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South Florida Vacation Rental Accommodations During The Holidays

This holiday season has already proven itself to be a busy one, especially in South Florida.

Nearly 110 million people are expected to travel throughout the United States between Dec. 23 and Jan. 2, according to AAA. That’s nearly 28 million more travelers than the 2020 holiday period.

Considering that Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International and Miami International airports are ranked as a top destination for Christmas and New Year’s travel, it’s safe to say that a significant number of that total will descend upon our sunny beaches and roadways. Also, they will all need a place to stay.

South Florida Vacation Rental Accommodations During The Holidays 1 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm

It’s exciting to plan a vacation to somewhere new and being somewhere will it make it even more memorable.

A good number of those traveling here to South Florida may have their own place to stay or have accommodations with family or friends. Even more though are staying at a hotel, motel or a vacation rental like an Airbnb and Vrbo.

Many hotels are centrally located, with easy walking or transport access to nightlife, restaurants, and cultural attractions.
But if you really want to blend in with the neighborhood’s full-time residents, a vacation rental is a better choice for many.

Airbnb and Vrbo vacation rentals are very popular throughout South Florida and there is little wonder as to why.
With the ability from property owners to make their beachside home or their scenic skyscraper condo available to rent,it can provide a unique holiday stay experiences.

In most cases, their trips will be a delightful memory that can last a lifetime.
However, with recent cases of rape and sexual assault that can happen at these vacation rental establishments, it needs to be considered in order to take the right precautions and action.

South Florida Vacation Rental Accommodations During The Holidays 2 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm

Any business that caters to vacationers need to do more than simply just opening their doors. They have a responsibility to provide protection from any preventable hazards and generally, safe premises.

Often there are no issues with these rentals and both customers and owners share positive experiences. Staying at an Airbnb or Vrbo property should be a positive experience and equally, there should be no case where you end up in the hospital due to the negligence or unaddressed conditions of the property instead.

If you do or have experienced sexual assault during your stay at a short term rental, your response should be determined by the nature of the incident. If dangerous and ongoing, the most important thing that you can do is to remove yourself from the situation. If you need to seek assistance, do so immediately.

You have the right to file a claim if you’ve been the victim of a sexual assault or other type of misconduct (whether physical or sexual in nature) at an Airbnb or Vrbo property.

Separate from any criminal case proceeding, a sexual assault lawsuit can also help survivors recover damages for the harm caused. Emotional distress damages are compensation one recovers for impact that would include anxiety, humiliation, and psychological trauma.

Our attorneys at The South Florida Injury Law Firm are here to make sure that you are fairly treated in the aftermath of such an incident and to help you take the necessary legal action you need to get the compensation you deserve. Our experienced attorneys work diligently to fight for their clients rights who have either suffered serious injuries or assault on or around their vacation rental.

South Florida Vacation Rental Accommodations During The Holidays 3 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm

Wherever you choose go or stay. we wish you all a safe and enjoyable Holiday season


VRBO Sexual and Physical Assault Cases

VRBO and others revolutionized the vacation rental industry when they launched, providing a simple platform for homeowners to rent their partial or entire properties for short-term stays.


Instead of limiting your stay to hotels and motels, VRBO and other similar vacation rental companies have allowed property owners to make their vacant properties available for any party registered with them as a guest or host. The platform provides a list of available accommodations ranging from apartments and houses up through castles; some listed by private individuals who rent them directly; others offered by professional real estate firms, hotel chains, resorts & spas offering timeshares.

VRBO Sexual and Physical Assault Cases 4 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law FirmVRBO Background

VRBO was founded in 1995 as Vacation Rentals by Owner, but was later acquired by Expedia/Home Away and has grown into the largest source for short-term vacation rentals. Although the vacation rental service provides many benefits that have consistently been used and enjoyed by hundreds of parties throughout time, there are also negative aspects. Similar to the Airbnb platform, VRBO has experienced tremendous growth in volume that has surpassed its ability to ensure the safety for its hosts and guests.


