Articles Posted in Personal Injury

Most of us have been in a car accident at some point or another. (If you haven’t, consider yourself lucky – or due for one soon, statistically speaking; car insurance companies estimate every driver files a claim about once ever 17 years.) If you have been in a crash, you may have been asked more than once whether you plan to sue.car accident lawyer

When it comes to auto accidents, Florida is a no-fault state. What that means is that rather than pursuing a claim against the driver who was at-fault, it’s your own auto insurance company that is responsible for compensating you after the crash. This falls under the provision of state law (specifically F.S. 627.736) regarding personal injury protection insurance (or PIP). However, this only covers up to $10,000 in medical and disability expenses and only $5,000 in death benefits.

If you’re injured to the point you are required to take more than  few weeks off work, have lasting disabilities or are disfigured, this won’t be nearly enough. Yet it is only if one meets the serious injury threshold, as outlined in F.S. 627.727 that he/she may step outside the no-fault system to claim damages from the at-fault driver (or his/her own uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage). Continue reading

After years of ping-ponging on the issue of evidence admissibility standards in Florida courts – weighing the long-standing, more relaxed Frye test versus the more rigorous Daubert analysis – it seems the Florida Supreme Court has made a final decision. At least for now… West Palm Beach medical malpractice lawyer

For decades, it was Frye. Then in 2013, Daubert. Except not everyone agreed, and for a while, lower courts and lawyers weren’t exactly sure which applied until 2018 when it was definitely Frye. But now, we’re back to Daubert.

As our South Florida injury lawyers can explain, this is going to have a big impact on both criminal and civil cases. Perhaps most significantly in torts, plaintiffs with highly-technical claims requiring expert witness testimony (medical malpractice, product liability, etc.) are likely going to have a much tougher time overcoming the “trial within a trial” hurdle that Daubert presents.

While criminal and civil defense lawyers will be pleased with this change, prosecutors and personal injury lawyers most likely are not. Continue reading

Injury at South Florida gyms has been climbing as the number of health-fitness clubs and gyms has risen – 4 percent in the last five years, according to IBISWorld market research.Industry-wide revenue topped$2billion this year. gym injury lawsuit Miami

The question of whether one can successfully sue for a gym injury in Florida will depend heavily on how the injury occurred, what assurances of safety were express or implied with your gym patronage, the language of the liability waiver you (most likely) signed and whether third parties were involved.

Because injuries at the gym have the potential to be very serious (with some reported including broken bones, facial fractures, dental injuries, head injuries, neck and spinal cord injuries and more) it’s imperative to discuss your options with an experienced Miami personal injury attorney.

Fitness centers throughout Miami in standalone buildings, shopping plazas, hotels, resorts, spas – even commercial warehouses (primarily Crossfit). Customers pay good money to use the parking facilities, access all the workout equipment, receive one-on-one time with personal trainers, attend various classes and use amenities like lockers, change rooms, showers, pools and steam rooms. Unfortunately, as our personal injury attorneys in Miami are well aware, that’s a lot of opportunity for potential danger. Continue reading

West Palm Beach injury lawyers have been watching closely the progression of HB17, a bill that would limit the amount of damages for losses like pain and suffering that can’t be easily quantified. The $1 million damage cap would affect non-economic damages in personal injury cases. Proponents claim it’s necessary to improve insurer and large corporation stability, “balance out” their legal risk resulting from high litigation costs and lower what we all pay for insurance and other products/services. West Palm Beach Personal Injury Lawyer

The Florida House Civil Justice Committee approved the cuts, and the bill is advancing.

Here’s the reality about legislative actions like this (also known as “tort reform“): It’s a “get-out-of-jail” free card for insurers and big business. Where they have been successful, it is found companies are better-shielded from litigation risks and their profits are higher. It very often does not result in savings for the public/consumers. Furthermore, it’s been proven that the people most affected by a policy like this are the individuals hurt most severely. Finally, it’s likely no coincidence the most ardent advocates of this measure receive an awful lot of campaign contributions from lobbyists for these industries.

The Case of McCall v. State Showed Damage Caps Don’t Work

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Bars, festivals, nightclubs, concerts and cruises are required to use reasonable care in ensuring the safety of patrons – particularly if they are serving substantial or unlimited quantities of alcohol – in order to prevent South Florida injuries and wrongful deaths.South Florida festival injury lawyer

According to The News-Herald, a man filed a Florida injury lawsuit recently alleges a no-limit alcohol policy for unlimited alcohol policies for VIP guests. Among the most dangerous practices: Offering unlimited amounts of “free” alcohol. This, plaintiff alleges, resulted in his falling off the balcony at a Panama City Beach business owner and sustaining serious injury.

Although there was railing on the multi-level platform, there was no railing on the stairs that flanked either side of it. When he was asked by a security employee to sit down on the step, he complied – but lost his balance ended up falling from the stairs, sustaining serious and permanent injury.

When you are reeling from a personal injury in Florida, the materials on your cast may hardly even be dry before you are hit with a barrage of paperwork from doctors, police and insurance companies. None of those entities or individuals, however, is looking out for your best interest, making sure your rights are protected and that you aren’t saddled with a financial burden you don’t deserve. Whether your injury resulted from a work accident, car accident, slip-and-fall or some other incident, it will behoove you to hire a South Florida injury lawyer with experience, as opposed to one just starting out. South Florida injury attorney

There have been numerous reports the last handful of years about the fact that there are too many law students and too few legal jobs, with the American Bar Association reporting schools are continuing to raise tuition and produce twice as many graduates as the job market has to absorb. We mention this to say that while there is plenty of bright young talent in the legal profession, there are also a fair amount starting out – even in the first few years – who may not have much if any experience in handling the kind of case on which you require assistance. There are also attorneys who take many different kinds of cases – from personal injury to criminal defense to business law – just to make ends meet. But that doesn’t help you with a Florida work injury claim where the rules for workers’ compensation benefits and third-party liability claims are very specific. You can have greater confidence in the experience of attorneys who can point you to proof of success in past cases.

