Articles Posted in Wrongful Death

Last September, an early morning boat crash claimed the life of Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez and his two companions, Eduardo Rivero and Emilio Jesus Macias. The crash happened when the pitching ace’s boat ran aground into a stone jetty between PortMiami and the open ocean. Families of the two men killed with Fernandez recently filed personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against his estate, claiming that the baseball player’s negligence led to the men’s deaths.

When careless or reckless behavior causes an injury or a death, whoever caused the accident or injury can be held responsible for paying damages in civil court—even if that person did not survive the same accident. If your loved one was killed because of someone else’s negligence, our experienced Miami wrongful death attorneys can help.

Mystery Surrounds Crash

file0002088439867Self-driving cars are notably convenient and exciting, but the technology behind them has been increasingly associated with personal injury, one case having recently been fatal. According to reports, the family of a man who died while driving a car with its Autopilot function turned on is suing the manufacturer in an effort to not only receive damages but to also force the industry to make smarter decisions when designing and testing new automobile technology.

If you or a family member has suffered an injury while driving a car and are seeking damages, you will need an experienced attorney to assist you with your case. The Miami personal injury lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz, PA will work with you to help you achieve the reward you deserve. Call us at 1-877-474-2905.

Self-Driving Cars and Fatalities

file000530964878Per Florida statute, a person shall be charged with driving under the influence if he or she has a “breath-alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath.”  In Florida, as in other states, DUIs are a daily threat to public safety. As a matter of fact, per Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (“MADD”), 27.5% of all traffic fatalities in Florida involve drunk drivers. In the 2014 alone, there were 40,677 DUI arrests.

A doctor, 61-year-old Eric Martin Spivack, living in South Florida, was arrested for the crash that killed a pedestrian in North Miami Beach. Spivack faces a DUI manslaughter charge.  Spivack, a cardiologist, was driving when he fatally struck Yakov Duboschinskiy, 77 years of age.  Duboshinskiy was crossing the street when he was hit. When police arrived at the scene, they noted that Spivack smelled of alcohol. A toxicology test would later reveal that Spivack had a blood-alcohol level of .087. This is above the legal limit of .08. Spivack also had traces of codeine in his system.  

If you or a loved one are a victim of a crime, it is imperative you hire an experienced attorney.  The Miami crime victim lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz, PA provide high quality legal representation. For more information call us toll free at 1-877-475-2905 or contact us online to set up a FREE initial consultation.

barIf you are a bartender, or if you own a bar, there is an important law that you should be aware of: Florida’s dram shop law. This law was recently argued in a Florida court following a fatal car accident. Terry Dinkins of Water Park, the owner of Acme Comic Superstore, caused said accident. The night of the accident he visited a bar for an event hosted by Acme. He then drove away from the bar with a blood-alcohol level of 0.20, and began driving in the wrong direction down State Road 436. Mr Dinkins then collided head-on with a gray Nissan. Sylvia Barajas and Brandi Cole, passengers of the Nissan, were killed on impact. Three civil lawsuits followed, one being against the bar. This lawsuit alleges that the bar was negligent under Florida’s dram shop law. This post will define Florida’s dram shop law and hopefully provide some clarity.         

How the Dram Shop Law Works in Florida

Upfront, various states have dram shop laws that allow injured people to seek compensation from a third party, such as a bar or a host at a social gathering, if that third party provided alcohol to someone who then caused an alcohol related accident. Florida’s dram shop law differs from other states’ dram shop laws. In Florida, per Florida Statute Section 768.125, if an individual willfully and unlawfully provides alcohol to a minor under 21 years of age or knowingly provides alcohol to a person habitually addicted to alcohol, that person, or bar, may be held liable for any injuries caused by the minor or the person who is habitually addicted.

file000769955952The weather is drastically warming as we approach the summer. At the same time, more and more people are spending time enjoying outdoor activities. With this, it is important to take caution as accidents, sometimes fatal accidents, can occur when least expected. Recently, in Winter Park, Florida, a van slammed into a man who was walking down a sidewalk near the intersection of 436 and Aloma Avenue. The van knocked the man to the ground and kept rolling until it slammed into a sign and then a fire hydrant. The van then flipped over onto its roof. One witness reports that the victim saved his girlfriend from being hit by pushing her out of the way.  The victim suffered from a broken leg and a head injury.

