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New laws
The new Florida laws going into effect next month Nearly 150 bills set to take effect on July 1, 2024 Florida lawmakers and Gov. Ron...
Victoria Orlando
Anyone who knows Victoria Orlando will tell you how artistic she is, but it isn’t until you see her intricate drawings and paintings that you...
LLS-4042-Case Result
When our client and his wife returned to Miami for a family reunion, he never anticipated that their stay at a local resort would turn...
RECALL ALERT PRODUCT LIABILITY CLAIM (1)
If you own a 2002-2006 Nissan Sentra, 2002-2004 Nissan Pathfinder and 2002-2003 Infiniti QX4, there is a "DO NOT DRIVE" warning that has been issued...
LLS-4015-National BBQ Month
There’s just something about the smell of food on the grill that makes us think of barbecue! May is National Barbecue Month, a great time...
BEN_3055
Managing Partner Gary Lesser co-chaired and emceed a sold-out Unity Passover Seder that brought together a huge turnout of Palm Beach County judges, lawyers and...

The New Florida Laws Going Into Effect Next Month

Nearly 150 bills set to take effect on July 1, 2024Florida lawmakers and Gov. Ron DeSantis have been busy passing new laws as part of the 2024 Legislative Session. Nearly 150 bills have been approved and are scheduled to take effect on July 1. These new laws cover a wide range of topics, including insurance, crime, education, tax relief and more. Here is a summary of some laws that will go into effect next month. HB 49 — Teen Labor RightsHouse Bill 49 removes certain employment restrictions for 16- and 17-year-olds in Florida, such as how many hours per day and week teens are allowed to work. The bill (Chapter 2024-25, L.O.F.):1. Clarifies that minors 15 years old or younger may not work more than 15 hours in any one week, when school is in session.2. Provides an exception for minors 16 and 17 years to work for more than 8 hours in any one day when school is scheduled the following day and the day of work is a holiday or a Sunday.3. Provides that the cap of 30 hours per week when school is in session for minors 16 and 17 years old may be waived by a minor’s parent or custodian or by the school superintendent or designee.4. Allows minors 16 and 17 years old to work more than 6 consecutive days in any one week by lowering the age limitation to minors 15 years old or younger.5. Requires that minors 16 and 17 years old who work for 8 hours or more in any one day may not work for more than 4 hours continuously without an interval of at least 30 minutes for a meal period. The bill retains the limitation that minors 15 years old or younger may not work more than 4 hours continuously without an interval of at least 30 minutes for a meal period.6. Provides that the work restrictions do not apply to:-Minors enrolled in any educational institution, not just public schools, who qualify on a hardship basis and receive a waiver on hours from the school superintendent.-Minors 16 and 17 years old who are in a home education program, or are enrolled in an approved virtual instruction program in which the minor is separated from the teacher by time only.7. Clarifies that the DBPR may grant a waiver of these restrictions.8. Clarifies that a violation by an employer of this section of law is punishable by fine and as a second-degree misdemeanor as provided in s. 450.141, F.S. HB 59 — HOA Rules and CovenantsHouse Bill 59 requires HOAs to provide a physical or digital copy of their rules and covenants to each of its members by Oct. 1 — and all new members going forward. In addition, the HOA must give every member an updated copy of the rule or covenants if the rules or covenants are amended. HB 113 — Tax Collections and SalesHouse Bill 113 eliminates a $10 processing fee to the tax collector for partial payments. The bills makes various clarifying changes to local governments’ annual tax collection administration to reflect current best practices related to errors and insolvencies reports and tax certificate sales. HB 305 — Offenses Involving ChildrenHouse Bill 305 amends to increase the age for the child hearsay exception from 16 to 17 years of age. The hearsay rule is a rule of evidence which prohibits the admission of out-of-court statements that are offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted as evidence in judicial proceedings. The Bill also amends requiring a person convicted of a human trafficking offense, where the victim is a minor, to be designated a sexual predator on a first offense. HB 353 — Alternative Headquarters for District Court JudgesHouse Bill 353 permits an eligible district court of appeal judge to designate an alternate official headquarters in a county that is adjacent to his or her county of residence that is within the judicial district. Current law only permits an official headquarters designation within the judge’s county of residence. HB 357 — Veterans Appreciation MonthHouse Bill 357 replaces “Veterans Week,” instead designating all of November as “Veterans Appreciation Month.” HB 461 — Pregnant Women Excused from Jury ServiceUnder House Bill 461, a woman who has given birth within six months before the reporting date on a jury summons may be excused from service upon request. HB 591 — Hot Car Death Prevention MonthHouse Bill 591 designates April as “Hot Car Death Prevention Month” to raise awareness of the dangers of leaving children alone in vehicles. The law is also known as “Ariya’s Act,’ in memoriam of a 10-month-old Ariya Paige, who died of a heatstroke after being left in a car. HB 919 — A.I. Use in Political AdsHouse Bill 919 creates a definition for “generative artificial intelligence” and requires a disclaimer be included on specified forms of political advertisements created with generative artificial intelligence (AI). The bill requires a disclaimer stating the political advertisement was created using A.I. if it appears to depict a real person doing something that didn’t actually happen or it was created with the intent to smear another candidate. HB 1133 — Vulnerable Road UsersHouse Bill 1133 provides that a person who commits a moving violation that causes serious bodily injury to a vulnerable road user must pay a fine of not less than $1,500 and attend a DHSMV-approved driver improvement course. The bill also requires a court to revoke the person’s driver license for at least three months. Under state law, “vulnerable road users” are defined as:  1. A pedestrian, including a person actually engaged in work upon a highway, or in work upon utility facilities along a highway, or engaged in the provision of emergency services within the right-of-way;2. A person operating a bicycle, an electric bicycle, a motorcycle, a scooter, or a moped lawfully on the roadway;3. A person riding an animal; or4. A person lawfully operating on a public right-of-way, crosswalk, or shoulder of the roadway:-A farm tractor or similar vehicle designed primarily for farm use;-A skateboard, roller skates, or in-line skates;-A horse-drawn carriage;-An electric personal assistive mobility device; or-A wheelchair HB 1589 — Driving Without a Valid Driver’s LicenseHouse Bill 1589 amends state statutes regarding penalties for those caught driving without a valid driver’s license. Specifically, any person who drives any motor vehicle upon a highway in this state without a valid driver license commits:1. For a first offense, a misdemeanor of the second degree.2. For a second offense, a misdemeanor of the first degree.3. For a third or subsequent offense, a misdemeanor of the first degree and is subject to a minimum of 10 days in jail as ordered by the court.The penalties do not apply to the operation of golf carts on roadways. HB 1653 — Dead BodiesHouse Bill 1653 makes it a first-degree misdemeanor to knowingly fail to report a dead body. Under the law, anyone who becomes aware of someone’s death is required to report it to either the district medical examiner or law enforcement. SB 544 — Swimming Lesson VouchersSenate Bill 544 aims to reduce the number of child drownings in the state by expanding access to swim lessons. The bill establishes the Swimming Lesson Voucher Program within the Department of Health (DOH) to increase water safety by offering vouchers for swimming lessons to Florida families with children ages 4 and under who have an income of up to 200 % of the federal poverty level. Click here for a list of all the Florida laws that will take effect July 1, 2024.

