Over the last few years, auto recalls have gotten a tremendous amount of attention due to the severity of the injuries that they cause. And those injured in an auto accident caused by a recalled product do have several rights that could mean financial restitution is possible.
But consumer products are also potential sources of risk, and when a faulty product poses risks to users it could mean serious problems might arise. The recent recall of Cuisinart food processors is a perfect example of this, and understanding it and the basics of a recall and your rights is well worth doing for anyone.
Conair, the parent company of the Cuisinart brand, recently issued a recall for approximately 8 million of their food processors. The problem lies in the riveted blade, which can gradually crack over time. When this occurs, small metal pieces of the blade can end up in the food being processed and cut consumers enjoying that food. Customers can contact Cuisinart through their website to get a replacement or refund.
That’s the primary info behind this recall, but what happens if you’re actually injured by... read article
Boats and Florida. Are the two just not synonymous? A big part of many lives in the state, boating can be great recreational fun. With over 8,000 miles of coastline and 3 million acres of lake, Florida is a boater’s dream – so much so that Florida ranks first overall nationally for boating participation. However, boating should also be taken extremely seriously in regards to accidents, as injurious and fatal boating accidents have been on the rise over recent years.
Boating Accidents In Florida
Just like cars, motorcycles, and other vehicles, boats pose a risk of injury to riders, occupants, and bystanders. Accidents can occur just about anywhere – on water, on land, at docks, in marinas, and anywhere in between. Just as Florida ranks first in boating participation, they also rank first in boating accidents per year. Boat accidents tend to typically involve heavy property damages, and can often involve multiple defendants. Potential defendants who could be liable include:
• The owner or operator of a boat you were on
• The owner or operator of a boat that made contact with... read article
Florida is the third most populated state in the entire country, and along with the more than 20 million who live here, millions more visit each year. Such a large concentration of people means that accidents will be inevitable. But when you’re involved in an auto accident or even a premises liability related accident – also called ‘slip and fall’ injuries – many assume that it’s an easy process to get financial compensation and move on.
Making this seem even easier is Florida’s no fault auto insurance coverage laws. Under Florida law, each motorist is required to carry PIP – Personal Injury Protection – coverage for themselves. This coverage ensures that their injuries will be covered in the event of an accident, regardless of the situation. But it’s not always that easy, for one big reason.
That reason? Insurance companies and their profits depend on avoiding paying out big settlements. The more they pay out each year, the less they make. That means that they’ll take numerous steps in most situations to avoid doing so. There are several ways they might go... read article
Semi-trucks are large, heavy vehicles that provide companies with an excellent way to transport goods near and far. But, these complex commercial vehicles are not without problems or defects. In fact, traffic accidents involving large trucks can often be contributed to a defective component in their design or manufacture. Fault may also lay with the driver or company for failing to adhere to proper procedures for maintaining the vehicle’s safety.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards that provide regulations for tires and their rims, vehicle braking systems and brake fluids, lamps and reflective devices, stability control systems, rearview mirrors, and stopped-vehicles warning systems.
For example, FMVSS Rule 121 states that air brake systems on most heavy truck and trailers must allow drivers to stop these trucks in 250 feet or less when they are loaded to their “gross vehicle weight rating,” or in 235 feet or less when they are loaded to their “lightly loaded vehicle weight,” and moving at 60 mph. If such a vehicle is unable to stop under those conditions, the air brake system may be faulty.
Even... read article
If you are a victim of a drunk driver you will, in all likelihood, find yourself in both criminal court, and civil court.
Let’s address criminal court first. Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol is a crime. As a victim of a drunk driver you will have to provide statements to the police, maybe a medical professional, and probably, a prosecutor.
A state prosecutor that represents the county where the incident occurred will seek to prosecute the drunk driver, who then becomes known as a criminal defendant. The drunk driver (defendant) faces jail or prison, loss of driving privileges, and often, a fine. For the criminal case you are known as the complaining witness, complainant, or victim. You are not a party to the case like in a civil action where you are deemed the plaintiff.
Many cases will plea bargain so the defendant will plead guilty and receive punishment. Some cases go to trial where you may have to testify. If you do have to testify at trial (or at a hearing) you will meet with the prosecutor and be prepared accordingly.
