Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Goldman, Tiseo & Sturges Attorneys at Law
3 followers
3 followers
About
Goldman, Tiseo & Sturges Attorneys at Law's posts

Post has attachment
Acceptance of Partial Payment Could Result In Full Satisfaction of Debt

Many condominium, cooperative and homeowner associations have accepted partial payments for delinquent accounts under the premise that receiving some money is better than receiving no money at all.  However, a recent Florida 2nd District Court of Appeal Case should give associations pause before they make the decision to accept a partial payment.
On August 8, 2014, the 2nd District Court of Appeal for Florida issued its decision in the case of St. Croix Lane Trust, Et Al v. St. Croix at Pelican Marsh Condominium Association, Inc., 144 So.3d 639 (Fla. 2 DCA 2014).  In this case, the owner of a condominium unit appealed a final summary judgment declaring that no accord and satisfaction occurred when the condominium association accepted a check that the unit owner tendered in full satisfaction of the association’s disputed claim for past due assessments and other charges.  The Plaintiff was the successful bidder at a foreclosure sale which occurred as a result of the association foreclosing its lien on the condominium unit for past due assessments and other charges against the previous owner.  The association elected not to bid at the foreclosure sale and the Plaintiff was the successful bidder for $100.00.  The association’s attorney wrote the Plaintiff a letter demanding payment of the full amount of the assessments and other charges due.  The trust took the position that only the first quarterly assessment of $840.00 was due.  The trust attorney responded to the association attorney’s demand by enclosing a check for $840.00 to settle the matter and indicated in the cover letter that the check was tendered as full and final satisfaction of all claims made against the trust and the property for the amounts demanded in the association attorney’s letter.  The trust attorney’s letter stated that negotiation of the enclosed check shall be deemed an acceptance of the offer of settlement and shall be a full and final satisfaction of all claims against the trust and the property.  The association elected to apply the payment as a partial payment pursuant to Florida Statute §718.116(3).  The Circuit Court determined that the trust was jointly and severally liable with the previous owner for all amounts claimed by the association through the date of the foreclosure sale, less the $840.00 payment rejecting the trust’s argument that Florida Statute §673.311 relating to accord and satisfaction applied.
However, on appeal, the 2nd District Court of Appeal found that §673.311 applied rather than Florida Statute §718.116(3).  The Appellate Court found that under §673.311(2), the claim is discharged if the person whom the claim is asserted proves that the instrument or an accompanying written communication contained a conspicuous statement to the effect that the instrument was tendered as full satisfaction of the claim.  Subsection 3 of that statute provides certain exceptions and the Appellate Court found that none of the exceptions provided for in the statute were applicable in this case.
The lesson for this case is that associations should be careful in accepting payments for less than the full amount of the claimed debt.  Any tender of payment for less than the full amount of the debt which contains any type of restrictive language or is accompanied by a letter containing any type of restrictive language should be carefully reviewed to determine if the St. Croix case would be applicable.  Caution should be exercised by associations in acceptance of partial payment without a carefully drafted payment plan agreement prepared by the association’s counsel.  Any question whatsoever regarding the acceptance of partial payment should be directed to the association’s attorney.

Post has attachment
Does Your Automobile / Motorcycle Insurance Provide You with “Full Coverage”? Almost Certainly Not…

