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Florida Negligent Security Lawyers For Shooting Victim

Florida Shooting At Apartment Complex Or Shopping Center

A shooting death at an apartment complex, mall, hotel, or shopping center in Florida is often foreseeable and preventable. Our Florida crime victims’ rights lawyers focus on fighting for justice for our clients and trying to hold those who contributed to the crime responsible to compensate our clients for their losses. Florida law allows crime victims to pursue civil claims in addition to any criminal case which may be pursued by the State Attorneys’ Office.

If you were shot in a Florida apartment complex, mall, hotel, or shopping center, or a loved one was killed by gunfire at an apartment complex or shopping center in Florida, call a Florida shooting victim lawyer at the Law Offices of Jason Turchin today for a free consultation at (800) 337-7755. We are open late and after hours to take your call and would love to speak with you to see how we can help.

We also handle crime victim claims on behalf of those shot or killed in a Florida apartment complex or shopping center on a contingency fee basis. This means that you don’t have to pay us any money up front or out of pocket. We only get paid if you recover compensation for the incident. Otherwise, we waive all fees and costs.

When Can a Business or Apartment Complex be Found Responsible for Death or Injury of a Shooting Victim?

Commercial properties generally have a duty under Florida law to provide reasonable or adequate security to protect its residents, tenants or guests from crime which is foreseeable. The four elements of negligence are:

  1. A legal duty owed by defendant to plaintiff,
  2. Breach of that duty by defendant,
  3. An injury to plaintiff legally caused by defendant’s breach, and
  4. Damages as a result of the injury.

In general, the landlord or property owner’s duty is to exercise reasonable care to maintain the premises in a reasonably safe condition. The issue of foreseeability said to be lacking in the case of criminal attack relates to the elements of duty and causation.

Failure to Protect Against Criminal Acts

When a landlord or property owner breaches their duty by failing to provide a reasonably safe condition, it may be liable for all damages to the victim or the victim’s family, including pain and suffering, medical expenses, funeral expenses, and more.

How do I Find a Crime Victim Lawyer Near me in Florida?

Finding the best crime victim lawyer in Florida to help with your case may require some research. Not many lawyers actually have significant experience handling crime victim claims, like negligent security claims, in Florida. Top Florida negligent security lawyers generally have handled many shooting and murder claims, understand the nuances involved in handling these cases, know how to do proper background checks on properties and individuals, have experience gathering evidence, and can help walk the victims or their families through both the civil claim and the criminal case.

While you can search Google to find a crime victim rights lawyer near you, some of these phrases may also help direct you to an experienced murder victim lawyer in Florida:

  • “Rights of murder victim”
  • “Rights of murder victim”
  • “Negligent security lawyer”
  • “Compensation for crime victim”

We handle crime victim claims statewide, so if someone you knew was shot to death in Miami, Tampa, Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando, Pensacola, Opa Locka or anywhere else in Florida, call one of our murder victim rights’ lawyers at the Law Offices of Jason Turchin today at (800) 337-7755 for a free consultation.

What Types of Compensation Can a Crime Victim Get in Florida?

The amount and type of damages a victim can recover depend on whether the victim suffered injuries or was killed. Our goal is to pursue all financial compensation for the victim of a crime in Florida.

If the Florida shooting victim was injured, he or she may be entitled to compensation for the following, among other possible claims:

  • Money to cover all past medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of earning capacity as a result of the injury
  • Past pain and suffering
  • Future pain and suffering
  • Reimbursement for out of pocket expenses
  • Punitive damages

If a child was the victim of a shooting and was paralyzed or suffered brain damage or another catastrophic injury, the child’s parent may make a claim for loss of consortium to recover money for their loss. Under Florida law, the Florida Supreme Court recognized a parent’s right to recover for the permanent loss of filial consortium due to a significant injury which results in the child’s permanent total disability. The court defined loss of consortium to include not only the traditional loss of the child’s services and earnings, as at common law, but also the loss of companionship, society, love, affection, and solace of the injured child.

