June 8, 2017
Congratulations to our 2017 Super Lawyers and Florida Rising Stars!
In 1963, Gene Kubicki founded the firm based on dedication to excellence. The same high standards have been maintained for over five decades -- years which have seen the firm’s ranks swell to over 100 attorneys.
Our team knows return clients are the life blood of any law firm and this is why we ensure client satisfaction by an exacting attention to service and quality. Client service coupled with a spectacular work ethic, makes our team hard to beat... Literally!
In response to the growing needs of its clients, the firm began expanding in the early 1980's and today is a diverse full-service law firm providing trial, appellate, coverage, commercial and real estate transaction services.
Kubicki Draper enjoys a national reputation for expertise in the handling of complex, high stakes litigation matters, as well as, appellate, general commercial and real estate practice.
June 8, 2017
April 28, 2017
April 28, 2017
We are honored to have four partners recognized and selected for inclusion in the 2017 Best Lawyers® “Women in the Law,” Spring Business Edition produced in collaboration with the Coalition of Women’s Initiatives in Law.
Betsy E. Gallagher of our Tampa office and Caryn L. Bellus of our Miami office were selected for their Appellate work. Laurie J. Adams of our West Palm Beach office was recognized for Personal Injury Litigation and Jane C. Rankin of our Ft. Lauderdale office was selected for her work in Real Estate Law. We are extremely proud of their dedication, integrity and commitment to excellence in the work they do.
ABOUT BEST LAWYERS
Best Lawyers is the oldest and most respected attorney ranking service in the world. For more than 30 years, Best Lawyers has assisted those in need of legal services to identify the attorneys best qualified to represent them in distant jurisdictions or unfamiliar specialties. Best Lawyers lists are published in leading local, regional, and national publications across the globe.
ABOUT THE COALITION OF WOMEN’S INITIATIVES IN LAW
The Coalition of Women's Initiatives in Law is a nonprofit membership association comprised of representatives of women’s initiatives in Chicago and New York offices of law firms and corporations. Its mission is to benefit its member firms and companies and its individual in-house counsel members by providing positive avenues of communication, collaboration and guidance that help members to 1) enhance the recruitment, retention, and promotion of women lawyers and 2) support the building, implementation, and continued relevancy of women's initiatives in law firms and companies.
April 11, 2017
April 10, 2017
April 10, 2017
March 14, 2017
February 8, 2017
February 4, 2017
January 17, 2017
August 1, 2017
Preparing Field Adjusters for Deposition
Speakers: Sarah Goldberg, Charles Watkins, Timothy York of NEFCO and Jennifer Newell of Federated National Insurance
Proving Material Misrepresentation and Fraud in Florida
Speakers: Valerie Dondero and Nicole Ellis
Look Who's Talking Now
The Story of the Bait and Switch: Assignment of Benefits
Speakers: Nicole Wulwick and Anthony Atala
The Good (faith), The Bad (faith), And (how to avoid), the Ugly...in claims handling
The Ugly Potential of Bad Faith Claims
Speakers: Michael Balducci, Joseph Carey, Michael Walsh and Anthony Atala
Avoiding a 'Case of the Mondays'
Trends to Know for Fee Shifting and Proposals for Settlement
Speakers: Stefanie Capps and Kendra Therrell
The Money Pit
Walking through a Post-Claim Inspection
Speakers: Nicole Wulwick, Scott Rosso and Dr. Ralph Moon of GHD
This course will set out a step-by-step guide to inspecting a property after a plumbing loss or roof leak claim is claimed.
The courses have been approved for continuing education credits by the State of Florida and guests will be eligible to receive up to six Florida Adjuster Continuing Education Credits.
Space is limited, so register today!
