Florida Residents Who Engage in Recreational Activities on Another Party’s Land May Do So at Their Own Risk (With a Few Notable Exceptions)

The Florida state government wants to encourage people to be active and to enjoy the beautiful Florida weather by rollerblading, skateboarding, mountain biking, or engaging in other recreational activities. However, the government seemed to notice that there were becoming fewer and fewer places to partake in these activities because landowners were prohibiting people from engaging in these recreational activities on their land, due to the liability they may face if someone is injured. The Florida Legislature’s solution was to pass Florida Statute 316.0085, which provides immunity to certain landowners who open up their property for the public’s use. While there are other recreational use statutes in Florida, th...

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Police Officers Have Duty to Drive Safely, Even When Responding to Emergencies

All drivers have a duty to operate their motor vehicles in Florida in a careful and prudent manner under the circumstances. This duty extends to everyone, including to police officers driving police cars, whether or not they are responding to an emergency and whether or not the emergency lights are activated. A police officer’s failure to take the necessary precautions when operating a patrol car may result in the officer, the department, or the city being liable for a victim’s injuries through a South Florida personal injury lawsuit. Duty of Reasonable Care To establish a negligence claim, a plaintiff must prove that a defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care, that the defendant breached that duty, that the breach of that duty caused the plaintiff’s damages, and that the plaintiff has quantifiable damages. A defendant’s “duty of care” in favor of a plaintiff...

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Recent Appellate Opinion Discusses Government Liability and Its Outer Limits

Earlier this month, an appellate court in Georgia issued a decision in a tragic case stemming from the death of a seventh-grade student that occurred at school while his teacher was out of the room. In the case, the court had the opportunity to discuss when government immunity is appropriate in situations in which a government employee’s negligence is alleged. In this case, unfortunately for the plaintiffs, the court determined that the allegedly negligent teacher was entitled to immunity. The Facts of the Case The plaintiffs were the parents of a seventh-grade student in the defendant’s American Literature class. One day, the teacher stepped out of the room and asked another teacher to listen in on the class while she w...

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