In a civil action against a drunk driver, you are the plaintiff filing a personal injury lawsuit. The greatest concern... read article
Is it fair to have higher expectations for truck drivers? It is and we should – the law says so. Truck drivers are specially trained, have commercial drivers’ licenses (CDLs) and are common carriers. They are big (some weigh more than 10,000 pounds), they can be scary, and they have potential to cause tremendous damage. That’s why not only are truck drivers mandated to follow the same road rules and traffic laws as other drivers, they must also yield to smaller vehicles to avoid collisions.
All drivers have a duty of care they owe to other drivers, their passengers, and pedestrians. That duty is that they must exercise reasonable care while on the road to protect both their own safety as well as that of other motorists. For truck drivers, it’s next level.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations dictate that truck drivers owe more than merely ordinary or reasonable care, “extreme caution in the operation of a commercial motor vehicle shall be exercised when hazardous conditions, such as those caused by snow, ice, sleet, fog, mist, rain, dust, or smoke, adversely affect visibility or traction.”
Several courts have interpreted a “higher standard of care” for commercial truck drivers, based on that language.... read article
Buses are a great form of transportation. Whether you are riding a city bus, a school bus, or a private charter, it’s an efficient way to get from point A to B. For the most part, bus transportation is perfectly safe, however bus accidents do occur. In fact, statistics show that bus accidents are increasing in the state of Florida, particularly among school buses. To understand why these accidents are increasing, it’s important to understand the most common causes of bus accidents.
Seven Common Causes Of Bus Accidents
Bus accidents most often involve crashes with other vehicles and objects on the road, but they can also include hitting pedestrians. Here are the seven common causes of bus accidents:
1. Drivers operating the bus while intoxicated: Though the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has very strict guidelines that require drug and alcohol testing and has severe punishments for driving a bus while intoxicated, sometimes a driver will still break the rules.
2. Distracted driving: Like with any driver, bus drivers can become distracted while talking on their phones, eating, or playing with the radio. However, bus drivers have an... read article
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has been studying truck drivers and their use of drugs and alcohol for over 25 years. Their research shows that up to 5,000 people die every year from truck accidents where drug use has been a factor. Out of all truck drivers who die in truck accidents, approximately 35% of them tested positive for an illegal substance. With these statistics, and an estimated 1.9 million semi-trucks travelling on U.S. roads and highways every day, there is legitimate cause for concern.
Long-haul truck drivers can travel significant distances over a relatively short period of time. The roads may be lined with traffic in some areas, and desolate in others. Drivers may be inundated with signs, buildings, and pedestrians vying for their attention, or they may have nothing to focus on but the monotonous lines of a straight, isolated road. Due to varying circumstances of long hours behind the wheel, lack of communication with other people, distractions, potential obstacles and hazards, and monotony of boring trips, some truck drivers may turn to substances they believe will help them cope. And this, of course, can... read article
Being involved in an accident can upend your entire life and throw it into tremendous disarray. The heavy financial burden that can come with an injury can impact a life in numerous ways, and for many seeking financial compensation for their injuries is the only real option they have for escaping from that debt.
But not all accidents are grounds for financial compensation. In order to be able to pursue restitution through the Florida legal system, it must be shown that the other party involved in the accident was responsible for your injuries through their own reckless or negligent behavior. In some cases this is a straightforward process – a drunk driver who causes the accident is obviously acting reckless, and will likely be found to be to blame. But there are many additional nuances to the subject of accident fault that the average person may not be aware of.
Learning more about this is important since it helps ensure that you know the basics of your rights in the courts. While Florida PIP coverage is designed to offer you some protection on its own, seeking... read article
You may be pondering this question if are considering mounting a camera to your dashboard. Will it help with my insurance company or in court? Let’s explore the legality and potential benefits of the dash cam.
Dash cams are meant to record everything that happens when you drive. They can cost you anywhere from $60 to $150, depending on features and quality. The camera starts recording as soon as you start your car, taking video from the driver’s perspective. Some of these cameras are capable of recording in night vision and/or with sound. Ones with GPS can tell you the location where something was recorded.
Some people feel these cameras are an invasion of privacy, but there are no U.S. federal laws against recording from a dashboard-mounted camera. However, states do have their own laws that should be consulted before readily applying a dash cam with all of the bells and whistles. Generally, recording in parking lots and on public streets is fine if you are only taking video. Audio can be considered wiretapping, so you may need the consent of any passengers in your vehicle, or you... read article