Orlando Wrongful Death Lawyer https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com T.M. Willis, Esq. Thu, 31 May 2018 16:32:27 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.7 Fatal Car or Truck Accident: Surprising Facts About Value https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/fatal-car-truck-accident-value/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/fatal-car-truck-accident-value/#respond Wed, 22 Feb 2017 18:46:03 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=431 Fatal Car Or Truck Accidents: Top 4 Surprising Facts About Case Values As an Orlando fatal auto accident lawyer, I can never say enough how every single call regarding a death under any circumstances is terrible.  We regularly receive calls regarding fatal car and truck accidents.  My first thought is always whether the person calling […]

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Fatal Car Or Truck Accidents: Top 4 Surprising Facts About Case Values

Fatal Auto Accident Lawsuit Value

As an Orlando fatal auto accident lawyer, I can never say enough how every single call regarding a death under any circumstances is terrible.  We regularly receive calls regarding fatal car and truck accidents.  My first thought is always whether the person calling was close to the person they lost.  When they were, I always start thinking about how life is so unpredictable, so unfair, and how much pain I would be feeling if the same thing happened to me.

But I am a lawyer.  So I have to put on my lawyer hat, which means that I have to give advice about what legal options might at least bring financial relief.  And, at least I figure, financial relief might eventually help with emotional healing — if only because having to survive, pay bills, and get through life can be next to impossible after losing someone you love. Of course, if you lost someone who was close to you, no amount of money will ever really help — and for that I am sorry.

If you have any question about the value of your fatal car or truck accident case, please call or text (407) 383-7290 immediately.  If we can accept your case, an attorney will answer all of your questions about how best to maximize your case value.

After A Fatal Car Or Truck Accident, You Need A Wrongful Death Lawyer As Soon As Possible

If you tragically lost someone you love as a result of a fatal car or truck accident, there are a number of important things to consider.  Ideally, we would talk to you very soon after the accident, so that we can preserve any necessary evidence.  As an example, we might want to buy the vehicle, so that we can prove air bags didn’t properly deploy.  We also might want or need to talk to any witnesses, or the police officers investigating the case.  Our immediate job is to stop you from saying anything to an insurance company or witness that could hurt your case value, and gather evidence.  We can do that job better the sooner we get involved.  (However, even if a long time has passed, we still can get a high value for the case — as long as there is some way of proving who caused the accident.)

First Surprising Fact: Only Certain Relatives Can Recover The Full Case Value

The first thing to consider is WHO can recover for losing someone after a car accident.  A girlfriend or boyfriend cannot.  The rules get somewhat complicated — generally a spouse or children can recover, although the amount of recovery varies depending on their age and connection (closeness) to the person who died.  Close spouses and children under 25 will recover the highest value.  For children over 25, if there is NOT a surviving spouse, they can still recover a high value (subject to insurance limits; see below).  If there IS a surviving spouse, then children over 25 would need to be totally financially dependent, and unable to work, to recover any money.  Very rarely, financially dependent blood relatives can also recover (must be 1o0%  financially dependent, and in true need of support, like a totally disabled person).  You can read more about WHO can recover here.

Second Surprising Fact: Case Value Is (Usually) Totally Dependent On Insurance Coverage

Recently, we have settled one wrongful death case for 20K, another for 75K, another for 100K, and another for 2 million (those were all before any attorneys’ fees or costs were deducted).  What was the difference?  Well, believe it or not, the ONLY meaningful / case value difference was the amount of insurance coverage.  Those were the ALL the policy limits of the defendant drivers, combined with uninsured motorist coverage.  In other words, there was no more money available from any source.  The defendants had no other assets, and all available combined insurance policies were those amounts.  The 2 million dollar case happened to involve a semi-truck, so the policy limits were much higher than an average non-commercial automobile.  Many non-commercial vehicles have insurance coverage ranging from 100K to 300K.  Occasionally a non-commercial vehicle will have 1 million in available coverage.  Commercial vehicles are usually (but not always) 1 million plus. But some non-commercial vehicles have no coverage at all (I still remember one call I received where a woman was, of course, completely devastated after losing her older but still hard-working father to a fatal auto accident in the wee hours of the morning on his way to work, coming around a blind curve.  Unfortunately, we could not help her, because the defendant driver didn’t have a penny of insurance or assets.)  Other  non-commercial vehicles have lower amounts of coverage, like 50K to 100K.

There are also some Florida statutes (laws) that require, or don’t require, various amounts of insurance, depending on the type of vehicle, or type of accident.  For example, because there is a Florida statute protecting lease holders (that’s the car dealership) from liability IF they require 100/300K in bodily injury insurance coverage, the vast majority of leased vehicles have at least that amount of coverage (sometimes more).  (Bodily injury coverage is the amount available to pay for injuries caused to accident victims.  The “100/300” is per person / per accident — meaning the maximum any one person can recover is 100K, and the maximum per accident is 300K.)  There are other Florida and federal statutes requiring higher amounts of insurance coverage for semi-trucks.  Motorcycle riders, and regular automobile drivers, aren’t required to have any bodily injury coverage, but many do.

There are also laws that require drivers to reject uninsured motorist coverage, in writing, whenever the person also purchases bodily injury coverage.  We always request this written rejection anytime there is no UM coverage, but there is BI coverage.

Another wrinkle is that sometimes there can be coverage above the bodily injury coverage, but no one investigates to find that coverage. Or there might be a commercial policy for someone driving their personal vehicle for work.  Of course, we carefully check all of those things.  We have worked with clients who came from other law firms who did NOT check for all possible insurance policies.  (We had one recent auto accident client come to us after working with a newer lawyer at a well-known local law firm, after they told him he could only receive 2K in recovery.  We just settled one of his cases for 1 million  (which was the policy limits), and are still pursuing a product defect case against the auto manufacturer because the air bags did not deploy in a brand new Nissan).

So, bottom line, we always carefully review the facts and law to verify whether there is any possibility of any additional coverage.

Believe it or not, even with lower policy amounts, we have to work hard to get the full amount.  We have had great success getting the full policy limits for many of our wrongful death clients.

