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Florida Legal Observer

City Celebrates DeLoach Milestone

Dennis DeLoach Florida Bar Anniversary

In recognition of attorney Dennis R. DeLoach, Jr.’s 50 years as a member of The Florida Bar and his years of service, City of Seminole Mayor Leslie Waters presented DeLoach with a proclamation from the City declaring June 4, 2014, as Dennis R. DeLoach, Jr. Day.

Born and raised in Georgia, DeLoach graduated from the University of Georgia in 1960 and graduated from Stetson Law School in 1963.  He then joined the law firm of Fisher & Sauls in St. Petersburg.  In 1965, DeLoach transferred to Fisher & Saul’s Seminole office, where his passion for the community led him to help form the City of Seminole in 1970 and serve as its first co-city attorney along with late attorney Bill Dunlap.

In 1976, DeLoach started his own law office, which is now known as DeLoach & Hofstra, P.A.

(Story courtesy of the Seminole Beacon).

8 Questions Your Need To Ask Your Aging Parents

As aging parents get older it sometimes becomes necessary to have difficult discussions with them. There are things that you would like to know and things that need to be taken care of, as your parents get older. There are so many things that you may want to ask but you are not sure exactly what to say to start the conversation. In my time helping clients as their elder law attorney I have found that there are 8 basic questions that you should ask your aging parents.

  1. Do you feel like your health insurance is adequate?
  2. Is there anything that can be done to make you more comfortable in your home?
  3. Does your doctor seem to be highly knowledgeable about medical issues that are specific to seniors?
  4. Have your reviewed your estate planning documents with your attorney recently?
  5. Are you still comfortable driving?
  6. Do you have a safe place where all of your important information is kept?
  7. What kind of medical intervention do you want if you are seriously injured or sick?
  8. Have you noticed any changes in your spouse that worry you?

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A Personal Injury Attorney Make Life Easier After An Accident

I have found that many people don’t realize what a Florida personal injury attorney can do for them following a car accident, especially if they are injured. After getting treated for injuries that you have sustained in the wreck, calling a personal injury attorney is the most important thing you can do. Some people believe that they are better off dealing with the tangle of insurance and the legal system on their own. Gaining the experience of a lawyer can mean a less stressful and more successful recovery after your accident. A personal injury attorney who has experience with auto accidents can:

  • Ensure Your Rights Are Protected – You may start getting pressure from the insurance companies to agree to a settlement that won’t even begin to cover your medical bills, let alone the damage to your vehicle or any other losses. I will make sure you understand your rights and every available option.
  • Evaluate Your Injuries – To file a motor vehicle accident claim, insurance companies require that a dollar value be placed on your injuries. Estimating the amount that you can reasonably expect the medical care and recovery to cost can be daunting. You may still be in the hospital getting treatment for your injuries and when asked to file a claim. That means that you not only need to understand how much your hospital care is going to cost, but how much physical therapy and rehab will cost as well as factoring  in the money you are losing while you are not working. My experience with auto accidents means that I can smooth this estimation process out and make sure that it is a fair and reasonable amount. Continue Reading »

Does Your Car Accident Require A Personal Injury Attorney?

Many car accidents happen every day around the Tampa Bay area. Many of those are minor accidents that don’t cause personal injuries and do only cosmetic damage to vehicles or property. In these cases, usually dealing with your insurance company is sufficient. Unfortunately, car accidents that result in severe injuries occur daily in the Tampa Bay area. If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, and sustained severe injuries from that accident, you need to speak with a Pinellas personal injury attorney. While this seems like a simple enough rule of thumb it can get much more complex. Not everyone believes that his or her injury is actually severe. Many think that whiplash or a broken bone isn’t severe enough to contact a lawyer. Before you discount the pain you have experienced, you need to understand what constitutes a severe injury.

Injuries That Mean You Should Call An Car Accident Lawyer

If you are involved in a car accident that leads to any of the injuries below you need to schedule an appointment with a lawyer as soon as possible.