Although most accommodations are comfortable, safe and successful, what happens if you unluckily become a victim of a violent or sexual assault or injury?
VRBO and AirBnb have admitted they receive more than 250,000 safety issue reports each year from both hosts and guests, but have chosen exponential growth over taking the proper steps to protect their customers.

Concerningly, many of these reports are from those who were guests that have reported sexual assaults by VRBO hosts.
With a variety of allegations that include claims of kidnapping, rape and other acts of sexual violence. Some accusations have even included child sex abuse. However, guests are not the only victims stated in these assaults. Hosts and their families have also been assaulted by the guests they have rented their properties to.

Because of this, many strongly believe VRBO and others have not done enough to ensure the safety of both guests and hosts on its platforms. In their proven effort to provide quick service, many believe VRBO has failed to properly protect its guests and hosts from predators by not ensuring adequate security, check-in safeguards and background checks. Although VRBO screens rental owners and renters, many claim the background checks don’t do enough to protect either party.

VRBO Sexual and Physical Assault Cases 5 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm


In response, the company has deployed a crisis response team of nearly 100 agents to quickly hush up these crimes and pay settlements to those affected before they go public.
However, victims should never agree to a release without learning their full legal rights to compensation. Until 2017, every potential guest who negotiated a settlement with them over events and incidents involving attacks, assault, rape, and murder was required to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Media reports indicate the vacation rental company’s high-profile operatives are trained to negotiate the potential publicity nightmare of some of the gruesome events involving the Company’s worst crises. Because of the wording in the non-disclosure agreement meant that they could not reveal their harrowing stories involving VRBO that would likely go unreported.

While they’ve assembled teams of crisis responders to handle complaints, these people do not work for victims or have their best interests in mind.

VRBO Sex Assault Legal Assistance

Survivors of these assaults can take legal action to get the justice they deserve. Lawyers are now investigating VRBO lawsuits for those who’ve suffered sexual assault, physical assault or homicide while using their services. Given the complexity of these lawsuits, and the numerous parties involved, the assistance of a personal injury attorney with knowledge of the VRBO platform is imperative. If you’ve been a victim, you should speak directly with a lawyer today.

At South Florida Injury Law Firm, our attorneys represent sexually abused victims. Tell us what happened in a confidential setting. Then, let us hold those responsible for causing your harm financially accountable for their negligence.

Our South Florida attorneys have developed a reputation for being compassionate advocates. We understand the challenges you are facing and cater our representation to your unique situation and needs. Our legal team accepts all personal injury cases and wrongful death lawsuits through contingency fee agreements to ensure no payments are made until we resolve the case through a negotiated settlement or jury trial verdict.

Swimming Pool Liability: How Injury Cases Work in Florida

Swimming Pool Liability: How Injury Cases Work in Florida

Swimming Pool Liability: How Injury Cases Work in Florida

Summer is upon us, and it’s peak swimming pool season in the sunshine state. Although swimming is a great way to cool off and get some exercise, it can also be dangerous.

Statistics show three children die every day from swimming pool accidents, and many more people sustain serious injuries.

In many cases, these tragic accidents can be prevented — and it’s the pool owner’s responsibility to do what they can to help. When the pool owner breaches this duty of care, he or she may be liable for the resultant injuries.

Let’s take a look at how swimming pool injury cases work in Florida.

Florida Injury Statutes of Limitations

If you are considering bringing a swimming pool liability case in Florida, understand you must do so within a set limit of time, the “statute of limitations.”

Victims sustaining an injury in a swimming pool accident have four years from the date of the accident to file suit. If a victim dies during the accident, relatives have only two years to bring a wrongful death suit.

Any lawsuits outside of these statutes of limitations will be dismissed.

Further, waiting too long before filing suit brings the severity of your injuries under question. It is important to act as soon as possible if you determine it’s appropriate to seek damages.

