Selecting Your Best Advocate

Have you ever looked at an insurance commercial on TV and wondered what are they trying to sell with these commercials? People jumping off of bridges with their identity hidden. Emus dressed up as cabbies pecking on a mirrored glass. Or Flo and Jamie, really? Is it that they have more of our money then they know what to do with or simply have forgotten that it is important to sell their benefits and advantage over the competition. I for one am not amused. Understanding that insurance companies like to take your money not give you money when you have a claim makes these commercials seem very insulting to me. The insurance industry has the second largest lobbying budget other than pharmaceuticals, with over $140 million dollars to persuade our politicians to enact laws that benefit their industry. No telling how much is spent on television alone. Yet when the big storm hits, they suddenly cry poor mouth. Get in a tragic accident and your rates go up. Then you have to fight to get even your medicals bills paid. Sad to think that the good hands people really have their hands in your pocket. You could try to fight big insurance yourself but are you legally armed and ready to take on that fight alone? Lets face it, the reality is that you not going to be able to do that without help. It’s just too frustrating and difficult to navigate the insurance companies hidden policies.

Seek professional legal help. I know some people will say they don’t trust lawyers any more than they trust the insurance companies but the fact still remains they don’t care for them anymore than you do. Most of these law firms work on a contingency basis which means if there is no recovery, there is no cost to you. These lawyers are prepared to fight for your rights, that’s their job. So what should you look for when choosing an attorney to represent you? Lets first look at board certification. Any lawyer can get you a recovery but a board certified civil trial attorney should be ready to take your case to trial and to verdict if necessary. Experience and resources would be the next thing to review. Does the lawyer have the experience and the firm the resources to take on a lengthy case if it comes to that? Does the lawyer have trial experience and knows their way around a courtroom? Do they even know where the courthouse is located? Silly question but you would be surprised at some of the realities there. Look at some of the peer reviews such as Best Lawyer or Super Lawyers. These reviews are what other lawyers think about lawyers in the same area of practice. Call the state bar association to see if any complains have been logged against the lawyer. Ask questions and do a little research and you will have a potentially better experience and greater results fighting the insurance companies. Still have questions? Call Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath at 561-655-1990. There is no obligation, no high pressure and best of all, no cost to help you make the best choice in finding legal help.

personal injury attorney Boynton Beach

Daniel Jensen, Up and Coming Trial Lawyer: A Voice for Victims

“It is an incredibly rewarding experience to stand up for what’s right and be the voice for those who have been harmed.” This was the response from our newest associate, Daniel Jensen, when asked to reflect on his former career as a prosecutor with the Palm Beach County State Attorney’s Office. Our firm hired Daniel Jensen in late 2017, after he gained valuable experience trying over 65 cases as a prosecutor.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey, and Fronrath prides itself on being advocates for our clients and having trial attorneys who will take cases to trial.  Not all law firms have the experience and willingness to take cases to trial. As a young, up and coming attorney with our office, Daniel brings plenty of trial experience and is a great example of how our firm treats its clients and fights for them in the courtroom.

Daniel is a Palm Beach County native who grew up in Wellington and graduated from Wellington High School. Daniel attended Florida State University for his undergraduate degree. He then moved on to the University of Florida for law school where he met his wife Kaitlin.After graduating law school, Daniel jumped at the opportunity to become a prosecutor with the State Attorney’s Office in Palm Beach County and give back to the community where he was born and raised.

As a prosecutor, he was immediately in court trying cases and getting results for victims. Our firm is fortunate to have Daniel, as he embodies the strong ties to the community that our firm believes in.  He and his wife are actively involved in the community and both are members of the Palm Beach County Bar Association Young Lawyers Section. Daniel is also an active member of the Florida Justice Association, Palm Beach County Justice Association, and American Association of Justice. In addition, Daniel takes part in community service projects and plans charity events in our area as a member of Palm Beach County’s local Kiwanis Internationalclub.

