Articles Tagged with slip and fall

You or a loved one has been injured through the fault of another.  Without the right team on your side, no insurance company will treat you and your claim fairly, in fact, the wrong team can create even more problems than they solve.  Some of the typical problems encountered arise right at the start of a case.  The DRG Law Firm, located in Miami, Florida will help you navigate through the following issues typical of a new personal injury case.

  • Bodily Injury (Initial Assessment)
  • Property Damage

jury selection in personal injury lawsuit south florida and miami

The Critical Cryptical Method Called “Voir Dire”

The importance of jury selection cannot be over-estimated.  One of the great trial lawyers of the Twentieth Century opined “[n]ever forget, almost every case is won or lost when the jury is sworn.”  Clarence Darrow, circa 1936.   Juries may be selected utilizing both written questions (an example of which is included at the end of this blog), and the above-mentioned colloquy, or voir dire, between the Court, the lawyers, and the “venire” which is defined as the pool of potential jurors.  Voir Dire is a Latin term meaning “to see or speak”.

 
Voir dire is a legal procedure conducted before trial in which the attorneys and the judge question prospective jurors to determine if any juror is biased and/or cannot deal with the issues fairly, or if there is cause not to allow a juror to serve.   A simple example would be an insurance adjustor who cannot separate his work-related mind-set from the case he is being asked to decide.

slip and fall personal injury in south florida and miamiSlip and Falls – Ways to not make a bad situation worse in the Miami Area and Florida!

You should read this blog because a slip and fall can happen to anyone, anyplace and at any time.   For example, a bathroom at a movie theater, a department store, a service station or almost anywhere the injured party has a right to be.  The accident can be caused by a foreign substance, defect or negligently maintained premises.  Although outside the scope of this blog there are “static” and “transitory” conditions that may give rise to liability on the part of the property owner or entity in control of the premises.

A static condition or defect can be defined as something which is not inherently dangerous in and of itself.  Static conditions or defects are typically found in places where such conditions or defects are expected. Examples are cracks in sidewalks, depressed areas in pavement, manholes, curbs, drainage culverts, etc.

Slip and fall, trip and fall cases are usually more difficult than automobile related personal injury claims.  Historically, and before the advent of surveillance technology, premises liability claims were often fertile areas of dispute.   Without video a defendant was often less likely to be found liable.

In slip and trip and fall claims there are two (2) main types, transitory foreign substances, (think banana peel) and static condition (think “worn” carpeting).  Florida has codified the elements necessary to establish a cause of action in foreign substance slip and falls by enacting §768.0755 Fla. Stat. (2010). The requirements are as follows.  In a slip and fall involving a transitory foreign substance the plaintiff must prove that the business establishment had actual or constructive knowledge of the dangerous condition and should have taken action to remedy it.  Constructive knowledge may be proven by circumstantial evidence showing that the dangerous condition existed for such a length of time that in the exercise of ordinary care the business establishment should have known of the condition or the condition occurred with regularity and was therefore foreseeable.

Surveillance videos have gained popularity and many accident scenes are now routinely recorded.  It is important when involved in a slip or trip and fall that you consult with an experienced personal injury attorney.  It is critical to do this as soon as possible after the accident.  Most if not all experienced personal injury firms will immediately send a letter advising the defendant(s) to preserve any surveillance evidence and to avoid the destruction (spoliation) of any recordings, etc., it would have recorded contemporaneously at the time of the accident. Additionally, any experienced personal injury law firm will routinely send an investigator to gather evidence, photos, measurements, etc., to help bolster an injury claim.