Erika focuses her legal practice on defending employers/carriers against workers’ compensation claims. She has experience handling claims from inception through trial, and those including third-party liens, Medicare Set Asides, catastrophic injuries, toxic exposures, and permanent and total disabilities.
While earning her law degree at St. Thomas University School of Law, Erika gained valuable experience interning as a law clerk for the Florida Office of the Attorney General. During that time, she assisted with preparing an appellate brief that was selected to come before the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit oral arguments. Erika also has experience as a research assistant where she examined matters related to the Florida Constitution. In addition, she participated in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program and prepared taxes for low-income families in the Miami community.
- Successfully obtained zero-payment verdict from the Fort Lauderdale District Office of the Judges of Compensation Claims on behalf of a construction client, with recovery of trial-related costs wherein a plaintiff was assaulted by a co-worker at a construction jobsite, which resulted in the plaintiff’s claim of entitlement to workers’ compensation benefits from our client; although each of the contractors involved in the project were listed as defendants by the plaintiff who sought indefinite medical treatment, reimbursement of past-received medical care, recovery of lost wages, and attorneys’ fees, ultimately our client was absolved of all monetary liability.
- Successfully obtained First District Court of Appeals order reversing Final Order following workers’ compensation trial in the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings, Miami District; District Court admonished the trial court’s failure to address defense’s “well-preserved” contingent argument and case was remanded back to trial judge to appoint an Expert Medical Advisor to resolve the disputes in medical evidence that the Judge had improperly resolved herself.
- ABM Indus., Inc. v. Valencia, No. 1D20-2027, 2021 WL 4450483 (Fla. 1st DCA Sept. 29, 2021)