Third Surprising Fact: The Closeness Of Your Relationship Matters

Anytime there is a death, the value of the pain and suffering damages is VERY dependent on the closeness of the relationship between the person who died, and the person filing the lawsuit.  If a spouse died, in a normal marriage, usually regular husband and wife arguments will NOT reduce the value of the case.  But, if the person was completely estranged, or separated, then we have a more difficult job.  However, there can still be a very high value, certainly worth pursuing, even for an estranged relationship.  We just have to dig to discover whether there was any attempt at connecting, any personal visits, letters, or phone calls, and over what time period.  We dig very hard to try to uncover the evidence that will help us prove the connection meant something important.  As an example, we settled one case for just over 420K (policy limits 1M), even though the children had only once seen their father in 25 years or so.  We were able to use other forms of communication and connection to prove the value of that case, and formulate a settlement strategy that worked to get the case settled very quickly.  So, the value of the case is HIGHLY dependent on the specific facts of your case, which is why we conduct a detailed intake interview to determine how best we can help.

Fourth Surprising Fact: Insurance Companies Are NOT Your Friend

Unlike the insurance companies who provided great service to my parents and grandparents, today’s insurance companies have only ONE goal, and that’s to pay you the least amount of money possible.  There have been books written about how the entire industry changed for the worse around the mid-1990s. Although adjusters will be nice, they will try to pay much less than they should.  They do this by asking questions designed to get information that lowers your case value.  So, please, do not talk to adjusters.  You need a lawyer by your side before giving any statements.

If you have lost a loved one after a fatal car or truck accident,  please call or text our office for an appointment. We make every effort to speak with new clients as soon as possible, so will meet the same day if at all possible.  Our phone number is (407) 383-7290.  We handle fatal auto accident cases all over Florida and Georgia.

 

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Shooting Death & Premises Liability Lawsuits: Can You Recover? https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/shooting-death/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/shooting-death/#respond Wed, 22 Feb 2017 00:39:09 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=417 Shooting Death | Premises Liability Lawsuits As an Florida shooting death lawyer, I regularly receive phone calls from those who have lost loved ones from shooting events.  Over the last year or so, we have received an alarming increase in those calls.  Whether we can help by filing a wrongful death lawsuit, or not, varies greatly […]

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Orlando FL Shooting Death LawsuitsShooting Death | Premises Liability Lawsuits

As an Florida shooting death lawyer, I regularly receive phone calls from those who have lost loved ones from shooting events.  Over the last year or so, we have received an alarming increase in those calls.  Whether we can help by filing a wrongful death lawsuit, or not, varies greatly depending on the particular facts of each case.

(If you are wondering whether you might have a shooting death case, please call or text — 24 hours a day — (407) 383-7290.  A wrongful death lawyer will call you back as soon as possible after receiving any message.)

There are a vast number of ways that someone can lose their life through a shooting.  Perhaps the most memorable shooting call that I have received was from a family member of one of the victims of the Orlando Pulse massacre (whose case, unfortunately, we could not accept, due to limitations in Florida’s Worker’s Compensation statute).  But any shooting death call, and I have received many, is equally tragic.

First Question After A Shooting Death: Who Might Be Able To Sue?

The first question is whether the person calling me can recover for losing their loved one caused by a shooting death.  Only certain people are entitled to recover for the death of a loved one, regardless of the cause.  For shooting death cases, generally the spouse, children under 25, children over 25 (but only if there was no surviving spouse), parents (but only if there were no other survivors), and financially dependent blood relatives IF the dependence was very significant (like total dependence by someone with a complete and total disability).  The rules regarding who may recover after a shooting death are the same for all wrongful death lawsuits (except medical malpractice, which is more restrictive), and you can find those here.

Next Question After A Shooting Death: Is There A Possible Case?

The next question is whether there is any type of lawsuit that can be pursued.  Wrongful death lawsuits require that there be some person, or organization, or company, who was negligent.  That means there has to be someone, with money or insurance to collect, who did something wrong.

Obviously, anytime you have a shooting (unless it was self-defense), you have someone who did something wrong.  You have the shooter.  But, almost always, we can’t sue the person who fired the shot.  Many times, the family and police investigators don’t even know who did the shooting.  Even if they know, the criminal generally has no money, insurance, or assets.  A criminal would have to have substantial assets for us to sue them, because collections and bankruptcy laws make it very easy for most people to get around paying judgments.  Most of the time that means that we are trying to determine whether anyone else might share in the blame.

Usually Not A Good Defendant: Police & Prison Systems

One of the common calls I receive is people who want to sue either the police, or prison officials, for releasing someone with known dangerous tendencies, who then shot their loved ones.  There are statutes that limit recoveries against government agencies.  More importantly, convincing a jury that police or prison officials were negligent in releasing a criminal is an extremely unlikely scenario. So, while technically there might be a case, we would not pursue this type of case.

Possibly A Very Good Defendant: The Property Owner

The most common type of shooting death case that we will accept is based on negligent security, which is a subset of premises liability.  That means that we sue the property owner, for failing to provide adequate security.  Usually these are most promising when they happen on commercial property (like a mall or other business), in a high crime area.

In these cases, the law requires that we show that there was a reason for the property owner to anticipate the shooting (which means there was history of similar crime in the immediate vicinity — meaning within a 1 mile radius), yet the property owner negligently failed to provide adequate security.  We have to carefully investigate these types of cases to be sure that there was sufficient crime, and insufficient security.

You can get a very general idea of the crime rate in the area surrounding your crime by entering the address here, and searching for similar crimes during the approximately three (3) month time-frame immediately before your loved one became a victim.  As an Orlando wrongful death lawyer, I do a quick / preliminary review of the crime rate in the area before I decide whether I can accept a case.  IF I believe there was enough crime to pursue a case, then we would hire a security expert to do a comprehensive analysis of the crime rate, in much more detail than you can find on any website.

If the shooting happened in a low crime area, then we may not be able to pursue a shooting death case.  However, if you lost a loved one due to a shooting, please let us decide whether we think we can prove the case.

If there was high crime, then we also have to prove that there was insufficient security.  The level of security that is required, again, we prove by hiring a security expert to evaluate the security measures in place on the property.

What Is The Value Of A Shooting Death Case?

The value of a shooting death case varies based primarily on these factors:

(1) The amount of insurance coverage of the business where the shooting took place. Very often, companies have 1 or 2 million dollar policies, but not always.  This amount is usually the maximum we can recover.

(2) The closeness of the relationship between the person who died, and the person who calls us.  Wrongful death damages are largely determined by the closeness of the relationship between the decedent (person who died) and survivor (person who called us).  That means, for example, if the relationship was very estranged, such as a child who hadn’t spoken to their parent in 25 years, the damages are usually lower.  However, we have recovered substantial sums for those who have lost a loved one, even when the relationship was estranged.  We can provide more information about this issue during a free consultation, if you give us a call.