Full coverage Punta Gorda motorcycle insurance Port Charlotte motorcycle Insurance
I have handled countless automobile, motorcycle, and bicycle accidents in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda, and Englewood in the last 20 years. At the beginning of every claim, I ask my prospective client “Do you know what levels of insurance coverage you have?” I’d venture to say that 80% of people respond with the same answer: “Oh, I have full coverage”. Of all the folks who believe they have “full coverage”, in my experience less than 1 in 10 actually does. Full coverage Punta Gorda motorcycle insurance Port Charlotte motorcycle Insurance dos not always fully cover you in the case of an accident!
Most people believe they have “full coverage” because they purchased a policy which includes “coverage” under every category where insurance is offered, such as:
Personal Injury Protection (pays for your medical bills)
Property Damage (pays for damage to other vehicle if you cause accident)
Comprehensive (pays for damages to your vehicle caused by another driver)
Towing Expenses
Vehicle Rental
Bodily Injury (compensates another who you’ve negligently injured in an accident)
Underinsured/Uninsured Motorist (compensates you for injury if driver who caused accident is uninsured or underinsured)
People believe merely having all seven (7) of these coverages, regardless of the actual amount of coverage they’ve purchased, is “full coverage”, because Florida law (shamefully, I might add) only requires two (2) of these coverages, i.e. $10,000.00 in Property Damage coverage and $10,000.00 in Personal Injury Protection benefits. Let me show you with some simple examples why having merely purchased all of these coverages as part of your insurance policy, without focusing on the actual amounts of the coverages you’ve purchased, does not equate to having “full coverage”. I will focus on Property Damage coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood, Bodily Injury coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood, and Unsinured/Underinsured Motorist coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood. These are the three (3) coverages for Full coverage Punta Gorda motorcycle insurance Port Charlotte motorcycle insurance where most people fall woefully short, and don’t realize it until it’s too late.
Property Damage Coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood:
Florida law only requires us to carry $10,000.00 in Property Damage coverage, which pays for property damage you caused as a result of negligently operating your car or motorcycle. If you cause more than $10,000.00 in property damage, however, you are personally responsible for all damages above the $10,000.00 limit you purchased. If you accidentally go through a red light and broadside a newer model luxury car, do you feel $10,000.00 in Property Damage coverage is enough to cover that loss? Probably not. If you accidentally rear-end a vehicle stopped in line at a red light and that vehicles pushes forward into another vehicle, do you feel $10,000.00 in Property Damage coverage is enough to cover the property damage of two vehicles? Probably not. In these scenarios, other drivers and their insurance companies will be suing you personally for all of their property damage over and above your $10,000.00 Property damage insurance limit.
Solution Regarding Property Damage Coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood:
Purchase at least $50,000.00 in Property Damage coverage, but we recommend $100,000.00 in light of the increasing cost of automobiles and their repair.
Bodily Injury Coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood:
Bodily Injury coverage compensates someone you’ve negligently injured in an accident. Please recall that Florida law does not require you to purchase any Bodily Injury coverage. Nonetheless, you responsibly decide to purchase some level of Bodily Injury coverage. You can generally purchase this coverage for limits anywhere from a minimum of $10,000.00, all the way up through $1,000,000.00. So, how much should you purchase to make sure that you’re “fully covered”?
Statistics seem to bear out that each of us, at least once in our lives, will cause an accident that involves serious injury to another, i.e. bone fractures, a surgical procedure performed, substantial scarring, etc. Serious injury claims usually involve voluntary settlements or jury verdicts which exceed $100,000.00. If you’ve purchased only $50,000.00 in Bodily Injury coverage, do you feel you’re fully covered if this scenario occurs? Clearly not. In this instance, you can be sued by the injured party, and any judgment entered in excess of your $50,000.00 Bodily Injury insurance limit will be entered against you personally. Obtaining the proper level of Bodily Injury coverage, and the financial protection it provides, is even more important for those who have reached a level of financial comfort and security in their lives. The more financial success you’ve enjoyed, the more you have to protect.
Recommendations Regarding Bodily Injury Coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood:
Unless financially impossible for you to afford, never carry less than $100,000.00 Bodily Injury coverage.
The more assets you own and personal wealth you’ve accumulated, the more Bodily Injury coverage you need to purchase.
When deciding on the proper level of Bodily Injury coverage to purchase, have an honest discussion with your local insurance agent or an attorney like myself regarding your assets and personal wealth. This conversation takes less than 30 minutes. Unfortunately, this incredibly important discussion almost never occurs when people purchase their automobile/motorcycle insurance coverage. The amount of Bodily Injury coverage you purchase should be directly related to the amount of assets you’ve accumulated. The more assets and wealth you have, the more Bodily Injury coverage you require.
Unisnured /Underinsured Motorist Coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood:
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverages compensates you if you’re injured by another driver who either doesn’t have insurance, or has Bodily Injury coverage in an amount that’s less than the value of your injury claim. Please recall that Florida law (shamefully) does not require vehicle owners to carry any Bodily Injury coverage at all. As a result, if a negligent driver either without insurance or who has purchased an amount of Bodily Injury coverage that is far less than the value of your injury claim causes you serious injury, there may be no coverage (or very little coverage) to compensate you for your loss. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage protects you from this all-too-common scenario in Florida. You can generally purchase this coverage for limits anywhere from a minimum of $10,000.00, all the way up through $1,000,000.00. So, how much should you purchase to make sure that you’re “fully covered”?
Statistics coincidentally seem to bear out that not only will each of us, at least once in our lives, cause an accident that involves serious injury to another, they also indicate that each of us will be seriously injured by another in an accident at least once in our lives. Knowing these statistics, obtaining a proper level of Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits is crucial in Florida, a state in which other drivers are not required to carry any Bodily Injury coverage whatsoever.
Once again, serious injury claims usually involve voluntary settlements or jury verdicts which exceed $100,000.00. If you’ve purchased only $25,000.00 in Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage, do you feel you’re fully covered if this common scenario occurs? Clearly not. In this instance, for example, you could suffer a $500,000.00 injury and collect only $25,000.00 because of a lack of insurance coverage limits between the other driver’s Bodily Injury and your Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverages. This sad scenario happens each and every day in Florida.
Purchasing Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage in substantial amounts is particularly important for motorcyclists. There are very few motorcycle accidents which involve only “minor” injuries, because motorcyclists have little protection. Whereas the occupant of an automobile is protected by seat-belts, air-bags, and the carriage of the vehicle, the motorcyclist has no such protections. Motorcyclists often contact the roadway at substantial force, which almost always brings about serious injuries such as fractures, internal injuries, paralysis, or death.
Recommendations Regarding Uninsured / Underinsured Motorist Coverage in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood:
Florida law does not allow you to carry more Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits (which protects you from the negligence of others) than what you carry for Bodily Injury coverage (which protects others from your negligence). As a result, you can never protect yourself from the negligence of others more than you are willing to protect others from your negligence. So if you want to fully protect you and your family, you will need to protect the public fully from you!
Unless financially impossible for you to afford, never carry less than $100,000.00 Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits. If you ride a motorcycle and can afford the coverage, never carry less than $250,000.00 in Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits. Simple accident statistics show that you will almost certainly need this coverage at some point in your life.
Always “stack” your Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage. “Stacking”, the cost of which is fairly minimal, multiplies your level of coverage by the number of automobiles you have on your policy. Thus, if you choose to purchase $100,000.00 in Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits and you have three (3) vehicles on your insurance policy, you in fact have $300,000.00 in Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage.
When deciding on the proper level of Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits to purchase, have an honest discussion with your local insurance agent or an attorney like myself regarding your assets, personal wealth, and family situation. This conversation takes less than 30 minutes. Unfortunately, this incredibly important discussion almost never occurs when people purchase their automobile/motorcycle insurance coverage.
Conclusion
Please take out your automobile or motorcycle insurance policy in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood. Take a look at what coverages you purchased, and more importantly, pay special attention to the amount of coverage you purchased, especially for Bodily Injury coverage and Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits. Ask yourself these simple questions:
“If I caused an accident this week, and the driver I injured suffered a non-surgical wrist fracture, a rotator cuff tear which required surgery, and a serious ankle fracture which required surgery to insert a plate and screws to stabilize the fracture, do I have an appropriate level of Bodily Injury coverage which fairly compensates the injured driver, and in so doing protects me from getting sued?”
“If I were in an accident this week caused by an uninsured or seriously underinsured driver, and I suffered a non-surgical wrist fracture, a rotator cuff tear which required surgery, and a serious ankle fracture which required surgery to insert a plate and screws to stabilize the fracture, do I have an appropriate level of Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist benefits to fairly compensate me and my family for my injuries, lost wages, unpaid medical expenses?”
If your answer to either question is “no”, you, like most others, do not have the “full coverage” you believed you had. If you have additional questions regarding the topic of this blog post, or would like to review your automobile/motorcycle insurance policy in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda and Englewood with me, I would be happy to speak with you.

