Articles Tagged with car accident lawyer

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An auto manufacturer was ordered to pay $1 million to a man who was catastrophically and permanently injured in a rollover crash when his seat belt failed to protect him. He was rendered quadriplegic, though has retained some limited use of his hands through therapy and a nerve transplant.car accident attorney

However, after the close of the trial, the judge granted defendant auto maker’s motion for judgment as a matter of law, finding the evidence insufficient to support a plaintiff win. Plaintiff appealed this JML ruling, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit reversed, reinstating the jury verdict, but allowing for a new trial on the issue of damages.

According to court records, it was five years ago when plaintiff, driving two of his sons and a group of other boys home from a Boy Scout camp, was seriously injured when he struck a boat and trailer towed by a pickup truck. The initial impact didn’t cause any severe damage, but then the sport utility vehicle he was driving overturned.  Continue reading →

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As the national rate of traffic fatalities fell by more than 20 percent between 1975 and 2015, the rate in Florida spiked by 47 percent. That’s according to recent data published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Where there were 1,998 people killed in 1975, there were 3,357 in 2006 and 2,939 in 2015. Although these figures fell by about 12 percent between 2006 and 2015, there was a jump of 18 percent just between 2014 and 2015.car accident attorney

Meanwhile in the U.S., there were 44,525 traffic deaths in 1975, compared to 35,092 in 2015. This latest figure is a slight increase since 2006, but it’s still overall a lower number. That’s great news, but clearly, we here in Florida need to be doing more to curb the number of traffic accidents that cause serious injury and death.

To our Orlando car accident attorneys, this is bigger than the numbers. The fact is, these are not merely statistics. These are real people with spouses and children and parents and loved ones and communities who rely on them. For us, seeking compensation is personal. We work tirelessly to help our clients be made whole by seeking recompense from at-fault drivers, automobile owners, vehicle manufacturers, insurance companies and those responsible for road design and maintenance. Continue reading →

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As Florida personal injury attorneys, our legal team has seen numerous cases wherein car accident victims aren’t sure whether they have uninsured/ underinsured motorist coverage (often denoted UM/ UIM coverage) as part of their auto insurance plan. In fact, many people don’t even know what it is. car accident lawyer

This is troubling indeed when you consider that this is often the primary source of recovery for those in accidents with drivers who either don’t have insurance or don’t have enough insurance to fully cover the damages incurred in a serious crash.

As noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Florida car accidents rack up a total of $32 million in medical costs and nearly $3 billion in work loss costs every single year. More than $2,450 people are killed in Florida crashes annually, and motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for people under the age of 54. Many of these people are the primary breadwinners in their family, and they can’t afford to be saddled with crippling debt for medical costs and other expenses that stem from a car accident. Continue reading →

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Statewide rules on Uber, Lyft and other ridesharing services went into effect earlier this month, after Gov. Rick Scott agreed to create uniformity as it relates to the services, which had previously been regulated by a patchwork of local statutes.car accident attorney

The new law went into effect July 1st. HB 221 establishes long-debated statewide regulations for so-called “transportation network companies.” The new law, codified now in F.S. 627.748, sets forth a number of provisions these rideshare services will have to meet, some of which the companies had been voluntarily following anyway.

Among the provisions of the bill:

  • Insurance for bodily injury and death is $50,000 per person and $100,000 per accident and $25,000 per property damage while the driver is logged into the app. This can be paid by the driver’s own plan, through the insurance provided by the rideshare company or some combination of both.
  • Insurance for bodily injury and death of $1 million when the company is engaged in an active ride with a passenger.
  • Rideshare services will be required to conduct background checks on their drivers.
  • Drivers will be required to show their picture and license plate numbers to riders before they are picked up.

Continue reading →

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Florida has been ranked the second-worst state in the country when it comes to distracted driving, tailing only Louisiana for the dubious distinction. iphone

The study was conducted by the online insurance firm EverQuote Inc. Although we normally wouldn’t highlight the findings of an auto insurance company as any sort of gospel, EverDrive, the  motion-sensing app used to conduct the analysis gleaned information from some 2.7 million trips and 230 million miles driven. Plus, these same kinds of results have been underscored in previous studies on distracted driving.

What the findings showed was that more than 9 in 10 drivers across the country who have cell phones used those phones while in a moving car at some point in the previous month. Study authors created a point system that analyzed certain maneuvers, such as bard braking, speeding, aggressive turning, sudden acceleration and other movements while the phone was in use (not in sleep mode). Based on this calculation, Florida was ranked the second-worst.  Continue reading →

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We all rely on bridges in everyday transportation in Florida, whether commuting for work or heading to church or just out for a fun family day. Bridges are not just historical and aesthetically valuable to our skylines – they are integral to modern transportation.bridge

However, there is growing concern that a number of these structures are not actually safe. Not all are built with parts or structural integrity that are entirely sound. Even those that are can degrade and erode over time with exposure to the elements. Some sustain more severe damage in natural disasters, such as hurricanes and tornadoes.