Employee Spotlight: Legal Assistant Victoria Orlando

Self-Portrait by Victoria OrlandoAnyone who knows Victoria Orlando will tell you how artistic she is, but it isn’t until you see her intricate drawings and paintings that you grasp the depths of her creativity and talent. Art holds a special place in Victoria’s heart. She has spent hours transforming herself into different characters, though more recently expressing herself through digital drawing.  Alongside her passion for art, Victoria has developed a keen interest in the law and legal profession, something she learned about in a Google search.  “I was studying Criminal Justice in college, and I was unsure of what field I would like to get into,” Victoria recalled. “I was searching online for possibilities and law peaked my interest. I haven’t regretted it since!”  A legal assistant in our West Palm Beach office, Victoria recently celebrated three years with the team at Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith. Prior to joining the firm, she worked as a bookkeeper at a family-owned lawn mower shop. This experience, though different from her current role, provided her with a strong foundation in diligence and attention to detail.  Victoria’s family history is rich and diverse. Her mother, originally from the Philippines, moved to Queens, New York, at the age of 12, while her father was born and raised in Brooklyn. The couple met while working in Manhattan’s Jewelry District. Today, her mother is an accountant at a CPA firm, and her father continues to work as a jeweler.   Born in Boca Raton and raised in West Palm Beach, Victoria has an older sister who lives in Pennsylvania with her two children, and another niece is on the way. At home, she enjoys the company of her two dogs, Coco and Chanel.  “One thing I can say that motivates me is I always want to do better for myself and my family,” Victoria said. “I want to ensure that I can be happy, healthy, and successful in life so I can provide for my parents as they’ve helped me so much growing up.”   Some fun facts about Victoria – she is one of only 10% in the world who is left-handed; she dreams of visiting Japan; she enjoys collecting unique types of purses, anime figurines and different types of crystals; she wants to learn to play the electric guitar and the last book she read was In Time by Aliza Grace, a book of poetry that focuses on self-healing.  Guided by the mantra, “it is a blessing and a curse to feel everything so very deeply,” Victoria said she is passionate about helping other people, and in the future, she would like to volunteer with organizations focused on mental wellness. “I’m passionate about helping other people in many ways,” she said.