(3) The degree of negligence of the security.  If a mall had a high level of security, and they were doing everything within their power to prevent crime, then the value of the case is somewhat lower.  However, we delve deeply into the evidence to evaluate all aspects of security, depose security guards and their employers, consider the frequency and location of security patrols, and consider the adequacy of all other security measures.  Very often, there are problems with even the most seemingly comprehensive security plans.  But, if security was spectacular, that would be a factor in what amount we would advise a client to accept when settling a case (because, if the case goes to trial, we have to prove to a jury that the security was inadequate, and the defense would present all evidence showing they did everything they could in terms of security).

(4)  The level of similar crime in the immediate area.  More crime generally means more security should have been provided.

Overall, if a shooting death happened in a high crime area, on commercial property, then there is a very good chance we could pursue a valuable case.  We can provide more information about the types of verdicts and settlements you might expect, depending on the particular facts of your case, if you give us a call.

If you have lost a loved one due to a shooting death, please call or text (407) 383-7290, 24 hours a day.  Someone will respond as soon as we receive your message (often immediately or within a very short time-frame).  Please explain that you need information about a possible shooting death case.  We can be most helpful if someone who is entitled to bring the lawsuit calls us.  You can read more about who can sue here.

 

 

 

 

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Probate Versus Wrongful Death Lawsuit: What Is The Difference? https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/probate-versus-wrongful-death/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/probate-versus-wrongful-death/#respond Tue, 21 Feb 2017 23:13:54 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=407 Wrongful Death Versus Probate: Differences As an Orlando death attorney, one common question from my clients is whether they also need a probate attorney.  Many do not understand the difference between a wrongful death lawsuit, on the one hand, and a probate action, on the other. Let me briefly explain. What Is A Wrongful Death […]

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Wrongful Death Versus Probate: Differences

Wrongful Death Versus Probate

As an Orlando death attorney, one common question from my clients is whether they also need a probate attorney.  Many do not understand the difference between a wrongful death lawsuit, on the one hand, and a probate action, on the other.

Let me briefly explain.

What Is A Wrongful Death Case?

A wrongful death lawsuit is typically filed by survivors of the person who died.  These cases can be based on a number of negligent actions of others, such as a shooting death (which leads to a possible negligent security claim against the property owner where the shooting took place), auto accident death (obviously caused by negligent drivers, and typically limited to the amount of all available insurance policies), medical malpractice (when a medical provider’s negligence caused death), swimming pool drowning death (often a premises liability case), products liability cases (where a defective product caused death), and similar cases.  There are many different scenarios that might lead to a valid claim for survivors under Florida’s wrongful death statute.

If there are grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit, then, on behalf of survivors, a wrongful death lawyer would be pursuing a lawsuit to prove that someone else was negligent, and that caused the death of their loved one.

What Is A Probate Case?

In contrast, a probate lawyer only deals with Florida’s probate laws. Those are the laws that apply whenever anyone dies, and they determine how the person’s estate is distributed. For example, there are many laws governing the requirements for wills and trusts (such as the requirement that there be two witnesses to every will, for example).  There are also laws called “intestacy statutes,” which govern the distribution of an estate whenever there is no will, or trust.  The intestacy statutes determine which survivors get what portion of a decedent’s estate.

But, the important point to understand is that probate applies ANYTIME ANYONE dies, with or without a will.  Basically probate laws determine the distribution of an estate, even when death was caused naturally.  By contrast, a wrongful death lawyer is needed when someone’s negligence caused death, for example, if a negligent driver caused the death of another in an auto accident.

If Someone Dies, Do You Need A Wrongful Death Lawyer, Or A Probate Lawyer?

IF you believe that negligence might have caused the death of your loved one, then you need a wrongful death lawyer.  When negligence caused death, a wrongful death lawyer always needs a probate lawyer, and vice versa.  Anytime we accept a new wrongful death case, we hire a probate lawyer for our client (unless our client already has their own probate lawyer).  We then work hand-in-hand with the probate lawyer, to ensure that the probate part of the case is handled properly (which involves approval of any distributions by the probate judge).

But understand: the probate lawyer is not involved in pursuing the monetary damages available as a result of the negligence of a wrongdoer who caused death.  Wrongful death lawyers have that job.

Wrongful Death From Auto Accident: An Example

Let me give you a simple example.

One of my clients called me after tragically losing a loved one after an auto accident.  My job was to fully investigate the cause of the auto accident, prove that the defendant driver caused the accident, and recover any available insurance proceeds or defendant assets.  Once I fully recover the damages for the auto accident (which usually is capped at the amount of insurance proceeds), then I send the check to the probate lawyer, who distributes the proceeds to the estate, in accordance with Florida’s probate laws.

Should All Wrongful Death Survivors Have The Same Lawyer?

Incidentally, if there are multiple survivors, the best scenario includes all survivors having the same wrongful death lawyer (as long as they have no conflict, which usually means they can agree how to divide the recovery before hiring the wrongful death lawyer).  This is important because usually the probate lawyer will want to know how the parties want to divide the estate proceeds.  This is also important because, unless all survivors agree, there can be a long and expensive battle between the survivors regarding who deserves what amount of money.

Who Hires The Wrongful Death Lawyer?

Ideally, everyone who is a “survivor” under Florida’s wrongful death statute should hire the wrongful death lawyer.  For example, if a husband lost his wife, but she had children from a previous marriage, ideally the father, on behalf of the children, would hire the same lawyer, assuming there is no conflict of interest between the three people, which generally means assuming the three people can agree how to divide the proceeds of any lawsuit verdict or settlement.

If everyone cannot agree on the same wrongful death lawyer, the case can get messy to the point where no one gets good or any representation (that varies a LOT depending on the facts of the case, and the relationships involved).

Anyway, the person who actually files the lawsuit is the “personal representative” of the estate (usually the spouse, if there is one, or closest relative, or person appointed by will).  The personal representative can be appointed by will, or, if there is no will, a judge can appoint a personal representative.  That person actually pursues the wrongful death damages on behalf of ALL survivors.

In the example above, let’s say the former spouse becomes the personal representative.  He would pursue the lawsuit for ALL of the people entitled to recover, and the proceeds would be divided between all of the survivors, based on their agreement.  (If children are among the survivors, and the recovery exceeds a certain monetary threshold (currently greater than $15,000), then a guardian ad litem is appointed to review the fairness of the award to the child, and judges carefully review the guardian ad litem report.)

If YOU believe that you might have a wrongful death case, but aren’t sure whether you are the proper survivor to pursue the case, please give me a call.  I will ask you about the facts of your situation, and tell you who can pursue what damages.

