Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) save lives. Of that, there is no question. However, in order for these devices to work, they must be located where people need them the most. If you or somebody you care about has been harmed or if a loved one lost their life due to an AED not being present, you may be able to file a claim against a property owner or manager.
Our team of West Palm Beach AED injury liability lawyers at the Law Offices of Craig Goldenfarb, P.A. understand your legal rights, and are not only committed to getting you the maximum amount of compensation possible, but also helping you recover from your injuries or loss, so you can move forward. Get started today with a free case evaluation, or call us at (561) 222-2222.
The Importance of AEDs
Leading the nation in this unique and niche area of personal injury law is the Law Offices of Craig Goldenfarb, P.A.
With 250,000 Americans dying from sudden cardiac arrest each year, the topic of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) is becoming more relevant in the news media. AEDs can save the life of a person if used on a victim of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) as soon as possible. For every minute that an AED isn’t used during a SCA, the American Heart Association predicts, the chances for survival decrease by 10%.
So using an AED is extremely important. AEDs are required in certain public facilities. The State of Florida was the first to answer the call for widespread AED adoption, when, in 1997, the state enacted AED liability laws, addressing the need for a fast response to sudden heart attacks in public places.
The “automated external defibrillator” or “AED”, a portable lifesaving device, allows trained non-medical personnel to treat a heart attack victim immediately, preventing as many as 50,000 deaths from occurring each year. This means, for example, that a trained employee of a retail store could potentially save the life of an individual who experiences sudden cardiac arrest while shopping in the store. It’s easy to see the enormous potential of the AED in saving lives and also the risks of having no AED on site.
Unfortunately, state requirements for keeping an AED available in public places like schools or arenas vary widely. On the federal level, there is a requirement for AEDs to be present and maintained in all federal buildings—locations like courthouses, post offices, and airports, for example. If you find yourself having a heart attack somewhere without an AED, you may lose an opportunity to be revived before an ambulance can arrive.
Public Places and AED Injury Liability
At the state level in Florida, some laws have been enacted to require AEDs to be present in certain public places. Schools, for example, must have an AED available if they are to participate in FSHAA sporting events, which includes most public schools and universities.
Under certain conditions, other places that might be required to have an AED on site might include:
- Golf courses
- NCAA and high school athletic programs
- Sports stadiums (including high school sporting events)
- Theme parks
- Dentist’s offices
- Medical offices
- Nursing homes
AED Injury Liability Occurrences
Failure to have an AED on public premises can be deadly for anyone suffering a sudden cardiac event. Even if the victim or bystanders call 911 immediately, an ambulance may not arrive for 30 minutes or more, depending on the location and traffic. Not everyone knows how to do CPR, and even the best efforts of highly-trained medical professionals aren’t as effective as getting the heart restarted with a defibrillator. By the time paramedics arrive with their own AED, it may be too late to save the heart attack victim. Even if they can be revived, they may have already suffered permanent brain damage or other injuries due to a lack of oxygen. This can lead to a coma, stroke, or permanent neurological damage.
Catastrophic Injuries associated with Lack of AED Injury:
- Cardiac Arrest
- Brain Damage
- Permanent Sensory Deprivation (Vision, Hearing, etc)
We are prepared to provide you with the experienced legal representation you need to build a case for the compensation you deserve, if you happen to be a victim of a trucking accident due to the negligence of another party. Our trucking accident personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis.
This means that if, and only if, we secure compensation by way of a settlement with or a verdict against the defendant insurance company will we take an attorney’s fee. We also deduct the reasonable costs of the case at the end of the settlement or verdict. We must deduct the medical expenses and liens as well, though part of our job is to negotiate or reduce down the balance of your medical expenses and liens before paying them out on your behalf.
Liability & Damage Recovery
Owners or managers of public places, especially those that host sporting events where people might exert themselves, should be aware of the importance of having an AED on hand. Keeping and maintaining this device is simple, and may prevent the death of a guest or employee suffering a cardiac event.
