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Workers' Compensation

Florida: City Successfully Rebuts First Responder Presumption Regarding Heart Disease

A Florida appellate court held a municipality had successfully rebutted the presumption of compensability [see § 112.18(1)(a), Fla. Stat.] regarding a correction officer's claim of cardiac disease (atrial fibrillation), where the evidence suggested that the officer's condition was "triggered" by his strenuous athletic training for an Olympic-type competition and not by any work condition, including stress, as had been claimed by the officer. The JCC found that the heart condition was triggered by stress. The appellate court noted that a physician had indicated that job stress could play a role in causing arrhythmias, such as those experienced by the officer. It also noted, however, that the same doctor had dismissed stress as a cause in the corrections officer's case. In as much as the JCC had failed to evaluate the evidence as a non-occupational cause that would overcome the presumption found in § 112.18(1)(a), Fla. Stat., the decision had to be reversed and remanded for further consideration.

Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the 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 City of Jacksonville v. O’Neal, 2020 Fla. App. LEXIS 5471 (1st DCA, Apr. 23, 2020)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 52.07.

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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