Who Is A Survivor Under Florida’s Wrongful Death Statute?

This varies depending on the cause of death.

In general, medical malpractice cases have a very limited group of survivors; other types of death cases include slightly more relatives who are entitled to recover.  You can read more about which survivors can recover what damages here.  Generally, for medical malpractice, only spouses and children under 25 can recover (or, if a child died, parents can recover for children under 25).

There is a very narrow exception to this rule — specifically, if a blood relative was totally (100%) dependent on someone who died, then they might be able to pursue a case.  (This is further limited in medical malpractice cases — where only the parents can recover for the death of a child over 25, and, as a practical matter, medical malpractice lawyers will ONLY pursue these claims in the extremely limited situations where the parents were totally (100%) dependent on their child for financial support, and all life services (like 100% care-giving).  So this “support and services” exception only applies to an exceptionally small percentage of cases.

For most medical malpractice wrongful death lawyers, as a practical matter, this “total dependence” means total — as in the person was incapable of working and supporting themselves, like an elderly parent with downs syndrome.  (Note the wrongful death statute technically allows recovery when there is partial dependence, but other aspects of the medical malpractice cases make those cases cost-prohibitive to pursue.)

For wrongful death cases OTHER THAN medical malpractice (like auto accidents, or shooting death / negligent security cases), there is a broader class of survivors, but still limited.  In those situations, a parent can pursue recovery for the loss of a child, and vice versa.

Do All Survivors Need Probate Lawyers?

Again, if negligence was possibly a factor in the death, then all survivors need a wrongful death lawyer, who then hires the probate lawyer.  In most cases, the probate lawyer plays a very small role in the case.  While the wrongful death lawyer must pursue the lawsuit to prove the negligence (like prove the negligent security), the probate lawyer only has to have the division of the proceeds approved by the probate judge, in accordance with the will, or Florida’s intestacy statute. Those are very different jobs, but the probate and wrongful death lawyers do work hand-in-hand.

If you lost a loved one in a way that you feel was caused by the negligence of another person, please call me today for your free consultation.  There are never any costs or fees, until we recover money for you.

You can reach Orlando wrongful death lawyer Tina Willis, usually pretty quickly, by calling or texting (407) 383-7290.

 

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How Fatal Car Accident Cases Might Differ From Probate https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/fatal-car-accident-versus-probate/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/fatal-car-accident-versus-probate/#respond Tue, 29 Mar 2016 17:03:31 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=387 Fatal Orlando Car Accident Cases Versus Probate: When I Can’t Help As an Orlando wrongful death attorney, I frequently receive calls from those who have just lost a loved one in a fatal auto accident.  These are obviously among the most tragic calls I receive. Call Or Text 24 Hour Orlando Wrongful Death Attorney Hotline […]

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Fatal Orlando Car Accident Cases Versus Probate: When I Can’t Help

As an Orlando wrongful death attorney, I frequently receive calls from those who have just lost a loved one in a fatal auto accident.  These are obviously among the most tragic calls I receive.

Call Or Text 24 Hour Orlando Wrongful Death Attorney Hotline – (407) 383-7290

Today I received a phone call that is pretty typical of my semi-regular calls. A woman called about her father, who had passed away in a fatal car accident. She wanted advice on when to file various documents, and the deadlines involved.

I had spoken with her a few weeks ago, and unfortunately realized that I was unable to accept her wrongful death case based on a fatal auto accident.  I really hate when that happens because very often unfair laws are the culprit, and a wrongful death loss is obviously the worst possible situation for the grieving family member.  In those cases, I spend as much time as needed to make sure there is nothing that I can do to help, which I did with this woman.  Sometimes that takes me 5 minutes, sometimes several days.  I spent a couple of hours evaluating her case, including asking lots of questions, and performing a good bit of legal research, before determining that unfortunately I could not help her.

Florida Wrongful Death & Fatal Car Accident Survivors Might Have A Probate Claim

fatal car accidents versus probate

Whenever I cannot accept a fatal car, truck or motorcycle accident case, there still might be a probate claim to pursue.  For example, the person might be entitled to recovery under a will.  If there is no will, then Florida has something called an intestacy statute, which outlines which survivors are entitled to receive money from the deceased person’s estate.  This estate may, or may not, include recovery from the estate’s wrongful death case.

To make matters even more confusing, sometimes only an estate has a wrongful death claim.  However, sometimes individual survivors, like a spouse, minor children, or parents, also have their own individual wrongful death claim.  So the estate and the individuals may have separate claims.  And even more confusing is the fact that only the personal representative of an estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit, which would represent the interests of both the estate, and the individual survivors.

In any event, with this particular woman, I referred her to an estate attorney. She called that lawyer, and he had been helping her.

So she called me back to ask about various deadlines related to that probate action.

Unfortunately, when I am unable to accept a wrongful death case, for liability and practical reasons, I am unable to give legal advice.

The Work Orlando Fatal Car Accident Lawyers Must Do To Give Advice

Lawyers must review all evidence, documents and often speak with witnesses and perform legal research to give accurate answers. Even when we have done all of those things, we often do not have a clear answer.

The law is filled with unclear issues. Just think about this — a jury consisting of unknown people hears the evidence in any case. That process might take several days, weeks, or even longer. They then make a decision based on unclear standards like “reasonable person” (in civil cases) or “beyond a reasonable doubt” (in criminal cases). Those are very basic examples.  Jury instructions and decisions can get much more complicated — yet the instructions are always similarly unclear.  Indeed, one of the things lawyers fight to make happen is to get the jury instructions that they want.

So we simply can’t give advice or answers in many cases. We can only give educated guidance.

As for deadlines, often those are more clear. But not always.  Which particular deadlines might apply varies, depending on the type of case, and issues involved. And knowing the type of cases, and issues involved, again requires detailed analysis of many factors.  I certainly cannot trust a non-lawyer who calls me thinking she needs to file one document or another, to know, for sure, that is the document she needs to file, and then tell her that deadline.

This woman, I think, wanted deadlines associated with a probate issue. I am not a probate lawyer.  But I couldn’t even know exactly what she needed, without learning all facts of her case.  That includes whether she really even needs to file whatever she wants to file.

Besides, when it comes to probate, I don’t even know many of the deadlines.  That’s why Orlando wrongful death lawyers always hire probate lawyers whenever we open any estate for a wrongful death action.  So really I could have just told her I had no idea.  But that’s not the point.