  • Any spinal cord or brain injuries
  • Whiplash or other injuries to your back and neck
  • Dizziness, ringing in your ears, or blurred vision
  • Moderate to severe burns or road rash
  • One or more of your bones was fractured
  • Torn or damaged muscles or connective tissues Continue Reading »

Staying Active Has Many Benefits For Seniors

In the past I’ve written about ways to keep seniors active and tools to keep a senior mobile but I haven’t delved into why it is important to keep active as we get older. A lot of aging is unavoidable. As an elder law attorney I speak with many seniors who have been affected by the passage of time. Sadly many of my clients also don’t have much to do after they have retired and their children have grown and started families of their own. Research is showing us that maintaining a physician-approved active lifestyle in our golden years not only keeps us from being bored but can help increase our lifespan, reduce the risks for cognitive issues, increase our emotional states, and actually help us get more sleep.

Keeping Active Keeps Your Brain Healthy

According to a study published in the Archive of Neurology, physical activity in people over the age of 65 can provide protection from mental decline like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The study also mentions that as long as the senior is not overworking themselves, the activity they take part in does not matter. Almost any activity is good including golf, swimming, yoga, taking a walk or just doing stuff around the home.  The study also mentions that taking part in less strenuous activities, like the hobbies that I wrote about a couple months ago, also seems to cause a reduction in mental decline.

Staying Active Keeps You Happier

Through our lives at work and raising a family we all maintain a network of relationships. As we get older we lose touch with friends and our kids grow up. Keeping our network of friends becomes harder. The good news is that if we take part in a social activity, it usually means that we are spending time with other people. A paper by the Rochester Institute of Technology points out that social support, when coupled with physical health, can improve the mental health of everyone, not just seniors.  Basically a healthy level of activity can increase our social support network which also keeps us happier and mentally healthy.
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Don’t Believe What Hollywood Says – Whiplash Is No Joke

Frequently, I speak to people who have been injured in a car accident, but are reluctant to seek compensation because their injury is limited, at least initially, to what is commonly called whiplash. Their reluctance is most often due to the media’s portrayal of whiplash as a way to “game” the system. Quite commonly the movies make people who claim whiplash as faking it and the injury is not treated as seriously as it should. Unfortunately, people receive whiplash-type injuries on a normal basis but these initial symptoms can mask a more serious underlying injury. The injury itself can manifest itself weeks down the road and can be felt for a long time  and, in some cases, can even be permanent. As a Florida personal injury attorney I feel it is important to remove the stigma of whiplash injuries and let you understand the realities of whiplash.

Common Causes Of Whiplash Injuries

Whiplash is a result of an unexpected and usually violent movement of the head and neck, commonly occurring after being rear-ended in a car accident. This sudden movement usually forces the tendons and muscles to move in a manner that is unnatural. The pain can be anywhere from mild to debilitating and can be constant or intermittent. Unfortunately, a whiplash injury is not something that will usually show up using medical imaging like X-rays or MRIs. All of this means that if you are involved in an auto accident and think you may have experienced a whiplash injury, it is important to first seek out medical care and then meet with a personal injury lawyer.
Continue Reading »

Tools That Let Seniors Remain Active & Mobile

Everyday I speak to seniors and their families who are worried about their long-term eldercare options. Often the seniors are beginning to have problems getting out and enjoying their lives. Many people don’t realize that there are quite a few innovative products that have been designed to help seniors maintain as normal a life as possible. Below I have compiled a list of these wonderful products. While I do not personally endorse any particular product or manufacturer, I have found these types of products can make a big difference in our clients’ lives.

Get Up And Moving

  • The Tru-Motion Cane is designed to allow the cane to provide a large amount of contact on almost any surface, including stairs.
  • The Strongarm Mobility Crutch is more like a cane that helps take the stress off of your wrists as with a typical cane and moves it onto your forearm.
  • A great product when traveling in a plane or even your car is a Folding Travel Cane that folds into a case that is only 11 inches by 5 inches. Another option is a folding cane with a built in flashlight and an emergency alarm.
  • Frequently, there are never enough places to sit when you’re out shopping. The solution is a Seat Cane.