As an associate with our firm, Dan continues to work with and help the people of Florida.  While working for the State Attorney’s Office Daniel gain edin valuable experience, but what impacted him most was how his role as a prosecutor could truly impact someone’s life for the better. As a prosecutor, Daniel had the opportunity and privilege to protect those without a voice and make a difference in their lives. He continues this mission as an associate with our firm and has already fought for victims in the courtroom in his first few monthshere.  We have no doubt that he will continue to advocate and fight for victims as a trial attorney with Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey, and Fronrath.

personal injury attorney Delray Beach

Star Delray Beach Football Player Killed in Dirt Bike Accident

According to a recent Sun-Sentinel report, an Atlantic High School senior and star football player from Delray Beach was recently killed when his dirt bike crashed into an SUV in nearby Greenacres.  The accident occurred when the dirt bike, which did not have headlights, and a Chevrolet Equinox crashed on a dark stretch of road.  As the Chevrolet SUV was turning onto the road, the dirt bike slammed into its front passenger door. The dirt bike’s driver was taken to St. Mary’s Hospital for treatment, but was pronounced dead a week later from his injuries.  The dirt bike’s driver was a starter and star player on last year’s Atlantic High School football team, which finished as the Florida Class 8A state runners-up.  He had already received multiple scholarship offers from Division I football programs.  This was a tragedy of a young football career cut short by the decision to drive on an off-road vehicle.

Dirt Bikes, ATV’s, Off-Road Vehicles and the Dangers They Can Pose

Riding in or driving a dirt bike, an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) or other type of off-road vehicle can be extremely dangerous.  Unfortunately, many people get behind the wheel of such vehicles and sometimes engage in reckless behavior by driving at breakneck speeds, taking sharp turns without braking, and other dangerous behaviors.  This coupled with the fact that many off-road vehicles lack even basic safety features like headlights or seat belts, can make the incidence of death or serious injury extremely high.  This can spell danger for motor vehicle drivers in the vicinity or even passengers in the ATV, who can be thrown from the vehicle and suffer serious injuries or even death.  In addition, if a dirt bike or ATV is driven in the vicinity of motor vehicles, accidents can often be fatal for off-road vehicle drivers and passengers, as many do not wear helmets or other protective gear despite the lack of safety features on such vehicles.

Damages Recoverable in an Accident Involving an Off-Road Vehicle

In a dirt bike or other off-road vehicle accident like the recent incident in Greenacres, the same damages apply as in any other personal injury lawsuit in Florida.  These include the costs of any repairs to a vehicle or other property that is damaged as a result of someone else’s negligence, any medical treatment for injuries caused in the accident, as well as pain and suffering for any injuries associated with an accident caused by one party’s negligence.  Therefore, in the accident above, if the high school football player on the dirt bike was determined by a jury to be at fault in the accident, his estate could be sued for each of these damages by the driver and passengers in the Equinox.

The Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys of Lytal Reiter Are Here to Assist Victims of Dirt Bike, ATV or Other Off-Road Vehicle Accidents in Florida

At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrathour experienced personal injury attorneys have decades of combined legal experience representing victims of dirt bike and other ATV accidents.  We have successfully represented individuals who have been injured in accidents involving off-road vehicles in the past. Therefore, if you have been involved in an accident involving a dirt bike, all-terrain vehicle or other off-road vehicle in Florida and have been injured by someone else’s negligent or reckless behavior, please call us today for a free consultation at (561) 655-1990 for a free consultation regarding your situation today.

injury lawyer west palm beach

Home Pesticides May Cause Cancer

Pesticides and other toxins that are used around the home have been reported and written about for years as being harmful to humans.  Yet, despite the fact that much research has gone into trying to make these over the counter chemicals safe, there are still reports of individuals becoming violently sick or even dyeing.   Recently CNN reported that a man in the California bay area used a weed control product called Roundup produced by Monsanto.  He claims the product gave him cancer.  Dewayne Johnson, a former school groundskeeper, regularly used Roundup and claims it is the cause of his cancer. Last year CNN reported that more than 800 patients were suing Monsanto, claiming its popular weed killer, Roundup, gave them cancer.  This brings the total up to over 2,000 people who have used Round Up and have claims against Monsanto.

The big question at stake is whether Roundup can cause cancer and, if so, whether Monsanto failed to warn consumers about the product’s cancer risk.

In March 2015, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said the key ingredient in Roundup, glyphosate, is “probably carcinogenic to humans.”  But Monsanto long has maintained that Roundup does not cause cancer, and that the IARC report is greatly outnumbered by studies saying glyphosate is safe.

The law firm of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey& Fronrath has handled chemical and pesticide exposure cases around the state of Florida where there is an overabundance of pesky little critters invading yards and homes with home owners using professional or over the counter chemicals to rid them.  As result, we have had many successful outcomes with these cases.  We are here to answer any questions you may have about chemical exposure.  If you or a loved one feels that you have become sick due to a chemical at home or at work, call Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath at their West Palm Beach Office today.  The call and consultation is FREE and there is no obligation.  Call 561-655-1990 to talk to one of our highly trained attorneys.

top attorneys Jupiter

What do you Mean I Can’t Sue the Government?

