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Greenberg Stone & Urbano

Where to turn in Florida when your insurance claim is denied

Our state can be a place of paradise for those who live in it, but there are dangers that come with living in the state. For example, hurricanes and sinkholes could cause a person's home to suffer wind damage, water damage or even fire. For these reasons, homeowners here carry home insurance, with the expectation that they will be covered in such circumstances. Unfortunately, sometimes a person's initial homeowner's insurance claim for benefits is denied.

Insurance companies may not fulfill their obligations per the term of the insurance policy. They may refuse to cover necessary repairs to the insured property, even if they are obligated to do so. This could spell out financial disaster for homeowners whose property has been damaged through no fault of their own.

Early holiday season shopping could lead to injuries

Now that Halloween is over, and Thanksgiving is on the horizon, people in Miami might be giving a thought to their holiday shopping, particularly Black Friday. Stores offer great deals and are open extended hours at this time of the year to entice shoppers in. However, with an influx of patrons brings the duty for storeowners to be extra-vigilant that their premises are safe for customers.

Thousands of people are injured every year in shopping-related incidents. This is concerning, as most shoppers are simply looking for a bargain or a gift that is "just right," and assume the store premises are safe. Unfortunately, if a store owner fails to keep their store safe for shoppers or fails to warn shoppers of known dangers, shoppers can be injured. If so, they may want to learn more about filing a premises liability claim.

Thousands of fatal crashes occur in Florida every year

Most people in our state do not anticipate that they will be in a fatal car crash. Unfortunately, as statistics show, all too many people are killed in motor vehicle accidents every year. In 2017, there were 2,920 fatal traffic accidents here, which caused 3,117 deaths. In addition, 659 pedestrians were killed after being struck by a vehicle, and 127 bicyclists lost their lives after being hit by a car. So far, 2018 has seen 2,198 fatal traffic accidents, killing 2,360 individuals in our state. Moreover, 518 pedestrians lost their lives after being hit by a car, and 108 bicyclists died in accidents with automobiles.

These numbers are a sobering reminder that fatal accidents on streets and highways are not uncommon. A person can take every safety precaution possible, from wearing a seatbelt, driving the speed limit and following traffic signs and signals, but nothing can protect a person from the acts of a negligent motorist.

Can I seek damages after a car crash if I was partially at fault?

Some motor vehicle accidents, while unfortunate, are straight-forward. For example, a drunk driver might rear-end another motorist stopped at a red light. Or, a semi-truck could fail to yield to the right of way of another motorist, resulting in a collision.

However, there are many factors at play in most car accidents. For example, what if one's vehicle was side-swiped by a distracted driver, but the impacted driver was also breaking traffic laws by speeding? If one is partly at fault for the crash, can they still recover damages in a subsequent lawsuit?

Drunk driving fatalities in Florida drop in 2017

Most people in Florida know by now that drunk driving is extremely dangerous. However, that doesn't stop many from getting behind the wheel of a car having had too much to drink. Drunk drivers put not only their safety on the line when they drive, but also the safety of everyone else on the road. However, according to recent data, the number of drunk driving fatalities may be on the downswing.

The number of drunk driving fatalities in Florida decreased in 2017. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2017 drunk driving deaths nationwide went down 1.1 percent. However, in Florida specifically, in 2017 drunk driving deaths went down 7.3 percent. This amounts to 66 fewer drunk driving fatalities in Florida in comparison to the number of drunk driving fatalities in the state in 2016. In 2016, there were 905 drunk driving fatalities. In 2017 that number sat at 839 fatalities.

Texting prescriptions can cause medication errors

Texting is an incredibly convenient form of communication, especially when a person only needs to make a brief comment to another person. However, texting may not be appropriate in all situations. This may especially be true when it comes to one's occupation. For example, potential safety risks to patients in Florida and nationwide arise when their prescriptions are sent to the pharmacist via text message, leading to medication errors.

For example, using a cellphone rather than a computer to prescribe a medication means that the physician texting the prescription may not have the same access to the patient's medical records that they would have if they were sending or writing a prescription in their clinic. Moreover, it is possible that a physician texting in a prescription could be distracted should they be receiving an incoming text or phone call. Social media notifications and incoming emails could also be distractions.

How is norovirus spread on Florida cruise ships?

People in Florida taking a vacation on a cruise ship may anticipate some seasickness. However, sometimes this sickness is not due to the rolling of the waves, but to unsanitary practices that cause viruses such as norovirus to spread between crew and passengers on the ship.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that there are 685 million cases of norovirus annually world-wide. Norovirus can cause nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Some of these outbreaks occur on cruise ships. In fact, over 90 percent of outbreaks of diarrhea on these ships are due to norovirus. Norovirus can get into the ship's food supply, especially buffets or cold foods, or it can contaminate dirty dishes. Ill passengers will then go on to touch things such as railings or door knobs, which are then touched by other people, spreading the virus throughout the ship. In fact, if surfaces are not disinfected, the virus can remain on a hard surface on a cruise ship for days or even weeks.

Multiple types of damages available after Florida injury crash

Motor vehicle accidents can be traumatic experiences on multiple levels. For one, these types of accidents can easily cause you to suffer serious physical harm. They can also have a negative impact on you both emotionally and financially.

Fortunately, if another driver's carelessness has caused you to suffer serious injuries in a motor vehicle collision in Florida, you have the right to seek justice through the civil court system. Here is a rundown on a few types of damages you can pursue in civil court following an injury-causing crash that was not your fault.

Property owners have a heightened duty of care towards invitees

Whether one is a social guest at a friend's house or a patron at a grocery store, they generally expect that the places they frequent are safe. Unfortunately, sometimes property owners are negligent in keeping their premises safe, causing others on their property to suffer injuries. When this happens, the injured party might want to pursue a premises liability lawsuit. However, a property owner's duty of care in such cases can depend on the status of those on their property.

For example, some people are invitees on a person's property. A person who is invited onto the premises of another for business purposes is an invitee. Store patrons and job applicants are some examples of those who would be considered an invitee. In fact, under Florida law, even trespassers may be considered invitees if the property owner has expressly invited the person to enter the premises or demonstrates a clear intent to keep the premises open for the use that the trespasser is on the property for.

A wrongful death claim can bring closure to grieving survivors

It may go without saying that it is never easy to lose a beloved family member. We often hope that our loved ones will live to a ripe old age. However, sometimes this expectation is shattered when our loved one is killed due to the negligent or wrongful acts of another.

For example, a Floridian's life could be cut short if he or she is killed in a car crash caused by a drunk driver. Or, it could be an act of medical malpractice that, instead of healing your loved one, ultimately led to their death. Or a person could lose their life in the course of performing their jobs due to the wrongful acts of a third party.