Determining Liability for FL Swimming Pool Accidents

The owners of both public and private swimming pools carry a heavy legal burden. They are not automatically liable for injuries sustained on their premises, but have to adhere to much stricter rules than other types of property owners.

Because a pool is considered part of a person’s property, premises liability rules apply to swimming pool injuries. Under premises liability, there are three types of entrants, with varying duties of care:


An invitee is a patron of a public pool, and pool owners owe the greatest duty of care to invitees. Owners are required by law to maintain and repair the pool to prevent injuries to invitees. In public pools, the owners are also obligated to do the following:

  • Provide supervision
  • Provide adequate emergency equipment
  • Maintain the pool and surrounding areas
  • Post adequate signage for the pool
  • Post warnings regarding pool hazards


A licensee is a guest on private property that was invited by the homeowner. The homeowner is obligated to warn licensees of any hazards that are not obvious to a reasonable individual, but their level of liability isn’t as high as that of a public pool owner.


A trespasser does not have permission to be on the property or in the pool. Therefore, a pool owner does not owe a duty of care to this type of entrant — unless the trespasser is a child, as we cover below.

To establish liability in a private pool, the victim must prove that the risk that caused the injury was not an obvious hazard, and that the injuries were not a result of the victim’s own negligent behavior.

Pools and Florida’s Attractive Nuisance Doctrine

Circling back to children trespassing, the law considers children too young to understand the risk of drowning. Therefore, Florida law holds property owners liable for maintaining an “attractive nuisance.”

An attractive nuisance is any object on a property that makes children curious and drawn to the property, including swimming pools.

Property owners are obligated to take extra precautions to keep children away from swimming pools. Ideally, it is fenced on all four sides with a child-proof gate. Otherwise, the pool must be properly covered when not in use, or alarms for all doors and windows directly accessing the pool must be installed.

South Florida Pool INjury Lawyers

Ultimately, both homeowners and public pool operators have an obligation to provide a reasonably safe environment, and to protect pool users from unreasonable hazards. If you or a loved one have suffered a pool injury, and feel it was due to a breach in their duty, you may have grounds to seek damages with the guidance of a South Florida personal injury attorney.


About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.


These are the Most Common Ways That Kids Get Hurt in Florida

These are the Most Common Ways That Kids Get Hurt in Florida

These are the Most Common Ways That Kids Get Hurt in Florida

As a parent, you care about your child and you look out for their well-being. However, you may not be aware of which types of injuries occur the most often for Florida kids, and that’s something that can be the difference between avoiding an accident and spending time in the hospital.

Children are treated every day in US hospitals for all kinds of injuries. In fact, over 9 million children visit emergency rooms for injuries each year. In this post, we’re going to detail the most common injuries that happen to kids and what you can do to keep your child safe.

The most likely reasons that your child could need medical care for injuries are:


Since young children tend to put everything in their mouths as they explore the world, choking injuries are a constant threat in the first few years of life. Babies and toddlers need careful supervision, since unlikely items can get into their mouths in mere seconds. Be sure to keep all small items out of reach.

Mealtimes present choking hazards to children of all ages. You must avoid giving hard foods like candies, raw carrots, or nuts to children under the age of six, since those foods present particular dangers for children without molars. Until your child can cut his or her own food into small pieces, do that job for them.


With all the access to water in Florida, it’s essential for parents to train children in water safety from a very young age. Drowning is the number one reason for death among children between the ages of one and four years. You must be vigilant any time your child is near water, no matter how shallow the water may be.

Even an inch of water is enough for a small child to drown in. Do not allow your young child to be near water without constant supervision. Make sure that pool gates and doors are locked and not able to be opened by a child. Also lock pool covers when the pool is not being used, because even older children can drown if they get trapped under the cover.

Boca Raton Swimming Pool Accidents

As soon as your child is old enough, sign him or her up for swimming instructions. Kids must always wear a vest when on a boat, and you must supervise them closely when you are out on the water. Teach your child water safety habits to minimize the risk of drowning.