June 9, 2017
May 18, 2017
May 15, 2017
April 7, 2017
March 9, 2017
February 9, 2017
Caryn Bellus and Brad McCormick, of the Miami office, are slated to present at the CLM 2017 Annual Conference in Nashville, Tennessee, March 29-31. Caryn will be presenting “Deciding Whether to Jump into The Ring of Fire or Just Walk Away – To Appeal or Not to Appeal?” and Brad will be part of a round table panel discussing “Ideas for the Future: The Corporate and Insurance Client Relationship.”
The firm is excited about Brad and Caryn's participation and once again being a Gold Sponsor of the conference. We hope to see you there!
The Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM) promotes and furthers the highest standards of claims and litigation management and brings together the thought leaders in both industries. CLM's Members and Fellows include risk and litigation managers, insurance and claims professionals, corporate counsel, outside counsel and third party vendors. The CLM sponsors educational programs, provides resources and fosters communication among all in the industry. To learn more about the CLM, please visit http://www.theclm.orgContinue...
February 7, 2017
September 30, 2016
Caryn Bellus, of the Miami office and Stuart Poage of the Tallahassee office, presented at the 2016 CLM National Construction Claims Conference. The conference was held in the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego, California, September 28-30, 2016.
The Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM) promotes and furthers the highest standards of claims and litigation management and brings together the thought leaders in both industries. CLM’s Members and Fellows include risk and litigation managers, insurance and claims professionals, corporate counsel, outside counsel and third party vendors. The CLM sponsors educational programs, provides resources and fosters communication among all in the industry. To learn more about the CLM, please visit http://www.theclm.orgContinue...
June 22, 2016
Laurie J. Adams, of the West Palm Beach office, moderated the Personal Injury sessions at the 2016 Palm Beach County Bench Bar Conference. Judicial Panelists included Judge Lisa S. Small, Judge Meenu Sasser, Judge Donald W. Hafele, and Judge Edward Artau from the 15th Circuit, as well as Judge Dorian K. Damoorgian from the 4th District Court of Appeal. Session topics focused on motion practice, attorney’s fees, CME billing, expert discovery, non-binding arbitration, summary jury trials, ethical conduct, and sanctions. Laurie helped guide the discussion while offering insight on these important topics. While Laurie always maintains a vigorous representation for her clients, her role as moderator exemplified the firm’s excellent reputation for respect and collegiality amongst local attorneys and judges in Palm Beach County.Continue...
June 6, 2017
February 24, 2017
December 1, 2016
IN THIS ISSUE:
September 23, 2016
August 12, 2016
August 12, 2016
August 1, 2016
IN THIS ISSUE:
June 22, 2016
May 26, 2016
May 26, 2016
IN THIS ISSUE:
July 3, 2016
In a certiorari proceeding before Florida's Fifth District Court of Appeal, Betsy Gallagher and Michael Clarke of Kubicki Draper's Tampa office, were successful in obtaining an opinion which will assist no-fault insurers in defending law suits filed seeking payment of personal injury protection benefits. In Progressive Select Ins. Co. v. Emergency Physicians of Cent. Fla., No. 5D16-253 (Fla. 5th DCA Sept. 16, 2016), the Court reviewed facts showing that Progressive had reimbursed the medical provider for its services at "eighty percent of 200 percent of the allowable amount under the Medicare Part B fee schedule" even though it did not specifically elect to use the fee schedule in its insurance policy. The Court reasoned that while Progressive was not entitled to rely on the fee schedule limitation within section 627.736 (5)(a)2.f., Fla. Stat., under the holding of GEICO Gen. Ins. Ins. Co. v. Virtual Imaging Services., 141 So.3d 147 (Fla. 2013), it held that the failure to elect to use the fee schedule limitation in its policy did not preclude Progressive "from having an opportunity to litigate the reasonableness of [the medical provider's] bill under section 627.736(5)(a)1., Florida Statutes (2008)." In short, the Fifth District held that even where an insurer has made an insufficient election under its policy and paid at eighty percent of 200 percent of the allowable amount under the Medicare Part B fees schedule, in accordance with section 627.736 (5)(a)2.f., Fla. Stat., the insurer does not lose its fundamental right to defend that the charge was not reasonable under section 627.736(5)(a)1., Fla. Stat. including the consideration of "various federal and state medical fee schedules applicable to automobile and other insurance coverages."
