Today, in a 5 to 2 decision, the Florida Supreme Court issued its opinion in Nunez v. Geico General Ins. Co., Case No. SC12-650 (Fla., June 27, 2013), a case which was argued before the Court on December 4, 2012. This case was certified by the federal Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, on the following certified question: “[w]hether, under FLA. STAT. § 627.736, an insurer can require an insured to attend an [examination under oath] as a condition precedent to recovery of [personal injury protection] benefits?” The Florida Supreme Court answered this question in the negative.Read More
Archive by Month: June 2013
In Ergas v. Universal Property and Casualty Ins. Co., 38 Fla. L. Weekly D900 (Fla. 4th DCA, April 24, 2013), the Fourth District Court of Appeal addressed the issue of whether a homeowner’s property insurance policy exclusion for “wear and tear, marring, deterioration” excluded coverage for the insureds’ claim for damage to their tile floor caused when an insured dropped a hammer on the floor, causing it to chip. The insureds argued that the term “marring” was ambiguous because it was not defined in the policy and that, in the context of the exclusion, the term contemplated damage gradually occurring over time. In response, Universal argued that none of the terms in the exclusion required interpretation by reference to the others. The appellate court affirmed summary judgment in favor of the carrier, finding that the exclusion for “marring” applied to exclude coverage for the insureds’ claim.Read More
Yesterday, in Jacobson v. Southeast Personnel Leasing, Inc., the First District Court of Appeal held that a statute prohibiting a claimant from hiring a lawyer on an hourly fee to defend him against a motion to tax costs is unconstitutional. The claimant sustained a compensable industrial accident on September 4, 2007, injuring his neck and back. He underwent a cervical fusion, and then doctors recommended another surgery to repair a herniated cervical disc. The JCC denied both the claim for continued compensability of the low back as well as for PTD benefits. The employer/carrier then filed a motion to tax prevailing party costs against the claimant.