Articles Tagged with naples-accident-lawyer

It is not enough in a Florida car accident lawsuit to prove the other party caused the accident. Plaintiffs must also show the accident either proximately caused his or her injuries or exacerbated a pre-existing condition. caraccident2

Often, the issue of causation is obvious. If a person in a car accident sustains a serious head injury, there is usually no doubt the two are causally connected. However, there are some instances in which there were successive causes of negligence that might complicate causation. In other cases, a person may claim severe neck injuries as a result of an accident, and defendants may counter that the force of the crash could not have caused the alleged injuries for which plaintiff is seeking compensation.

How difficult a task this will be will depend on the individual facts of the lawsuit. In some cases, proving this element may require the testimony of an expert witness. This could be a biomechanical engineer who could attest that the dynamics of the crash could have caused the severity of injuries or a medical doctor who opines with reasonable medical certainty that it was the accident – and not some other factor – that caused the plaintiff’s injuries.

In the recent Florida car accident lawsuit of Maines v. Fox, Florida’s 1st District Court of Appeal, justices were asked to decide whether the trial court erred in limiting certain expert witness testimony and in awarding attorney fees to plaintiff based on defendant’s rejection of earlier offers for settlement. The court determined that while the trial court abused its discretion in limiting the testimony of defendant’s biomechanical engineer, the error was deemed harmless. However, with respect to attorney fees, the court determined the earlier proposals for settlement were ambiguous and therefore plaintiff could not collect attorney fees under F.S. 768.79. Continue reading

It’s a decision that could have far-reaching consequences for many Florida workers’ compensation lawsuits. Florida’s 1st District Court of Appeal ruled it unconstitutional for a police officer and her union to be barred form paying a retainer and hourly fees for a lawyer in a workers’ compensation case.policecar

In Miles v. City of Edgewater, the three-judge panel struck down the state law that limited the officer’s ability to pay for a law firm to represent her as she pursued workers’ compensation benefits for a work-related injury.

State law puts tight limits on attorney’s fees for workers’ compensation cases, and this has long been a point of bitter contention. The way it works is attorneys are paid strictly on a contingency fee basis, which is dependent on the amount the plaintiff is awarded. If plaintiff does not receive any money, neither will the attorney collect fees.  Continue reading

Rear-end collisions are some of the most common on the roadway. Most occur because drivers don’t pay attention and travel too fast for conditions, failing to maintain enough distance between their vehicle and the one ahead. crashedbumper1

That’s why there is a presumption of negligence on the part of the tail-end driver.

But this presumption is not infallible. In fact, three years ago, the Florida Supreme Court took on this issue in Cevallos v. Rideout and rejected the 4th District Court of Appeal’s finding of presumptive negligence in a rear-end crash. The court determined a rear driver can rebut the presumption of negligence by producing evidence to show negligence on the part of the front driver.

As far as pedestrian accidents go, the one at the center of Carrel v. Serco Inc. was not as bad as it could have been. The driver of a pickup truck allegedly ran over the foot of a pedestrian in a parking lot. But just because the injuries weren’t life-threatening doesn’t mean the victim should be left without recompense, particularly because the injury resulted in hospitalization and a broken foot. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

At issue in the matter as it went before the Nebraska Supreme Court was whether a default judgement in plaintiff’s favor for $210,000 against the driver’s purported employer was improper. The state high court ruled the trial court’s denial of motion to vacate the default judgment was wrong because the company notified plaintiff of a meritorious defense. Specifically, it asserted it didn’t employ the driver of that pickup truck, nor did it own the truck. Allowing the default judgment to stand, the court ruled, would unfairly deprive defendant of due process and would have an unjust result.

That doesn’t mean plaintiff has lost the case. It just means the default judgment has been scrapped, so now the case will continue with litigation. That could end in either a settlement (if both parties agree to it) or a trial, where the court will decide negligence and/or damages.

In any injury case where insurance companies are involved, it’s important to seek guidance from an experienced attorney before agreeing to any settlements or accepting any payouts. This is especially true when the injuries are significant and there is more than one insurer and/or policy. thathurt

The reason is language in some policy provisions can be complicated. One could negate the other. You may be entitled to some but not all. You may be entitled to all but only offered some.

Insurers are notorious for using aggressive tactics to mitigate the amount of damages paid, regardless of the severity of injuries or even if you are reeling from the loss of a loved one.