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NFIB/Florida joins groups opposed to workers’ comp hike

The National Federation of Independent Business/Florida is adding its voice to the business groups decrying a proposed 17 percent hike in the cost of workers’ compensation insurance to employers.

The rate increase “is a $623 million tax on workers in Florida that will go primarily to workers’ compensation attorneys,” NFIB/Florida Executive Director Bill Herrle said in a statement.

“For the sake of Florida’s small businesses and the millions they employ, this cannot stand,” he added. “The filing is the tip of the iceberg.”

The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) last week asked the state to consider a 17 percent rate hike in the cost of workers’ comp to employers. Workers’ comp is mandated by states to pay workers who get hurt on the job.

The council submitted its filing to the Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) on Friday.

If approved, it would take effect Aug. 1.

That would collectively cost Florida businesses roughly $623 million and make the Sunshine State the costliest in the southeast part of the country to buy such insurance, according to the NCCI’s news release.

The council is “a licensed rating organization authorized to make rate filings on behalf of workers’ compensation insurance companies in Florida,” according to the OIR.

The organization directly attributed most of the increase to a Florida Supreme Court decision, Castellanos v. Next Door Company, which struck down Florida’s workers’ compensation law’s legal fee schedule as unconstitutional.

Associated Industries of Florida and the Florida Chamber of Commerce also have come out in opposition to the increase.

Written By

Jim Rosica is the Tallahassee-based Senior Editor for Florida Politics. He previously was the Tampa Tribune’s statehouse reporter. Before that, he covered three legislative sessions in Florida for The Associated Press. Jim graduated from law school in 2009 after spending nearly a decade covering courts for the Tallahassee Democrat, including reporting on the 2000 presidential recount. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

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