Denise Isensee, a Florida woman, was awarded a jury verdict for $1,165,452.60 for injuries she incurred after being rear-ended in a car accident in Pasco County. The defendant’s insurance company, Allstate, appealed the judgment to Florida’s 2nd District Court of Appeal, complaining that the trial judge erred by 1) limiting the testimony of the defense expert, Dr. Michael Foley; 2) limiting the testimony of the police officer who responded to the scene; and 3) allowing the jury to watch a 15-minute video of Ms. Isensee undergoing surgery.
Rental car accident in Florida are very common because of the large number of vehicles rented for both business and pleasure every year. The personal injury laws in Florida for collisions that are caused by drivers of rental and leased cars are designed to protect the insurance companies and car rental agencies–not the injured.
I am not just a personal injury lawyer in Miami; I also own a small business, which is my law firm. And like many other business owners who rent cars or trucks for their employees for business use, I too have, on occasion, rented cars for my lawyers who travel across the State of Florida for depositions, hearings, and trials.
What happens when an employee allows other people to drive the rental vehicle and they get into a traffic accident?
This scenario occurs frequently: An employer rents a car for the use of its employee for a business purpose, and for one reason or another the employee gives the keys of the vehicle to a spouse, friend, or other family member, who gets into a rental car accident.
Recently, a Florida business, Bell Partners, was sued after a car it had rented for one of its employees collided with another car, causing serious personal injuries to Keith and Jacqueline Adams.
Summer camp is just around the corner for millions of children across the State of Florida and around the country. Our Miami injury lawyers are frequently asked if there is insurance coverage for injuries when kids are hurt traveling to and from summer camp and on camping field trips.
The acid test for every Miami children’s injury lawyer who sues summer camps–or cruise lines, and other businesses–is did the injury occur “in the course and scope” of the counselor’s duties? For nearly 25 years I have battled insurance companies on this issue and have learned that commercial insurance policies are designed to protect the insurance company’s profits–not the camps, not the counselors, and certainly not the injured campers.
Camp Volunteer Causes Head-On Traffic Accident
Recently a “Registered Volunteer” camp counselor for Troop 370 of the Boy Scouts of America, Alan Norton, was involved in a terrifying head-on collision. Mr. Norton was driving back from a Florida cemetery where he had been supervising a Boy Scout who had, over the course of eight visits, assisted in cleaning up a Florida cemetery, in hopes of earning an Eagle Scout Merit Badge.
On the last and fateful visit, Mr. Norton had forgotten to photograph the cemetery to verify the Scout’s work, so he drove home to retrieve his camera with the intention of returning to the cemetery to take pictures. Photographing the work was mandated to verify that the Scout had in fact met his requirements.
On the return drive, Mr. Norton hit Chris Hubner head-on, seriously injuring Mr. Hubner and himself. Mr. Hubner sued the Boy Scouts of America for his injuries resulting from the car accident.