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In 2022, the 2-year-old child of our clients drowned in the swimming pool of a Central Florida house the family rented on AirBnb’s platform. It took less than a minute before she was pulled out unconscious, and despite the medical team’s every effort to keep her alive, she tragically died weeks later. The investigation revealed that the house was not equipped with a compliant child safety fence, and as a result, Leesfield Scolaro Partners, Thomas Scolaro and Adam Rose, filed a lawsuit against multiple parties, including the owner of the home located in Osceola County and AirBnb.

In the recent past, Leesfield Scolaro has litigated several pool drowning cases with liabilities resting on property owners, pool contractors, and property managing companies. In one South Florida case that resulted in the drowning of a toddler, Ira Leesfield and Thomas Scolaro were able to secure a seven-figure settlement against multiple defendants for the inadequate installation of a defective pool fence.

Florida Laws and Local Regulations

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Over the last 47 years, Leesfield Scolaro has led verdict and settlement recoveries in road construction cases throughout the state of Florida. In every road construction case, a rapid response is necessary and paramount for our team of investigators and experts, as well as, our firm’s road construction litigation division, to take vital witness statements, and obtain documentary, video and photographic evidence. The importance of acting quickly and decisively cannot be overstated. To respond quickly, Leesfield Scolaro maintains offices at strategic locations throughout the State of Florida, including an office in Key West since 1987.

Below are recent results our team has obtained in road construction cases on behalf of our injured clients and their family:

Confusing highway construction case ends in eight-figure result

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Early Giving is now OPEN!

Join the giving club early. You can donate funds or time now through Give Miami Day!

Give Miami Day, the annual philanthropic event that serves as a pivotal platform for charitable giving and community engagement in Miami, Florida, is NOW!

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Attorneys Ira Leesfield and Thomas Scolaro represented the family of a young girl who died of electrocution while playing miniature golf. The 11-year-old’s golf ball ended up in a small water pond, when she reached inside the pond in an attempt to retrieve her ball, she immediately started to scream. Another guest jumped to her rescue and tried to grab her by the arm to pull her out but they too became injured as soon as they touched her.

The tragedy for the family was in fact an incomprehensible act of negligence committed by the owners and employees in charge of maintenance. Leesfield Scolaro’s inspection and investigation revealed an improper replacement and installation of electrical breakers. State and local regulations mandate the use of ground fault interrupter (GFI) breakers for all water features like the pond in question. The inspection of the wiring and the electrical pump uncovered that non-GFI breakers were employed, which resulted in the water to become electrified, unbeknownst to all, including our fatally injured young client who was on vacation to celebrate her 11th birthday.

Within nine months, several inspections were conducted, lawsuit was filed, depositions were taken, and the case was settled for $10,000,000.

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On June 21, 2023, Attorney Michael Shepherd of Leesfield Scolaro delivered a comprehensive Continuing Legal Education (CLE) presentation concerning HB 837, Florida’s recent tort reform legislation, to the esteemed members of the Coral Gables Bar Association. In his capacity as a newly elected board member of the association, this speaking engagement served as an exceptional opportunity for the attendees to acquaint themselves with Mr. Shepherd and his legal practice.michael-shepherd

During his discourse, Michael provided an insightful analysis of the implications of the new law on his personal injury practice, along with the strategies he employs to overcome potential challenges encountered by Florida personal injury plaintiffs. Notably, he addressed the novel frameworks introduced by section 768.0427 for the calculation of damages, shedding light on pertinent aspects such as changes to negligent security law and the concept of comparative fault.

Furthermore, he elucidated the additional prerequisites for pursuing a bad faith claim against insurance companies as stipulated by the legislation. Of considerable importance, Michael dedicated a significant portion of his presentation to the contentious issue of the potential retroactive application of HB 837, offering the audience two contrasting trial orders that exemplified opposing viewpoints. This engaging session was followed by inquiries from the attendees, including queries pertaining to the inclusion of instructions related to comparative fault in jury deliberations, as well as the prospective impact of HB 837 on litigation costs incurred by injured plaintiffs.

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Leesfield Scolaro recently represented a couple exposed to carbon monoxide while on vacation in a foreign country. Despite numerous legal obstacles, an eight-figure settlement was secured in less than nine months.  This is the latest of several CO exposure cases this firm has handled recently, an area of personal injury that requires creative legal strategizing and extensive legal experience.

