Earlier this month, a state appellate court issued a written opinion in a Florida car accident case discussing whether a private residential community could be held liable for the injuries sustained by motorists who were involved in a collision within the community. Ultimately, the court concluded that any alleged negligence of the community was not the proximate cause of the car accident, and thus the plaintiff’s case was dismissed.
The Facts of the Case
According to the court’s opinion, the plaintiffs were driving through a residential community when another motorist rear-ended them. Evidently, the plaintiffs’ vehicle had come to a stop to allow oncoming trucks to pass through a narrow area of the road where there were cars parked on both sides of the street. As the plaintiffs waited for the vehicles to pass, they were rear-ended.
The plaintiffs filed a Florida personal injury lawsuit against the motorist that struck their vehicle as well as the residential community. In support of their claim against the residential community, the plaintiffs cited a city code that prohibited parking on both sides of the street. Apparently, when the community was first created parking was only permitted in the driveways of residents’ homes; however, after discovering that this policy resulted in a severe parking shortage, the community allowed parking on both sides of the street. The plaintiffs claimed that by allowing residents to park on both sides of the road in violation of the city ordinance, the residential community was partially responsible for the accident.
The Court’s Opinion
The court disagreed with the plaintiffs and dismissed their case. The court acknowledged that the community’s decision to allow parking on both sides of the street was a cause-in-fact of the accident. However, the court explained that the plaintiff needed to establish that the community’s alleged negligence was also a proximate cause of the crash that led to their injuries.
Here, the court concluded that was not the case. The court explained that it is within the “common experience” of motorists to encounter situations requiring a driver slow down or stop the car, whether it be while driving in stop-and-go traffic or while driving behind a bus. Thus, the court explained the negligent act of the motorist who rear-ended the plaintiffs was not a foreseeable consequence of the community’s decision to allow parking on both sides of the street.
Have You Been Injured in a Florida Car Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Florida car accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for the injuries you have endured. This may include amounts for past and future medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for any pain and suffering you have suffered as a result of the accident. The dedicated South Florida injury attorneys at the law firm of Friedman Rodman & Frank have extensive experience assisting injury victims and their families pursue claims for compensation based on all types of Florida car accidents. To learn more, call 877-448-8585 to schedule a free consultation today.
More Blog Posts:
Florida Court Explains the Limits on Circumstantial Evidence in Recent Car Accident Lawsuit, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published December 27, 2018.
Can a Court Exclude Relevant Evidence from a Florida Personal Injury Trial?, South Florida Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, published January 7, 2019.