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Construction sites are among the most dangerous workplaces in Florida. Those on-the-job work from heights, dodge moving objects, face the threat of slips, trips and falls, toil down in the trenches and encounter hazardous chemicals, toxic materials and live electricity. Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer

But it is ever possible for a worker injured in a construction accident to sue? The answer is yes, it’s possible, though as our Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyers can explain, it’s usually a third-party liability lawsuit rather than a direct lawsuit against one’s employer. The reason for this has to do with Florida’s workers’ compensation laws. Specifically, F.S. 440.11 holds that workers’ compensation is the exclusive remedy of injury claims by an employee against an employer UNLESS:

  • The worker is not actually the company’s employee.
  • The employer committed an intentional tort that caused the injury or death of an employee (deliberately intending to injure the employee or engaging in conduct that, based on prior similar accidents or explicit warnings, they knew was virtually certain to result in injury/death to the employee and the employee didn’t know about the risk).
  • The employer didn’t secure workers’ compensation insurance, as they were required by law.

It is very tough to prove employers in construction site accidents committed an intentional tort. Most claims stem from the other two exceptions. Continue reading

Summers in South Florida – and across the country – are rife with their own risks of child injuries, even excluding the COVID-19 pandemic. But compounding matters this year are a few different factors, including a reluctance by parents to bring their children into the emergency room. However, as noted by a pediatrician writing for The New York Times, delays like this can be painful for the child, and they can cause problems for the doctor. For instance, you can’t stitch a days-old laceration, no matter how sizable. As our Fort Lauderdale child injury lawyers can explain, some injuries can be exacerbated by delaying medical care. Some, like head injuries and those involving internal bleeding, may even prove fatal if they aren’t caught early and treated. Fort Myers child injury lawyer

Here, our Fort Lauderdale child injury attorneys details some of the more common child injuries and fatalities reported this summer and what type of situations may allow for legal recourse (compensation for medical bills, lost wages, loss of life enjoyment, pain and suffering, emotional distress and punitive damages). As always, this is not intended to be legal advice, and specific questions and concerns should be addressed in direct consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Continue reading

A woman who suffered a serious injury fall from a boat dock at a Florida beach club condominium had already won her premises liability lawsuit against the condo owners, the boat dock repair company and the condominium complex. But the case was again recently before Florida’s Third District Court of Appeals to determine whether the condo company could be held jointly and severally liable (legally responsible) to pay for the other defendants’ share of the damages. Fort Lauderdale injury lawyer

In short, the 3rd DCA held yes, they could – or at least part of it.

It comes down to whether the duties a defendant owed to the plaintiff were non-delegable, meaning they can’t be pawned off on another person or entity by contract. Continue reading

There is no law that says you must hire – or be provided with the services of – a personal injury lawyer. However, if you have suffered serious injuries, it’s important to understand that the legal rules implicated in many Florida personal injury cases can be complex. In some instances, insurance companies refuse to settle in good faith. In trying to handle the matter on your own without the assistance of a Fort Lauderdale injury lawyer, you may soon find that you’re in over your head. Worse, it can cost you more than the attorney’s fees you’d pay.Fort Lauderdale injury lawyer

The civil justice system makes personal injury representation more accessible by stipulating that Florida injury cases must be accepted on a contingency fee basis. What that means is plaintiff’s don’t pay attorney’s fees up front – or at all if they don’t win. Attorneys have incentive to be honest with you about the merits of your case, the extent of your damages and your chances at winning a favorable settlement or verdict.

That said, you might not need an attorney, particularly if your injuries are very minor. An injury lawyer will tell you will tell you upfront in a free initial consultation whether you can benefit from their services – or not. Continue reading

More than 4,100 people died in large truck crashes in a single recent year – 30 percent more than a decade ago. These collisions largely result in deaths to passenger vehicle occupants, primarily because trucks weigh 20-30 times as much, take up to 40 percent longer to stop and are frequently operated by fatigued drivers.truck accident lawyer

One bright spot is that technology is increasingly on the side of those hoping to hold drivers, carriers and truck owners responsible for negligent driving and truck maintenance.

Historically, Florida truck accident investigations were limited to photographs of crash scene, snapshots of vehicles and witness testimony. Expert witnesses helped to reconstruct the crash and fill in the details of what happened.

Pertinent information in a truck accident lawsuit includes:

  • The area of impact in the road.
  • The angles of the impact.
  • Speed of the vehicles involved both prior to and at the point of impact.
  • Determining motorist reactions to whatever occurred prior to the crash.

Continue reading

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, one might assume that traffic accidents and roadway deaths are on the decline. After all, fewer people are traveling short and long distances and many are hunkered down under stay-at-home orders. Unfortunately, as our Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys understand, it appears that may not be the case in some areas.Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers

For example, the Houston Chronicle reported that despite half as much road traffic, car accident deaths were only down about 20 percent this March compared to a year ago.

Some anecdotal observations are that while there are undoubtedly fewer vehicles on the road, some motorists are using this as an excuse to speed, blow through stop signs or fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. Pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents – which have always been a major problem in Florida – may even see an uptick as an increasing number of people are running and biking to maintain optimal cardiovascular fitness and also as an excuse to break the monotony of staying at home.

