Stop Work Order/Penalty Assessments Representation in Orlando & Orange County

Through the Department of Financial Services, Division of Workers' Compensation, the State of Florida ensures that employers comply with state law and carry workers' compensation insurance coverage for their employees, if required to do so. The state uses investigators to conduct inspections and to determine if an employer lacks the required coverages. If an investigator determines that coverage is required, but not in effect, the Division may issue a Stop-Work Order and may also assess a penalty equal to 1 ½ times the amount the employer should have paid in premium over the preceding 3 year period. Stop-Work Orders may also be issued if an employer misstates or conceals payroll, misrepresents employee duties, or otherwise attempts to avoid paying workers' compensation premiums. Any of these activities can also result in criminal charges or additional penalties.

To get a Stop-Work Order released, the employer is required to obtain the required workers' compensation coverage and provide proof (usually through a certificate of insurance) and to make arrangements for payment of the penalty. The Division is empowered to initiate lien proceedings or any other collections actions necessary to collect an unpaid penalty.

It is illegal for an employer to engage in any of the following activities:

  • Continue business operations while a Stop-Work Order is in effect;
  • Make false statements for the purpose of obtaining workers' compensation coverage or reducing a workers' compensation premium;
  • Fail to report an injury to an insurance company if required to do so by law;
  • Discharge, or threaten to discharge, an employee for reporting an injury or attempting to file a workers' compensation claim;
  • Deduct workers' compensation premiums from an employee's pay;
  • Misclassify an employee as an independent contractor.

One of the most important things to remember with regards to a Stop-Work Order or a penalty assessment is that you have a very limited window to appeal or contest them. If you do not file an appeal and/or request for hearing within the required timeframes, you forfeit the right to ever contest them later and are stuck with whatever findings or determinations the state has made. This makes it crucial that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible, to get an evaluation of your rights and the possible steps which can be taken to lift the Stop-Work Order and/or contest the penalty assessment. The Workers' Compensation Trial Group, P.A., will be happy to provide you with a free consultation to discuss your situation and your options.

Over 25 Years'

Combined Experience

The Florida Bar Peer Review Rated

Orlando Workers' Compensation Attorney