Children love to climb, whether it’s on playground equipment or trees. Many love to ride bikes and explore the outdoors. Unfortunately, these childhood times of delight also present countless falling dangers. Since falls are the top reason for injuries to children under the age of 15, it’s important to teach your children safety measures to prevent falls.

Start inside your home. You can prevent slip and fall injuries by removing loose rugs and keeping floors free from clutter.

When outdoors, choose playgrounds with a bouncy surface to minimize injury. Insist that your child wear a bike helmet on every ride.

You can greatly reduce the risk of serious injury with these precautionary measures.


The family medicine cabinet is a common source of poisoning in Florida homes. Keep your medicine cabinet secured and monitor its contents on a regular basis.

Household chemicals can also poison children. Place toxic chemicals out of your child’s reach and make sure they are clearly labeled as hazardous. Teach your child which chemicals must be avoided to prevent poisoning.

Sports Injuries

Your child will likely experience minor injuries like bruises or sprains while playing sports at some point. Some sports injuries, like concussions or ligament tears, can require physical therapy, surgery, or other ongoing treatments. It’s important to seek medical treatment for sports injuries, whether they’re major or minor.

Your child will be safer if he or she is hydrated and well-rested before engaging in any strenuous physical activity. Make sure that your child has frequent breaks and takes time off between seasons to prevent injuries.


Babies under one year of age are in the highest risk group for suffocation. You must properly place your child in a crib with no blankets, toys, or other objects to prevent suffocation.

It’s also essential to keep plastic bags away from babies and toddlers, who can suffocate in mere moments if not supervised.

Boca Raton Child Injury & Accident Attorney

Obviously, these are just some of the many, many different ways kids can get hurt. Toys can be defective and result in harm. They can be in car crashes. The list goes on and on. All you can really do is be aware of the most likely injury scenarios and prepare both yourself and your children so that they engage in safe practices.



About the Author: 

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

Swimming Pool Injuries: The Many Ways Floridians Can Be Hurt

Swimming Pool Injuries: The Many Ways Floridians Can Be Hurt 6 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm

As the weather heats up, time in the pool becomes a necessity for many people. Nothing feels better than cooling off in a pool, whether you’re at your local swimming club or at a friend’s home. Unfortunately, swimming pools come with big risks, and Floridians should keep the potential for injury in mind before taking a dip.

As an experienced Florida personal injury lawyer, I’m well aware of the many different ways that people can get hurt in pools. Here are six ways you could potentially be hurt in a swimming pool this summer. Remember, the more you know, the more accidents you can prevent.

Diving Injuries

Diving is a fun way to show off and get into the pool, but shallow waters can cause life-threatening injuries. Swimmers should be cautious of the depth of the pool they are diving in. Above-ground pools, for example, are always too shallow for divers. Over half of all diving injuries occur in water that is four feet deep or less.

If a swimmer hits their head while diving or jumping into a pool, they should be sent to a doctor immediately. Even if the swimmer appears fine throughout the rest of the day, they may be at risk of a traumatic brain injury (TBI.) Over 1.7 million people suffer from a TBI each year, but half of these cases are not recognized or reported. These injuries only get worse if they are unchecked.


This isn’t one many people think of – or realize – when thinking about pool injuries, but it can happen – particularly if kids aren’t careful. How?

If a young child is sitting near a pool’s skimmer box, the connected suction pump could eviscerate them. This is an especially gruesome and impactful injury. Evisceration can result in the victim needing their food to be administered through an IV, colostomies, or even death.

Other Drain Injuries

Pool drains and suction pumps can cause injuries apart from disembowelment. This area of the pool can create a suction that moves up to 500 pounds of force, so swimmers of all sizes should avoid the area. Suction from a pool drain may cause:

  • Loss of jewelry and accessories, or these items being pulled from and injuring or choking the swimmer
  • Loss of fingers, toes, hand or feet
  • Other organ damage

Skin Irritations from Chemicals

Swimming Pool Injuries: The Many Ways Floridians Can Be Hurt 7 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm

Conversely, if a drain is not properly working, injuries can still occur. Drains and suction pumps move chemicals throughout the pool to kill bacteria and keep the area clean. If the drain is malfunctioning, or the owner of the pool is not properly maintaining it, a variety of injuries can occur.

