Florida Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Allowing Treating Physicians of Family of Child Who Underwent Kidney Transplant to Testify in Medical Malpractice Case

 Medical Malpractice Case

According to a report from WLRN in Miami, the Florida Supreme Court recently issued an important ruling in favor of a patient’s ability to present key evidence of his or her injuries in a Florida medical malpractice case. This evidence consisted of the testimony of an injured patient’s own treating physicians. In the case, Gutierrez v. Vargas, a child was forced to unnecessarily undergo a kidney transplant in 2007 due to damage caused to her kidneys by a chronic kidney disease. Read more

Powerboat Carrying Owner of Speedboat Manufacturer Flips in Florida Keys, Killing One and Injuring Three

The owner of a Bristol, Rhode Island speedboat manufacturing company was fatally injured in one of his company’s boats in the Florida Keys in early November.  Joseph Sgro, 63, the owner of Rhode Island-based speedboat manufacturer Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats, died the day after his boat flipped over during a trip from Miami to Key West for the Florida Powerboat Club’s annual poker run according to a report from Newsday. Sgro was originally airlifted to Jackson South Hospital in Miami via air ambulance but ultimately did not survive his injuries.  Four passengers were aboard the boat at the time it capsized, and all four had to release their seatbelts in order to escape from the boat when it flipped over.  Two of the four other individuals on board the boat at the time it submerged approximately half a mile from the shore were injured, one of whom was thrown from the boat and was treated for a broken shoulder blade, a bruised rib cage, and water in his lungs.  One of the injured passengers said the boat was not traveling fast when it rolled over, also adding he was unsure of the actual cause of the crash.

 

The Law Related to Boating Accidents in Florida

 

From the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, Florida can be a great place to enjoy a boat ride. Fort Lauderdale bills itself as the Boating Capital of the World, while Key West holds multiple boating festivals every year.  Florida’s waterways can also be dangerous for boaters. Speeding, reckless operation of boats by careless boaters, alcohol use and bad weather can all lead to serious accidents and injuries.  Florida law requires boat operators to take certain precautions to keep themselves and their passengers safe. If you’re injured due to someone else’s negligence in the operation of a boat, that person may be responsible for your medical bills, lost wages and/or the costs of future medical treatment.

 

Contact Lytal Reiter if You or a Loved One Have Been Injured in a Boating Accident

 

The Florida boating accident lawyers at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath understand the seriousness of boating safety and have extensive experience handling injury claims for those who have been injured in a boating accident.  If you have been injured in a boating accident in Florida, contact the experienced lawyers at our firm today at (561) 655-1990 for a free consultation regarding your situation today.

 

Are There Protections for Me If I File a Sexual Harassment Claim Against My Employer?

Being the victim of sexual harassment or sexual abuse in the workplace can result in feelings of doubt, anger, fear, guilt, and frustration. However, a victim needs to understand that there is help available so that he or she is not hesitant about reporting the sexual abuse and harassment. As we have seen with the #METOO movement, there is an overwhelming amount of support from other victims and the community for victims who come forward to report incidents of workplace abuse and harassment.

You are not alone!

Our West Palm Beach sexual harassment attorneys are here to help you bring to light the despicable and illegal actions of a workplace abuser or harasser. We want you to know that we will assist you in filing a claim and seeking justice for yourself and others who have suffered because of sexual harassment and sexual abuse in the workplace. The attorneys of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath will stand beside you and fight for your legal rights. We are here to provide support, guidance, and legal advice as you take each step on the path to bringing your abuser to justice.

Retaliation for Reporting Workplace Sexual Harassment

One of the most common reasons why a victim is hesitant to report the abuse and harassment is the fear of retaliation by an employer or supervisor. However, there are laws at the federal, state, and local levels to protect victims who speak up from retaliation by employers.

For instance, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects your rights if you file a sexual harassment claim for sexual abuse or illegal conduct in the workplace. If you are acting in good faith by filing a claim, the protections in Title VII remain in full force and effect, even if your claim is denied or found to be without sufficient evidence to pursue. Examples of actions that employers are forbidden to take in retaliation for a sexual harassment or abuse claim include demotions, poor performance reviews that are unmerited, job termination, threats, harassment, and increased scrutiny of the employee.

If you are a victim of workplace sexual misconduct, you are protected by law from employer retaliation for taking steps to report the incident including:

  • Filing a report of sexual abuse or harassment with your supervisor or employer;
  • Filing and pursuing a sexual harassment complaint through the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC);
  • Revealing your intention to file a workplace sexual harassment lawsuit;
  • Assisting in the investigation of a workplace sexual misconduct allegation; and,
  • Acting as a witness for or supporting another employee who is claiming to be a victim of sexual abuse or harassment at work.

