Two Areas of Law to Know Now: Florida Medical Malpractice & Premises Liability

1. Medical Malpractice:

Is an umbrella of many different areas where clients pursue claims against medical professionals, other third-parties, including companies, institutions and many for violating their duties and obligations under Florida law.

It’s important for clients to understand the importance of:

(a) the statue of limitations in Florida for pursuit of their claim. In other words, a client only has TWO YEARS from the DATE OF DISCOVERY of the incident.

(b)NO ACTION may be taken FOUR years from the date of the ORIGINAL incident.

EXAMPLE: if the client’s operation takes place on December 1, 2020 and she wakes up on December 3, 2020 and discovers the wrong leg was amputated, the client has until December 3, 2022 to file the claim against the responsible parties. Further, it is arguable any claims are BARRED after December 1, 2024. It is critical clients DO NOT wait if they believe they have any type of medical malpractice claim to hire an attorney.

(c) Attorneys are usually paid on a contingency fee basis in Florida, which means the attorney receives a portion of the clients recovery as stated in The Florida Bar Consumer Pamphlet and as per Florida law.

(d) It is also critical clients cooperate and work collaboratively with their attorneys, reviewing experts and other professionals to determine if there is a good faith basis to pursue their claim.

2. Premises Liability.

Accidents happen at businesses, homes, public spaces and pretty much anywhere. Sometimes, they happen because of someone or something on or around the space or property. It may be someone is doing something they shouldn’t be doing or something is there that shouldn’t be.

Common examples are:

(a) ‘slip and fall’ cases where people are innocently injured through no fault of their own because of dangerous property conditions.

(b) Other times, people have dangerous pets and those pets bite children or others, causing disease or irreparable harm.

(c) In these situations, the owner of the property owed you a ‘duty of care’ and ‘breached their duty’ which ‘caused you damages’ so premises liability cases are quite common.

(d) Other examples can include falling in nursing homes, injuries sustained at public outings such as amusement parks, sporting events, colleges, and private homes.

(e) Under Florida law, it does matter who the person was that had an accident on your property If it occurred at a private home. Trespassers are owed a lower duty of care which could affect damages.

(f) It is important in every case to establish damages. There is no case without proof of injury. The injury, medical expenses, loss of work, life, health and other factors will constitute damages in the State of Florida.

(g) Regarding the statute of limitations or time a client has to sue, you have 4 years in the State of Florida from the date of the injury because of the owner’s negligence.

(f) However, if you are the LEGAL BENEFICIARY of someone WHO DIED as a result of negligence, you have 2 years from the date of death to sue.

(g) BEWARE: FLORIDA USES THE DOCTRINE OF LACHES:

(f) You may be barred from pursuing a claim EVEN THOUGH you ARE within THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS.

TIPS: TALK to your attorney right away. Don’t be swayed by the insurance company.