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Workers' Compensation

Florida: Judge Should Have Appointed EMA to Resolve Conflict in Medical Opinions

Under Florida’s one-time change of physician statute, § 440.13(2)(f), Fla. Stat., a judge of compensation claims was required to appoint an EMA to resolve a conflict in the medical evidence where an injured worker was dissatisfied with the medical opinion of the employer/carrier’s authorized physician and then, when the carrier did not immediately provide an alternate physician, sought medical care on his own and that second physician’s opinion disagreed with the first. The JCC had ruled that the second physician was not “authorized” under the statute until the JCC’s final ruling, thus obviating the requirement that an EMA be appointed. The appellate court disagreed. The instant that the JCC ruled that the second physician was an authorized physician, that ruling retroactively required the JCC to address the employer’s EMA request.

Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the co-Editor-in-Chief and Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).

LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance.

See ABM Indus. v. Valencia, 2021 Fla. App. LEXIS 13480 (1st DCA Sept. 29, 2021)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 94.02.

Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law

For a more detailed discussion of the case, see

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