Recently, the Washington Post developed a user-friendly, searchable database using figures from the National Bridge Inventory, breaking down which areas have the highest percentages of structurally deficient bridges that pose the greatest risk to drivers.  Continue reading →

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When the negligent actions of an employee acting in the course and scope of that employment result in injury to a third party, that individual has a few different avenues he or she may pursue for recovery of damages. taxi

The first involves seeking accountability of an employer per the doctrine of respondeat superior, which is Latin for, “let the master answer.” Under this rule, it isn’t necessary to show the employer was personally negligent in any way, only that it employed someone who acted in a negligent manner while on-the-job, thus resulting in plaintiff’s injuries. The second way involves asserting direct liability of the employer. That means plaintiff is arguing employer was in some way directly negligent for what happened. Some possible claims that fall under this category would be: Negligent hiring, negligent supervision, negligent vehicle maintenance, etc.

Courts in different states have reached different conclusions about whether injured parties should be able to pursue both types of claims if an employer concedes vicarious liability. For example, the Tennessee Supreme Court rejected the so-called “preemption rule” last year. The court held comparative fault could still apply for direct negligent claims when an employer had already admitted vicarious liability for a plaintiff’s injuries.  Continue reading →

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Three years ago, Florida lawmakers altered the standards for admissibility of expert witness testimony in the courtroom. We went from being a “Frye” state (based on the 1923 precedent in Frye v. U.S.) to a “Daubert” state (based on the 1993 case of Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc.). science

The latter is a more stringent standard of weighing scientific methodology. This change has had a profound impact on civil litigation in Florida, requiring that expert witness testimony (needed in so many cases, from medical malpractice claims to car accident injury lawsuits) be thoroughly vetted. The Frye test required that the methodology or theory from which a scientific deduction was made had to have gained acceptance in that particular field. Daubert, meanwhile, the judge is responsible for being the gatekeeper of the expert witness’s qualifications and also ensuring that the testimony is both relevant and reliable. With regard to methodology, this generally means the court has to consider whether the theory or technique has been or can be tested, whether it has been subject to peer review, what the known or potential rate of error is and whether the theory is generally accepted in the relevant scientific community.

In a recent product liability case considered by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, justices reversed a $3 million award in favor of the plaintiff after finding the trial court judge failed to perform the proper gatekeeping duties with regard to plaintiff’s expert witness. Further, without that testimony, plaintiff did not have enough evidence to prove his claim, and therefore justices issued an order remanding the case for entry of a judgment in defendant car manufacturer’s favor. Continue reading →

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In the first nine months of 2016, traffic deaths rose 8 percent compared to the same period from 2015. During that time, nearly 28,000 people were killed in car accidents. In the first three quarters of 2015, there were 25,800 people who died. caraccident

Many people have looked for an explanation for what’s happening, and there are several. One of the most popular theories is that more people are traveling the roads and for longer distances, thanks to the economic recovery. Certainly, there is some truth to this. We do know that people are traveling more. But when we look more closely at the data, that doesn’t account for the entire trend. That’s because, as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration points out, vehicle miles traveled from Jan. 1, 2016 through Sept. 30, 2016 were up 3 percent as compared to that same time frame the year before. So we have a 3 percent uptick in vehicle miles traveled and an 8 percent increase in the number of people dying in car accidents.

Something more is going on, and it’s especially concerning when you consider that cars manufactured today are safer than ever. While it’s true we’ve seen record-setting auto recalls in recent years, much of that involves the auto industry catching up with years of failing to recall vehicles with serious defects they should have set straight many years earlier. Meanwhile, we have cars that come standard-equipped with rearview cameras, electronic stability control, blind spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control. All of this to say: Driving should be safer than ever, yet it’s not.  Continue reading →

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Car insurance is essential. It’s mandated in all states, to varying degrees, but it ensures that when we are involved in a car accident, those damages will be covered, whether that is through no-fault personal injury protection (PIP) benefits or through bodily injury liability coverage from the at-fault driver’s insurer. Other times, it’s derived from uninsured/ underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage, which protects those who are insured in case they are struck by someone who lacks insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance to cover the full extent of the damages. car

Previous reports in Florida show that 1 in 4 drivers in the Sunshine State are driving without any insurance at all. A far greater number are driving on only the minimum amount of coverage mandated by law.

Now, a recent study by the Federal Insurance Office reports that millions of Americans live in regions where car insurance is not affordable. The agency looked at auto insurance premiums for basic liability coverage of motor vehicles in some 9,000 zip codes that have a high number of “under-served” consumers – including those with low to moderate incomes and those who are minorities. What they discovered was that the rates were not affordable in 845 of those zip codes analyzed. That’s approximately 9 percent of those areas, which equates to about 19 million people nationally.  Continue reading →

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