If you believe your rights have been violated, you need to contact our West Palm Beach employment attorney immediately. You have legal rights, and you need to exercise those rights.  The first step is learning about your rights from an experienced Florida employment attorney who handles workplace sexual harassment claims.

Support for Those Who File Workplace Sexual Harassment or Sexual Abuse Claims

It takes a great deal of courage to step forward to file a workplace sexual abuse claim. The West Palm Beach attorneys of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath commend you on your courage. We also want you to know that we are here for you when you need legal counsel to help you through the process of filing a sexual harassment claim.

Proving employer retaliation can be difficult in some cases.  Employers may try to conceal retaliation by finding other reasons to justify the actions taking against you after you file a claim. If you believe your employer is attempting to retaliate against you for filing a sexual misconduct complaint, we can help. Our attorneys will investigate the matter thoroughly and aggressively to uncover any evidence that shows your employer’s true motives. We will stand beside you during each step of the process to fight to protect your legal rights.

Sexual Abuse West Palm Beach.

Click HERE to receive information about contacting our office online, by telephone, and in person. You can talk to a representative by using the Live Chat feature on our Home Page, or you can call our toll-free number 1-800-654-2024 to speak to someone directly.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath

515 N Flagler Dr, 10th Floor

West Palm Beach Florida, FL 33401

(561) 655-1990

www.foryourrights.com

Miami Gardens Television Tower Collapses, Causing Deaths of Three Workers

In a recent South Florida worksite accident, scaffolding outside a television tower in Miami Gardens collapsed on September 28th, killing three people. As reported by the Palm Beach Post, workers were removing equipment at the tower’s top when the accident occurred.  While the cause of the scaffolding’s collapse remains a mystery, frayed wires near the top of the 1,250 foot tower could be seen from news helicopters, according to a Miami Local 10 News report. That report also noted that the victims of the accident were not employed by the television stations which shared the transmission tower, but instead were employed by Texas company Tower King II. Tower King II was contracted by the television stations to upgrade the antenna.

 

Worksite Accidents: A Very Common Occurrence, Particularly for Television and Cell Phone Towers

 

Worksites can be deadly places. This is true both for construction sites as well as television and cellular telephone towers in particular. As noted in the Local 10 News article discussed above, according to the federal Occupational Health and Safety Administration, a federal agency which regulates workplace safety, 13 people have died in falls from television or cell phone towers since 2011.

 

The Legal Duties of the Worksite Owner and a Contractor on a Worksite

 

In a scenario like the recent tragedy in Miami Gardens, both the worksite’s owner as well as a company (like Tower King II in this instance) that is performing work on the worksite can be liable if an employee is injured or killed on the site. Third parties who may happen to walk by and be injured or killed by falling debris may also have legal claim(s) against the worksite owner as well as a company doing work onsite. Therefore, if the collapsing scaffolding in the scenario above had fallen on an innocent bystander, that bystander would likely have a claim against both the owners of the worksite (the two television stations) as well as Tower King II.

 

Damages Available in Florida Worksite Accident Lawsuits

 

If you are injured in a worksite accident, Florida law permits you to recover damages for your losses. This includes any medical bills relating to treatment for your injuries, any pain and suffering you experienced, and any loss of income from work you missed. The same would be true for the survivors of a worker killed on a worksite.

 

Contact Lytal Reiter If You Have Been Injured in a Florida Worksite Accident

 

If you or a loved one have been injured in a Florida worksite accident, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Lytal Reiter today at (561) 655-1990.  Our experienced attorneys have over 30 years’ experience representing the victims of construction site accidents.  We have represented both construction workers injured on the job due to unsafe working conditions as well as innocent bystanders injured as a result of a construction or other types of worksite accidents. If you have been injured in a construction or other worksite incident, contact us today for a free consultation regarding your rights under Florida law.

Accident Involving Tractor Trailer in Orlando Leaves One Dead

A recent crash on Interstate 4 in central Florida involving a tractor trailer left one person dead.  According to a report from the Orlando Sentinel regarding the occurrence, the accident occurred in the middle of the day just outside Orlando.  A motorist in a car struck a concrete barrier, bounced off the barrier and re-entered the highway. The car then swerved in front of a tractor trailer, which could not stop in time to avoid plowing into the car at full speed. The car’s driver was killed and traffic was backed up for miles leading into Orlando as police investigated and the roadway was cleared of debris from the fatal accident.

