West Palm Beach Legal Blog

The six levels of vehicle automation

As residents in Florida continue to read and hear about the development of autonomous cars, they may understandably have a lot of questions. This is understandable as the technology is advancing rapidly. Learning about the technologies involved in creating a self-driving car can help take some of the mystery out of things and make people feel more comfortable with these emerging vehicles.

One fact that should be highlighted is that there is not just one type of autonomous vehicle. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicates there are six distinct levels of automation identified in vehicles. The goal of increasing autonomous operation is to save lives. More than 37,000 people died in vehicle accidents in the U.S. in 2017 alone. Whether they realize it or not, many drivers have interacted with some level of automation in a vehicle already today.

Lawsuit alleges Tesla technology cause of fatal accident

Vehicle accidents are sadly nothing new or even unusual to residents in Florida. However, it is important for people to not just blindly accept these events but instead to ensure that they are their family members are properly compensated if an accident was caused by another person's negligence. The same is true when an accident may have been caused by a company's negligence or the failure of some technology or component of a vehicle. 

An example of a situation that may warrant this type of proactive steps can be seen in a case involving a crash between a semi-truck and a passenger car equipped with some autonomous driving capabilities. As reported by, the sedan was being operated by the human driver in Delray Beach. A tractor-trailer was approaching an intersection marked with a stop sign but the truck driver did not obey the stop sign and, instead, continued driving through the intersection into the path of the sedan.

Older motorcyclists must pay heed to fitness and skills

Both fitness and skill levels are vital for older motorcyclists. They can make the difference between a pleasant ride and a devastating crash.

If you are a senior citizen about to dust off your Harley and take to the open road, answer these questions: Are you physically fit to ride? Are your riding skills up to snuff?

Knowing who can file a wrongful death lawsuit

When you lose a loved one to a car accident in West Palm Beach, that loss is often felt far beyond the emotional void that they leave behind. You might have relied on them for financial support as well, and replacing both that companionship and financial assistance is no easy feat. Many have come to us here at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & RYLES in that exact same situation wondering if filing a wrongful death lawsuit may be a possibility for them. If you are considering a similar action, you should know who the state of Florida allows to file (and to benefit from) such a lawsuit. 

Section 768.20 of the Florida state statutes shows that only a decedent’s personal representative can formally file a wrongful death lawsuit. However, such action is typically brought on behalf of the decedent’s survivors. The state defines “survivors” as: 

  • Spouses
  • Children
  • Parents

When to talk to a personal injury attorney

Suffering an injury accident can lead to many pressing questions and concerns. "How will I pay my medical bills?" "Will I fully recover?" Speaking with a personal injury lawyer could put your fears to rest.

A lawyer can give you trustworthy information about your specific accident, as well as related Florida laws in general. Whether you were injured in a car accident or attacked by a dog, a lawyer can help you recover financial compensation.

Proving who is liable when a truck driver is speeding

When you are involved in a truck accident where a trucker is speeding, the easy thing to do may be to immediately assume such a driver to be reckless and indifferent towards the safety of others. Yet is that really the case? Truck drivers know their vehicles better than most, and thus should also understand the dangers inherent with driving them at high speeds. Understanding this, you might be prompted to then ask why they would speed? Many in your same situation have come to us here at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles with the same question. 

You likely experience the pressure to perform in your own career and thus understand how such pressure might sometimes prompt you to rush through your work. Truck drivers are no exception to this. Their performance is often gauged on on-time deliveries. Their employers gain and retain business by ensuring prompt delivery times, and are therefore incentivized to offer clients the best time estimates. This could directly lead to pressure being put on drivers to do all that is necessary to quickly complete their routes (which could include subtle indications that speeding may be tolerated if it means completing a delivery on time). If such pressure does indeed exist, an argument might be made that it is not the fault of the driver that hit you for speeding, but rather their employer. 

Bill proposes new SSDI program

Many people in Florida who become unable to work and earn an income due to a disabling condition or injury have often looked to Social Security Disability Insurance as a way of helping to provide for themselves and their families. This crucial benefit is run through the Social Security Administration. Some people are even eligible for SSDI and Supplemental Security Income benefits at the same time, depending on their income and other factors.

There are apparently some lawmakers who assert that the SSDI program has been abused over the years, with people collecting payments when they potentially could have been or should have been working. One congressional representative recently introduced new legislation on Capitol Hill that attempts to address this alleged problem. As reported by The Ripon Advance, the bill aims to establish a program that promotes a return to work while still providing SSDI support to participants for some period of time.

Defining a survival action

Many may consider taking legal action immediately following a car accident, yet circumstances may prevent them from actually doing so. You might have a loved one in such a situation. Oftentimes, they may choose to wait to take action until they have recovered from their injuries. Yet what if your loved one eventually succumbs to those injuries. Many to whom this has happened have come to us here at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles thinking that the chance to pursue a lawsuit against those responsible for their loved ones' accidents has passed. If you share the same concern, not to worry; your window is not yet shut. 

In such a scenario, you can pursue a survival action on your loved one's behalf. Section 46.021 of Florida's state statutes says that a cause of action survives the death of the one that it belongs to. What this means is that if your loved one had cause to seek action for a car accident that they were involved in prior to their death, that cause remains in place even after their gone. You can thus pursue the claim in their stead as if they were still alive. 

Hearing loss is America's most common workplace injury

Hearing loss is America’s most common workplace injury

Construction workers, loggers and commercial fisherman face undeniably dangerous work environments. But America’s most common workplace injury is not industry-specific. It afflicts workers in a broad range of occupations, and can permanently affect their quality of life and ability to earn a living.

A new report says hearing loss has become the most common work injury. Millions of American workers are exposed each year to potentially hazardous noise levels on the job.

Assigning liability in your truck accident case

A collision with a semi-truck in West Palm Beach will likely leave you facing inordinate expenses either from medical bills or vehicle repair costs (or a combination of both). Oftentimes, those expenses may be more than insurance payouts can cover, leaving you with little choice but to seek compensation. Many in your same position have come to us here at Rosenthal, Levy, Simon & Ryles questioning who assumes liability in such a case: the truck driver who caused the accident, or the company that employed them? 

You might immediately assume the answer to the question to be the truck driver. However, a strong argument might be made that were they not required to be on the road to fulfill the duties of their employment, the accident might never have occurred in the first place. Thus, their employer should share some of the blame, right? 

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