Post has attachment
Why Drivers in Other Parts of the World Intentionally Kill the Pedestrians they Hit

Imagine the horror of accidentally striking a bicyclist, backing into a young child, or crashing your car into a pedestrian in the Port Charlotte or Punta Gorda Publix shopping center. How would you feel? What are the first three things you would think to do when it comes to motor vehicle accidents in Charlotte County? According to this article in Slate online magazine, which was also discussed on National Public Radio just a few days ago, an alarming number of people in some other parts of the world intentionally kill the pedestrians they hit rather than provide them aid. These types of car “accidents” have been referred to as “double-hit cases”. Please be advised the article contains graphic descriptions of actual accidents caught on film, as well as links to the film itself, and is incredibly disheartening to read.
http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/foreigners/2015/09/why_drivers_in_china_intentionally_kill_the_pedestrians_they_hit_china_s.single.html
Based on the research of the article’s author, a law professor at Fordham University in New York who is a partner in the New York law firm Dorsey & Whitney LLP, it has become economically more beneficial for drivers in some other countries to kill pedestrians and bicyclists rather than “merely” injure them. This phenomenon has become common enough that an adage has been adopted to describe it: “It is better to hit to kill than to hit and injure”. In these locales, the cost of compensating for a life lost is less than the cost of paying for a lifetime of medical care.
The purpose of this post is three-fold:
To get readers to think about the level of automobile insurance coverage they need. Do you have enough automobile insurance coverage should you be involved in a motor vehicle accident in Charlotte County?
To get readers to think about their responsibility, both financially and as human beings, should they cause tragic motor vehicle accidents in Charlotte County.
To appreciate that while automobile insurance laws are weaker than they should be, and the very limited levels of coverage required by the Florida Legislature are far, far less than what they should be required in order to be considered a responsible motorist, these cited “double-hit cases” would clearly not be tolerated by any Court or jury in Florida in regards to motor vehicle accidents in Charlotte County.
Please drive responsibly, protect yourselves and others by being a thoughtful and responsible purchaser of appropriate automobile insurance, and always make rendering aid to the injured your top immediate priority should you be involved in a serious motor vehicle accidents in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda, Englewood or Sarasota involving injuries. For more information on how to protect yourself and others, CONTACT US anytime.

Post has attachment
Goldman, Tiseo & Sturges Attorneys at Law: Jason B. Goldman, Ernest W. Sturges, Jr. and Albert J. Tiseo Jr.
PhotoPhotoPhoto
3 Photos - View album
Wait while more posts are being loaded