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A Personal Message from Steve Brooks

by on Friday, September 22, 2017  —  Firm News

Hello, Friends-

I hope everybody has had a good week. I recently attended a meeting in Nashville and was reminded of my family connections to this fast-growing city. I have a nephew who recently graduated from college and accepted a job in Nashville. Both my father, Beach Brooks Sr. and my brother Beach Brooks, Jr. attended Vanderbilt University in Nashville. I have heard many of my brother’s college war stories. Suffice it to say he thoroughly enjoyed his college experience.

I am also reminded of a story my dad frequently relayed about one of his Vanderbilt professors. This particular professor essentially cemented my dad’s legacy with a simple challenge laced with truth. Apparently, dad was struggling in a chemistry class. After class one day the professor told dad that if he didn’t buckle down he would never make it through medical school. Dad told me this statement gave him singular focus on excelling in his studies. The rest is history, as he graduated from medical school and practiced medicine as a career.

Some might view the professor’s statement as negative, or demeaning. Our culture has shifted too far for sometimes demonizing “truth” under the guise it is negative or demeaning. Let’s look at the statement made to my dad. Yes, it may have been temporarily hurtful. However, it forced him to take a hard look at himself and to refocus his priorities. That simple statement shaped a life. Truth is important especially when we don’t want to hear it.

Speaking truth so it inspires means doing it with compassion. Truth without compassion can be brutal. Often I find myself in a position of having to speak with my clients about some tough topics. At first one may feel defensive but when reminded that I have their better interest most people are very receptive to hearing the “truth”. This was a great life lesson for my father he passed on to me. I feel fortunate to have had his guidance and input! Just thought I would share my experience/thinking with you guys. Hope everybody has a good weekend! Steve

I hope everybody has a good weekend!

Steve

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are excited to announce Brooks Law Group’s newest ATTORNEY!

by on Wednesday, September 20, 2017  —  Firm News

We would like to introduce you to our newest attorney here at Brooks Law Group! After months of actively working as a Case Manager, we are proud to announce that Jeffrey Sheloske has been promoted and will be practicing as an Associate Attorney. His practice focuses in the area of Personal Injury.

About Jeff

Mr. Sheloske grew up in the Midcoast Region of Maine and relocated to Florida to attend the University of Tampa where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Criminology.  He was a member of the Men’s NCAA Division II Cross Country Varsity team, active in ARMY ROTC, was a Student Government Representative and interned with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Department.  He is also one of the founding fathers for the Epsilon Zeta chapter of Theta Chi Fraternity and served as the Alumni Chair.

After graduating from the University of Tampa, Mr. Sheloske worked for several of the nation’s largest insurance companies handling claims in Florida, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, which sparked his passion for zealously representing the injured.  His claim experience included Bodily Injury, Property Damage, Auto Theft and Arson claims, and he was a member of a Coverage Investigation Unit.

His Education

After several years of working for various insurers, Mr. Sheloske attended Florida Coastal School of Law where he earned his Juris Doctorate. While in law school, he was inducted into the Phi Delta Phi Legal Honors Fraternity. He received Book Awards for the highest grade in Lawyering Process I and Lawyering Process II (Research and Writing), received the Outstanding Oral Advocate Award and served as a Teacher’s Assistant in Lawyering Process.  He also served as Treasurer for the Christian Legal Society.  While in law school, Mr. Sheloske interned for several civil litigation firms.  He conducted extensive legal research for Personal Injury cases, drafted pleadings, demands, letters and firm correspondence.

His Experience

Upon graduation from law school, he worked for the nation’s largest insurer as a Licensed Bodily Injury Claim Representative and a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Litigation Claim Specialist handling Florida, West Virginia, and North Carolina claims.  He earned an Associate in Claims (AIC) designation and was selected to be part of a Special Investigation Unit task force (SIU).

Mr. Sheloske is admitted to practice before all county and circuit courts in the State of Florida as well as the District Courts of Appeal.  He is a member of the Florida Bar and the American Bar Association. Jeffrey also belongs to the Christian Legal Society and Free & Accepted Masons of Florida as a Master Mason.