Similarly, if a parent or spouse was paralyzed, in a coma, suffered brain damage or was otherwise catastrophically injured, a person who, through negligence, caused significant permanent injury to the natural or adoptive parent of an unmarried dependent resulting in a permanent total disability shall be liable to the dependent for damages, including damages for permanent loss of services, comfort, companionship, and society. This means that a child of a parent shot and paralyzed at an apartment complex, for example, may bring an additional claim separate from the parent’s claim against the complex for his or her loss of services, comfort, companionship, and society.

If a victim died in Florida as a result of a shooting, the victim’s family may be entitled to recover money for the following:

  • Each survivor may recover the value of lost support and services from the date of the decedent’s injury to her or his death, with interest, and future loss of support and services from the date of death and reduced to present value.
  • The surviving spouse may also recover for loss of the decedent’s companionship and protection and for mental pain and suffering from the date of injury.
  • Minor children of the decedent, and all children of the decedent if there is no surviving spouse, may also recover for lost parental companionship, instruction, and guidance and for mental pain and suffering from the date of injury.
  • Each parent of a deceased minor child may also recover for mental pain and suffering from the date of injury. Each parent of an adult child may also recover for mental pain and suffering if there are no other survivors.
  • Medical or funeral expenses due to the decedent’s injury or death may be recovered by a survivor who has paid them.
  • The decedent’s personal representative may recover for the decedent’s estate the following:
    • Loss of earnings of the deceased from the date of injury to the date of death, less lost support of survivors excluding contributions in kind, with interest. Loss of the prospective net accumulations of an estate, which might reasonably have been expected but for the wrongful death, reduced to present money value, may also be recovered:
      • If the decedent’s survivors include a surviving spouse or lineal descendants; or
      • If the decedent is not a minor child as defined in Florida Statute section 768.18(2), there are no lost support and services recoverable under subsection (1), and there is a surviving parent.
    • Medical or funeral expenses due to the decedent’s injury or death that have become a charge against her or his estate or that were paid by or on behalf of decedent.

What are Florida’s Crime Victim Bill of Rights?

Crime victims in Florida have certain limited rights afforded to them in the criminal case. These rights are different for a victim in a civil case. The rights in the criminal case are balanced against the rights of the accused to have a fair trial. In the civil case, the victim or his or her family may be the Plaintiffs in the case, with far more control typically than in the criminal case.

In Florida, the victim or family of a deceased person are generally afforded the following rights, for example:

  1. The right to due process and to be treated with fairness and respect for the victim’s dignity.
  2. The right to be free from intimidation, harassment, and abuse.
  3. The right, within the judicial process, to be reasonably protected from the accused and any person acting on behalf of the accused.
  4. The right to have the safety and welfare of the victim and the victim’s family considered when setting bail, including setting pretrial release conditions that protect the safety and welfare of the victim and the victim’s family.
  5. The right to prevent the disclosure of information or records that could be used to locate or harass the victim or the victim’s family, or which could disclose confidential or privileged information of the victim.
  6. When requested, a victim shall have the following specific rights:
    1. The right to reasonable, accurate, and timely notice of, and to be present at, all public proceedings involving the criminal conduct, including, but not limited to, trial, plea, sentencing, or adjudication, even if the victim will be a witness at the proceeding, notwithstanding any rule to the contrary. A victim shall also be provided reasonable, accurate, and timely notice of any release or escape of the defendant or delinquent, and any proceeding during which a right of the victim is implicated.
    2. The right to be heard in any public proceeding involving pretrial or other release from any form of legal constraint, plea, sentencing, adjudication, or parole, and any proceeding during which a right of the victim is implicated.
    3. The right to confer with the prosecuting attorney concerning any plea agreements, participation in pretrial diversion programs, release, restitution, sentencing, or any other disposition of the case.
    4. The right to provide information regarding the impact of the offender’s conduct on the victim and the victim’s family to the individual responsible for conducting any presentence investigation or compiling any presentence investigation report, and to have any such information considered in any sentencing recommendations submitted to the court.
    5. The right to receive a copy of any presentence report, and any other report or record relevant to the exercise of a victim’s right, except for such portions made confidential or exempt by law.
    6. The right to be informed of the conviction, sentence, adjudication, place and time of incarceration, or other disposition of the convicted offender, any scheduled release date of the offender, and the release of or the escape of the offender from custody.
    7. The right to be informed of all postconviction processes and procedures, to participate in such processes and procedures, to provide information to the release authority to be considered before any release decision is made, and to be notified of any release decision regarding the offender. The parole or early release authority shall extend the right to be heard to any person harmed by the offender.
    8. The right to be informed of clemency and expungement procedures, to provide information to the governor, the court, any clemency board, and other authority in these procedures, and to have that information considered before a clemency or expungement decision is made; and to be notified of such decision in advance of any release of the offender.
  7. The rights of the victim, as provided in subparagraph (6)a., subparagraph (6)b., or subparagraph (6)c., that apply to any first appearance proceeding are satisfied by a reasonable attempt by the appropriate agency to notify the victim and convey the victim’s views to the court.
  8. The right to the prompt return of the victim’s property when no longer needed as evidence in the case.
  9. The right to full and timely restitution in every case and from each convicted offender for all losses suffered, both directly and indirectly, by the victim as a result of the criminal conduct.
  10. The right to proceedings free from unreasonable delay, and to a prompt and final conclusion of the case and any related postjudgment proceedings.