Family Reunion Nightmare: Lesser Law Firm Secures Justice for Injured Hotel Guest 

When our client and his wife returned to Miami for a family reunion, he never anticipated that their stay at a local resort would turn into a painful nightmare.  After entering the hotel room, our client did his usual walk-through to make sure everything was clean and in working order.  As he opened the sliding glass door to the balcony, the entire metal shade detached from the wall and struck him in the head, causing him to fall on his back and sustain severe injuries.  The unexpected accident left our client with severe injuries, causing both physical and emotional trauma. Recognizing the seriousness of the situation, he promptly reached out to Firm Attorney Imani Williams for support and guidance during this traumatic time.  The Lawsuit and Outcome  Despite the clear evidence of negligence, liability was initially denied. The insurance companies for two defendants in the case had the audacity to blame our client for causing this horrific incident. This unjust blame added to the distress and complexity of the situation. Attorney Williams filed a lawsuit and navigated numerous hurdles along the way. Her diligence and expertise in premises liability cases were instrumental in overcoming the initial denials and securing a favorable outcome.  Both defendants were compelled to pay significantly higher amounts than initially offered before the lawsuit was filed. This successful outcome not only provided our client with the compensation he deserved but also sent a strong message about the importance of maintaining safe premises.  Seeking Justice for Negligence  When you walk into a hotel room, you shouldn’t have to worry about heavy objects falling on you. Under Florida law, hotels and resorts have a duty to ensure that the premises are safe for guests. This includes regular maintenance and inspections to prevent accidents caused by dangerous conditions.  When it comes to holding businesses responsible for injuries caused by dangerous conditions because of negligence, the team at Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith will vigorously pursue your premises liability case to make sure you get the justice you deserve. If you or a loved one have been hurt at a Florida hotel due to its negligent safety or security, it’s crucial to seek expert legal representation. Call 561-655-2028 today to speak with one of our experienced premises liability attorneys.  Frequently Asked Questions  What should I do if I’m injured at a hotel? Immediately seek medical attention for your injuries. Report the incident to hotel management and document everything, including taking photos of the accident scene and your injuries. Then, contact one of our experienced premises liability attorneys at 561-655-2028.  How can a premises liability attorney help me? An attorney can guide you through the complicated legal process, gather necessary evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and represent you in court to make sure you get the fair compensation you deserve for your injuries.  What kind of compensation can I receive for my injuries? You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages related to the incident. The attorneys of Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith can help determine the appropriate amount based on your specific circumstances.  How long do I have to file a claim in Florida? In Florida, the statute of limitations is two years from the date the accident occurred. Unless your case falls into one of the rare exceptions, if you do not file before this time limit expires, you will lose your right to claim any damages at all. Our client’s traumatic experience at a Miami resort underscores the importance of holding negligent businesses accountable for their actions. Thanks to the relentless efforts of Attorney Imani Williams, justice was served, and our client received the compensation he deserved. If you find yourself in a similar situation at a Florida hotel or resort, don’t hesitate to reach out to Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith for expert legal assistance. Call us today at 561-655-2028.

