Articles Tagged with Florida Supreme Court

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2012 could be historic for injured patients if the Florida Supreme Court follows the lead of Georgia, Illinois, and other states who have declared caps on damages in medical malpractice cases to be unconstitutional. The courts have reasoned that limitations on damages violate an individual’s access to the courts, treat the medical profession different from all others, and often force the state taxpayers to absorb the cost of future care.

Medical malpractice law has always been a hot topic, especially in Florida, where extensive lobbying by hospitals, doctors, and the insurance industry has led to major changes affecting the rights of injured victims. While medical professionals have argued that malpractice lawsuits have caused billions of dollars to be wasted on unneeded medical tests; yet privately, they admit that these same tests would be ordered if the patient was their family member.

As Florida medical malpractice attorneys we have been closely monitoring the debate over medical malpractice caps, which is set to come before the Florida Supreme Court next year.

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Cases throughout Florida may end up coming unraveled if judges take note of what courts in Miami and Manatee County have done recently with drug cases that have been ruled unconstitutional, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports.

Cases of drug possession and drug sales may be dropped after Judge Mary Scriven, of the U.S. Middle District of Florida, ruled that Florida’s drug possession statute is unconstitutional because it lacks the element of intent — opponents argue that violates due process because it puts the legal burden on the defendant. Three circuit court judges have now asked the Florida Supreme Court to address the constitutionality question of Florida Statutes Section 893.13.

152342_no_smoking_4A Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney who is familiar with recent case law can often use evolving law to a client’s advantage. These precedent setting cases typically start at the trial-court level when a defendant and experienced lawyer see a legal issue that permits them to fight the charges.

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Back in 2008, the Florida Supreme Court ruled against parent liability waivers for a minor participating in activities at a commercial venue.

The wrongful-death case, Scott Corey Kirton v. Jordan Fields, involved 14-year-old Christopher Jones, killed in 2003 while riding an all-terrain vehicle at Thunder Cross Motor Sports Park in Okeechobee. His father had signed a risk and liability waiver as the facility required.

The high court’s ruling said the state had no statute supporting the waivers – and that wider public concerns cannot allow parents to waive the rights of minors to legal recourse when injury occurs. The releases served commercial interests more than the child, the court ruled, and the boy’s family was allowed to sue the track despite his father having signed the waiver.

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In courtrooms around the state, it has long been the practice that juveniles were to be shackled by the wrists and ankles with belly chains, chained to furniture or chained to each other when they were brought to appear before a judge.

In this 6-1 opinion, The Florida Court stated,  that this process was “repugnant, degrading, humiliating and contrary to the primary purposes of the juvenile justice system.”

One of the primary goals oFort Lauderdale Juvenile Defense Lawyerf the juvenile justice system is rehabilitation and many have argued that this process actually harms the child and can have long lasting psychological consequences.

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