If you or someone you love has suffered injury at the fault of another person, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. To increase your chances of compensation, it is imperative that you hire an attorney for your case. The Miami personal injury at Gerson and Schwartz PA lawyers are here to help. Our lawyers have provided high quality legal representation to injured people in Florida for over 40 years. We are dedicated to protecting our clients’ rights and helping them get back on their feet. For a FREE consultation, call (305) 371-6000 or contact us online.

Florida’s Relevant Law

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In late December five people were killed in a car accident on 1-95 in northern Miami-Dade County when a woman traveled the wrong way down the opposite lane and crashed into a sedan carrying four people. The woman was driving southbound in the northbound lane when she struck the sedan, killing all four people in the car. Two of the passengers were not wearing seatbelts and were ejected from the vehicle. Both vehicles were moving at a high rate of speed and collided head on. Two more people were sent to the hospital in critical condition.

The four people inside the sedan were family members getting together for the holidays. Jose Martin Labrador, 52, and Gisela Gil-Egui, 48, were husband and wife and both worked at local colleges. Labrador was the director of education technology at Housatonic Community College and Gil-Egui was a professor of communications at Fairfield University.

If you were injured or lost a loved one in a car accident, contact an experienced Miami Car Accident Attorney.

Plane 23Two people died in Madison County, Florida from a plane crash. WCTV reported that 32-year-old James Swiggart and 18-year-old Maitland Harvey, who were cousins, both died in the crash. They were flying from Ocala to Tallahassee in an experimental RV-4 plane and lost contact with air traffic controllers before the crash. If you lost a loved one in a plane accident, contact a Miami Wrongful Death Attorney.

The crash occurred in a heavily wooded area and it took authorities a long time to both locate and reach the crash site. There were no witnesses of the crash, although some area residents reported hearing a noise.

Swiggart was a navy pilot although the plane he was operating was a personal aircraft. The National Transportation Safety Board has launched an investigation into the crash.

Up Close 3The state of Florida has a serious work-related death problem, the causes of which are not entirely clear. With 221 deaths in 2014, Florida has the second highest rate of work-related deaths in the country based on population behind only Texas. Florida consistently ranks in the top three each year. If you had a loved one killed in a work-related incident, do not hesitate to contact a Miami Wrongful Death Attorney.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that construction, transportation and warehousing, and administrative and waste services were the industries with the highest fatality rates in the state of Florida and nationwide.

Some of these work-related deaths were gruesome, such as one man being pulled into a wood chipper and another being buried alive at a construction site. But most work-related deaths could have been prevented if companies better adhered to standards and regulations set by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration. According to OSHA, the actual number of work-related deaths are probably much higher than the number reported because these figures do not take into account deaths due to long term, slow acting factors such as exposure to pesticides and other hazardous chemicals in the workplace.

dui offenseDrinking and driving is one of the most irresponsible and reckless decisions an individual can make. The risk of causing a catastrophic collision is so high and the ease of calling a taxi cab or using the Uber app to get a ride home is so easy. Simply put, the risk is not worth the ramifications. Unfortunately, not everyone understands the impact of his or her decisions. A recent example our team of Miami car accident lawyers discovered was the heartbreaking loss of a 10-year-old girl who was killed in an accident caused by an intoxicated driver.

The tragic collision involved a drunk driver who neglected to stop at a stop sign and slammed into the passenger side of a Chevrolet. The 10-year-old girl was sitting in the front passenger seat and died at the scene of the collision.

Drunk Driving Accidents are Preventable

DSC05235-BA tragic car crash occurred in Miami resulting in the death of one person and serious injuries to seven others. News reports indicate that a vehicle was traveling east on Northwest Seventh Street when a collision occurred at the intersection with 35th Avenue. Two elderly individuals (one of whom passed away later on at the hospital) and six teenagers were involved in this awful wreck. Our team of Miami car accident lawyers are deeply saddened to hear about another preventable car crash in which live were forever changed.

This terrible crash is an example of just how precious life is and the fact that, in the blink of an eye, everything can be turned upside down. Just think, the elderly couple involved in this wreck was simply going about their day. Now, a spouse is dead and the other is left to pick up the pieces.

The six teenagers involved in the crash ranged in age from 17 to 19. Two of the teenagers had to be transported to Jackson Trauma Center due to the severity of their injuries. The students just finished with class at Green Springs High School when the crash occurred, according to 7 News.

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