Or the Police Department, School Board, Post Office, FBI or any other federal or local governmental entity!  That right, it’s called Sovereign immunity and it protects the Government, nationally, locally and internationally from being sued.

The entire concept of sovereign immunity is antiquated, dating back to the days when it was proclaimed: “The king can do no wrong.”

King?”

Anyone who believes governments can do no wrong must be completely out of touch with reality.  Sadly, those who are injured or have died due to the negligence of a governmental employee may fall victim to this very old, legal doctrine that states  the sovereign or state cannot commit a legal wrong and is immune from civil suit or criminal prosecution.

“That’s crazy, right?”“So when can I sue the Government or Sovereign?”

Under the Federal Tort Claims Act, you can file a lawsuit against the government in certain situations. The FTCA allows you to file a lawsuit for injury, loss of property, or wrongful death caused by a federal employee only if it was caused by negligence and if you could file a similar lawsuit against a private person and win.  Furthermore, for you to be able to sue, the federal employee must have been within the scope of his/her employment when the event occurred. For example, if an FBI agent crashed into you while chasing a suspect, then you might have a case because the FBI agent was in the scope of their work.  However, if the same FBI agent crashed into you while driving his kids to school; you can’t sue the government, even if he was driving his work vehicle. But you may have a case against the FBI agent as a private citizen since the agent was not in the scope of their work.

“OK, so what if I want to sue a governmental entity under the FTCA rule because I was badly injured during the time when the employee was on the clock?”

Here’s how it works.  First, you should consider hiring legal counsel so the process is done correctly and in a timely manner. This is a very complicated situation and an attorney can help make sure you are compensated properly and things are done in an orderly manner.  But if you decide to go it on your own, you have to file a claim within two years with the federal agency responsible for your situation. So, if an FBI agent crashed into you, then you’d have to file with the FBI. At this stage it is considered an administrative claim. You need to file as quickly as possible to make sure it doesn’t get rejected as being late.Make sure you include as many facts as possible in your claim along with the amount you want in damages.  An SF 95 form will ensure you’ve provided all the information the agency requires to carry out its investigation.

After submitting your claim, the agency has to issue a ruling within six months. If you have a strong case, the federal agency may admit your claim and offer to compensate you in full or in part, so you may not have to go to court.

If the federal agency refuses to compensate you or rejects your claim, you then need to file your lawsuit within six months from the date when the decision was mailed to you. If the agency doesn’t make a decision within six months, you can either wait for their decision or go ahead and file the lawsuit. Note that the clock starts counting down on the six-month limit only once a ruling has been made.If you were badly injured, at this point your medical bills are probably really mounting up!

“How much can I sue for?”

You can sue for any amount you want but chances are you will not receive more than the limit set on sovereign immunity liability in your state.  In Florida, that’s $200,000.  If you have lost a limb or a loved one has died in the accident, that $200,000 is going to feel like a real slap in the face.

“Is it possible I can get more?”

It is, but this could take years and usually has to be approved by the Governor of your state or some other governmental committee.  Most likely you would end up in court with a trial by jury in order to receive anything better than the minimum.  Again, the chances are slim and if your law suit was for say $10,000,000 because you lost a loved one, you might only be awarded $200,000.Best advice, seek counsel.  Call a law firm that has experience in these types of cases and has a track record of presenting claims bills to the Governor to get morethan the minimum recovery.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath have been fighting for the rights of our clients for over thirty years and have the trial experience, resources and reputation for taking on thesecomplicated cases.

personal injury attorney wpb

Lytal, other Palm Beach County lawyers take lead at state legal group

Lake H. “Trey” Lytal III and other Palm Beach County attorneys have taken leadership roles in a state legal association that has lobbied the legislature heavily on issues including proposed repeal of Florida’s no-fault car insurance system.

Lytal, 47, was sworn in as president of the Florida Justice Association in its annual meeting last week in Palm Beach. He serves as managing partner with Lytal Reiter Smith Ivey & Fronrath in West Palm Beach.

“We protect cornerstone American rights and support Republicans and Democrats who support our mission,” Lytal said in a statement. The group seeks to protect “access to the courts and right to a jury trial,” he said.