Get Out And About

  • Of utmost importance when you are out is making sure that, if you are injured, you receive proper medical care. This Medical Alert USB Device can store all of your medical information making it easy for medical personnel to treat you quickly and correctly.
  • All of us occasionally lose our car in a parking lot. A Personal GPS Locator can help you remember where you parked or get you back to almost any location.
  • Seniors sometimes have difficulty getting in and out of cars. A great product that helps with this is the Automobility Solution. It has a padded seat that swivels to help turn your legs out of the car and a portable handle that helps you stand up. Continue Reading »

Avoiding Florida Auto Accidents

Every day hundreds of auto accidents happen, but no two accidents are the same. Some require some buffing of paint to repair; others are more severe resulting in severe injuries or even death. As a Florida auto accident attorney, I spend thousands of hours every year with clients who have been injured in auto accidents. Part of my services include reconstructing what led to the collision, which gives me a unique perspective into how to avoid the most common causes of auto accidents. Since you most likely don’t want to be involved in an auto accident, you need to know how to stay safe while driving our dangerous Florida roads.

Use Extra Caution At Intersections

Intersections are one of the few things that a driver will encounter almost every time they get behind the wheel, and are unfortunately one of the more dangerous aspects of driving as well. More auto accidents happen in intersections than almost any other place on the road. In part this is due to the large amount of things a driver needs to pay attention to when going through the intersection. The easiest way to avoid auto accidents at an intersection is to pay attention only to driving. Make sure to watch the lights, other vehicles, signage and directions, and most importantly for pedestrians crossing the street. Many people use crosswalks, but some seem to avoid them. This makes it difficult to predict where a person will enter an intersection, so use extra caution when pedestrians are present at an intersection.
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Caution After A Car Accident With Your Insurance

No matter how good your judgment usually is, after a car accident your usual impeccable decision making may become skewed due to frayed nerves.  Many people never completely recover until days after an accident. Insurance companies know about this and try to take advantage of a person’s emotional state to settle their claims as cheaply as possible. As a Florida injury attorney, I talk to many people who made the mistake of settling their claim before getting legal advice after they have been injured in a car accident. While it is important to inform your own insurance company of the car accident, you need to make sure you contact a personal injury lawyer before agreeing on a settlement with the other driver’s insurance company.

What You After A Car Accident Say Can Hurt Your Case

When you speak with the other driver’s insurance company, seemingly innocuous statements can actually hurt your case.  An insurance company will latch onto almost anything that may cast doubt as to what occurred before and after the accident. Anything that makes the case uncertain means that the insurance company may pay less than what you may actually be entitled to. Saying something as simple as  “I’m not sure what happened,” or “I’m sorry,” is enough to reduce your final settlement.
Continue Reading »

Nursing Home Hobbies and Exercise To Keep You Moving

Keeping your mind and body active as you get older can be difficult. This is especially true for people whose hobbies once revolved around taking care of their home, but now reside in a nursing home that doesn’t require upkeep. It’s important to keep moving and keep thinking as you age. Mental exercise has been shown to reduce the risk of acquiring dementia by 50%. Physical exercise has quite a few benefits that help keep the brain functioning better for longer. A few weeks ago I talked about keeping seniors active and provided some local resources for seniors. This week I wanted to give seniors, and their kids, some ideas about what they can do on their own or with a group of friends.

Mental Exercise Ideas For Seniors

Scrapbooking – This activity keeps the fine motor skills active, maintains creativity, and helps keep memories fresh. Nursing home residents often like to share memories of their life and family, and scrapbooking can help aid in making the memories vivid.

Learning A New Language – Learning a new language seems to protect the brain, not to mention increasing the number of people you can communicate and become friends with.

Play Video Games – This again also increases fine motor skills and stimulates the brain.

Become A Photographer – Photography is something you can do alone or with other people that is not only creative but also keeps you physically and mentally active.

Learn To Play An Instrument – Music is another one of those hobbies that you can practiced alone or with some friends and may provide benefits similar to learning a new language.

Start A Blog – There are great places to start a blog for free with almost no technical skill needed. A blog provides similar benefits as scrapbooking but also lets you meet new people and learn how to use a computer.  Here is a great list of free blogging sites, which includes some of the biggest sites like wordpress.com, blogger.com, livejournal.com, and tumblr.com.
Continue Reading »

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Local: 727.397.5571 Toll Free: 888.397.5571
8640 Seminole Boulevard Seminole, FL 33772