Accident: May 2, 1976.
appeal from an order of the Judge of Compensation Claims.
Nolan S. Winn, Judge.
McCabe of William J. McCabe, P.A., Longwood, and Douglas H.
Glicken, Orlando, for Appellant.
Said of Eraclides, Gelman, Hall, Indek, Goodman, Waters &
Traverso, Pensacola, for Appellee.
workers compensation case, Samuel Phillips
("Claimant") appeals an order of the Judge of
Compensation Claims ("JCC") denying his claims for
benefits as barred by the statute of limitations. On the
unique facts of this case, we reverse and remand for further
compensable injury occurred more than 40 years ago. His
employer administratively accepted Claimant as permanently
and totally disabled (PTD) in 1986 and paid PTD
benefits. In 1987, the Division of Workers
Compensation began paying Claimant PTD supplemental benefits,
as authorized by section 440.15(1)(f), Florida Statutes.
See Dept of Children & Families v. Monroe,
744 So.2d 1163, 1164 (Fla. 1st DCA 1999) ("The purpose
of supplemental benefits is to allow for increases in the
cost of living."). For unknown reasons, when Claimant
started receiving supplemental benefit payments from the
Division, he stopped receiving PTD benefit payments from his
2018, Claimant filed the first of several petitions for
benefits seeking medical and disability benefits from 1986
"to the present and continuing." The JCC denied the
petition, ruling the statute of limitations had run before
the claims were filed. The JCC found that although the
supplemental benefits are compensation, the statutory
obligation to pay them rests with the Division, not the
employer; therefore, the JCC concluded, those payments did
not toll the statute of limitations. We disagree.
statute of limitations applicable to Claimant is the version
in effect on Claimants date of accident. Batista v.
Publix Supermarkets, Inc., 993 So.2d 570, 572 (Fla. 1st
DCA 2008). That version provides as follows:
The right to compensation for disability under this chapter
shall be barred unless a claim therefor is filed within 2
years after the time of injury, except that if payment of
compensation has been made or remedial treatment has been
furnished by the employer without an award on account of
such injury a claim may be filed within 2 years after the
date of the last payment of compensation or after the date of
the last remedial treatment furnished by the employer.
§ 440.19(1)(a), Fla. Stat. (1975) (emphasis added).
plain language, the statute is tolled by either (1) the
payment of "compensation" or (2) the furnishing of
remedial treatment by the employer. Supplemental benefits
constitute compensation. SeeJackson v. Hochadel
Roofing Co.,794 So.2d 668, 671 (Fla. 1st DCA 2001)
("Although the supreme court has not decided the point,
the First District has decided that supplemental benefits
payable when an injured worker becomes entitled to permanent
total disability benefits are compensation benefits payable
under this chapter. ") (quoting § 440.15(9)(a), Fla.
Stat. (1991)). And it is ...