The presence of bacteria and a high concentration of bacteria-killing chemicals could cause:

  • Skin and eye irritation
  • Stomach problems and infections
  • Further injury to existing cuts or lacerations (infections)

Lacerations and Cuts

Proper pool maintenance also involves checking the pool for potential risks of lacerations or cuts. Over the years, pool lining can get ripped or torn. If these materials have sharp edges, swimmers can get cut while they are playing or running. Inground pools that are surrounded by concrete also pose a big risk for swimmers.

Even a small cut poses a big risk. As we mentioned earlier, a cut can become seriously infected if it comes into contact with the wrong bacteria or chemicals. If you notice that a loved one has suffered cuts while swimming in a pool, take proper care to treat the cut and remove the person from that area until the cut is healed.


Drowning is one of the most common and serious pool injuries. Nine people drown in America every single day. Children are at an especially high risk – drowning is the second-leading cause of unintentional death for children ages 1-14.

Drowning doesn’t just occur when inexperienced swimmers get in the water, though. All it takes is lying face down in 30 mm of water for someone to drown. A victim may drown because of an injury that occurs in the pool, horseplay, or overcrowding. Stay alert for signs of drowning to keep your loved ones safe this summer.

Being Alert to Swimming Pool Dangers Can’t Always Save You

These aren’t the only possible injuries that you might experience at a pool. Your best way to stay safe is to remain alert at all times and prepare ahead of time.

Swimming Pool Injuries: The Many Ways Floridians Can Be Hurt 8 Swimming Pool Accidents South Florida Injury Law Firm

Unfortunately, even the most prepared people cannot account for the negligence of others, and if you or someone you love is hurt, you owe it to your family to hold them accountable

Reach out to a Florida personal injury lawyer today about your options for compensation.

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

Building a Backyard Pool in Florida: Safety Measures You’ll Need

Building a Backyard Pool in Florida: Safety Measures You’ll Need

Building a Backyard Pool in Florida: Safety Measures You’ll Need

With beautiful weather year-round, Florida is an ideal place to build a residential swimming pool. However, if you and your family are thinking of improving your backyard by adding your very own pool, there are a few safety measures that you’ll need to consider first.


That’s because Florida has a Residential Swimming Pool Safety Act that requires all pools built after October 1, 2000 to have specific safety features. The Act (which has actually been a law since 2009) was implemented in an effort to prevent drowning accidents in the state that has the highest drowning rate in the country for children ages 1-14.


Whether you’re just now building a swimming pool or you have a home pool that was built before 2000 and doesn’t meet the current safety standards, do your part to prevent drowning accidents. Here are the minimum safety features your pool should include.


Features to Help Keep Your Pool Safe


The Residential Swimming Pool Safety Act actually only requires that you have one of the following safety features, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t add more in an effort to make your pool as secure as possible.


Safety pool cover. Your cover can be either manual or power-operated, but it needs to meet the performance standards of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Modern power-operated pool covers tend to be a good choice because they can completely seal the pool when not in use.


Safety Pool Covers - Pool Accident Lawyer

Barrier. Florida has strict requirements for what constitutes a pool barrier. Your barrier needs to be at least 4 feet high, may not have any gaps or other openings that a young child could crawl through, must go all the way around the perimeter of the pool, and needs to be far enough away from the pool that a child or medically frail person who fell through the barrier would not immediately fall in the water. Any gate in the barrier must be self-closing and have a release latch on the inside of the enclosure, where a child could not easily reach it from outside the barrier.


Home exit alarm. Although not as common as enclosures or pool covers, you can choose to install a home exit alarm on all doors or windows that have direct access to the pool. However, keep in mind that your pool still needs to have some kind of barrier to prevent children in the neighborhood—not just your own kids—from getting in the pool undetected.