What Does Florida’s Crime Victim Assistance Fund Give Money For?

In order to qualify for benefits from the State of Florida’s Crime Victim Compensation Fund, Florida Statute 960.13 provides that an award may be made if the victim can show that:

  1. A crime was committed;
  2. Such crime directly resulted in personal injury to, psychiatric or psychological injury to, or death of, the victim or intervenor; and
  3. Such crime was promptly reported to the proper authorities.

To be considered promptly reported, the victim must generally show that the crime was reported within Seventy-two hours after the occurrence of such crime, if the crime occurred before October 1, 2019; or within Five days after the occurrence of such crime, if the crime occurred on or after October 1, 2019, unless the department, for good cause shown, finds the delay to have been justified.

Any award shall be granted on an “actual need” basis and shall be provided subsequent to all benefits provided by primary insurance carriers, including, but not limited to, health and accident insurers, workers’ compensation, and automobile accident coverage. That is, payment made in accordance with this section shall be considered payment of last resort that follows all other sources. This means that a victim should first consider filing a civil claim through a Florida Crime Victims’ Rights Lawyer before filing a claim with the Florida Crime Victim Compensation Fund, as any liability insurer may be primary before the Fund would pay any award.

Sometimes there are several people entitled to an award following the death of a person who is the victim of a crime in Florida. For example, one person may have paid funeral expenses and another may have lost income from the deceased person. The total award may be apportioned among the claimants based upon their losses.

Any award made pursuant to the Florida Crime Victim Compensation Fund laws, except an award for loss of support or catastrophic injury, shall be reduced by the amount of any payments or services received or to be received by the claimant as a result of the injury or death:

  1. From or on behalf of the person who committed the crime; provided, however, that a restitution award ordered by a court to be paid to the claimant by the person who committed the crime shall not reduce any award made pursuant to this chapter unless it appears to the department that the claimant will be unjustly enriched thereby.
  2. From any other public or private source or provider, including, but not limited to, an award of workers’ compensation.
  3. From agencies mandated by certain other Florida statutes to provide or pay for services.
  4. From certain emergency awards.

The total award a victim or the victim’s family may receive from Florida’s Crime Victim Compensation Fund may not exceed:

  1. Ten thousand dollars for treatment;
  2. Ten thousand dollars for continuing or periodic mental health care of a minor victim whose normal emotional development is adversely affected by being the victim of a crime;
  3. A total of $25,000 for all compensable costs; or
  4. $50,000 when the department makes a written finding that the victim has suffered a catastrophic injury as a direct result of the crime.

As you can tell, the fund does not pay a lot when there is a catastrophic injury or the death of a victim. Crime victims may be entitled to millions of dollars, and a civil claim for the crime victim may be the better avenue to pursue. Our Florida crime victim’s rights lawyers have recovered millions of dollars in cases involving crimes, like hit and runs, shooting, molestation, drunk driving and more.

What is the Federal Crime Victims’ Rights Act?

Under Federal law, any crime victim may be entitled to certain rights, in addition to any civil claim which may be brought against a hotel, commercial property, apartment complex or restaurant. These generally include:

  1. The right to be reasonably protected from the accused.
  2. The right to reasonable, accurate, and timely notice of any public court proceeding, or any parole proceeding, involving the crime or of any release or escape of the accused.
  3. The right not to be excluded from any such public court proceeding, unless the court, after receiving clear and convincing evidence, determines that testimony by the victim would be materially altered if the victim heard other testimony at that proceeding.
  4. The right to be reasonably heard at any public proceeding in the district court involving release, plea, sentencing, or any parole proceeding.
  5. The reasonable right to confer with the attorney for the Government in the case.
  6. The right to full and timely restitution as provided in law.
  7. The right to proceedings free from unreasonable delay.
  8. The right to be treated with fairness and with respect for the victim’s dignity and privacy.
  9. The right to be informed in a timely manner of any plea bargain or deferred prosecution agreement.
  10. The right to be informed of the rights under this section and the services described in section 503(c) of the Victims’ Rights and Restitution Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 10607(c)) and provided contact information for the Office of the Victims’ Rights Ombudsman of the Department of Justice.

Are Victims Entitled to Restitution Under Federal Law?

Pursuant to the Federal Mandatory Victims Restitution Act (MVRA), when sentencing a defendant convicted of certain federal offenses, the court shall order, in addition to, or in the case of a misdemeanor, in addition to or in lieu of, any other penalty authorized by law, that the defendant make restitution to the victim of the offense or, if the victim is deceased, to the victim’s estate.

In the case of an offense resulting in bodily injury to a victim, the Court may order the Defendant to:

  1. Pay an amount equal to the cost of necessary medical and related professional services and devices relating to physical, psychiatric, and psychological care, including nonmedical care and treatment rendered in accordance with a method of healing recognized by the law of the place of treatment;
  2. Pay an amount equal to the cost of necessary physical and occupational therapy and rehabilitation; and
  3. Reimburse the victim for income lost by such victim as a result of such offense;

If the offense causes bodily injury that results in the death of the victim, the Court may also order the Defendant to pay an amount equal to the cost of necessary funeral and related services.

The Court may also order that the Defendant reimburse the victim for lost income and necessary child care, transportation, and other expenses incurred during participation in the investigation or prosecution of the offense or attendance at proceedings related to the offense.

Does Life Insurance Still Pay a Claim if the Insured is Murdered in Florida?

Life insurance may still pay out if someone is murdered in Florida. It depends on the type of life insurance, and how the death occurred. If the policy was a traditional life insurance policy or whole life policy, for example, and the death occurred more than 2 years from the time the policy was taken out, the policy should pay out if there are no other exclusions. If the life insurance policy is an accidental life insurance policy, we would generally look at the terms within the policy to see if it is payable.

Another factor of consideration is who the murderer was. Under Florida’s Slayer Statute, a killer cannot benefit financially from a deceased’s life insurance policy. In that case, the policy should still be payable, but the killer would be skipped. If there was a contingent beneficiary listed on the policy, that person should be entitled to make the claim for benefits. If there was no contingent beneficiary listed, then the deceased person’s family may be able to make the claim on behalf of the Estate of the deceased. That is, our Florida probate lawyers could help set up an Estate in Florida Probate Court to get a Personal Representative appointed. That person could then make the claim for benefits. The life insurance company would then generally send us the check made out to the Estate, and we could process the claim through the Probate Court. In that case, we would often look to see whether the deceased person had a will.

If he or she had a will, the proceeds would be distributed pursuant to the terms of the will, subject to creditors and other provisions under the law. For example, the killer would still not be entitled to the money through the Estate and may be deemed to predecease the decedent in Probate Court as well when we look to distribute the proceeds. If he or she did not have a will, there is a different statute we look to for guidance as to the order of preference for who may be the Personal Representative, and who is considered a beneficiary entitled to the proceeds through Probate Court. Feel free to call our Florida life insurance lawyers at the Law Offices of Jason Turchin at (800) 337-7755 for a free consultation.

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