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A 3-year-old girl was recently killed in a South Florida pedestrian accident while walking with her mother as they returned from dropping her older brother off at the bus stop. pedestrian accident

According to The Press Republican, the girl, her mother and a neighbor were walking at the intersection of Hampton Meadow Way and Bright Street in Riverview when they were struck by the 33-year-old driver of a pickup truck. The driver said he looked before he turned onto the street, where he saw the two women and the dog. However, he said he did not see the little girl. As soon as he heard the sickening sound of the impact, he immediately stopped and realized he had struck the girl.

The girl’s mother, meanwhile, asserts the driver was operating on the wrong side of the road. Her daughter, she said, was approximately two arm’s lengths ahead of her as they made their way home. The girl had made it nearly to the sidewalk right in front of her home, where she stood waiting for her mother, holding a sippy cup.  Continue reading →

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If you are involved in an auto accident in Florida, it’s important to contact an attorney before you give any more than basic information to your auto insurer. Your attorney can negotiate the claim on your behalf. A lawyer can also advise you of your obligations as an insured – and this is extremely important when it comes to ensuring your claim will be covered. car accident

Your coverage is contingent upon meeting the contractual obligations in your policy. If you fail to hold up your end of the bargain, your claim could be denied.

Several insureds learned this the hard way in a recent case out of Kentucky.  Continue reading →

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All drivers are required to use reasonable care in protecting passengers as well as other motorists from foreseeable harm. That means operating the vehicle in a reasonably safe manner.car accident

Some drivers may have a heightened duty of care. Primarily, these include common carriers, such as bus drivers. It does not, according to a recent ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, include designated drivers. Such drivers are members of the group who agree to abstain from drinking alcohol or taking drugs in order to be able safely to drive others in the group, thus avoiding a potentially tragic drunk driving accident.

In the case recently before the Eighth Circuit, the trial court in North Dakota applied a higher standard of care to the sober designated driver – something statutory and case law did not support. This fact was especially important here because of the way that state approaches comparative fault. Here in Florida, we follow a pure comparative fault model, per F.S. 768.81. This means even if a plaintiff is deemed 99 percent at-fault for an accident, he or she can still collect on the other 1 percent (though an attorney would have to weigh carefully the wisdom of pursuing a case with such long odds). However, many other jurisdictions do not allow plaintiffs to recover if they bear 50 percent or more of the fault burden. Continue reading →

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We trust the vehicles in which we rely on daily to be properly tested for safety. Unfortunately, too many auto manufacturers and makers of auto parts fail to adequately test these machines. When they fail or there is a vehicle defect, the consequences can be catastrophic personal injuries. car accident lawyer

Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eight Circuit reinstated a $1 million jury verdict in favor of a car accident victim rendered quadriplegic after his seat belt failed to prevent his head from striking the roof of the vehicle in a rollover crash. These types of product liability cases should be explored anytime someone is in

According to court records, the crash occurred five years ago when plaintiff driving a van collided with a boat that was being towed by another vehicle. At the time, plaintiff was driving his two sons and eight other people on a return trip to St. Louis following a Boy Scout camping trip in Minnesota. The initial impact of the crash didn’t cause significant damage. However, the van plaintiff was driving swerved and rolled at a relatively low-speed. Plaintiff was wearing his seat belt, but still slid far enough out of the seat for his head to connect with the roof of his van, dislocating his neck and severing his spinal cord. Nobody else in the vehicle was seriously hurt.  Continue reading →

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A defendant amusement park missed the deadline to seek compensation from the school of an 11-year-old girl killed in accident at the park, but it can still try to prove the school was partially negligent in a pending trial brought by the girl’s parents. wrongful death lawyer

That’s according to a recent ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court. The decision was notable for the fact that it holds third-party claims against the government to the same standards for tort claim notice as first-party claims. In New Jersey, there is a 90-day deadline to file a notice – starting at the time of a victim’s death – to the defendant government agency and its subdivisions. Still, it’s a disappointing outcome for the plaintiff parents because the ruling will allow defendant amusement park to present evidence of the school’s potential liability, which could reduce its own liability and ultimately reduce damages awarded to plaintiffs.

The tragic events that spurred this case began in 2011, when the girl was on a school field trip hosted for honor roll students. The trip was organized by the school. She died after falling approximately 150 feet from a large Ferris wheel. Two years after the fifth-grader’s death, within the statute of limitations for wrongful death cases, her parents filed their wrongful death lawsuit.  Continue reading →

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A recent decision by Florida’s Third District Court of Appeals upholds the liability of auto insurance company GEICO in covering damages awarded to plaintiffs who won a $15 million verdict against GEICO’s insured. car accident lawyer

The case is a tragic and complicated one, and despite the commonality of Florida auto accident claims, how complex they can sometimes be when it comes to disputes with insurers. That’s why it’s so critical that claimants seek top quality legal counsel to represent them in such cases.

