Taylor Day Law

The Briefing

Monthly Archives: February 2019

Taylor Day Gears Up For 2019 JBA Young Lawyers Section Chili Cook-Off

Since 2009, the YLS has hosted a Charity Chili Cook-Off to bring the legal community together. Join us tomorrow, February 16th, from 11:00 – 1:00 at the Riverside Arts Market (located at 715 Riverside Ave, under the I-95 overpass), for an afternoon of live music and delicious competition. This year, the Taylor Day team, “Taco ’bout Good Chili,” will be lead by Attorney, Ryan Reese, who is hard at work prepping his family’s award-winning recipe.  We will be located in booth 18.  ALL proceeds will benefit BEST BUDDIES, so be sure to come out to vote for your favorite chili and support a great cause!

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Taylor Day Continues Expanding, Welcome Third New Associate This Year

Taylor Day Continues Expanding, Welcome Third New Associate This Year

It is our pleasure to announce that John N. Kessenich has joined the firm. John began his career with the Office of the State Attorney for the 10th Judicial Circuit in Bartow, Florida, prosecuting a wide range of criminal cases. He was later selected for the Economic Crimes Division, where he prosecuted high profile and complex white-collar offenses in addition to exploitation of the elderly offenses.   After working as an Assistant State Attorney, John accepting a position with a private civil litigation firm and practiced in a wide range of civil litigation areas, such as business litigation, personal injury litigation and first-party insurance litigation. Having relocated to Jacksonville, he now joins Taylor Day and will continue practicing in the areas of business litigation and bodily injury defense.      

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Get to know this week’s featured attorney, Victoria E. Armstrong.

Get to know this week’s featured attorney, Victoria E. Armstrong.

This week’s featured attorney is Victoria Armstrong.  An integral part of Taylor Day’s PIP Defense team, she recently released an article examining the question raised by the Fourth District regarding Sovereign Immunity Liability.  Originally from Waterloo, Ontario, we look back at how she came to be at Taylor Day. What made you decide to move to the U.S., specifically Florida? After taking the LSAT, I received surveys about what type of law I wanted to practice and where. After I completed the surveys, I started to receive literature from Florida Coastal. I toured the school with my Dad and decided I was moving to Florida.  What made you decide to stay in Florida once you graduated? Sun, sand and not having to scrape my car or shovel the driveway. I also love Jacksonville and have great friends here! You recently got engaged to your fiancé Jason.  How did the two of you meet? I went on a date with his roommate, who then introduced me to Jason. When not practicing law, what are some of your favorite past-times? Going to the beach, traveling and trying to keep up with book club.  If you weren’t practicing law, what else would you be doing? An interior designer/decorator.  If you’d like to learn more about Victoria and her dog Cali, view her online biography.

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Citing to the Recent Rise of High-Profile Mass Shootings, Fourth District Court of Appeal Certifies Question of Great Public Importance to Florida Supreme Court Regarding Sovereign Immunity Liability

Citing to the Recent Rise of High-Profile Mass Shootings, Fourth District Court of Appeal Certifies Question of Great Public Importance to Florida Supreme Court Regarding Sovereign Immunity Liability

Pursuant to Florida’s Sovereign Immunity Statute (§768.28), the State of Florida and its political subdivisions has limited liability in tort for damages. Pursuant to the statute, the state is not required to pay a claim which exceeds $300,000.00 for all claims or judgments. Narrowly construed, this means that the cap is $300,000.00 for multiple claims arising out of the same negligent act(s) committed by the state agency. However, the Fourth District Court of Appeal recently held that a broader reading of the statute could allow a per injury limitation. The Fourth District Court of Appeal heard argument on the state entities’ Motion to Certify a Question of Great Public Importance to the Supreme Court regarding the sovereign liability. In the underlying claim, a negligence action was filed in Palm Beach County against the Department of Children and Families by the father/guardian of four children killed and one child injured by their mother’s boyfriend. The Complaint alleged that the department breached its duties to the children, resulting in their death and injury. With the question being whether damages are capped at $300,000.00 for the claims of all the children or $300,000.00 per claim. The Fourth District Court of Appeal granted the motion and certified the following question to the Supreme Court: “When multiple claims of injury or death arise from the same act of negligence committed by a state agency or actor, does the limitation on the waiver of sovereign immunity in section 768.28(5), Florida Statutes, cap the liability of state agencies […]

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