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Naples Legal Blog

What do you need to know about field sobriety tests?

Florida drivers know that driving drunk could have serious financial and legal repercussions. If convicted of this type of crime, a driver could face financial penalties, time behind bars and the loss of driving privileges. Even if it is a first-time drunk driving offense, a driver would be prudent to learn how he or she could fight these charges.

One of the ways that you can defend your interests is to learn more about what to expect from a DUI traffic stop. This can help you know if you experienced a violation of your personal rights and prepare you in the event law enforcement ever stops you for suspected drunk driving. There are certain protocols in place for suspected DUI traffic stops, and law enforcement must follow certain rules when pulling people over.

Can I get a DUI using prescription drugs?

Florida drivers should know that a drug does not need to be illegal to affect you behind the wheel. You can become impaired with the use of both prescription and over-the-counter medication, as well as alcohol and other drugs. That means you can be convicted of driving under the influence no matter what type of drug or medication you may use and despite using it legally.

FindLaw explains that the point to ponder is whether your driving is impaired. If so, you should not drive. In general, a DUI arrest can be made of anyone in control of a vehicle on a public road who is under the influence at the same time. Being “influenced” by a drug or alcohol simply means your ability to drive and make driving decisions is lessened, or impaired.

Slip-and-fall accidents outdoors: Who is to blame?

If you suffered injuries in a slip-and-fall accident while on personal or private property in Florida, you may have grounds to seek compensation through a premises liability claim. However, there are times when it can be difficult to determine who may be to blame for an accident.

If your slip-and-fall accident took place while you were outside, you may be unsure of who or what could be to blame for your suffering. While it can be difficult to identify liable parties, you do not have to walk through the aftermath alone. With guidance, you may be able to build a strong claim for recompense for your financial losses and your pain and suffering.

The potential changes of florida's strict drug laws

It is common for minor drug offenses in Florida to escalate quickly, and often unnecessarily. While state drug laws exist for a reason, that reason can become unclear when a small cocaine possession charge turns into months -- and even years -- of repercussions.

Florida, like most states, enforces its own laws on drug possession and trafficking. However, with a drug history dominated by cocaine cartels in the 1980s, the state considers such offenses seriously. Might the seriousness of these penalties see future change? 

Self-driving cars may not eradicate accidents

Residents in Florida may likely be curious about the numerous reports detailing the advances in and testing of fully self-driving cars happening in various locations around the nation. As The Washington Post notes, some statistics indicate that a whopping 94 percent of all motor vehicle accidents today are influenced by or caused by human error. While it would stand to reason then than autonomous vehicles could eliminate all crashes, that may not necessarily be possible.

One of the issues that may impede the eridaction of or even the reduction of car crashes is getting the average consumer comfortable enough with self-driving cars so that they will readily adopt and use them. Car and Driver magazine explains that this is not likely to be an easy task. By nature, becoming a passenger in an autonomous vehicle means that a person must give up control of the vehicle. In addition, they are ceding their control not to another person but to a computer.

Could florida soon legalize recreational marijuana?

Many Floridians can attest to the scares minor drug charges can create. Such incidents can make the smallest offense appear catastrophic, and the penalties can become financially crippling. When it comes to marijuana specifically, an overwhelming number of experts and residents alike have leaned in favor toward recreational legalization.

Although the steps toward simmering down the severity of marijuana laws in the state have been small, they have been progressive. States such as California have made recent waves in their efforts to legalize both medical and recreational use, and some say Florida could be next. 

The impact of a car accident on the brain

No matter what incident causes the problem, a traumatic brain injury can prove to be a frightening discovery. These injuries commonly arise from car accidents -- where one wrong turn or over correction can result in tragedy. Because each head injury is unique, treatment and recovery can depend on each individual's needs. Floridians going through this difficult time can learn how to best overcome obstacles by learning more about traumatic brain injuries themselves.

Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center helps clarify exactly what traumatic brain injuries are, and why they are so impactful on the human brain. Caused by external force, a TBI can occur without causing an individual to lose consciousness -- making them all the more dangerous. However, an individual can maintain consciousness after a TBI and still experience a skull fracture, experience seizures or have abnormal brain scans after an incident. When it comes to damage done, doctors can measure the degree of brain tissue damage to determine best recovery approaches. Measuring the depth of a coma and the results of a brain scan, as well as assessing neurochemical problems, are just some of the ways experts care for patients with TBI.

Repeat DUI offenders continue to drive

When drugs or alcohol play a role in a Florida traffic accident, the tragedy seems worse knowing that it may have been avoided if both drivers were sober. For victims who must deal with physical injuries, emotional trauma and ongoing medical expenses, the tragedy is ongoing, at times well past any fines or jail time that the drunk driver received.

Today offers statistics that the number of drunk drivers on America’s roads is nearly 300,000. Additional data says that, by the time a drunk driver is arrested, he or she has already driven drunk an estimated 80 times. Still more data says that two-thirds of the overall U.S. population will be part of a drunk driving crash at some point in their life. Finally, 50 to 75 percent of DUI drivers will drive drunk again, whether or not their license has been suspended.

Will distracted driving decrease in Florida in 2018?

Distracted driving is a problem that continues to affect the health and well-being of all Florida motorists. Despite education about the danger of this behavior and other measures, statistics indicate that this problem is not going away any time soon. Between the years of 2013 to 2016 alone, the number of distraction-related accidents increased 26 percent.

Cell phones, in-car technology and other factors all contribute to driver distraction. No matter the type of distraction, drivers are responsible for the decisions they make behind the wheel, including those that could place others at risk. There are some who believe that state lawmakers should be doing more, such as passing legislation that will increase penalties against distracted drivers.

Woman avoids criminal charges for alleged drunk driving

When a person in Florida is involved in an accident in which another driver is suspected to have been under the influence of alcohol, it is reasonable to expect that the judicial and law enforcement systems could step in to help. That is likely what some people riding in a van hit by a woman they say was drunk thought should have happened for them but did not.

The incident occurred in the summer of 2016 and just recently it was announced that the woman accused of driving drunk will not face any criminal charges for impaired driving or related to two crashes she was involved in. Essential to the ruling that no charges will be filed is the lack of concrete evidence that one might consider standard to obtain after a crash. This includes the lack of field sobriety test results, breath or blood test results and police camera footage.

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