Orlando Wrongful Death & Fatal Car Accident Lawyers Know Very Little Until They Review All Evidence

I can’t know those things without reviewing all facts, and evidence, and then making a decision. If I am unable to accept the case, then I can’t perform the many hours of research and factual analysis to give an accurate answer. And I sure can’t give an “off-the-cuff” answer, for liability reasons.

I do wish that I could help more people by quickly answering their questions. When I can help easily, by suggesting another lawyer or obvious & quick solution, then I do. But wrongful death lawyers usually cannot give quick answers to just about any question.

If you are wondering whether you might have a valid claim to a fatal auto accident or wrongful death case, then please give me a call.  I will evaluate whether I can help you, or give you the name of a probate attorney to evaluate those issues, if I cannot.

Call Or Text 24 Hour Orlando Wrongful Death Attorney Hotline – (407) 383-7290

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Must An Autopsy Be Performed To Maintain A Wrongful Death Lawsuit? https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/must-an-autopsy-be-performed-to-maintain-a-wrongful-death-lawsuit/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/must-an-autopsy-be-performed-to-maintain-a-wrongful-death-lawsuit/#respond Wed, 04 Sep 2013 15:05:23 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=296 As a Florida fatal accident lawyer, I receive lots of questions about what should happen immediately after any fatal accident.  Many people who have recently suffered the death of a spouse or other family member wonder whether they must insist on having an autopsy performed to maintain an action for wrongful death.  The answer is […]

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As a Florida fatal accident lawyer, I receive lots of questions about what should happen immediately after any fatal accident.  Many people who have recently suffered the death of a spouse or other family member wonder whether they must insist on having an autopsy performed to maintain an action for wrongful death.  The answer is that most of the time an autopsy is absolutely critical to proving a wrongful death case, although not technically (legally) required.  In other words, Florida’s wrongful death statute does not require an autopsy, but proving the cause of death can be next to impossible without autopsy results.  (In some rare cases, the cause of death may be known and provable without an autopsy, such as when extensive tests (for example radiology or blood tests) or medical procedures (such as surgeries) were performed immediately before the person died.)

What Is An Autopsy?

An autopsy is a thorough medical examination by a physician (M.D.) called a forensic pathologist (physicians trained in the study of diseases and abnormalities).  They carefully examine the body, both internally and externally, in their attempt to determine the cause of death.  These examinations may include various forms of testing (not just visual examination) along with microscopic examination of certain tissues and organs.

Why Is An Autopsy Usually Necessary To Prove Wrongful Death In Court?

When an attorney evaluates a wrongful death claim, they must first determine the cause of death.  The person might have been under the care of a physician who performed numerous, obvious medical errors.  However, those violations of the standard of care would be totally irrelevant in a wrongful death lawsuit if they did not cause the person to die.  As an example, let’s say that a physician failed to detect an illness that would have been fatal if left untreated, but could have been treated if detected (like diagnosing treatable cancer too late or failing to detect toxic levels of some poisonous substance).  And let’s further say that we can prove those things (perhaps through medical test results performed when the person was alive).  But then let’s say the person died suddenly, earlier than expected based on the typical progression of a known illness, such as cancer.  How can we know that the person did not die from a sudden aneurism, and not whatever illness or other condition the physician failed to diagnose?  In other words, if the physician committed numerous deviations from the standard of care that did not cause death, then even known violations of the standard of care are totally meaningless.  (Please note that an autopsy is not always required to prove wrongful death, such as where a person is diagnosed with cancer too late, despite having presented with known symptoms at an earlier time (and having a cancer treatable in the early stages, like melanoma) and then has clear progression through the illness leading to death.)

How Can An Autopsy Help A Wrongful Death Case?

An autopsy provides almost certain evidence of the cause of death and the findings from an autopsy are much more definitive regarding the cause of death than a death certificate.  If you have ever read any death certificates, you might know that one of the most common causes of death written death certificates is “cardiopulmonary arrest.” In other words, the death certificate tells us that the person’s heart stopped beating, which, of course, we already know.  So death certificates are most often completely useless in determining the cause of death.

On the other hand, during an autopsy, a physician thoroughly examines every part of the body, including microscopic examination of areas of the body that give excellent clues regarding the cause of death, such as a blocked coronary artery, or an aneurism.  Once we know exactly what caused the death, by way of the pathology and/or toxicology reports produced after an autopsy, we can combine that information with the factual circumstances surrounding the death (such as the clinical history revealed in medical records) to very accurately determine the cause of death in the overwhelming majority of all cases.

What Is The Next Question After A Wrongful Death Attorney Learns The Cause Of Death?

After we know the cause of death, the next questions are: (1) whether the death was preventable (although most deaths are preventable in hindsight); and (2) critically, whether the negligence of another person or entity, or a deviation from the standard of care by any medical provider, caused the death.   These questions are impossible to answer in many cases unless we first know the cause of death.

If I Get An Autopsy, Can I File A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Here’s some unfortunate news.  If you choose to have an autopsy performed on your loved one, you may ultimately learn that you do not have a case for wrongful death.  In other words, you may learn that your loved one died from natural causes.  But autopsy results may still give you much needed emotional closure when you strongly suspect that someone else caused the death of your loved one. You will either confirm your suspicions (in which case you can seek justice and potentially help prevent others from suffering the same fate) or you will gain the peace of knowing that no one hastened your loved one’s death.  In cases where the autopsy shows that someone died of natural causes, or any cause not related to the negligence of another person or entity, a wrongful death lawsuit cannot be sustained.

What If You Object To An Optional Autopsy On Religious, Emotional, Or Moral Grounds?

Having an autopsy performed may be an intensely emotional decision for many people.  Others may object on religious or moral grounds.  Of course, these objections are totally understandable.  To make matters worse, loved ones often must make this sometimes difficult decision very shortly after death (for example, if the decedent is going to be cremated), when they are going through the most intense phase of grieving, and typically in shock.  Unfortunately, if you suspect that the negligence of a medical provider (or other person or entity) caused the death of your loved one, very often wrongful death attorneys simply must have autopsy reports or they cannot even investigate much less accept your potential wrongful death case.  Additionally, a wrongful death can have serious financial repercussions for the entire family.  So, if at all possible, try to think about the long-term financial benefit that a successful wrongful death lawsuit might bring to your family.

