Articles Posted in Premises Liability

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Security is something that many guests take for granted when staying at a nice hotel, especially one that has received multi-star ratings for its comfort, convenience and luxuries offered. However, even the most careful, observant traveler may become the victim of a theft, assault or worse because the hotel or inn where they are staying suffers from negligent and inadequate security issues.

Trial attorneys from the Miami law firm Hannon Legal Group have some tips that can alert an observant traveler that his or her hotel is not taking security seriously.

One of the basics of hotel security is control of the access to the hotel’s interior. Secondary entrances to the buildings, especially those in remote areas, should be locked at night and accessible only by room key.

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Ensuring your personal safety and security when visiting a shopping center is a two-fold responsibility: You can do things as an individual to reduce the likelihood of your becoming a crime statistic, and there are procedures the center itself should institute to keep you safe. The Miami negligent security lawyers at Hannon Legal Group regularly represent shoppers who have become crime victims because of relaxed security procedures at malls and shopping centers, and have advice for what shoppers should watch for.

Shoppers should make sure the center has basic security measures in place. These measures include security patrols, including bicycle and/or mounted police and rooftop watchers; exterior lighting that covers the entire area; and signs that guide patrons to parking spots close to their destination.

Shopping centers should have closed-circuit televisions cameras manned 24/7, both outside in the parking lots and in common areas inside the mall. Malls with large parking lots should have emergency phones or call boxes to summon help quickly.

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Inadequate security at schools is a growing concern and has led to unnecessary injury and trauma for thousands of students. The Miami negligent security lawyers at Hannon Legal Group regularly represent families with children that have become victims of inadequate security at schools.

When parents send their children to school, they don’t expect that their children will become victims of crimes. But, unfortunately these incidents do occur, and they are often the result of the school’s failure to maintain adequate surveillance systems or the negligent actions of school security personnel. There are many cases in which children have been attacked during or after school while on school grounds. The attacks are often times the results of unauthorized individuals being allowed on the premises. In such situations, a parent may opt to seek compensation from the school.

Being injured at school due to an attack can be an extremely traumatic experience. The trauma does not simply stop with the physical injuries and can often result in mental health concerns for the victims. Parents can help to prevent these incidents from occurring by finding out about the emergency and security protocols that the school has in place in advance.

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What should be an enjoyable dining experience at your favorite restaurant can become a sour evening if it ends with you or one of your guests slipping and falling and breaking a bone or worse. The slip-and-fall lawyers at Miami firm Hannon Legal Group can help you navigate the legal maze that you may be facing if you have been injured in such an incident.

Even a place you have been to many times before can have hidden hazards that may catch you by surprise.

Conditions change. Carpets become worn. Drinks and food are spilled on the floor. Light bulbs go out. Your chair may break.

Falls can be caused by a number of things, even those outside of the premises. A heavy rain can result in water being tracked inside by others making floors slippery, or someone can drop something in your path that you can’t see because it’s not well lit.

If you are injured in a slip-and-fall incident, you may be approached by a representative of the business or property owner’s insurance company seeking a statement giving your view of the mishap.

But you should not make any statement to anyone or sign anything without first consulting your own personal injury attorney. The adjuster for the restaurant’s insurance company may seem friendly, but he is not on your side.

That adjuster is there to defend the restaurant and may argue that you were not paying attention to where you were walking or that you were being reckless, fiddling with your cell phone or engaging in horseplay with friends at the time.
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Slip and fall accidents are quite common in the state of Florida and often result from businesses failing to adequately maintain their premises with regard to safety. Florida premises liability lawyers at Hannon Legal Group regularly represent clients who have been injured due to such acts of negligence in Miami and throughout the state.

Proving a case in favor of a slip and fall victim is often challenging, as there are a variety of complex liability issues involved. In addition, Florida Statute 768.0755 has increased the burden of proof for victims who must prove that the business or landowner had knowledge of the dangerous condition in advance of the fall.

