Articles Tagged with liability

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

Despite medical professionals having to endure strict educational and internships requirements before entering the profession, instances of medical malpractices continue to occur across the nation. Per the National Academies, medical malpractice kills more Americans annually than automobile accidents. Countless more victims survive with lifelong disabilities.

As you may know, medical malpractice occurs right here in the sunshine state, too, and in high numbers. As a matter of fact, Florida ranks in the top five states for medical malpractice payouts.  As a way of shielding against such claims, medical providers are required to obtain their patients’ informed consent before engaging in a medical procedure. This post is aimed at clarifying this somewhat complex concept.

If you or a loved one is injured at the fault of a medical provider, such as a doctor, hospital, or clinic, it is imperative that you hire an attorney for your case. The Florida medical malpractice lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz, PA are here for you.

Recently, on the beach of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, a young boy was playing in a bounce house when, all of a sudden, 85 miles per hour wind gusts triggered the bounce house to take flight causing the young boy to fall about 20 feet to the sand, breaking his arm. His parents filed a lawsuit against the city and the vendor, All Star Events, for damages. Said lawsuit alleges All Star Events was negligent in the way it assembled and secured the bounce house, failed to warn of the risks, failed to monitor the weather, and its failure to train personnel for emergencies, and other claims. The boy’s parents argue that All Star Events breached its duty of providing a safe environment for guests.

If you or a loved one sustained an injury at the fault of another person, it is imperative that you seek legal representation. Doing so will increase your chances of adequate compensation. The experienced Miami personal injury attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz, PA are here for you. Our attorneys have been representing accident victims and their families throughout Miami, Fort Lauderdale and other parts of South Florida for more than 43 years.

Statute of Limitations

If 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.

Automobile accidents are prevalent here in Florida. As it turns out, automobile accidents are one of the leading causes of injury and death in Florida. Are you a victim of such an accident at the fault of another person? If so, are you hesitant on initiating a claim because you may have been partially at fault for the accident? True, this would be a huge problem in Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and the District of Columbia because these states follow the “Contributory Negligence” rule. Per said rule, an injured person (“Plaintiff”) will not recover from the at-fault driver (“Defendant”) if Plaintiff was at fault to any degree. Fortunately, this rule does not apply in Florida.

It is critical that you hire an experienced attorney for your case. The personal injury and accident attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz PA are here to help. Our experience spans over 43 years with significant results at both the trial and appellate levels. We have successfully represented injured drivers and passengers in every imaginable automobile accident scenario.        

Florida’s Pure Comparative Fault

In December, a Gadsen County jury reached a decision to award $11 million to a woman suing R.J. Reynolds Tobacco company. The woman claimed that she contracted throat cancer from smoking their cigarettes. Although the $11 million figure may be reduced by the judge because the woman can be considered partially at fault, this case represents a huge victory for those suffering from nicotine addiction. If you have gotten sick or lost a loved one from tobacco product consider contacting a Miami Product Liability Attorney.

This case was argued in court as a product liability case. The 71-year-old woman’s attorney alleged that R.J. Reynolds was selling a defective product even though it was perfectly legal. The nicotine in the cigarettes caused the woman to become addicted reducing her fault for not being able to quit and prevent the cancer. The woman began smoking when she was just 14 years old.

The tobacco company’s lawyers argued that the woman was a willing smoker and not the picture of a hopeless addict she was portraying to the court. They also claimed that her cancer was not even caused by the cigarettes, but by the Human Papillomavirus, which at times is known to lead to cancer. The jury clearly did not buy the tobacco company’s arguments and decided instead to punish them heavily for selling such a dangerous product.

The Florida Department of Transportation is planning to install fences around Amtrak train tracks in Seminole County after the death of two pedestrians in November. FDOT anticipates spending $300,000 to place a 6-foot high chain link fence around four miles of tracks that pedestrians commonly cross. The two separate incidents that instigated the fence project occurred when a pedestrian crossed the tracks and was struck by the train. If you were injured or lost a loved one in a railroad accident contact a Miami Railroad Accident Attorney.

The first fatal incident occurred in downtown Orlando when a man crossed the tracks in broad daylight. Despite the conductor’s best efforts at attempting to stop the train, the train struck and killed the man on the tracks. The Orlando police describe the incident as an apparent suicide.

The second death happened in Altamonte Springs, a town north of Orlando, when a woman crossed the tracks at night and was killed by an Amtrak train. Police are still investigating the matter and the cause of the accident has not yet been determined.

A 27-year-old British man was on vacation in Miami Beach, Florida when his life came to an abrupt and tragic end. The young man was hit by a convertible BMW and died at the scene of the collision. The driver of the car was reportedly operating the vehicle at around 100mph. Immediately after the collision, the at-fault driver got out of the car and fled the scene. Our team of Miami car accident lawyers are outraged by this story. This was such a senseless tragedy and the driver’s decision to leave the scene of the accident only makes the situation worse.

Leaving the Scene of an Accident is Both Morally Wrong and Against the Law

If you hit someone with your car, you have a non-delegable duty to remain at the scene of the accident. It is the right thing to do since the person you hit could have, as exemplified above, life-threatening injuries. Just leaving shows a complete indifference to human life. You also have a legal obligation to remain at the scene. Specifically, Florida Statute § 316.027(2)(a) states:

Fleeing the scene of a car accident is totally unacceptable and is against the law in Florida. Our team of Miami car accident lawyers takes this issue seriously since a hit-and-run accident has ramifications long after the collision.

The consequences of leaving the scene of a car wreck are quite serious. Take, for example, what recently happened to former TV star David Cassidy. He is facing up to a year in prison after the actor-singer was cited for fleeing the scene of an auto accident in Fort Lauderdale, according to Miami.com.

According to Florida Highway Patrol records, Cassidy was traveling on I-595 “at a high rate of speed” and “in and out of traffic.” The front of Cassidy’s passenger side collided with the back of a box truck. After the collision, Cassidy immediately fled the scene hoping to avoid any negative repercussions. Fortunately, a witness saw the crash and provided state troopers with a picture of the license plate.

Construction sites can be extremely dangerous, especially for the workers who are operating in and around the sites on a daily basis. With numerous contractors and sub-contractors at the site, there may be a number of different tasks taking place. Unfortunately, our team of Miami construction accident injury lawyers commonly discover that not all work tasks were being done in accordance with safety standards and protocols at the job site.

Injured on the Job – How to Get Compensated

Injured construction workers are entitled to apply for worker’s compensation insurance. Basically, worker’s comp allows you to receive financial benefits for your lost income while you are disabled and incapable of returning to work, along with reimbursement for medical expenses. In some cases, depending on the severity of the injury, you could be eligible to pursue lifetime permanent disability payments and/or a lump sum settlement.