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Miami Florida Law Blog

Are oral contracts legal?

A binding contract is a legal document that holds both parties to their agreement. A contract can be written or oral, which is something many people don't understand. When you say that you'll do something and both parties agree, that's a verbal contract. Certain types of contracts, like real estate contracts, must be in writing, but for other types of contracts, oral agreements can be enough.

It should be clear that written contracts are preferred over oral contracts. Why? They're easier to prove.

Watch out, even leashed dogs can bite

It's a beautiful time of year, and many people take the time to get their pets out of the house. They may take them to the beach for a run or walk them through the city.

Although most people find leashed dogs acceptable throughout the city, they can cause real problems if they aren't monitored. Two dogs passing too closely to one another could fight and cause each other injuries. A dog that doesn't like an approaching stranger could suddenly pull away and attack.

What happens if a contract's breached?

Breaching a contract is a serious offense. If you have a contract with another business, and they don't hold up their end of the arrangements, it could put you in a difficult position. No one wants to turn to the law for help, but when your business is on the line, a violation of a contract may be enough to result in a claim.

Your contract sets up certain obligations that you and the other party must fulfill. For example, if you have a contract where you expect the delivery of goods from Monday through Friday and pay on Wednesday, but the company delivering goods never arrives, they've breached the contract you have together.

Crash leads to injuries, 1 death after police pursuit

It's shocking how some people feel that it's acceptable to put other people's lives at risk. Take, for example, a case reported on Feb. 24 out of Miami.

Miami police reported that a woman in her 40s was killed after being hit by a vehicle on that afternoon. The vehicle had been involved in a pursuit with police and ran a stop sign. It hit one vehicle belonging to an off-duty officer and then went on to jump the sidewalk and strike the woman.

Not all accusations of medical malpractice are legitimate

As a medical provider, one of your worst nightmares is doing your best with a patient's care and finding out that they're seeking a malpractice lawsuit against you. Even if you did nothing wrong, some patients believe that this is an easy way to get a settlement or to be paid for what they perceive as mistakes.

The reality is that not everything a patient thinks is a medical mistake truly is. For example, after a surgery, a patient may have trouble recovering. This isn't always due to mistakes a surgeon made. Instead, it might simply be that the patient's body is having a hard time coping with the injuries. Some people take more time to heal, and complications are sometimes unpredictable.

A good defense protects your business' bottom line

As an insurer, it's in your best interests to limit the amount you pay out in benefits. Of course, you do right by your clients and pay out when they have legitimate claims. However, not all claims are legitimate, and you need to know when you can reject claims fairly.

It isn't always easy to tell someone that you're not going to pay their claim. It's particularly difficult when they appeal or sue over your company acting in "bad faith," even when they have not supplied you with any information to show that their claim is legitimate.

Multiple crashes show the importance of following traffic laws

There were several major collisions that took place on Feb. 9 in and around Miami. These collisions were likely preventable or could have been mitigated in many cases, potentially protecting those who were hurt or killed. Sadly, several people were killed and others were hurt in these crashes.

One crash took place in Northeast Miami-Dade when a pickup truck traveling west on Northeast 10th Avenue attempted to turn and collided with another vehicle. The car involved in the crash went off the road and into a nearby pole, leading to the death of the driver.

Government shutdown affects business contracts

When you're contracted to work for another company, you expect to get paid. That's a problem that is faced by Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents at Punta Gorda Airport (PGD). The government has already shut down once, and if there is a shutdown again, it could mean that these agents are again working without pay.

TSA is keeping the airport open with federal agents, but the current airport's contractor is in a legal bind. Why? It's not normal for federal agents to work in PGD. The airport has contracts with private companies, and two companies are currently in court seeking that contract.

Make sure your attorney is informed about client claims

Your construction team is among the best, so you were shocked when a client came back to tell you that they wanted to file a claim for construction defects. They claim that there was damage to concrete, problems with their building's structure and even water damage. To have all these defects, a serious problem would have had to have happened during construction, but no one on the team could think of anything that hadn't been done correctly.

There's a chance that all the client says is true, but the fault may not lie with you or your team. Defects could be a result of faulty materials or systems instead of defects in how the systems were installed or how the materials were used.

Be wary of ballpark estimates in a contract

If you consider signing a contract that does not really specify the financial details, instead giving you a ballpark estimate that may or may not be accurate, you need to be concerned. Take the time to look over the details and don't sign anything until you really understand what you're agreeing to.

For instance, maybe you're hiring a contractor for a construction project. You know what your budget is and what the fair market value is. Rather than giving you a direct bid with a stated cost, though, the contractor gives you a ballpark estimate with a rough range of possible prices.

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