Just as in any other time, most accidents are caused by driver error or carelessness. There may be a feeling that traffic rules can be flouted because “nobody else is on the road,” so it doesn’t matter whether you make a full stop or look twice before making a left turn. The fact is, we should all assume we’re going to be sharing the road with others no matter how quiet the streets seem. Continue reading

Accidents happen. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, they happened more than 6.4 million times a year, killing more than 37,000 and injuring more than 2.7 million.Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer

Perhaps just as scary is the fact that nearly 27 percent of Florida drivers have no insurance.

Even drivers who carry the minimum amount of insurance won’t have enough to cover your damages in the event of a serious crash. Although Florida law requires drivers to carry $10,000 in personal protection and $10,000 in property damage coverage, it doesn’t strictly require bodily injury coverage, which is paid to others hurt if you’re negligent in causing a crash. Drivers are required to be responsible for up to $20,000 in bodily injury coverage per crash ($10,000 per person), but having insurance to cover that amount isn’t strictly required.

What this means, as our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers can explain, is that smart Florida drivers don’t waive or skimp on their uninsured/underinsured motorist benefits. It one of the best and sometimes the only way you’ll get anything close to full compensation for your injuries after a crash. Continue reading

Pedestrian accident deaths in the U.S. are at their highest level in decades – and Florida ranks No. 1 nationally. Florida pedestrian accident lawsuit

The simple act of going to work on foot, walking your dog or enjoying an after-dinner stroll is increasingly a risk to your safety in the Sunshine State. The Governors Highway Safety Administration reported more pedestrian accident deaths in 2018 than in the last 30 years. With nearly 6,230 pedestrians killed that year, it was 4 percent more than the year before and higher than it’s been since 1990.

In fact, as our Fort Lauderdale injury attorneys can explain, while motor vehicle deaths have been steadily falling over the last year, pedestrian accident fatalities have spiked by 35 percent.

Why Pedestrians are at Greater Risk

Part of the reason pedestrians are at greater risk on our roads has to do with physiology. There are more large trucks on the road, and an increasing number of drivers are opting for larger vehicles, like sport utility vehicles. These are far more likely to kill a pedestrian than smaller, more compact cars simply due to the size and weight differential. Continue reading

Florida’s personal injury protection (PIP) auto insurance model was designed to help lower insurance costs and discourage costly civil court claims for every little fender bender. And yet, research shows Florida drivers pay the third-highest auto insurance bills in the nation – roughly $1 billion annually. Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer

Recently, bills were introduced by state lawmakers that would reform the no-fault auto insurance system in favor of a bodily injury coverage model. It’s not the first time lawmakers have tried. For three years running, similar bills have failed to gain enough traction.

It has been eight years since the most significant updates were made to F.S. 627.736, Florida’s PIP law, which requires one’s own auto insurer to extend up to $10,000 in coverage following a Florida car accident, regardless of fault. In 2012, lawmakers imposed restrictions on how much PIP coverage one could receive based on the severity of one’s injury. Insureds can now only glean $2,500 in PIP compensation for medical and disability benefits if the claimant didn’t suffer an emergency medical condition.

To pursue coverage outside of Florida’s no-fault system from the other driver, one must first meet the serious injury threshold, requiring evidence of permanent loss of a significant bodily function, permanent injury, significant and permanent scarring or death.

The Sunshine State is one of only a handful to adopt a no-fault approach to auto insurance. The two new bills that seek to alter the current model SB 378 and HB 771. These measures would shift the emphasis from personal injury protection coverage to a bodily injury model and require at least $25,000 in bodily injury coverage. Continue reading

Every year, there are roughly 1.7 million rear-end collisions on U.S. roadways, killing some 17,000 and injuring another 500,000. That’s according to a report from the National Transportation Safety Board, which has been pushing for years for automakers to make collision avoidance systems standard in all vehicles. The NTSB estimates 80 percent of deaths and injuries resulting from rear-end crashes could be avoided with such systems, available in some makes and models, but not yet all. Fort Lauderdale rear-end collision

As Fort Lauderdale injury lawyers can explain, the occasion of a rear-end collision carries with it the rebuttable presumption of negligence by the driver in the rear. A rebuttable presumption is a legal presumption made by the court, taken as try unless someone can prove otherwise. Thus, it is presumed that the driver in the rear of a rear-end collision was in the wrong because he/she is required by law to maintain an assured clear distance.

An increasing number of rear-end collisions are caused by driver distraction, particularly with smartphones. Evidence that a driver was distracted at the time of a collision can be used as additional evidence of negligence in car accident litigation.

However, as noted in a recent Florida car accident lawsuit ruling by Florida’s 5th District Court of Appeal, the presumption that the rear driver’s negligence was the only cause of a crash can be rebutted if there is any evidence from which a jury can infer the front driver was also negligent. In other words, the rear-end collision rebuttable presumption doesn’t supersede the state’s comparative negligence system, as outlined in F.S. 768.81, wherein a claimant’s own fault contributing to an injury proportionally diminishes the amount of damages he or she can collect. Continue reading

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