Message from the Chair

I am humbled and truly honored to chair the Workers’ Compensation Section this year. I have had the privilege of serving on the Executive Council since 2008 and have learned a great deal under the guidance of my predecessors. First, I would like to thank the past chair, Philip Augustine, who kept our Section running smoothly, and whose efforts resulted in an incredibly successful year. I am excited to continue his great work and for yet another successful year.

As chair of the Workers’ Compensation Section, I recently attended a meeting called the Council of Sections, which is a meeting that takes place every year at the annual Florida Bar Convention and is attended by all section chairs. Each section chair presents a report on their particular section, and I can state without a doubt that the Workers’ Compensation Section is one of the most active sections of The Florida Bar, with more than 1,200 members. We have regular CLE Lunch & Learn webinars, our News & 440 Report is second to none, and we regularly have DCA judges attend our forums to hear oral arguments. Further, we have four Executive Council meetings every year that are open to the entire Section, a winter retreat ski seminar, and the convention in August that brings a nationwide audience.

Significantly, we also have more access to and participation from our judges than any other section of The Florida Bar. To further facilitate open discussions between the bench and the Bar, I, along with the help of Judge David Langham and Judge Jacquelyn Newman, have put together multiple round table events, which allow our judges and Section members to come together to discuss current trends and new laws. These events are an excellent opportunity to interact with judges and other lawyers in person, which has been somewhat of a rarity since the COVID-19 pandemic. So far, we have met in Orlando, Jacksonville, Tampa, and Fort Myers, and the feedback I have received regarding these events has been overwhelmingly positive. I want to thank both Judge Langham and Judge Newman for their participation and continued support. I am also incredibly grateful for the local judges who participated in the discussions and helped put them together. We will be looking to scheduling additional round table discussions in the South Florida region this fall. To our South Florida members and judges: be on the lookout for a call from me to help get these events scheduled!

Noticing the need to get younger practitioners involved in our Section, Neil Ambekar is taking charge of developing a young lawyers’ committee (YLC) for our young and newer lawyers. The goal of the YLC is to increase involvement of younger practitioners in the section and start paving the way for new leadership, as well as providing mentorship for those in need.

New to our Section this year is the Emerging Leaders Committee. Out of our roughly 1,200 Section members, we have a little over 200 members with less than 10 years of experience. We created this committee to encourage participation and develop future leaders and to give newer practitioners the opportunity to interact with other members of our Section. It is my hope that these new practitioners will continue to grow our practice and keep the level of professionalism high. With the help of Judge Langham, Judge Newman, and Judge Neal Pitts, the Section had a workers’ compensation boot camp back in June in Orlando. There were 40 participants and registrations were so high that a second boot camp is set for October 16 in Tampa. We have received a lot of positive feedback on the Emerging Leaders Committee. If you would like to participate, please reach out to me at paolo@bichlerlaw.com, Neil Ambekar at nambekar@conroysimberg.com, or our two committee chairs, Erin Thorne at ethorne@thezenith.com and Michelle Chase at mchase@franksandkoening.com. This committee will also be putting together social events around the state for members to network and get to know each other.

This year, the Section will also be establishing a mentoring program. The idea is to create a mentor repository where younger members can go and seek out a mentor, as opposed to simply having one assigned to them. We know that some mentors will be better suited than others on various topics, so we are hopeful that having a large list of willing mentors will increase the odds of them being used. I am hoping to have this set up and ready to go in the fall, so please be on the lookout for this.

Our Section has also been working very hard since coming out of the pandemic to set new highs in the area of professionalism within our practice. We have focused on getting together as a group more often and providing good examples for our younger members. I would ask that everyone in our Section keep this in mind when working with opposing counsels. Let us all not only be good examples, but good reflections of each other. I am committed to raising the bar in all areas of our Section this year and am proud to serve as your chair. I will make myself available to any member who has questions or wants to get involved.

Sincerely,

Paolo Longo, Jr.
Section Chair

2023 Florida Bar Workers' Compensation Forum

2023 Florida Bar Workers' Compensation Forum

April 20-21, 2023

Omni Orlando Resort @ ChampionsGate

Featuring: Oral Arguments with the First DCA

 

The Workers’ Compensation Section of the Florida Bar and the WCCP Association would like to invite you to the 2023 Florida Bar’s Workers’ Compensation Forum on April 20 - 21, 2023 at the Omni Orlando Resort ChampionsGate. 