 

The Hazards Presented by Tractor Trailers on Florida’s Roadways

 

Tractor trailer accidents occur with regularity on Florida’s highways.  Although the Orlando accident discusseded above was caused by a motorist who hit a construction barrier and then rocketed back into traffic, the outcome may have been difficult if the motorist had been hit by another passenger vehicle instead of a tractor trailer.  Tractor trailers can weigh 35,000 pounds when empty and up to 80,000 pounds when carrying a full load.  Given that amount of weight, it is difficult for such a heavy vehicle to brake rapidly if it needs to, which can result in serious injury or death.

 

To compound the problem, and despite the existence of federal and state laws which regulate the number of hours that tractor trailer drivers can drive in a day or the speeds at which they are permitted to travel, these laws are routinely ignored.  Safety of both the tractor trailer drivers as well as nearby motorists can thus be negatively impacted as a result.  Therefore, a motorist on Interstate 95, Interstate 75, or any other highway in Florida may be behind an 80,000 pound vehicle driven by someone who is tired from driving all day or night and may not be awake or aware enough to brake suddenly when called upon to do so.  In addition, the truck’s driver may be exceeding the speed limit, as most large trucking companies pay their drivers by the number of miles driven, which causes a perverse incentive for the driver to drive his or her load faster.  Finally, many truck drivers prefer to drive at night, which can make them tired and less able to react quickly when called upon to brake suddenly, whether during the evening or during the day.  To illustrate this point, studies show that road fatigue affects 1-in-5 drivers of tractor-trailers, with many of them reporting having nodded off behind the wheel before.

 

Contact Lytal Reiter if You or a Loved One Have Been Involved in a Tractor-Trailer Accident in Florida

 

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a truck accident, then you should hire an attorney with extensive knowledge of Florida truck laws. The experienced personal injury attorneys at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath have handled hundreds of cases involving accidents involving tractor trailers and other commercial trucks. We have the experience and financial resources to take on the most powerful trucking companies and insurance giants. Call today for a free consultation.

Elderly Residents Die in Broward County Nursing Home that Lost Power During Hurricane Irma, Prompting Action by State Officials

The most tragic story to emerge from September’s Hurricane Irma was the death of numerous residents at a Broward County nursing home when its air conditioning system failed without a backup generator to keep residents cool.  According to a New York Times report, the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills first lost power on September 10th.  Residents were then subjected to temperatures in excess of 100 degrees inside the facility for the next three days before it was finally evacuated.  The nursing home reportedly had a backup generator, but this generator did not connect to the facility’s air conditioning system.

 

After responding to three early morning September 13th calls about patients in distress, firefighters went throughout the entire nursing home and found three people were already dead due to complications from excessive heat.  The emergency responders then evacuated more than 150 residents to hospitals.  By that afternoon, five more residents had died.  This situation is even more tragic because the nursing home is across the street from one of Florida’s largest hospitals, which never lost power during the storm.  Nevertheless, the facility did not evacuate any residents until the deaths began early on September 13th.  This tragedy prompted Governor Rick Scott to issue rules requiring nursing homes to have generators capable of providing backup power for four days.  Unfortunately, due to a court challenge from nursing home industry lawyers, that rule is currently on hold pending resolution of the legal challenge.

 

The Nursing Home’s Response

 

According to another New York Times report, Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills representatives claimed to have spoken repeatedly with officials from both Florida Power & Light and multiple state government agencies before the evacuation.  Nursing home executives even claim to have called Florida Governor Rick Scott’s cell phone unsuccessfully three times prior to the eventual September 13th evacuation.  However, the governor’s office advised that the nursing home actually had reported as late as September 12th to the Florida state nursing home regulatory agency that both its heating and cooling systems were operational.  The facility neglected to report to state officials that its heating and cooling systems were not operational until after residents began dying of heat-related causes.  The nursing home’s administrator reportedly admitted to reporters that the nursing home did not call 911 to check on the facility’s resident until 1:30 a.m. on September 13th.  However, by then it was too late.  Five patients had suffered cardiac arrest or respiratory distress by 4:45 a.m.  Since then, a total of fourteen total deaths have been linked to the nursing home’s failure to have a backup generator.