Personal injury attorneys in Florida are paid on a contingency fee basis, meaning you do not pay a fee for attorney services upfront. Instead, you pay a portion of whatever is recovered (if anything is recovered) either from a settlement or jury verdict.  Continue reading

A personal injury lawsuit filed by 15 high school students, survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, has been dismissed by a federal judge who ruled six defendants, including the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, a school deputy, a campus monitor and the Broward School District, owed no duty of care to protect the students from the gunman. Nothing in the state constitution or statute imposes a general duty on police officers or other government officials to protect people from harm – even when they know it will occur. This duty is limited to those who are “in custody” of police, which as our Broward County injury lawyers can explain has been narrowly interpreted by courts to mean those situations wherein a person has lost his/ her freedom to move freely or seek assistance on their own. It doesn’t apply to students in school, particularly the older they are. personal injury attorney

In total, 17 students and staff members were killed in the six-minute attack and 17 others were injured.

The outcome was indeed disappointing for many in Parkland and throughout Florida because it undercuts a core belief so many have about police and school services: That the public – especially schoolchildren – have the right to expect police will protect them. That is simply not true. The few exceptions that have been carved out, as noted by legal scholars quoted in The New York Times, are situations where, for instance, a crossing guard is assigned specifically to protect a child from crossing the street and instead gets distracted by their smartphone. In the eyes of the law, that crossing guard may have a special relationship to that specific child. It’s only when this special relationship has been established or when the officer has done something to enhance the risk of harm that the officer and/ or the employer can be held liable under the state’s negligence laws. Continue reading

Sometimes when folks read that the statute of limitations on Florida personal injury and wrongful death claims is two and four years respectively, they figure they’ve got some time before they need to bother reaching out to a South Florida injury attorney. And while it is true that you technically have that time span in which to file a claim, our Naples injury lawyers know what that timeline fails to take into account is:

  • The faster you act, the more likely your attorney can gather important evidence, talk to key witnesses and best preserve your case.
  • In most all cases,  you won’t be able to file a claim at all unless you have properly provided notice to defendants in accordance with Florida law. The timeline for notice is shorter than the statute of limitations period, and the requirements can vary depending on a host of factors.injury attorney Naples Continue reading

Every year, more than 200,000 child playground injuries nationally prompt a trip to a hospital emergency room, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Three-fourths of these occur on public playgrounds (schools and parks), and nearly 60 percent involve broken bones, contusions and abrasions. More than 20,000 are treated for traumatic brain injuries. Falls account for 70 percent of playground injuries. Slides and swings account for most injuries among children under 4, while climbing equipment is involved with most kids 5 to 14. Parents may be tempted to chalk up the incident to “just an accident,” but West Palm Beach injury attorneys know many times, these injuries occur because someone was negligent.playground injuries

When it comes to liability, our personal injury lawyers will look at the incident from all angles. Manufacturers and distributors can be liable when playground equipment is defectively designed or put together. Property owners can be held legally responsible if they failed to maintain the equipment as specified by the manufacturer. Schools, daycares and caregivers can sometimes be held to account when there is evidence of failure to adequately supervise (as accounts for 45 percent of playground injuries, according to the American Trauma Society).

In 2016, Florida legislators proposed Senate Bill 406, the Playground Safety Act, which called for requiring certain new and existing playgrounds to comply with specified safety standards and guidelines and authorized counties and cities to require playground permits and charge fees for the construction or renovation of certain playgrounds. Unfortunately, the measure died in committee. West Palm Beach injury attorneys can still refer to the fact that Florida public schools are guided by the State Requirement for Educational Facilities (SREF), provisions of which require separate kindergarten playgrounds and mandate all playgrounds and equipment comply with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Handbook for Public Playground Safety, which outlines ASTM specifications for just about every type of playground equipment imaginable. Playgrounds that don’t meet these guidelines can be dangerous. Continue reading

Fraternities on college campuses have come under fire in recent years for violent attacks and sexual assaults. Some occur during “hazing rituals,” while others in the midst of unchaperoned alcohol-fueled parties. Civil liability for these incidents can be tricky.fraternity liability

Consulting with an experienced Fort Lauderdale injury attorney is imperative. Fraternities tend to be self-insured – and sometimes receive more funding from alumnus than the colleges themselves. If you’re going to challenge them in a courtroom personal injury case, you need a lawyer prepared to go to bat for you.

Fraternity Violence Alleged in Recent Florida Injury Lawsuit

Recently, a new injury lawsuit alleges that a 20-year-old Florida State University student was struck so hard in the face during a so-called hazing ritual that he know suffers a “dead area in his brain” that has left him permanently impaired for life. The lawsuit was recently filed in Leon County Circuit Court against Alpha Epsilon Pi International – a fraternity that is national, and based in Indianapolis.

According to the fraternity injury lawsuit, the incident occurred in April when plaintiff was reportedly designated as the “Scumbag of the Week,” which reportedly called for physical punishment. Another fraternity brother was selected to dole out the “punishment,” amid chants from the other members to hit him. Plaintiff was struck in the head with a blow so hard, he suffered a skull fracture and hit the floor unconscious and having lost a tooth. Continue reading