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Orlando Wrongful Death Attorney On Admissibility Of Spousal Intent To Divorce, Remarriage, Or Intent To Remarry https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/orlando-wrongful-death-attorney-evidence-admissibility-divorce-remarriage/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/orlando-wrongful-death-attorney-evidence-admissibility-divorce-remarriage/#respond Wed, 03 Apr 2013 12:55:07 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=284 If you are a surviving spouse and you could speak to an Orlando wrongful death attorney, and depending entirely on the circumstances in your former marriage, some of the questions that you might be asking relate to the state of your former marriage or your relationships after your deceased spouse passed away.  As an Orlando […]

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If you are a surviving spouse and you could speak to an Orlando wrongful death attorney, and depending entirely on the circumstances in your former marriage, some of the questions that you might be asking relate to the state of your former marriage or your relationships after your deceased spouse passed away.  As an Orlando wrongful death attorney, I wanted to try to answer some of those questions.  Because wrongful death damages calculations relate partly to the strength of the relationship that you had with your deceased spouse, certain evidence regarding your relationship may or may not be admissible (and there may or may not be ways of preventing it’s admissibility, depending on the unique facts of your case).  Please also know that, as I write this, I want to be as sensitive as possible to the horrific feelings being experienced by most surviving spouses after the death of their spouse.  You should know that my goal is only to communicate aspects of Florida wrongful death law that could apply to a surviving spouse, although much of the information below applies to very specific situations, so may have no applicability to your potential case.

Can The Defense Admit Evidence Of Your Deceased Spouse’s Intent To Remarry?

Maybe.  At least one Florida court has ruled that a witness could testify that the decedent (deceased spouse) told her, before he died, that he was planning to divorce his wife and marry her.  The reasoning was that this evidence related to the pain and suffering experienced by the survivor, the degree of loss of companionship and protection, and even economic losses.  You should also know that the defense is entitled to explore these issues in a process called “discovery,” which is a lengthy pre-trial phase when attorneys from both sides can ask questions, talk to witnesses, depose witnesses and parties, and request and review any relevant documents.  Since admitting evidence of marital problems could potentially be abused as a defense litigation tactic, your attorney can attempt to thwart impermissible discovery techniques, impeach (discredit) the testifying witness, or present rebuttal evidence regarding the strength of your marriage or otherwise discounting the witness’ testimony.  Your Orlando wrongful death attorney can also try to exclude the evidence by motion for various reasons, including potentially “unfair prejudice,” although this last option is not always an easy sell to a judge, who has virtually unfettered discretion regarding whether to admit or deny “unfairly prejudicial” evidence.  But you need someone who will uncover every stone in their attempt to prevent this type of potentially damaging evidence from harming your case as much as possible within the rules of law.  Creative arguments and strategies, along with hyper-careful preparation and planning, and close communication with YOU, are the best counter to any defense.  I employ all of those methods with passion and vigor in my case preparation.

Can The Defense Admit Evidence Of Remarriage?

Under Florida’s Wrongful Death Act, evidence of a surviving spouse’s remarriage is admissible in a wrongful death action.  How the jury can use that evidence is less clear because the statutory provision is old and there is not a lot of interpretive law.  One case has held that this evidence, although admissible, is only relevant to the damages suffered by the estate, not damages suffered by the surviving spouse (learn the difference between the estate and surviving spouse here).  That being said, if you have remarried since your spouse passed away, then you definitely need someone who will carefully craft requested limiting jury instructions, which the judge may or may not grant.  But you still absolutely need to have a thorough and diligent advocate attempt, by way of written motion and oral argument, to get the judge to instruct the jury that this evidence is not relevant to the surviving spouse’s damages, and so they should not consider it for that purpose (juries are sometimes instructed to ignore evidence for certain purpose; we call these “limiting instructions.”)

Can The Defense Admit Evidence Of Intention To Remarry?

This is another maybe.  There are arguments going both ways regarding whether a judge should or should not admit evidence regarding a surviving spouse’s intention to remarry.  I believe the better view is that this evidence should not be admitted, partly because the statute says that evidence of remarriage is admissible, but mentions nothing about evidence of an intent to remarry.  That being said, again, judge’s have a lot of discretion and can also make bad decisions sometimes (that’s why we have appeals, and appeals of appeals, but even then sometimes the law is unpredictable).

What Should You Do?

The best approach if you are facing any of the above situations is to hire an Orlando wrongful death attorney who will make thorough and persuasive arguments to the judge about why this type of evidence should either be excluded or limited, and then make every effort to strongly counter this evidence during any jury presentation, or other strategic moves, assuming your case gets that far (many if not most cases settle before trial, but still pre-trial judicial decisions regarding whether this type of evidence will be admissible can impact settlement offers because defense attorneys may either feel better or worse about the case that they think they can present to a jury if they do not settle).

If You Would Like To Speak With Me Today At No Cost Or Obligation (And No Pressure) About Whether You Might Have A Viable Wrongful Death Claim, Please Give Me A Call.  I Can Often Return Calls The Same Day.  (407) 383-7290.

 

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Wrongful Death Lawsuit Rights Of Surviving Spouses https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/wrongful-death-lawsuit-rights-surviving-spouse/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/wrongful-death-lawsuit-rights-surviving-spouse/#respond Mon, 01 Apr 2013 11:30:38 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=272 As I have discussed previously, Florida’s wrongful death statute has significant limits, exclusions and detailed exceptions regarding who can sue for wrongful death.  This blog post is focused specifically on the rights of surviving spouses to sue on behalf of their deceased spouse in a wrongful death lawsuit. General Rule Regarding The Rights Of Surviving […]

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As I have discussed previously, Florida’s wrongful death statute has significant limits, exclusions and detailed exceptions regarding who can sue for wrongful death.  This blog post is focused specifically on the rights of surviving spouses to sue on behalf of their deceased spouse in a wrongful death lawsuit.

General Rule Regarding The Rights Of Surviving Spouses In Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Whenever someone’s spouse is killed and the action otherwise meets the criteria for a wrongful death lawsuit, the surviving spouse is defined as a survivor under Florida’s wrongful death statute, which entitles them to enhanced damages over those recoverable by the decedent’s estate (that is, beneficiaries under a will or Florida’s intestacy statute, which applies when there is no will or the will is partially or wholly invalid for some reason).  For the surviving spouse to qualify as a “spouse” under the act, the marriage must be legally valid, and legal validity is determined by the law of the state where the parties were married.  However, importantly, the damages may be reduced if their were problems in the marriage, as indicated by admissible evidence.  A diligent Orlando wrongful death attorney may also take numerous measures to prevent certain prejudicial evidence from being admitted, although there are never any guarantees when a court is ruling on the admissibility of prejudicial evidence, because the court has a lot of discretion in that regard.  The client and attorney may also work together to uncover facts (other evidence) to rebut any prejudicial evidence, which is one of many similar reasons why having a close, highly personalized relationship with your wrongful death attorney is critically important.

