensation for hundreds of hours of work to those who had filed claims. While this is great for workers’ comp claimants, it was basically a nightmare for the employers that had to shell out for it.

More Changes to Florida Workers’ Comp Laws

Looking for more changes to Florida workers’ comp laws?

If so, you’ve come to the right place. For starters, Florida has increased the maximum compensation amounts for workers’ compensation claims. Now, the new law says that the compensation rate for a week of lost wages is equal to the state’s average “weekly wage.”

While out of work, employees were only paid a maximum of $939 in 2019, they are currently paid $971 for a week of missed work. In short, this is a significant increase from the previous year. As if that’s not enough, this is good news for those who aren’t allowed to work due to doctor’s orders.

But how are these compensation claim amounts determined? 

Even though it is a state decision, each injury pattern is grouped into what’s known as a “class.” Then, rates for every class are set for all companies that are within a particular category. Of course, every state considers their personal economic factors when they determine their rates for every class too.

Next, something called experience rating happens. This looks at the collective loss of a particular business. Oddly enough, this gives companies a ton of control over how much their workers’ comp premium costs.

In a nutshell, the lower the premium is, the safer the business is. That being said, each state requires its companies to provide workers’ compensation. If a business fails to do so, it can face severe consequences that include:

  • Payment of claims out of pocket
  • Fines and possible imprisonment,
  • Losing the right to conduct business in the state

Been injured on the job in Florida recently?

Make sure that you visit a doctor right away. They can write up a medical document that will support your claims. You can write up a claim with an insurance company too!

Confused by Florida Workers’ Compensation Laws?

Are you still confused by Florida workers’ compensation laws?

If you are nodding your head yes, we are here to help you out. 

From understanding workers’ comp to learning the latest Florida laws, we have everything you need to succeed. Now that you know what to do be sure to get your workers’ compensation insurance right away!

Interested in receiving workers’ comp insurance coverage?

Contact us to receive a free, fast quote today!

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