Evidence

In Butoh Dance / Suicide Case, Court Rules that Emails & Skype into Florida Create Jurisdiction Over Katsura Kan, Dance Instructor

Can Florida obtain personal jurisdiction over someone just because he/she sent emails or Skyped with another person in Florida?  In the unusual case of Tibor Stern, as personal representative of the Estate of Sharon Stern v. Terugoshi Kotoura a/k/a Katsura Kan, the answer is yes. The Facts of the Case …

E-discovery

Third DCA Pharmacy Negligence Case Leaves Florida (Still) Without an ESI Discovery Appellate Opinion

In the case of Walgreen Co. and Holiday CVS, LLC v Jonathan Rubin, two national pharmacy chains were somehow convinced by their counsel to appeal an adverse discovery production order despite the fact that the lawyers failed to get (basic) affidavits establishing that production costs were unreasonably burdensome. In the …

4th Amendment
1

Your House is Burning — Can the Fire Department Turn You In for Drugs and Guns in the House?

You may have constitutional protections in your house but the exigency of the circumstance gives constitutional permission to the first responders to enter your home.  Once the fire is extinguished, fire fighters are required to conduct an “administrative sweep” to confirm there is no other fire or danger.  During fire fighting or during …

Evidence

First DCA Finds Facebook Posts by Florida Lawyer about Trial to be “Outside the Bounds of Professional Conduct”

The case of David Edward Boyles v. Dillard’s, Inc. from Florida’s First District Court of Appeal is a mixed bag of issues involving Daubert, evidence, voir dire, closing argument, and alleged attorney misconduct during trial. Notable, from a legal/technology standpoint, is this somewhat cryptic final sentences from the Opinion about …

Ethics

Can A Plaintiff Be Asked in Deposition Whether They Previously Consulted Other Lawyers?

Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal issued an opinion in Michelle Coffey-Garcia v. South Miami Hospital, Inc. regarding whether defendants, seeking to prove that the statute of limitation was blown, could ask the plaintiff “who, when and why” questions about consulting prior lawyers.  The appellate court quashed part of the writ …

Evidence

First DCA Issues a Hybrid Opinion Re Daubert & Proposal for Settlement

Two of the more novel, confusing areas of Florida civil law were addressed this week by the First District in Andrew and Kenneth Maines v. Marcia Drasko Fox. This case arose from an auto accident where the plaintiff claimed that she suffered a neck injury.  The plaintiff won at trial. …

E-discovery

What is a “Trade Secret” in Florida Discovery? (the existence of free cable tv, apparently)

What’s a “trade secret” for discovery objections and what are the steps for trial court review? In Bright House Networks, LLC v. Albert C. Cassidy et al. (Florida Second District, Jan. 10, 2014), we learn that at least one cable TV provider apparently provides free service to “a significant number …

E-discovery
2236

Judge Orders Neutral Examiner of Plaintiff’s Facebook Account

Faced with a dispute over whether a defendant hospital was entitled to access to the plaintiff’s Facebook account, a Pennsylvania judge ordered that a “neutral expert” would be given access to search the plaintiff’s Facebook account for photos of her engaging in physical activity and for references to “snow” (due …

Evidence
4513

What the Patreaus Scandal Tells Us About Email Privacy

This article discusses the Patreaus affair from the standpoint of practical email privacy tips for lawyers, law firms, their clients, and families. A brief explanation is provided how emails (or even fake email addresses) are traceable with free software and what data exists on the person’s computer to show what …

E-discovery
3617

What Does a Child Pornography Case Tell You About Computer Evidence?

Want to know how to find (or hide) on a computer what websites were visited, what images were viewed, and what files were deleted?  Even if you are not a computer forensic specialist, you can find this information using basic steps and free software on the Internet.  This is helpful …

Evidence
4509

Nevada Supreme Court Explains Admissibility Standards for IM / Text Messages

The criminal case of Kevin Rodriguez v. State of Nevada is one of three recent cases nationwide which discusses the admissibility of text messages in trial. In Rodriguez, a victim was attacked, robbed, and her cell phone was taken.  Thereafter, twelve text messages were sent from the victim’s phone.  The …

Evidence
3873

Internet Sleuthing: Number Guru & Spokeo

Can you find someone with only a cell, fax or phone number?   Or just a name? Or email address? The March 2012 Palm Beach County Bar Bulletin can tell you in this month’s Technology Corner article, Internet Sleuthing: Number Guru and Spokeo.

Ethics
4093

Privileged Documents Sent to Expert Not Waived?

Because so many people are involved in the everyday step of sending records from a law office to an expert, the mistake of inadvertantly including privileged information occurs now and again.  Is it waiver?  Will the jury see it? In Nan H. Mullins, D.M.D. v. Alice Tompkins (Benton, Webster and …

Ethics
4806

How Should A Judge Instruct A Jury Not to Text, Twitter or Google?

Look no further than our brethren in Michigan, who hustled out a June 30, 2009 order providing the anti-Twittering jury instruction for trial judges.  The rule goes into effect in September. No, it may not be required here in Florida yet, but isn’t it a good idea?  Why not offer …