 

Contact Lytal Reiter if A Relative Has Been Neglected at a Florida Nursing Home

 

If a family member or a loved one has been abused or neglected at a nursing home in Florida like the unfortunate residents of the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills, contact the experienced nursing home negligence lawyers of Lytal Reiter Smith Ivey & Fronrath today at (561) 655-1990.  We have successfully represented numerous nursing home residents as well as the families of those who have been injured or died as a result of abuse, neglect, or many of the other failures that plague many nursing home facilities in Florida.  Contact us today for a free consultation regarding your loved one’s rights under Florida law.

west palm beach rear end accident attorney

Important Recall Info That MAY Affect Your Tires

 U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) – Thursday, January 4, 2018 5:03 AM

NHTSA Recall ID Number : 17T019
Synopsis : Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. (Cooper) is recalling certain Cooper Cobra Radial G/T tires, sizes P215/70R14, P225/70R14 and P225/70R15, Cornell 1000 tires, size P235/75R15, El Dorado Golden Fury GFT tires, size P205/75R15, Futura GLS Super Sport tires, size P225/70R14, Mastercraft Avenger G/T tires, size P225/70R14, Mastercraft MC-440 tires, sizes 185/60R15, 215/60R16, 225/60R16, 225/60R17 and 205/55R16, Starfire RS-C 2.0 tires, sizes 215/60R16 and 205/55R16, Starfire SF-340 tires, sizes P215/65R16, P185/60R15, P215/60R16 and P225/60R16, Cooper Trendsetter SE tires, sizes P205/75R15 and P235/75R15, Mastercraft A/S IV tires, sizes P205/75R15 and P235/75R15, and Vanderbilt Turbo-Tech G/T Radial tires, size P225/70R14. These tires were manufactured with an incorrect belt rubber compound that may result in poor adhesion of the rubber to the belt wires, potentially resulting in a belt separation. If the belt separates from the tire it can cause loss of vehicle control, increasing the risk of a crash. Cooper will notify owners, and dealers will replace the tires, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Cooper customer service at 1-800-854-6288. Cooper’s number for this recall is 170.

 

The personal injury attorneys of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey& Fronrath can protect your right to receive full compensation for your damages, losses, and injuries from a railroad accident. Call our office at (561) 655-1990 or (800) 654-2024 to schedule a free consultation.

Contact us today so we can help make the world a better place for your family and other families out on the roads.

 

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath

515 N Flagler Dr, 10th Floor

West Palm Beach Florida, FL 33401

(561) 655-1990

 

Ford Recalls Over One Million F-150 Pickup Trucks for Faulty Door Latches

Ford Motor Company recently announced the recalls of more than a million of its F-150 pickup trucks due to faulty door latches.  According to the company’s official website devoted to the pick-up truck recalls, over 1.3 million Ford model year 2015-17 F-150 and model year 2017 Super Duty trucks have been recalled by the company in North America to add a water shield to the trucks’ side door latch.  In the recalled vehicles, either a frozen door latch or a bent cable could result in a door that will not open or close.  In addition, the recall notice also warns that a truck’s door may appear closed, but the latch may not fully engage the door striker, leaving the door not fully closed.  This could be catastrophic, as it could lead to someone falling out of a moving car.  Ford claims it is not aware of any accidents or injuries associated with this issue.  Nevertheless, even if the company’s claim is true, this door latch problem is a very serious issue that could harm to consumers in Florida and across the United States.

 

Legal Claims Based on Recalls of Unsafe or Defective Products under Florida Law

 

Under Florida law, Florida residents may have a legal claim against an automobile manufacturer like Ford if the manufacturer makes and markets an unsafe product.  Under Florida Statute Section 768.81, a Florida resident can bring a products liability action against an automobile manufacturer “based upon a theory of strict liability, negligence, breach of warranty, nuisance, or similar theories for damages caused by the manufacture, construction, design, formulation, installation, preparation, or assembly of a product.”  In such a case, the consumer can recover past and future lost income; medical expenses; lost support and services; the replacement value of the recalled vehicle; and any other economic losses due to the defectively designed or recalled car.  In addition, the consumer also could recover for any pain and suffering the consumer suffered due to the defect in the recalled automobile.  In the case of the recalled Ford trucks, a Florida consumer who is injured as a result of the failure of the defective door latches on the recalled F-150 trucks potentially may have a claim against Ford Motor Company based on the trucks’ safety latch defects.

 

Contact Lytal Reiter if You Have Been Injured In Connection with a Recalled Vehicle

 

If you, a family member or a loved one has been injured in connection with a recalled vehicle like the recently recalled Ford F-150 trucks, contact the experienced personal injury and product liability lawyers of Lytal Reiter Smith Ivey & Fronrath today at (561) 655-1990.  The lawyers of our firm have successfully sued automobile manufacturers in the past for defective products and product liability claims, including accidents involving airbag defects, tire failures, seatbelt failures, and other issues.  Contact us today for a free consultation regarding your rights under Florida law and your situation if you purchased a Ford F-150 truck or any other recalled motor vehicle.