Week In Review

Headnotes of selected Florida Supreme Court and District Courts of Appeal cases filed the week of
April 15 - April 19, 2019

Civil Law Headnotes (Jump to Criminal Law Headnotes)

THESE ARE NOT ALL OF THE CASES RELEASED BY THE COURTS FOR THE WEEK.
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Attorney's fees -- Offer of settlement -- Torts -- Maritime law -- Trial court erred in awarding attorney's fees pursuant to section 768.79 in case governed by federal maritime law, which holds generally that, absent an exception, attorney's fees may not be awarded pursuant to a state fee-shifting statute in an admiralty case -- Court recedes from contrary decision in Juneau Tanker Corp. v. Sims
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Attorney's fees -- Prevailing party -- Mutuality of obligation -- Real property -- Enforcement of restrictive covenants -- Lawsuit seeking declaratory judgment that developer breached declaration of restrictive covenants fell within scope of attorney's fees provisions in Declaration, which applied to lawsuits for violations of Declaration or to enjoin or enforce duties therein -- Because claims raised in complaint were within scope of attorney's fees provision, defendant was entitled to attorney's fees pursuant to section 57.105(7) following voluntary dismissal of suit
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Insurance -- Commercial general liability -- Duty to defend -- Trial court improperly relied on extrinsic evidence in entering summary judgment finding that insurer had no duty to defend action against insured which installed failed fire suppressant system in aircraft hangar -- Where insurer claimed that it did not have a duty to defend or indemnify because coverage was barred by policy's total pollution exclusion, it was error for trial court, in granting summary judgment for insurer, to rely on insurer's claims specialist's Material Safety Data Sheet to determine that fire suppressant foam from system was a pollutant and excluded from coverage -- Exception to general rule that insurer's duty to defend is determined by allegations of complaint where claim that there is no duty to defend is based on factual issues that would not normally be alleged in complaint is inapplicable where extrinsic evidence was not uncontroverted or manifestly obvious so as to preclude coverage
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Insurance -- Homeowners -- Hurricane damage -- Trial court erred in granting insured's motion to compel appraisal where insured failed to comply with post-loss conditions of policy -- Insured's generalized description of loss at her examination under oath did not constitute “sworn proof of loss” required by policy, and insured offered no reason for failure to submit public adjuster's itemized claim report before, rather than after, EUO and lawsuit
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Insurance -- Homeowners -- Misrepresentation -- Jury's finding that insureds made material misrepresentations to insurer voided coverage for claimed loss even though jury also awarded damages to insureds
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Criminal Law Headnotes (Jump to Civil Law Headnotes)

THESE ARE NOT ALL OF THE CASES RELEASED BY THE COURTS FOR THE WEEK.
To see others not presented here, log in for more comprehensive weekly listings.

Criminal law -- Double jeopardy -- Collateral estoppel component of double jeopardy did not bar state from introducing, at defendant's retrial on murder and conspiracy charges, an acquaintance's testimony that defendant had solicited him to commit murder, although this testimony was the factual basis for the solicitation charge for which defendant was acquitted at his first trial -- Collateral estoppel does not bar government from retrying defendant after jury has returned irreconcilably inconsistent verdicts of conviction and acquittal and the convictions are later vacated for legal error unrelated to the inconsistency -- Where jury in first trial convicted defendant of conspiring with codefendant to murder victim, but simultaneously acquitted him of the solicitation that proved the existence of the conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt, the original verdict was irreconcilably inconsistent, and state was not barred from introducing testimony about the solicitation to establish that defendant and co-defendant conspired to murder the victim
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