Jeff is truly an asset and we are truly grateful to have him as a part of our Brooks Law Group family!

Before You Clean Up The Mess Left By Hurricane Irma, Follow These Steps!

by on Friday, September 15, 2017  —  Law in Florida

Hurricane Irma raked through the state late last Saturday night and into early Sunday morning. Not only did it affect all of Florida, but especially Polk County, as the eye wall passed right over Winter Haven, Lakeland, and surrounding cities. During this time, homeowners in Florida will often rely on their homeowner’s insurance to give them a sense of security and help cover damages caused by Mother Nature. Without this coverage, homeowners are left without options to repair damages to their homes caused by wind, rain, and water. In a simple world, insurance claims would be filed, processed, and approved quickly to help cover homeowner’s out of pocket expenses; however, that is rarely the case. In the days and weeks following a natural disaster, insurance companies can receive a tremendous amount of claims resulting in the processing of claims on a first come, first served basis. This can result in claims being dismissed, denied, or unpaid due to lack of information and/or documentation.

In the event that you or someone you know is denied coverage for damages to your home caused by Hurricane Irma, we’ve compiled a list of steps to help you in the right direction.

Document the damaged items & take a lot of photographs

Insurance adjusters will come and take pictures of your home to assess damages, but may not capture all the damage done to your home and personal belongings. It is important that you document & retain evidence of all damages, including personal property; the adjuster you originally dealt with may be a subcontractor who is not around later. Many times pictures and documentation are misplaced and sometimes lost.

Save all bills and receipts from repairs

It is recommended to obtain multiple estimates. This will help set the expectation with the insurance company that you have done your homework.

Contact a disaster assistance agency.

Here are some agencies that provide interim assistance:
– Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
– Small Business Administration (SBA)

Contact Brooks Law Group

Call/Text/Email us any questions you may have.  We are an experienced law firm ready to fight to get you what is fair. Our “People First” approach ensures that we are committed to representing your case from beginning to the final verdict. In a time of need, we want to be the firm you can trust to fight for you … if you have sustained damage due to Hurricane Irma, Look to Brooks!

Was Your Home Damaged Due to Hurricane Irma? Here are the important steps you need to know about filing a claim!

by on Thursday, September 14, 2017  —  Law in Florida

 

When Do Most Car Accidents Happen In Florida?

by on Wednesday, September 6, 2017  —  Auto Accidents

Vehicles have become a necessary evil for most people in the United States. The ability to get to and from work, the store, or to the kids’ functions generally requires that people have at least one family car to transport them.

Predicting when a car accident will occur is impossible. We found it interesting to look at the times/days you are at the greatest risk for an accident.

Data Shows March is the Most Dangerous Month

March is a common month to travel not only for Floridians but for families nationwide as school lets out for Spring Break. Students and their friends and/or family are traveling to the nearest beach, like Tampa Bay, St. Petersburg or Clearwater to enjoy their vacation.

This has become a popular time of the year for tourists to visit Florida from all corners of the country. According to the Orlando Sentinel, Governor Rick Scott stated that Florida drew 31.1 million visitors during the first three months of the year, the highest number during any quarter in state history. This shows a 2.5 percent increase from the same time period last year!

As locals to the Tampa area, we understand that tourism means more cars on the road and an influx of cars on the already busy Florida highways, unfortunately, leads to more accidents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

**Photo Credit: Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System**

What Time of Day Are You at the Greatest Risk For An Accident?

According to the Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System (FIRES), there have been 240,013 accidents in Florida year-to-date, 99,607 resulting in an injury.

The graph below provides a visual of the “peak times” accidents occur. Of the 99,607 injuries that have occurred in Florida, the statistics show that 36,000 happened between 4 and 5 o’clock in the afternoon. This not a surprise as this time frame is generally known as “rush hour traffic” when people are trying to make their way home from work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

**Photo Credit: Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System**

 

What Day of the Week Is Your Risk For An Accident the Greatest?