What is Carbon Monoxide?

Carbon monoxide poisoning arises when one breathes in carbon monoxide, a poisonous gas devoid of scent, flavor, and hue. Even minimal exposure can have various effects on an individual, leading to fatigue, headaches, nausea, and vomiting. Prolonged exposure to carbon monoxide over a substantial duration can give rise to grave symptoms and health hazards, such as loss of consciousness, permanent brain damage, and fatality.

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Leesfield Scolaro has represented many clients injured in drop-fire cases against gun manufacturers.  One of the many allegations included that the subject pistols had a design defect which caused them to fire without the trigger being pulled.  The flawed designs were responsible for the accidental discharges, which caused death or catastrophic injuries to our clients.

One of the common design defects pertains to a crucial component that ignites the gunpowder in the cartridge, which in turn propels the bullet out of the barrel.  That component is the firing pin.  The firing pin is a small metal rod that is spring-loaded and sits inside the slide of the pistol. When the trigger is pulled, it releases the hammer, which then strikes the firing pin, causing it to impact the primer on the cartridge. The primer contains a small amount of explosive that ignites the gunpowder and propels the bullet out of the barrel.

In past cases, Attorney Thomas Scolaro was able to prove that the design defect was related to the firing pin releasing without the trigger being pulled -that it could happen whether the safety was engaged or disengaged, which is a separate design defect- causing the firing pin to impact the primer and discharge the firearm unintentionally.

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MIAMI, March 3, 2023- Boris and Lydie Lavenir’s 19-month-old daughter, Enora, died while staying at an Airbnb in Wellington, Palm Beach County, Florida, in August 2021. The autopsy determined Enora died of Acute Fentanyl Toxicity which established that the toddler came into contact with a lethal dose of Fentanyl left behind at the Airbnb.

PhotoOn August 6, 2021, Lydie, Boris, and their five children, including 19-month-old Enora, were visiting Florida for a family vacation. The Lavenir family booked a home on Airbnb located in Wellington, Florida. Upon arrival, they were greeted by co-Defendant Timpy who gave them access to the home.

After a quiet evening in the house, Enora spent the following morning playing throughout the house with her siblings. At around noon, Enora and her older sister laid down on the bed they were sharing to take a nap. When Mom checked on Enora later that day, she found her unresponsive, not breathing, with foam on her lips.

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Among South Florida bicyclists, Key Biscayne is known for its perfect cycling area with approximately 5 miles of straight scenic roadway. Every day around sunrise and sunset, large groups of cyclists make their way up and down Virginia Key and Key Biscayne, located just two minutes from Downtown Miami.

This is exactly what our client was doing one October morning before a tragic incident with a motor vehicle caused him to sustain permanent injuries and surgery. Our client was lawfully riding his bicycle westbound on the Rickenbacker Causeway in the designated bicycle lane. At the same time, an Officer with Coral Gables Police Department, Officer Robert H. Thomson was driving his police car westbound on the Rickenbacker Causeway in the vehicle lane. Inexplicably and without warning, Officer Thomson cut off our client by making a right turn and crossing over the bicycle lane, which caused our client to collide with another cyclist and fall off his bicycle.

In November, Attorneys Thomas Scolaro and Michael Shepherd filed suit against the City. Litigation is currently ongoing.

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Leesfield Scolaro reached two six-figure settlements in Legionnaires’ Disease cases against the same Resort. Ira Leesfield and Michael Shepherd argued that the resort was negligent in failing to properly maintain and sanitize its water systems, including decorative water features, which led to the spread of the bacteria and the infection of guests.

Our two clients, one from Florida and the other from Maryland, did not know each other and their stay did not overlap in time. Nonetheless, both were infected, contracted the disease and experienced a very similar onset of symptoms. First they began experiencing generalized body soreness, extreme fatigue, chills, difficulty breathing, and high fever. They went to the hospital within days of returning from the resort and were admitted with pneumonia and double pneumonia respectively. Infectious disease doctors consulted with both clients and upon further testings, a diagnosis of Legionnaires’ Disease was made.

Maryland and Florida’s Department of Health officials investigated the potential source of the infection and quickly zeroed in on a Florida resort as the potential source. Within days Health officials inspected the resort and found the Legionella bacteria in one of the many decorative water features of the resort.  Within ten months of being retained, Leesfield Scolaro secured a six-figure settlement for each client.

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