What About Common Law Marriages?  Is There Any Such Thing?

Florida stopped recognizing common law marriages on January 1, 1968.  So common law marriages entered before that date are still recognized and would qualify the spouse as a survivor entitled to recovery under Florida’s wrongful death act.  But any marriages entered in Florida after that date would need to comply with Florida’s existing law regarding how marriages are entered.  Most of the time, for regular marriages, this is simply a non-issue (most spouses are spouses), other than those who wonder about potential common law marriages (which cannot have been created in Florida after January 1, 1968).  In terms of common law marriages entered in other states, their binding validity would depend on the law of that other state at the time that the marriage was entered.

Evidence of Divorce, Intention to Divorce, Remarriage, and Intention to Remarry All Either Admissible Or Potentially Admissible Evidence

I will save more extensive discussion for another blog post, but you should be aware generally that a dissolution of marriage (divorce) ends the rights of the surviving spouse to recover under Florida’s Wrongful Death Act.  To recover under the act, the surviving spouse must have been legally married to the deceased spouse at the time of his or her death.  Additionally, evidence of intention to obtain a divorce may be admissible.  Evidence of remarriage is admissible for certain purposes and evidence of intention to remarry may be admissible.  This type of evidence may be limited or excluded with proper motions in certain limited situations, and, if you potentially may be subject to these types of arguments by the defense, then you need an Orlando wrongful death attorney who will utilize every legal argument possible to minimize or limit the impact of this type of potentially damaging evidence (the rules on this and most issues are complex and could lead to any number of extensive and unique written and oral arguments presented to the court, depending on the facts).

If You Would Like To Speak With A Wrongful Death Attorney About Your Rights As A Surviving Spouse, Please Do Not Hesitate To Call Me Anytime At (407) 383-7290.  There is No Cost or Obligation For The Phone Call.  Also, You Never Pay Any Fees Unless And Until We Recover.

 

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Orlando Swimming Pool Accident Attorney https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/orlando-swimming-pool-accident-attorney/ https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/orlando-swimming-pool-accident-attorney/#respond Sun, 31 Mar 2013 23:31:28 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=261 Orlando Swimming Pool Accident Attorney Today I read the terrible news that a 4 year old child playing in a pool on a Disney fantasy cruise ship was removed from the water, near drowning and airlifted to the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children this past Saturday.  The family had just boarded for a 7 day […]

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Orlando Swimming Pool Accident Attorney

Today I read the terrible news that a 4 year old child playing in a pool on a Disney fantasy cruise ship was removed from the water, near drowning and airlifted to the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children this past Saturday.  The family had just boarded for a 7 day cruise to the Western Caribbean.  He was transported by ambulance to the Cape Canaveral Hospital then later transported by ambulance to Orlando.  Of course, both parents nearly collapsed when they discovered him.  News reports say that Disney did not have a lifeguard on duty and had other drowning accidents in the recent past.

Unfortunately, drowning and swimming pool accidents are too common in Florida.  We have hot weather and inviting pools, which draw children into what is supposed to be fun play in the water.  But tragedies like this one can result if proper supervision and pool construction are not provided.

Available To Provide Strong Advocacy To The Families Of Drowning Victims in Orlando and Throughout Florida

There are few more deadly, terrible and traumatic accidents than those that involve swimming pools and water.  Unfortunately, swimming pool and water accidents are far more common in Florida than just about anywhere else in the nation.  Drowning accidents come about in private pools, hotels, motels, cruise ships, theme parks, parks, water parks, and other locations when adequate supervision is not provided, or when poorly constructed drains, gates, or other negligently constructed hazards put a swimmer or child at serious risk when they enter an area that should have been restricted or better guarded.  Even when the drowning victim survives, very often their lives are never the same, because underwater accidents many times cause brain damage or traumatic brain injuries because of the lack of oxygen that the victim experienced during the accident.  Very often these swimming pool accidents are the result of some other party’s negligence.  In those situations, you may want to consult with an Orlando swimming pool accident attorney address the legal matters of the claim or lawsuit.

Orlando Swimming Pool Accident Attorney Who Will Help Drowning Victims Take Legal Action

If you want needed compensation after a tragic drowning accident, we can provide highly personalized, rigorous and careful advocacy against the individual or entity that failed in their duty to maintain, supervise or construct the swimming area.  Sadly, many of these heartbreaking cases involve young children, since they are often just learning to swim, and parents and families suffer unthinkable grief and anger when they have lost their child or had their child suffer permanent, devastating injuries.  Although nothing can ever erase the devastating impact of what has happened, an Orlando swimming pool accident attorney can help you receive compensation, which may help with needed lifelong care, or at least help you eventually move forward with the financial aspects of your life in spite of paralyzing grief.

We can assist the families or the injured individual in the legal process in all types of drowning cases, including near pool accidents, drowning, beach accidents, near drowning, cruise ship accidents, child drowning accidents, water park or hotel drowning, theme park drowning, apartment pool drowning.  We can also assist with any cases involving broken or defective pool gates, improper drain guards, pool operator negligence, swimming pool drain accidents, pool operator negligence, negligent life guards, boating accidents, summer camps drowning, entrapment (in drains), and hot tub or spa cases.  You will need an Orlando swimming pool accident attorney who will fight sometimes large corporations with the utmost determination and “never give up” attitude.  We can also help you assess whether you are entitled to sue for wrongful death and help you understand the potential damages, and assess how much your case might be worth.

Personal Injury Cases in Florida: Personalized And Determined Representation

Tina prepares each case very carefully and is fully committed to seeking the highest financial recovery for her clients.  Tragic accidents caused by someone else demand justice.  We help families seek justice by filing civil actions and then prosecuting them with relentless determination and highly personal interactions with you–attorneys and clients must work closely together as a team and we fulfill that goal.

Consult with an Orlando Swimming Pool Accident Attorney

When the summer begins and the sun gets hotter, so do many children and families, which leads them to what is supposed to be a fun Orlando experience: swimming in our pools, lakes, and oceans.  However, given the dangers of swimming pools, particularly for young children, your neighbor’s backyard might actually be a dangerous area.  During the long and hot summer days, many of us enjoy private and public swimming pools without thinking much about the real and obvious dangers in swimming areas.  We can help you recover compensation after a swimming pool accident on someone else’s property, such as a public or neighbor’s pool, where a negligent act or breach of duty may have happened.  If your child was injured on another person’s property, you might be able to prove that the other party was negligent and receive compensation with the help of an Orlando swimming pool accident attorney.