 

Join the lawyers, adjusters, case managers, vocational experts, supervisors, managers, and executives as they gather at one of Florida’s most advanced educational conferences.

 

*REMINDER to Board Certified Litigation (CWCL) Adjusters! To maintain the “CWCL” designation, board certified adjusters are required to attend the Forum at least once every 3 years.

 

2023 WCCP Attendee Registration Form

 

2023 Attorney Registration Form

 

Exhibitor Opportunities



A limited number of exhibitors are invited to join the Workers' Compensation Section of the Florida Bar and the Association of Workers’ Compensation Claims Professionals (WCCP) in sponsoring the 2023 Florida Bar Workers' Compensation Forum, April 20-21, 2023.

 

The Forum features the latest in legal, claims, medical and vocational topics, which center around the Florida Bar’s traditional Certification Review Course.

 

Exhibitor setup is on Wednesday evening, April 19th, 2023 from 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. After set up, join us in the Exhibit Hall for a Welcome Cocktail from 6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

 

Registration includes:

 

· A 6’ tabletop display in the Forum Exhibit Hall throughout the event where Breakfast, Breaks, and Lunches are served (*Note: Exhibitor setup is scheduled for Wednesday, April 19th from 5:00-7:00 p.m.) Floor Displays will not be Permitted and no Early Breakdowns

 

· Your Company’s Logo featured in the Exhibitor’s slide presentation, WCCP's website and marketing emails, and onsite brochure

 

· Opportunity to present door prizes at Friday’s luncheon



· Complimentary registration for one (1) company representative *One additional company representative permitted at a rate of $175.00*

 

Exhibitor Registration Form

2023 FL Bar Exclusive Law Firm Sponsors

 

Angones, McClure & Garcia, P.A.

 

Bolton, Helm and Augustine LLP

 

Boyd & Jenerette, P.A.

 

Broussard, Cullen & Eldridge, P.A.

 

Cattie & Gonzalez, PLLC

 

Cole, Scott & Kissane, P.A.

 

Conroy Simberg

 

Eraclides Gelman

 

Fernandes Hicks Law Group

 

Francisco|Blanco, P.L.

 

Hamilton Miller & Birthisel

 

HR LAW

 

Kelley Kronenberg, P.A.

 

Kurkin Forehand

Brandes LLP

 

Marshall Dennehey

 

MKRS Law

 

Morgan & Morgan

 

Quintairos, Prieto, Wood & Boyer, P.A.

 

Rudolph, Israel, Tucker & Ellis, P.A.

 

Schefer, Petric & Simpson

 

VCFJ Law

 

Vernis & Bowling

 

Walton Lantaff Schroeder & Carson LLP

 

Zimmerman Kiser Sutcliffe P.A.

 

2023 FL Bar WCCP Exhibitors



Brooks Rehabilitation

 

Case Management Solutions

 

Clarity-dx

 

CORA Health Services

 

Florida Orthocare

 

HealthCare Comp

 

ION PT Network

 

Lori Woody, Inc.

 

Medical Management & ReEmployment

 

National Spine & Pain Centers

 

Paul Meli Orthopedic Surgeon

 

ProCare Transportation and Language Services

 

Specialty Allocations

 

Tampa General Hospital

 

The IMA Group

 

Verity Investigations

 

Wright Rehabilitation

Hotel Accommodations

A room block at ChampionsGate has been arranged at a discounted rate of $219.00 (resort fee waived). After registering for the conference you must make your reservation early by calling ChampionsGate’s central reservation number at 1-800-843-6664 or online at https://www.omnihotels.com/hotels/orlando-championsgate/meetings/fl-bar-workers-forum-2023-04192023.

 

 

The cut-off date for this special rate is Wednesday, March22, 2023. (There is a 72 hour cancellation policy)  Reservations are dependent on availability within our room block.

 

The WCCP Association | P.O. Box 2930, Land O' Lakes, FL 34639 | wccp.org

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