The case began with events that occurred in March 2011 in Miami. Court documents revealed defendant driver was operating his mother’s vehicle when he slammed into a cluster of other vehicles on the shoulder of I-95. The other motorists had just been involved in a minor chain-reaction crash set off when one vehicle clipped a stalled vehicle that was parked in an emergency lane. A total of seven cars were involved in the initial crash. People had exited their vehicles and were waiting on police to arrive when defendant swerved from the express lane, slammed into a concrete barrier and then crashed into the crowd. He instantly killed four people and a fifth died several days later of severe personal injuries.  Continue reading →

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When a personal injury occurs in the course of an activity the injured person knew was dangerous, the court may shoot down claims of liability, citing the assumption of risk doctrine. However, Florida courts (specifically within the 1983 ruling of Kuehner v. Green) have historically limited successful use of the assumption of risk doctrine to cases involving:

  • Contracts not to sue (i.e., liability waivers);
  • Injuries arising out of contact sports.injury lawyer

Florida courts have held that rather than preventing a plaintiff from proceeding with a lawsuit at the outset, jurors should be allowed to decide whether plaintiff’s assumption of the risks should be factored into whether plaintiff was fully or partially at-fault for the the accident that resulted in injuries. Continue reading →

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Florida is a boater’s paradise, but it quickly became a nightmare for the parents of two teen boys who disappeared off the coast of Jupiter in the midst of a fierce Atlantic storm. The 19-foot boat they took was recovered months later, empty. The boys have never been found. boating accident

Now, the parents of one of those teens are eyeing a wrongful death lawsuit against the other, after a new state report alleges negligence for failure to exercise reasonable care in allowing the teens to go out into the water on an ill-equipped boat in poor weather conditions with no adult supervision. However, the prospective defendants of the case say they did not allow their son to take the boat out that day, and should not be liable for the other boy’s death.

Florida does not require a boating license for any operator. However, if a boater was born on or after Jan. 1, 1988, they will be required to complete a boater’s safety education course if they operate a boat with 10 hp or more. Most providers of these courses have no minimum age, and do not require participants to be Florida residents.

The question in this tragic case will really boil down to whether the boys were properly supervised. Although negligent supervision is a tort that could apply in a variety of contexts (think construction site managers or trucking carriers overseeing many drivers), it can also refer to failure to control a child. What must be proven is the adult knew or should have known the child needed to be controlled and/ or protected, and failed to do so, resulting in injury.  Continue reading →

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A woman in Tarpon Springs has filed a personal injury lawsuit seeking at least $15,000 in damages for injuries suffered in an alleged slip-and-fall accident.slip and fall

The incident occurred in a Wal-Mart store, which has been no stranger to such claims, given that it gets an estimated 138 million visitors every week. In fact, the company hires not just attorneys to handle cases as they arise, but also a claims management firm, with the sole aim of reducing the store’s liability in slip-and-fall and other negligence cases.

Such claims are harder to win in Florida, especially in recent years since legislators tightened plaintiff’s proof burden under F.S. 768.0755. In order to prevail in a Florida slip-and-fall lawsuit arising from a transitory foreign substance on the floor of a business establishment, plaintiffs need to prove the company had actual or constructive knowledge of the dangerous condition and yet failed to take action – whether warning you about it or cleaning it up.  Continue reading →

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Florida is one of the worst places in the country to be a pedestrian. Data released earlier this year from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that of the 5,400 fatal pedestrian accidents nationally in 2015, there were 628 that happened in Florida. To put this in context, Florida claims about 6.25 percent of the nation’s population, but nearly 12 percent of its pedestrian accidents.pedestrian accident

But just because a pedestrian accident happens – even one that results in serious injuries – doesn’t automatically mean the injured party will be entitled to damages. It is still necessary for claimants to be able to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that defendant motorist was negligent in striking the plaintiff, causing the asserted injuries. This isn’t to say you must be 100 percent innocent in the entire incident. In fact, Florida operates under a standard of pure comparative negligence (per F.S. 768.81), which means even if you are 99 percent to blame for what happened, you could technically still collect that other 1 percent in damages from at-fault parties.

However, a recent case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (which oversees cases out of Puerto Rico, where this claim originated), plaintiffs still have to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the other party was negligent.