Failing to have such a device on hand can leave the business liable. If the actions of a business or other public place contributes to the death of a loved one, they are then liable for the injury that takes place as a result of their negligence. If you have lost someone to an AED liability injury, the Law Offices of Craig Goldenfarb, P.A. may be able to assist you in getting the compensation that you are entitled to. AED Liability personal injury compensation may include:
- Hospital & Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
- Pain and Suffering
- Cost of Future Care
Neither your insurance company nor that of the public venue where the cardiac event happened is likely to inform you of your legal rights. Insurance agents and adjusters work on behalf of the insurance company, not their injured clients or their clients’ grieving loved ones. If they do reach out with an offer, it may not be enough to cover current and future medical bills, lost wages, funeral costs, and other expenses you will be dealing with. It is very important that you never agree to or accept a settlement offer from an insurance company without first speaking with an experienced West Palm Beach AED liability attorney.
How Long Do You Have to File a Claim for AED Liability?
Individuals filing personal injury or wrongful death claims in Florida have a limited amount of time to do so. In general, the personal injury and wrongful death statute of limitations is two years from the date of the occurrence of the injury or two years from the date of death. There are various exceptions to these time frames. We encourage you to speak to a West Palm Beach AED liability lawyer about how long you have to file your particular claim.
How Will an AED Liability Attorney in West Palm Beach Help With an AED Liability Claim?
Deciding whether or not to contact an AED liability lawyer in West Palm Beach for assistance with your AED claim can be challenging, but we ask you to consider how much time you have to personally put towards these claims. Unfortunately, any lawsuit filed against a property owner or other party for not having an AED on their premises will likely lead to a major court fight, something that is costly and time-consuming. This is also something your AED liability lawyer can help with.
The property owner or operator will almost certainly have a legal team assisting them, either through their insurance carrier or their own personal attorney. You need to have your own AED liability attorney to go up against these other parties and have a chance of recovering compensation for your losses.
The role of your AED liability lawyer in West Palm Beach is multifaceted and includes:
- Conducting a complete investigation into the claim
- Speaking to other parties involved, including eyewitnesses and property owners
- Working with trusted economic and medical professionals to calculate damages
- Handling any communication or negotiation with insurance carriers or other parties
- Completely preparing the claim for trial if one becomes necessary
AED liability claims are complex, but an attorney will be your advocate throughout the process, making sure that your rights are maintained throughout the process.
Paying for a lawyer can seem daunting, but it does not have to be. At GOLDLAW, we handle aged liability claims on a contingency fee basis. This means that if we take your case, you will owe no legal fees until after we successfully resolve the claim. That includes no upfront or ongoing costs related to the case. You and your family will only pay legal fees after our team successfully recovers the compensation you are entitled to. If we do not win, you pay nothing.
How Long Will Your Case Take?
There is no specific time frame for how long an AED liability claim will take to resolve. Typically, these types of claims will not be a quick process. Even though you have to file an AED claim within a specified amount of time under Florida’s statutes of limitations, once the claim gets started, the process can take years.
After a lawsuit is filed, the discovery process begins. Discovery is when attorneys for every party are required to exchange evidence and information with one another so that each party involved has the same information to work from when deciding whether or not to settle or drop the case. During the discovery process, depositions of potential witnesses may be taken.
Claims could get settled as the deposition and discovery process continues. However, in the event the parties involved are unable to reach a resolution, a jury trial may be necessary. It could take years to schedule a jury trial, but we encourage you to speak to your attorney about how long your case could take.
Will You Have to Go to Court?
The vast majority of medical malpractice and premises liability claims are resolved through settlements with the parties involved. When a case is settled before a trial becomes necessary, this typically means that you will not have to go to court. However, in the event the parties involved are unable to reach a resolution, a jury trial will be scheduled. In this situation, you would have to go to court.
Good Samaritan Laws and AED Usage
There’s a Good Samaritan law in place in Florida that typically prevents individuals from facing liability if they take life-saving measures, including the use of an AED, in an attempt to save a life outside of a healthcare setting. These laws are in place to encourage individuals with the knowledge to do so to help those who need it the most when they need it without questions of whether or not they will be held liable for rendering assistance.
We encourage you to speak to your attorney about whether or not the Good Samaritan law in Florida could alter the trajectory of your AED claim.
Contact a West Palm Beach AED Liability Attorney Today
If somebody you love has been harmed, or if your loved one lost their life because there was not an ad present where there should have been, we encourage you to reach out to an attorney immediately. We understand how challenging this time is for you and your loved ones, and we want to help you get to the bottom of the case. Our AED liability attorneys in West Palm Beach want to offer a free consultation for your claim. Let us examine the facts of your case and help you move forward toward recovering compensation for your losses.