Orlando Theme Parks Protected from Workers Comp Lawsuits

According to a recent article in the Tampa Tribune, if you are going to bring a case against the Orlando theme parks, you face long odds. Sea World and Disney are two of Central Florida’s biggest employers and both face possible lawsuits stemming from employee deaths. In 2009, a family brought a lawsuit against a monorail driver killed in a train collision. And, at Sea World, we all heard of the Orca – which it is reported had been involved in a prior incident of aggression and was not kept separated – killing a trainer. Yet, both parks should be well insulated from taking responsibility because of the current state of Florida law. Seven years ago, former republican Governor Jeb Bush championed an overhaul of the sunshine state’s workers compensation law. Those changes give employers near ironclad protection and immunity from civil lawsuits. It is virtually impossible to overcome. Critics say that the current system too heavily favors businesses and gives corporations no incentive to make the workplace as safe as possible for its workers. Those in favor of the changes say it protects businesses for run away jury awards, cuts down costs and standardizes payments for accident claims. In reality, it only helps insurance companies and huge corporations with their bottom line which short-changes victims from receiving compensation to try to help them make up for the harm they were caused.



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