Indeed, slip and fall cases are very difficult for victims to win in Florida. It is important to consult with a qualified slip and fall attorney as soon as possible after an accident occurs. The Miami, Florida slip & fall lawyers at Hannon Legal Group have a track record of being able to secure significant verdicts and settlements for our clients.

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Violent crime is a serious problem in Miami and around the state. The Miami negligent security lawyers at Hannon Legal Group regularly represent the victims of violent crime and help them to obtain compensation for injuries and in many cases for wrongful death.

Unfortunately, in another incident of violent crime, an elderly man is dead and a woman is in critical condition at Ryder Trauma Center after being stabbed at a Miami apartment complex on Wednesday morning.

Police have not released the identity of the victims. The stabbing occurred at the apartment building located at 1559 North River Drive.

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We were recently reminded of this needless tragedy when two twin toddlers drowned in their apartment complex swimming pool; the result of a broken latch on the pool gate.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every day, about ten people die from accidental drowning. Of these, two are children aged 14 or younger. Drowning ranks fifth among the leading causes of unintentional injury death in the United States. Florida’s Heath Department reports that the state loses more children under age five to accidental drowning than any other state. Sadly that means enough children to fill three to four preschool classrooms – they never live to see their fifth birthday.

Many accidents happen in backyard swimming pools, but drownings can also occur in apartment complex pools, condominium association pool, public pools, hotels, resorts, water parks, campgrounds, and summer camps. It is the responsibility of the property owner (pool, hot tub or spa owner) to take reasonable precautions to make sure that his or her swimming pool is safe for users, or anyone else on the property, including trespassers.

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Recently a woman at the Scores Gentlemen’s Club in Palm Beach Gardens was robbed at gunpoint and told to hand over her diamond ring. Is this a random act or are we seeing a new pattern of violent crime? According to Robert Smith, a San Diego consultant who specializes in nightclub crime, “”The violence in nightclubs and bars across the country has increased dramatically.”

A 2012 Palm Beach Post article stated that in 2011, there were at least nine instances of gunfire in or around South Florida nightclubs, more than twice the number of the year before. In the past decade, 20 lives, nearly all young people, were snuffed out by nightclub-related gunplay. During that period, Broward County experienced the highest number of gun fatalities: 13, including one suicide. At least 42 people in South Florida were injured by stray bullets since 2002, some seriously. Since 2002, only five people – four in Broward, one in Palm Beach County – have been killed in nightclub stabbings.

There are many risk factors contributing to aggression and violence in bars and clubs including: underage drinking, binge drinking, impaired or inebriated drinking, serving drunk patrons, discounted drink prices, overcrowding, drug use and/or dealing, prostitution, the type of establishment, bar closing times, the lack of adequate security, and untrained or improperly trained staff.

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Do you walk and talk on your cell phone? How about walk and text message? If so, you are not alone. Distracted walking is a growing problem putting many at increased risk of being hit by a car or even becoming the victim of a trip and fall.

You may have seen the well-publicized YouTube videos or security camera footage of people falling into water fountains at shopping malls, people walking into intersections with an oncoming car, or people landing head first on train tracks.

Reports of injuries to distracted walkers treated at hospital emergency rooms have more than quadrupled in the past seven years and are almost certainly underreported, according to a recent USA Today article. In 2012, about 1,152 people were treated in hospital emergency rooms in the U.S. for injuries suffered while walking and using a cellphone or some other electronic device, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

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Florida cities, including Panama City, Daytona Beach, Clearwater Beach, St. Pete Beach, Fort Myers, Fort Lauderdale, South Beach – Miami, and Key West, are major destinations for spring breakers and tourists looking for warm sunshine and fun.

Whether by car or by air, hundreds of thousands of people flock to Florida each year to visit its miles of white sandy beaches, theme parks, restaurants, and bars. Some schools and colleges start spring break as early as the last week in February, and it runs through the end of March. According to TripSmarter.com, the two busiest weeks are March 10-17 and March 17-21.

Some common spring break dangers include: