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RECENT RELEASES - DISTRICT COURTS OF APPEAL & CIRCUIT COURTS

Torts -- Medical malpractice -- Arbitration -- Presuit requirements -- By agreeing to arbitrate plaintiff's medical malpractice claim pursuant to section 766.207, Florida Statutes, defendants waived presuit notice and investigation requirements
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Torts -- Sovereign immunity -- Indian tribe -- Trial court departed from essential requirements of law when it denied tribe's motion to dismiss plaintiff's action against tribe for injuries resulting from slip and fall in restroom at hotel and casino owned by tribe where tribe established that no resolution, ordinance or compact including a waiver of immunity was enforceable when plaintiff's claim arose -- Although resolution passed by Tribal Council authorized tribe to enter into certain compact that provided a limited waiver of immunity, that compact was held invalid by Florida Supreme Court
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Traffic infractions -- Red light violations -- Red light cameras -- Review of red light camera images authorized by section 316.0083(1)(a), Florida Statutes, allows a municipality's vendor, as its agent, to review and sort images to forward to a police officer where (1) the vendor's decisions in this regard are strictly circumscribed by contract language, guidelines promulgated by the municipality, and actual practices, such that the vendor's decisions are essentially ministerial and non-discretionary; (2) these ministerial decisions are further limited by an overarching policy of automatically passing all close calls to the police for their review; (3) it is the police officer that makes the actual decision whether probable cause exists and whether a notice and citation should issue; and (4) the officer's decision that probable cause exists and a citation issues consists of a full, professional review by an identified officer who is responsible for that de cision and does not merely acquiesce in any determination made by the vendor -- Questions certified: 1. Does the review of red light camera images authorized by section 316.0083(1)(a), Florida Statutes (2014), allow a municipality's vendor, as its agent, to sort images to forward to the law enforcement officer, where the controlling contract and City guidelines limit the Vendor to deciding whether the images contain easy-to-identify characteristics and where only the law enforcement officer makes the determination whether probable cause exists and whether to issue a notice of violation and citation? 2. Is it an illegal delegation of police power for the vendor to print and mail the notices and citations, through a totally automated process without human involvement, after the law enforcement officer makes the determination that probable cause exists and to issue a notice of violation and citation? 3. Does the fact that the citation data is electronically transmitted to th e Clerk of Court from the vendor's server via a totally automated process without human involvement violate section 316.650(3)(c), Florida Statutes (2014), when it is the law enforcement officer who affirmatively authorizes the transmission process?
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Torts -- Negligence -- Exculpatory clause in vendor agreement -- Motion to dismiss vicarious liability claim brought by injured vendor against company whose independent contractor dropped crate onto vendor off of company-owned forklift -- Indemnification clause in vendor's contract, which company seeks to use as exculpatory clause, does not meet requirement that exculpatory clause clearly and unequivocally place ordinary and knowledgeable person on notice of what he is contracting away where clause is not labeled as exculpatory, waiver or release and body of clause does not purport to waive, release or discharge any claims by vendor against company -- Further, clause only provides for indemnification against claim for personal injury or workers' compensation benefits brought by employees of vendor, not vendor himself
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Torts -- Premises liability -- Negligent misrepresentation -- Arbitration -- Motion to dismiss former professional football player's claims against team related to MRSA outbreak at team training facility in favor of arbitration is denied -- Claims premised on negligent maintenance of facility and misrepresentations regarding sanitization of facility have no contractual nexus to NFL player contract or NFL collective bargaining agreement, but instead emanate from common law duties that professionals and owners or lessees of commercial premises owe to invitees, third parties, and public
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