Note that the opinion is not final until the time for rehearing expires and if such a motion is filed, determined. Upon finality this opinion will be controlling on all Florida circuit and county courts as, at this time, it is the only district court level authority on the issue.Continue...
July 2, 2016
July 2, 2016
The Fourth District Court of Appeal, in Crane Co., R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., and Hollingswoth & Vose Co. v. Delisle, 2016 WL 4771438 (Fla. 4th DCA September 14, 2016), recently reversed an $8 million verdict in favor of a plaintiff trying to link his cancer to alleged asbestos in the defendants' products. After the defendants challenged the admission of the plaintiff's experts' causation opinions under Daubert, the appellate court concluded that the trial court abused its discretion and failed to properly exercise its gatekeeping function by allowing the testimony of several of the plaintiff's experts to be presented to the jury, by simply "taking the experts' word for it" that their causation opinions were reliable and based on sound scientific principles, and by permitting the experts to claim that their opinions were supported by the "weight of medical literature" without actually identifying any specific literature. In light of the admission of the improper expert testimony, a new trial was ordered for one defendant and the entry of a directed verdict in favor of another defendant was ordered based on a finding that the improper expert opinion was the sole evidence on causation against that defendant.The Delisle court also specifically rejected the plaintiff's argument that the appellate court lacked authority to apply Daubert since the 2013 legislative change to the Florida Evidence Code, which adopted the Daubert standard, was not yet approved by the Florida Supreme Court, thus demonstrating that unless and until the Florida Supreme Court declares otherwise, Daubert is the law in Florida.Continue...
June 30, 2016
Harold Saul, of the Tampa office, obtained a favorable arbitration result after a six week arbitration proceeding and a two month briefing schedule. Harold represented a stucco contractor who was no longer in business. The case was brought by a large builder against several contractors as a result of significant water intrusion and damage to a 48 unit 4 story condominium building. Harold attacked the Plaintiff’s experts on their conclusions, arguing they had no factual basis to support the stucco deficiencies caused any specific damage, as they failed to properly document any causal findings. Harold then utilized his expert to point out areas of the stucco application where it was in compliance with code. Although there was still damage behind the stucco and other areas where the stucco application was not properly applied, there was no damage to further arrive at the lack of causation opinion to the defective stucco application.
Furthermore, with the help of Michael Clarke, of the Tampa office, they presented the panel with an 80 page closing statement to support the position Harold had developed over the six weeks of evidence. In the end, the panel determined that the stucco application was defective, but found the Developer was not able to link any of the damage to the improper stucco application. Thus, they awarded only the costs of the stucco application. More importantly, the Panel concluded that neither the Developer nor Harold’s client were the prevailing party, thus denying entitlement to the Developer of any fees and costs. Shortly after the proceeding ended, the matter settled for nominal amount.Continue...
June 29, 2016
Stefanie Capps, of the Ft. Myers office, obtained a summary judgment in a case where the Plaintiff alleged that a large opening on a sidewalk in the City of Bonita Springs, caused him to fall off of his bicycle. As a result, the Plaintiff alleged that he sustained significant injuries to his face and upper extremities. Stefanie represented the contractor who built the sidewalk for the city who had finalized the project the year before the accident occurred.
The Plaintiff alleged that the concrete caulk in the sidewalk expansion/drainage joint was defective and therefore, rotted away and left an opening in the sidewalk. Stefanie’s Motion for Summary Judgment argued that this condition was patent and there was not notification from the city of the defective work by the contractor. The Judge agreed the condition was patent and the work had been accepted by the city, thus barring liability against the contractor. As a result of Stepfanie’s motion being granted, the Plaintiff must now pay attorneys’ fees and costs back to the insurance carrier.Continue...