If you have lost a child due to a swimming pool accident, please call our offices today. We can help families just like yours get back on track after a terrible accident has tragically altered their life.  We deeply regret and understand that no amount of compensation will ever make any of this right, but we strive to ensure that you receive justice and the negligent party is held responsible.  To learn more about how we handle cases (and all firms are different in this regard), please call an Orlando swimming pool accident attorney at our office today.

We are available to represent serious injury and wrongful death victims throughout Orlando and the rest of Florida and Georgia.

You Can Speak With An Orlando Swimming Pool Accident Attorney About Whether Your Case Might Have Merit At No Charge And No Obligations By Calling (407) 383-7290 Anytime

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You Play An Important (Critical) Role In The Success Of Your Case https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/you-play-an-important-critical-role-in-the-success-of-your-case/ Wed, 27 Mar 2013 13:58:54 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=199 One thing many clients do not realize is that they play a critical role in the preparation and ultimate success of their wrongful death lawsuit.  Attorneys prove cases through documentary and tangible evidence, along with lay witness and expert testimony.  So the client’s testimony, and the testimony of their supporting witnesses (often their friends or associates), […]

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One thing many clients do not realize is that they play a critical role in the preparation and ultimate success of their wrongful death lawsuit.  Attorneys prove cases through documentary and tangible evidence, along with lay witness and expert testimony.  So the client’s testimony, and the testimony of their supporting witnesses (often their friends or associates), is critical to the successful outcome of their litigation.   This type of testimony is not cookie-cutter or the same in every situation.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  There many different ways of handling any given lawsuit.  The evidence that theoretically could prove any issue in any case is vast and limited only by the imagination of the attorney and client working together (along with the rules of evidence).

However, The Rules of Evidence Can Be Tough

That being said, there are many important limits contained in the rules of evidence, which are rules contained in Florida Statutes that limit the admissibility of all sorts of evidence, from various kinds of testimony to documents, limits on expert witness testimony, and many other things.  You’ve probably heard of the hearsay rule (although doubtful any non-attorney understands that rule).  But did you know that there are more than 20 exceptions to the hearsay rule?  And those exceptions are long and complicated.  And that’s just one of so many evidence rules that a book on Florida evidence could only scratch the surface of the actual law.  These rules are complex and often lead to motions and extensive arguments regarding why some important evidence should be admitted or not.

For that reason, before trial, attorneys sometimes file motions called “Motions In Limine.”  The plaintiff or defendant can file these motions if needed.  These are basically motions asking the judge, before trial, to exclude or admit certain types of known evidence based on the rules of evidence.  After either party files a motion in limine, in which they present written lengthy arguments regarding the legal and factual reason the evidence should be admitted or excluded, they then attend a live hearing in front of the judge to present the same arguments orally.  Success or failure on these motions can have a dramatic impact on your case.  For example, the defense might file a motion in limine to exclude photographs of gruesome injuries on the grounds that they would be “unduly prejudicial.”  The judge often has a lot of discretion regarding whether to allow potentially “unduly” prejudicial evidence.  But some of this evidence can have a huge emotional effect on the jury.  There is not much you can do to change what the judge decides, but sometimes your testimony, either live or via affidavit, can affect how the judge rules on various other critically important issues in your case.  When that is true, your attorney needs to be in careful communication with you about how you can help.

Other Ways You Can Help

Clients also do not realize the importance of developing other evidence.  Very often evidentiary development requires the client to do some legwork or preparation.  For example, they might need to keep a careful journal about their feelings and other events to help them remember when they need to testify about their own pain and suffering.  They might also need to meet with grief experts for the same purpose.  Or they might need to find and talk with other potential witnesses or gather essential documents within their control (and which their attorney must have to present the case most effectively).  All of these things have to be explored at length over time, carefully considered throughout the pendency of the lawsuit, and are unique to each case.  Detailed evidentiary preparation is simply critical.  As one of my former law professors used to say “a shot glass of facts is worth a tub of law.”  You hold the key to many critical facts–but you need your attorney to work closely with you to uncover those facts.

I Will Help You Help Yourself

I will work closely with you and keep you well-informed regarding how we can best work together to develop this critical evidence during all phases of preparation for your day in court.  In short, you can expect hand-holding and close communication about how best to prepare your case from me.

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We Have Represented Over 20 THOUSAND Accident Victims!!! https://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/we-have-represented-over-20-thousand-accident-victims/ Thu, 07 Mar 2013 16:53:10 +0000 http://wrongfuldeathattorneyorlando.com/?p=72 Just kidding.  This post has a singular purpose, which is to emphasize that quantity and quality are hard to put together.  So, when you are hiring an attorney for your Florida wrongful death case, do not forget your math skills.  For example, take the number of attorneys working in any given firm for whatever number of […]

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Just kidding.  This post has a singular purpose, which is to emphasize that quantity and quality are hard to put together.  So, when you are hiring an attorney for your Florida wrongful death case, do not forget your math skills.  For example, take the number of attorneys working in any given firm for whatever number of years (I know this would change but go with me on this hypothetical), then divide by the 20 thousand or 100 thousand Florida wrongful death clients they theoretically could have represented.  That’s a lot of people.  If attorneys are nothing else, they are human.  They read and write and sleep and eat and socialize just like everyone else.  So, how could any of them manage to handle however-many-thousands of clients in the span of one career?  Do they just not sleep?  Not see their families?

Of course they sleep and relax and socialize, just like the rest of the world.  We are workaholics as a profession.  That is true.  But we are still human.  So what gives?

I cannot speak for other attorneys and do not actually know whether they might effectively handle many thousands of cases or even whether any of them actually handle that number of cases.  Maybe they have super-human skills, or exceptionally easy cases time after time, or maybe none of them actually handle that number of cases.  But I can say two things for certain: (1) I am not the dullest knife in the drawer and (2) I cannot even fathom representing “thousands” in any kind of lawsuits–not even traffic tickets (okay, well maybe traffic tickets, but that’s not my practice area).  Personally, I simply could not possibly focus on a high quantity of lawsuits and still do a good job.  Lawsuits can be handled somewhere along the spectrum between two points, at least for me: (1) skimming the surface and doing the minimum; or (2) digging into the details of each case, carefully and repeatedly considering what you need to prove your case, during the months and, in potentially high value cases, possibly years when your Florida wrongful death case might be pending.  The first approach makes me lose my mind, so I routinely opt for the second.

Which path do you want your attorney to take?

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