Child-proof latching device. You may choose to install a self-closing, self-latching device with a release mechanism at least 54 inches off the ground on any door leading out to your pool. As with the home exit alarm, this is best paired with some kind of barrier in order to protect both your own kids and potentially trespassing neighborhood children.


Pool Safety Is Worth the Investment


The Residential Swimming Pool Safety Act isn’t just an elaborate plan to get you to spend more money when building your pool; backyard pool drowning is a major issue in Florida, and it’s important that all homeowners with pools do what they can to minimize this risk. The initial cost of adding something like a barrier or a pool cover is far less than the cost of a life.



Swimming Pool Drains Pose Major Danger to Children

Swimming Pool Drains Pose Major Danger to Children

Swimming Pool Drains Pose Major Danger to Children
Do you have a backyard pool that has been on your property for years? Do you know if that pool uses a drain system? If so, you may need to add some new safety features to keep your family safe this summer.


Many older pools, both public and residential, were built with drains because pool designers originally believed drains were necessary to keep water circulating and reduce contamination. However, the suction created by these drains can exert 500 or more pounds of pressure if a person or object becomes stuck in them, making it almost impossible to lift someone who is trapped against one of these underwater drains.


According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were 83 reported swimming pool drain accidents between 1999 and 2008, including 11 deaths. This number is most likely a low estimate, as medical records and the police don’t always report the specific cause of drowning deaths. Whatever the exact number, it’s clear that the majority of accident victims are children who do not recognize the potential dangers of swimming pool drains.


Pool Designers Moving Away from Drains, but Older Pools Still a Problem


In recent years, swimming pool designers have looked at computational fluid dynamics using computer simulations of pools and have discovered that pools without drains are no less effective than pools with drains when it comes to circulating the water. This knowledge, paired with reports of horrific child drowning accidents, has led many designers to eliminate drains altogether from modern pools. Those public pools that were already built with drains are now required to use special rounded drain covers that don’t create suction.


Unfortunately, regulations on residential pools vary from state to state, and removing unsafe drains is not always a requirement. In Florida, people who have residential pools are only required to have one of several specifically outlined safety features, and some of those safety features are not necessarily enough to prevent a drowning accident (it is possible for a child to fall through a swimming pool cover, for example).


If you own a swimming pool, it is up to you to take the proper precautions to prevent drain-related and other drowning accidents.


5 Tips to Keep Your Pool Safe


Tips Keep Your Pool Kid Safe
If kids are going to be using your pool this summer, keep the following safety tips in mind: (It’s a good idea to follow these tips whether your pool has drains or not.)


1. Always supervise children. Never leave children without adult supervision in a pool, even if they have taken swimming lessons and appear to be competent swimmers (swimming abilities will not help if they become stuck on a drain).

2. Add a safety fence. Create some kind of barrier that completely surrounds your pool and that kids cannot easily climb over.

3. Update your pool’s safety features. If your pool currently has flat drain covers that create suction, upgrade to the kind of domed pool covers that public pools now use. You should also consider investing in a safety vacuum release system, which will cause pool drains to stop creating suction if a person or object becomes stuck in them.

4. Warn kids about drain dangers. Even if your pool already has domed covers and a safety vacuum release system, caution your kids to stay clear of the drain. They should also avoid wearing jewelry or baggy clothing and should put long hair in a bun or ponytail to prevent themselves from getting caught on any of the pool’s features.

5. Don’t try to lift a child straight off a pool drain. Because traditional pool drains have such powerful suction, it is impossible to pull a stuck child straight off the pool drain. If your child does become stuck, you will need to wedge your fingers or arm in between the child and the drain to break the suction, and then you will have to roll the child away from the drain.


If you take the proper precautions and know what to do in the event of an emergency, there’s no reason why you and your family can’t enjoy your backyard pool this summer.


About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his 22-year career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.