June 28, 2016
Brian Chojnowski, of the Tallahassee office, obtained a favorable trial result after a four day trial in Tallahassee. Our client was the third vehicle in a line of motor vehicles whereby a non-party 16-year-old driver may or may not have switched lanes in front of the Plaintiff’s car causing the Plaintiff to slam on his brakes. In turn, our client slammed on his brakes, but still hit the back of Plaintiff’s pickup truck. The impact was severe enough to bend the frame on the truck bed.
Plaintiff and his attorney thereafter claimed that the Plaintiff developed a traumatic brain injury, vertigo, a permanent neck injury, and had a wage loss claim. In addition, his wife filed a consortium claim. The Judge granted Brian’s motions for directed verdict on future lost income and future medical expenses.
Brian strategically asked the jury to award 50/50 liability against our client and the non-party in order to gain the jury’s trust and seem more credible as the evidence did not support comparative negligence against the Plaintiff. The jury returned a verdict that found our client 60% at fault and apportioned the other 40% to the non-party. The jury awarded only $5,689.91 in past medical expenses, $0 in past lost wages, did not find permanency, and no consortium award.Continue...
June 27, 2016
Joshua E. Polsky, of the Ft. Lauderdale office, obtained a final dismissal with prejudice in a clear liability medical malpractice action after proving to the court after multiple hearings, that the Plaintiff failed to comply with the two-year statute of limitations under Florida Statue § 95.11 and the medical malpractice pre-suit notice requirements which would have tolled the statute of limitations, under Fla. Stat. § 766.106(2)(a). The client’s potential exposure exceeded seven figures after the eye surgeon admitted to inserting the wrong diopter lenses and corrective surgery failed, resulting in complete loss of vision.Continue...
June 27, 2016
Angela Agostino, of the Ft. Myers office, obtained a Final Summary Judgment in a case involving an 81 year old Plaintiff who tripped over a parking stop located in a handicapped area with white and blue lines in a parking lot. The Plaintiff sustained a fractured shoulder and received a total shoulder replacement. In addition, the Plaintiff attempted to defeat the motion by an expert affidavit asserting that there was negligence because the parking stop constituted an “abrupt elevation change” and was ¼ inch shorter than design standards, and violated building codes.Continue...
June 26, 2016
Brian Chojnowski and Stuart Poage, of the Tallahassee office, in a five day trial, obtained a complete defense verdict in a disputed liability motor vehicle accident case. The Plaintiff was riding in the open bed of a pick up truck that was struck on the side by the Defendant. The case was defended on liability grounds as the defense’s theory was that the truck turned into the path of the Defendant’s vehicle despite the Defendant having a green light and the right of way. Plaintiff claimed he suffered road rash, torn ligaments, and muscles in his leg resulting in a permanent injury, and a permanent lumbar spine injury and sought significant damages for past and future medical damages, past and future pain and suffering, and future lost earning capacity. After only 25 minutes of deliberations, the jury found the Defendant was not negligent.Continue...
June 25, 2016
Stefanie Capps, of the Ft. Myers office, obtained a defense verdict in a veterinary malpractice case. The Plaintiff had an eight year old Labrador Retriever who had terminal cancer. The Defendant, a board certified veterinary surgeon, performed a life saving splenectomy on the dog to stop internal bleeding caused by cancerous tumors in his spleen. The Plaintiff alleged that the surgery caused the dog to suffer a neurological injury to his back right leg and thus, the remainder of the dog’s life was marred by the injury. The Plaintiff was seeking reimbursement for the bills to treat the dog’s foot condition and $16,000.00 for the air ambulance.
At trial, the Plaintiff had two treating veterinarians testify, however, during cross examination, both admitted that they could not provide a link between the surgery and the cause of the neurological defect. As a result, the Judge entered a directed verdict in favor of the defense.Continue...