Legal Updates

CRUISE SHIP FALL There have been numerous reports concerning the increase in passenger falls from cruise ships into the ocean. A federal jury has ruled against Royal Caribbean in a case involving a Nebraska family’s lawsuit against the cruise line for such an event. The jury determined there was no liability for the ship’s owners. 

MORGAN & MORGAN   A Sarasota Circuit Court judge has ruled against the law firm of Morgan & Morgan in a legal malpractice case. The firm sought to reduce or vacate a $5 million verdict awarded by a jury in a legal malpractice lawsuit. The plaintiff’s attorneys are requesting the firm also pay $1.5 million in fees and costs. 

GOVERNOR FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE A Florida appeal court judge has blocked a lawsuit filed by a Tallahassee attorney regarding the disclosure of Governor Rick Scott’s personal financial statements. The judge ruled that the state Commission on Ethics has exclusive authority over such matters. 

PUBLIC INFORMATION The Palm Beach Post won a court victory when the Fourth District Court of Appeal court ruled that it had the right to view redacted information on search warrants.   The court ruled that the state had failed to demonstrate how hiding surveillance techniques was a compelling governmental interest. 

RED LIGHT CAMERAS Florida’s red light camera laws could be in flux again as a Miami-Dade county judge has ruled that the differences among various municipal ordinances violates the Legislature’s intent to have uniform traffic laws. 

BRIGHTLINE RAIL Martin County, along with the U.S. Department of Transportation and an advocacy group, has reached a settlement with the Brightline passenger rail developers. The settlement includes the dismissal of a $1.15 billion lawsuit filed by the three plaintiffs who had sought to stop the project.