The association, which bills itself as advancing the interests of citizens and consumers through the work of member trial lawyers, advocated for a bill that passed the state House last session to end the state’s no-fault car insurance system. That would bring to a close Florida’s status as one of only two states that do not require bodily-injury liability insurance to cover a driver’s injuries to others, but the bill stalled in the Senate.

Other issues on its agenda have concerned worker’s comp legislation and “bad faith” laws affecting insurers.

Lytal, the son of a past president of the organization, succeeds attorney Dale Swope of Tampa as president, but he is not the only attorney from the area to line up officer roles.

Eric Romano, a partner with the Romano Law Group in West Palm Beach, was named treasurer.

The president-elect, or next president in line, is Leslie Kroeger, a partner with Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll in Palm Beach Gardens. She will become the second woman to serve as president, according to organization officials.

injury attorney Stuart

Kelsey Carol Burke: A Dream to Bring Change

The law firm of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey, and Fronrath hired Kelsey Burke in 2016 as her success and potential was very apparent. Like many people,Kelsey enjoys spending time with family, especially her nieces and nephews and her dog Bruno. She is very active and enjoys paddle boarding, running, yoga, and intense interval training exercises. These recreational activities are quite common in South Florida and Kelsey’s accomplishments would make anyone proud, but for Kelsey she has had to fight and earn everything. Kelsey has overcome many obstacles in her life to become the leader and professional that she is today.

Read more

E-Cigarettes – Are They Riskier Than You Think?

Although vaping may be the latest way to enjoy a good smoke, reports of e-cigarette explosions are climbing and claims of serious injuries are becoming increasingly more common.

E-cigarettes were first introduced in the U.S. in 2007 as a “healthy” alternative to traditional smoking tobacco cigarettes. The popularity of vaping has a resulted in a huge U.S. market, with more than 10% of Americans using the smokeless cigarettes.

E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices which transform liquid nicotine into a mist or vapor to be inhaled by the user. Although there are claims the cigarettes do not contain harmful chemicals such as carbon dioxide or tar found in traditional cigarettes, they do contain nicotine – the most addictive component of tobacco. Common ingredients are nicotine, glycerin, propylene glycol, and a wide variety of flavorings.

Over the past few years, concerns about health and safety around the use of the devices have begun slowing down growth in the market. Health problems such as coughing, shortness of breath, breathing difficulties, Popcorn Lung, Asthma, and Chronic Bronchitis are all suspected to be linked with e-cigarette use.

Health considerations aside, use of e-cigarettes has been regarded as potentially hazardous due to a risk of the devices exploding. As of July 2016, there were 183 reported cases of e-cigarettes catching fire or exploding, most of which occurred while the devices were either in use or charging.

E-cigarettes are powered by lithium-based batteries and are charged similarly to cell phone batteries. Although many other devices such as tablets, laptops, and cellphones use lithium-ion batteries, the U.S. Fire Administration has reported the shape and structure of e-cigarettes make them more likely to catch fire or explode when the battery malfunctions.

Poorly manufactured batteries and improperly charged batteries (i.e. using a mismatched charging device) are commonly cited in cases of battery explosion. The electrolyte solution contained within the battery can become flammable if overheated. Because the container within the device is cylindrical in shape, the e-cigarette can explode and be propelled forward with forces similar to a bullet or small rocket.

Early reports of e-cigarette explosions indicated few injuries were sustained. However, with developments in e-cig technology and the use of mods with removable batteries, e-cigarette explosions are becoming increasingly more dangerous, causing injury to people, animals, and/or property.

Explosion often occurs while the devices are being held, smoked or contained in a pocket, potentially causing damage to the face, hands and legs. Reported injuries have included burns, bone fractures, holes in the mouth/tongue, lost teeth, paralysis caused by fractured vertebrae, vision damage, disfigurement and even death.

Personal injury lawsuits filed against e-cigarette companies have already begun coming forward. In 2015, a woman from California was awarded $1.9 million dollars after suffering second-degree burns to her legs, buttocks, and hand. Her e-cigarette had exploded in her vehicle while she was charging it.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is cracking down on e-cigarette companies and recently finalized extensive regulations around the products. Implementation has already been initiated.

 

If you, a loved one, friend, neighbor, colleague or client has been injured as a result of an e-cigarette, please contact our firm at 561-655-1990 or chat with us at www.ForYourRights.com. We are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day / 7 days a week.

If you are in need of a Personal Injury Attorney in West Palm Beach, call now!

 About Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath

Conveniently located in West Palm Beach for 27 years, Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, LLP concentrates in Personal Injury, Wrongful death, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability and Auto accidents. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, we specialize in helping victims and their families get fair compensation for injuries caused by the negligence or recklessness of others. Our main areas of practice include personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, product liability, medical malpractice, and premise liability. We provide each client with the highest quality representation from a top Florida accident and injury lawyer.

© Copyright 2016. All Rights Reserved.

Samsung Being Sued After Exploding Android Causes Burns

Samsung’s troubles with the Galaxy Note 7 have gone from bad to worse.

On September 09, a Florida man was shopping at Costco when his Galaxy Note 7 exploded in his pocket. The device caught fire, burning through the pocket of his pants, and causing second-degree burns to his right thigh. The man also suffered burns to his right thumb as he attempted to remove the phone from his pocket.

The man is now suing Samsung for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other alleged injuries according to a report that was filed. He is seeking unspecified damages.

Samsung voluntarily recalled the Galaxy Note 7 on September 02 after receiving 35 reported cases of the Android either exploding or catching fire. This number has now climbed to 92. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission issued an official recall on September 15, which unfortunately, came 6 days too late for the Florida plaintiff.

Samsung insists the problem lies with the batteries and not the phones themselves. A rare deficiency during the manufacturing process of some batteries can cause them to overheat, leading to fire or explosion. In many of the reported cases, the devices were plugged in and charging when the incidents occurred. It is estimated about 2.5 million customers are affected.

Samsung is asking all customers to turn off their devices immediately and exchange them as soon as possible. Replacement Galaxy Note 7s only became available today, which is perhaps why so few have been returned.

This recent case in Florida marks the first alleged injury and lawsuit as a result of the faulty Note 7 devices.

If you, a loved one, friend, neighbor, colleague or client has been injured as a result of a Galaxy Note 7 defect, please contact our firm at 561-655-1990 or chat with us at www.ForYourRights.com. We are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day / 7 days a week.

If you are in need of a Personal Injury Attorney in West Palm Beach, call now!

 About Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath

Conveniently located in West Palm Beach for 27 years, Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, LLP concentrates in Personal Injury, Wrongful death, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability and Auto accidents. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, we specialize in helping victims and their families get fair compensation for injuries caused by the negligence or recklessness of others. Our main areas of practice include personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, product liability, medical malpractice, and premise liability. We provide each client with the highest quality representation from a top Florida accident and injury lawyer.

 

© Copyright 2016. All Rights Reserved.

Lawsuits Reveal Volkswagen Clean Diesel Playing Dirty with Consumers

Volkswagen “clean diesel” had been a staple in the green culture for years. Now it seems the car wasn’t so green. Federal reports estimate that 11 million VW “clean diesel” vehicles had actually been polluting the air at rates 40 times the federal emissions standard.

Not only had Volkswagen been “playing dirty” while pretending to set the clean standard, they installed technology to hide the problem and beat emission tests. The market has reacted harshly, criticizing Volkswagen and calling for tougher measures on the German automaker. Meanwhile, consumers who purchased Volkswagen diesel vehicles, incurring the additional cost and burden of using diesel fuel as an environmentally responsible choice, have been duped into driving a vehicle that caused more damage than cheaper alternatives.

There are currently a few class-action lawsuits currently pending against Volkswagen seeking compensation for the depreciated value of the owner’s vehicles. Most of the lawsuits already filed have focused on product liability claims. VW’s fraudulent claims to consumers about the fuel efficiency and environmentally sound design of their cars is likely to spur many more lawsuits.

Volkswagen may also be sued by government environmental agencies. Harris County, Texas filed a lawsuit against VW in September 2015 seeking $100 million in damages for polluting Houston and other parts of the county with toxic chemicals and then fraudulently deceiving local consumers and authorities by concealing the problem.

Owners of Volkswagen clean diesel vehicles may also find it difficult to now register their vehicles and pass emissions tests, especially in states with tougher environmental standards like California. While VW plans to recall 500,000 “TDI Clean Diesel” brand vehicles, it must first address the massive pollution inflicted on the environment by their products. Before any recall happens, Volkswagen will work with the EPA to set a plan in motion.

If you have purchased or leased a Volkswagen manufactured diesel powered vehicle then you may be entitled to damages. You should speak with a qualified commercial and products liability attorney immediately to protect your rights. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, we have achieved some of the most significant products liability verdicts nationwide. Our lawyers will fight to makes sure that Volkswagen lives up to their responsibility to you. Contact us today for a free consultation.