Unformatted text preview: opinions
discussing section 440.205. In Smith v. Piezo Technology and Professional
Administrators, 427 So. 2d 182 (Fla. 1983), the court was faced with the issue of whether 135 a private cause of action for wrongful discharge in retaliation for an employee's pursuit of
workers' compensation claim existed since the language of the statute did not expressly
provide one. In answering this question, the court held
. . .thus, because the legislature enacted a statute that clearly imposes a duty and because
the intent of the section is to preclude retaliatory discharge, the statute confers by
implication every particular power necessary to ensure the performance of that duty. . . .
We hold, therefore, that F.S. § 440.205 [**21] does create a statutory cause of action.
Smith at 184.
The supreme court addressed section 440.205 again in the case of Scott v. Otis Elevator
Company, 572 So. 2d 902 (Fla. 1990). The primary issue in the Scott case was whether
the plaintiff could recover damages for emotional distress under section 440.205, Florida
Statutes. In deciding this issue, the court referred back to its decision in Smith in stating:
". . . we held that while Florida does not recognize a common-law tort for retaliatory
discharge, section 440.205 created a statutory cause of action for wrongful discharge."
572 So. 2d at 903. The court then went on to state: "Section 440.205 reflects the public
policy that an employee shall not be discharged for filing or threatening to file a workers'
compensation claim." Id.
In the Smith and Scott cases, the Supreme Court of Florida has clearly stated that section
440.205, Florida Statutes is a "retaliatory discharge" statute and made no reference to the
statute covering other retaliatory or adverse actions absent a discharge. In fact, the
supreme court in Smith [**22] stated ". . . the intent of the section is to preclude
retaliatory discharge. . . . " 427 So. 2d at 184 (emphasis added).
The Third District Co...
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This note was uploaded on 09/30/2012 for the course ENC 102 taught by Professor Deria during the Spring '08 term at FIU.
- Spring '08