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Ex parte doctor conferences limited.

April 1, 2019
Lyne Bien-Aime v. Correct Care Recovery Solutions/ESIS, Inc., OJCC 17-022305DAL, Ft. Lauderdale District, Order Jan. 2, 2019

The judge of compensation claims granted the claimant’s emergency motion to prohibit and/or limit the employer’s ex parte communication with the transfer of care physician. The judge’s opinion indicated he was confronted with determining whether the employer/servicing agent conducted an impermissible ex parte “mini-trial” or deliberately undermined the doctor-patient relationship, thereby abusing its statutory right to conduct such conferences pursuant to § 440.13(4)(c).

The judge held that, although the employer’s attorney may discuss the claimant’s medical condition with the claimant’s provider on an ex parte basis, the employer or its representative shall not suggest to or instruct the doctor as to what treatment he or she may provide or recommend. The judge held that if the employer wishes to challenge a doctor’s treatment or recommendations, it must do so at a conference where the claimant or his legal representative has the opportunity to be present; otherwise, a deliberate undermining of the doctor-patient relationship would occur. 


Case Law Alerts, 2nd Quarter, April 2019

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