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Posts Tagged "reasonable"

Florida Supreme Court Declares Medical Malpractice Wrongful Death Caps Unconstitutional

Posted by on Mar 27, 2014 in Medical Malpractice

Florida Supreme Court Declares Medical Malpractice Wrongful Death Caps Unconstitutional

In 2005, the Florida Legislature capitulated to the demands (and political donations) of the medical malpractice insurance industry and passed a law capping non-economic damages for surviving family members of anyone killed in Florida as a result of medical malpractice. In 2006, Michelle McCall was a young mother who tragically died as the result of the malpractice of several Air Force physicians during childbirth in the Florida panhandle.  Ms. McCall left behind a son, and her two parents.  The trial court that heard that case found the evidence in the case warranted an award of $500,000.00 to Ms. McCall’s surviving son for his pain and suffering, and $750,000.00 to each of her parents for theirs. However, because of Florida’s cap on damages passed the year before, the trial court was obligated to reduce the award to an aggregate of $1 million to be divided between the child and parents.  Had Ms. McCall had additional children, each of their claims would require a further division of the $1 million aggregate cap. Ms. McCall’s case (McCall v. United States) finally made it to the Florida Supreme Court last year.  Just last week, the Florida Supreme Court decided that the caps on damages in medical malpractice wrongful death cases were unconstitutional.  The Court reasoned that the caps were violative of the Equal Protection Clause of the Florida Constitution. The Court determined that the caps imposed an unfair and illogical burden on large families because each family member of a large family would automatically receive less compensation than members of small families — everything else being equal — because of the caps, regardless of the evidence of loss. Additionally, the Florida Supreme Court found that there really was no “crisis” or any other real or rational relationship between caps on non-economic damages and the health of the Florida medical industry.  Therefore, there was really no good policy reason to have caps on non-economic damages in wrongful death medical malpractice cases.  This is a good decision for anyone who has lost a family member in a medical negligence case. If you have any questions regarding caps on damages, or a Florida medical malpractice case, call Winter Park medical malpractice attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...

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Making A Personal Injury Claim After A Florida Car Accident? You Will Be Judged

Posted by on Jun 12, 2013 in Uncategorized

Making A Personal Injury Claim After A Florida Car Accident?  You Will Be Judged

I just had a frustrating experience with one of our personal injury clients, and thought I might use the experience as an opportunity to explain an aspect of personal injury cases that many people never consider. Today’s frustration arose when my client failed to show up for her deposition.  There was no late night email, or early morning phone call, or any warning provided that she wasn’t going to be there.  When the time for the deposition to commence came and went, there was still no phone call, text, or any notice given by our client that she wasn’t going to be there.  After the insurance company’s lawyer, the court reporter, and I set there staring at each other for a while, I asked my office to call the client. Our client answered the phone comfortably after the first ring.  She wasn’t rushed, or hurrying to the deposition.  She wasn’t on her way at all. The only explanation given was, “I totally forgot about it [the deposition].”  This, despite the fact that we had provided her with a copy of the Notice of Deposition, emailed copies of documents to review to her, and had a comprehensive pre-deposition preparation session the week before the deposition.  Nevertheless – “I totally forgot.” I am a reasonable person.  I understand that people generally have a lot of things going on in their lives, and that they might forget to meet a friend for lunch, or to run by the dry cleaners on the way home from work.  But most people only have one personal injury lawsuit pending at any given time. Personal injury lawsuits necessarily involve one side asking the other side to give them money.  The side being asked to pay the money doesn’t really want to pay it, and in fact will go to great lengths NOT to pay it.  Our legal systemplaces the burden on the Plaintiff (the party requesting the money) to prove to the other side, or a jury, why any money should change hands at all, and if so, how much. Defendants (the parties being asked to pay money) take a huge number of variables into account when deciding whether to pay, or how much to pay.  In other words, they essentially sit in judgment of the Plaintiff — about fault, and medical bills, for example.  In addition, Defendants (usually via insurance companies and their lawyers) are also judging the Plaintiff on other factors perhaps less directly related to their accident. For example, in determining whether to pay, or how much to pay, Defendants ask these kinds of questions, “What kind of person is the Plaintiff?”  “Is the Plaintiff trustworthy?”  “Is the Plaintiff the kind of person a jury will like, or relate to?”  “What kind of appearance does the Plaintiff make?”  “Is the Plaintiff  taking this case seriously, and will that be conveyed to a jury?”  “Is...

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What Are Reasonable Expectations For Your Florida Accident Attorney?

Posted by on Jun 6, 2013 in Recent Videos, Uncategorized

What Are Reasonable Expectations For Your Florida Accident Attorney?

Everyone knows that the hiring of an attorney for your personal injury case is an important decision.  This is why it is so surprising when we talk to potential clients who have either considered hiring, or have previously hired, lawyers from the mega advertising firms, or lawyers associated with those 800-lawyer referral service companies. Most of these folks never meet with an attorney. The few that do meet an attorney, normally do so without the attorney knowing anything about them. What is reasonable for a client to expect from their lawyer? How to make sure this happens? Check out this video:     If you have any questions regarding what you should expect when you hire an Orlando accident attorney, or if you want to know what you should ask a personal injury attorney before hiring one, call Winter Park personal injury attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill, or order a FREE copy of Kim’s book, Asleep At The Wheel – 13 Mistakes the Insurance Company Desperately Hopes You’ll Make After Your Florida Car Accident by clicking...

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