Category: verdicts-and-settlements

Tallahassee Attorneys Achieve Defense Verdict in First Property Case Involving a Roof Leak

Posted in Verdicts and Settlements on July 10, 2024

Michael Bonfanti, partner, and Nicholas Monk, associate from the Tallahassee office recently obtained a defense verdict on behalf of Citizens Property Insurance Corporation. This case was a total denial of claimed roof damage and interior damage resulting from the entry of water through a peril created opening. The lawsuit was the culmination of nearly two years of litigation. On behalf of Citizens, evidence was presented through expert testimony to support the affirmative defenses of wear and tear, no peril created opening and faulty design and construction of the roof. Through diligent research, a composite of aerial photographs of the insured property were obtained which demonstrated the years long issue with the roof. This composite included clear images of a tarp being used directly over the area of water intrusion prior to the Plaintiffs purchasing the home, and subsequent use of the tarp shortly after purchase. The jury deliberated for under two hours and found that Citizens had demonstrated sufficient evidence to support the affirmative defenses and awarded no damages as a result. Citizens will now seek to collect attorney’s fees and costs from a rejected Proposal for Settlement that was served a year prior to the trial. 

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William Mitchell and Jesse Dyer Secure Summary Judgment in a First Party Property Case

Posted in Verdicts and Settlements on May 9, 2024

Partner William Mitchell, Sr. and associate Jesse Dyer obtained final summary judgment in a first party property claim on behalf of a major Florida homeowners insurance carrier. The claim arose from damages originating from a defective shower pan for which the Insurer denied coverage based on exclusions for long term seepage and leakage and pre-existing damages.  The Insureds’  argued that the cause of loss was a collapse of the subfloor below the 2nd story shower and therefore covered under the policy. However, after multiple hearings on the Insurer’s Motion the Court ruled that the Insureds failed to establish that a genuine issue of material fact existed as to whether or not the loss fell under the clear and unambiguous policy provision involving coverage for losses caused by collapse and that the Insurer had established that the damages were not covered under the policy of insurance. 

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Summary Judgment Secured in Engineering Services Case Not Covered Under Policy

Posted in Verdicts and Settlements on April 12, 2024

Noelia Vaccaro, an attorney in the firm’s first party practice group prevailed on a motion for summary judgment in a case involving the services of an engineer the insured retained after reporting the loss. She argued that the services the plaintiff performed were not covered under the policy because defendant did not constitute a cost to repair or replace the damaged property, as the plaintiff merely prepared a report that contained no narrative — i.e., no observations, analysis, conclusions, or recommendations — and, instead, consisted primarily of photographs.

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Tallahassee Attorneys Secure Summary Judgment in a Premises Liability Case

Posted in Verdicts and Settlements on April 2, 2024

Joshua C. Canton, managing partner of the firm's Tallahassee, Florida office, along with Justin B. Hales, an associate in the firm’s Tallahassee, Florida office, recently prevailed on a motion for summary judgment in a premises liability case in Wakulla County,  Florida where they successfully argued the Defendant breached no duty owed to the Plaintiff and the cause of the subject incident was an unforeseeable “Act of God”.

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Seth Goldberg Obtains Defense Verdict in Slip and Fall Case

Posted in Verdicts and Settlements on March 15, 2024

Seth Goldberg, a partner in our Hollywood office, recently obtained a Defense Verdict in a slip and fall case in Broward County, Florida. Plaintiff alleged he slipped and fell down the exterior stairs, in the rain, at the apartment complex where he had lived for over a year before the fall. The Defendants owned and maintained the property. The Plaintiff testified that he did not hold onto the available handrail as he descended the steps. Plaintiff alleged his fall was caused by the exterior light that illuminated the stairwell being out on the evening of the fall and the construction of the steps violated the applicable building codes when they were built in 1990. 

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