Nissan Issues Urgent “Do Not Drive” Warning for Deadly Recalled Takata Air Bags

If you own a 2002-2006 Nissan Sentra, 2002-2004 Nissan Pathfinder and 2002-2003 Infiniti QX4, there is a “DO NOT DRIVE” warning that has been issued for your car. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, these vehicles are subject to Takata air bag recalls. To date, NHTSA has confirmed 27 people in the U.S. have been killed by a defective Takata air bag that exploded. In addition, at least 400 people nationwide have been injured due to exploding Takata air bag inflators. NHTSA is urging anyone who owns of the 83,920 model year 2002-2006 vehicles equipped with Takata air bags to check to see if their vehicle has an open recall. If it does, owners should contact their dealership to schedule a free repair as soon as possible. Nissan customers with questions or concerns can reach the automaker at 800-647-7261 or visit Nissan’s recall website https://www.nissanusa.com/takata-airbag-recall.html. Infiniti customers can call 800-662-6200 or visit https://www.infinitiusa.com/takata-airbag-recall.html. Filing a Product Liability Claim  What can you do if you were harmed by this or another consumer product? You may be able to file a product liability lawsuit. In product liability claims, an injured person may be able to hold the designer, manufacturer, or retailer of the product accountable. Most product liability lawsuits are strict liability claims, which means you will not need to prove that the defendant was negligent. Rather, the mere fact that the defendant made or sold the product and that it caused injuries is sufficient for liability. Contact a Product Liability Lawyer in Florida  If you need assistance filing a product defect claim, one of our Florida product liability attorneys can assist you. Call Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith PLLC at 561-655-2028 to learn more.

Prevent Injuries this National Barbecue Month

There’s just something about the smell of food on the grill that makes us think of barbecue! May is National Barbecue Month, a great time for a refresher on grill safety tips. According to the National Fire Protection Association, 7 out of 10 of adults in the U.S. have a grill or smoker, which means a lot of outdoor picnics. It also means an increase in potential fires. Fire departments nationwide responded to an average of 111,421 home fires involving grills, hibachis or barbecues per year from 2017-2021. Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith has handled many BBQ grill fire cases and recently wrapped up a case involving a BBQ grill that exploded, causing serious burns to the homeowner and a guest.As we approach the summer months, which are peak times for barbecues, we encourage you to follow these safety tips and recommendations to prevent fires and injuries.          Grilling Safety Tips:           -Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.          -The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck, and out from under leaves and overhanging branches.          -Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.          -Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.         -Never leave your grill unattended.         -Always make sure your grill is open before lighting it.         -Have a fire extinguisher nearby and ensure you know how to use it.          -After you finish grilling, turn off the burners or gas supply and close the grill’s lid.         -Wear appropriate clothing while grilling. Avoid loose-fitting clothes or hanging sleeves that may accidentally come into contact with the grill’s flames. Barbecue injuries can have severe consequences. Preventing injuries is always our goal but if you or a loved one have been injured in an accident at BBQ in West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Stuart, Wellington, Bradenton or elsewhere in Florida, the experienced attorneys of Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith are here to provide guidance and support. Call 561-655-2028 to speak with one of our attorneys today.

Gary S. Lesser Co-Chairs Unity Passover Seder

Managing Partner Gary Lesser co-chaired and emceed a sold-out Unity Passover Seder that brought together a huge turnout of Palm Beach County judges, lawyers and elected officials of different faiths for a meaningful celebration of freedom on April 29. Current news events make clear that the need for programs like this is greater than ever these days, and our Firm was honored to be a sponsor. The Unity Passover Seder was a partnership of eight voluntary Palm Beach County Bar Associations. “We want to come together as a community, especially with shared values of freedom and justice in the hope that tomorrow can be a better day…and it will be a better day,” Gary Lesser said. Guests participated in a traditional Seder meal jointly led by Rabbi Ryan Daniels and Rev. Kevin Jones to honor the Jewish holiday of Passover, the story of the ancient Hebrews exodus from slavery in Egypt.  This gathering served as a source of inspiration and an opportunity for the entire community to celebrate shared values of freedom. Guests represent the following Legal Bar Associations, which all jointly served as partners for this meaningful evening:·         F. Malcolm Cunningham Sr. Bar Association·         Jewish Lawyers Association of Palm Beach County·         Palm Beach County Bar Association·         Palm Beach County Florida Association for Women Lawyers·         Palm Beach County Hispanic Bar Association·         Palm Beach County Sheree Davis Cunningham Black Women Lawyers Association·         South Palm Beach County Bar Association·         South Palm Beach County Florida Association for Women Lawyers·         Palm Beach County Justice Association Additional sponsors included the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County, BDO and First Citizens Bank. Notable guests included Palm Beach County Vice Mayor Maria Marino, Palm Beach County Commissioner Gregg Weiss, Palm Beach County Commissioner Michael Barnett, Sen. Bobby Powell, State Rep. Jervonte “Tae” Edmonds, as well as more than two dozen area judges and notable legal leaders. See news coverage here:https://lesserlawfirm.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/Unity-Passover-Seder-CBS-12-News-11-p.m-042924.mp4

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