Did you know that 16.38 percent (39,292) of the accidents have occurred on a Friday? That makes Friday the most dangerous day of the week! These findings may come as a surprise, but after a long week- people are concentrating more on getting home and starting their weekend, then the road itself.

To get an idea of how this affects us locally, we have pulled a report showing that the Tampa Police Department has reported that 902 accidents have happened on a Friday so far this year.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

**Photo Credit: Florida’s Integrated Report Exchange System**

 

Want To Know More?

  • For the last two years, March has been the month with the most accidents, averaging 36,500
  • 37% of the accidents year-to-date happened in clear weather conditions
  • Drivers age 20-24 made up 13.52% of the accidents reported in Florida

Injured in An Accident? – Look to Brooks –

If you were one of the 99,607 people injured in an accident this year, we want to help you.  Allow our knowledgeable attorneys, here at Brooks Law Group, to use our 25 plus years of experience to guide you through this challenging time in your life. It is our deepest passion to help people from all walks of life, receive the settlement they may be entitled to. You have nothing to lose by calling us at 1-800-LAW-3030. We offer free consultations and you do not owe us anything if we make no recovery for you.

 

Tampa Accident Victims’ Family Members May Be Eligible for Wrongful Death Suit

by on Friday, September 1, 2017  —  Auto Accidents

According to WFLA, Channel 8 News, on August 11, 2017, 29-year-old Amber Perera lost control of her vehicle on Tampa’s Selmon Expressway resulting in the death of three people- two adults and one 8-year-old child.

Witnesses spotted Perera excessively speeding and tried to pass at least two vehicles when she lost control of her car. Investigators stated that Perera slammed into the back of a Hyundai occupied by the three victims, causing it to cross the grass median and into oncoming traffic. The vehicle then struck other vehicles and burst into flames.

Perera left the scene but was caught shortly after by local enforcement. She admitted to taking anxiety medications Lexapro and Ativan and after failing a field sobriety test, she was taken to the hospital to measure her blood alcohol content.

Although Perera faces multiple criminal charges- including DUI manslaughter – the surviving family members of the deceased may also have a civil case against Perera. This type of case is referred to as Wrongful Death.

What is a Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death claim is filed when you lose a loved one due to the negligence of someone else. The cause of the death is the legal fault of another person. The claims can include fatal accidents of all kinds, from product liability, medical negligence, and car accidents similar to the case mentioned above.

The right to file a wrongful death lawsuit is a new concept as the Common Law did not have a law related to these types of cases. In the last century, the state and federal courts introduced wrongful death law and each state has adopted a wrongful death law of their own.

Who May Be Eligible a Claim?

According to the wrongful death act of Florida, the survivors of the deceased person may have a claim. The survivors can be:

  • Parents
  • Children
  • Spouse
  • Other blood relatives
  • Adoptive siblings

How to File a Claim?

To file a claim, an estate must be set up on behalf of the deceased and the courts must appoint a personal representative to oversee the estate. The personal representative is the legal representative of the estate, who brings the wrongful death lawsuit. When filing a wrongful death claim, seek legal advice here at Brooks Law Group. Our attorneys have comprehensive knowledge and experience in dealing with such cases. Each state has a time limit to sue, which is “Statute of Limitations”. In Florida, the statute of limitations requires that the lawsuit is filed within 2 years of the wrongful action resulting in the death of the victim.

Why Should You Get Legal Help

Here at Brooks Law Group, we understand that losing a loved one unexpectedly is one of the hardest things a person must endure. When someone dies because of the negligence, wrongdoing or carelessness of others, the family may pursue wrongful death lawsuit.

To file a wrongful death lawsuit, call us 1-800-Law-3030. We, at Brooks Law Group, are prepared to stand by you and pursue the compensation you may deserve. You will not owe us anything until we recover compensation on your behalf. Our mission is to “provide best customer experience possible.”  If you are near the Tampa area, we can help you with your legal needs.