Savings Tip: Sooner is Better Than Later

You hear or read about it all the time: Start saving, or start saving more for your retirement. For many, the reality is that it is far easier said than done. However, there is also the reality that a significant number of people, upon reaching their retirement, say, “I should have saved more.” It can be a very tough thing to find where adjustments can be made in order to start contributing or contributing more to your retirement. It may be:
  • trying to save on dining out
  • buying less at the supermarket, department stores or other retail stores
  • greater use

Workers’ Comp: A Summary of Morales v. Zenith Ins. Co.

On December 4, 2014, the Florida Supreme Court issued its opinion in Morales v. Zenith Ins. Co. Before we discuss the decision, let’s run through a brief summary of the case and how it ended up before the Florida Supreme Court. While employed by Lawns Nursery, Santana Morales, Jr. was crushed to death by a palm tree. Morales’ widow settled the workers’ compensation claim with Lawns Nursery and its workers’ compensation/ employer’s liability carrier, Zenith. The settlement included a release specifically choosing workers’ compensation as the sole remedy under Zenith’s workers’ compensation/employer’s liability policy. Morales’ estate had a separate wrongful…

Backing Accidents Are Preventable

The following tips are ways to avoid backing accidents:
  1. Plan ahead or back in to avoid backing wherever possible selecting easy exit parking locations where backing will not be necessary. If backing is necessary back in when you arrive, rather than when you are ready to leave, at which time you may be distracted in route to another call.
  2. Roll down your window so you can clearly hear any warning or noises.
  3. Back slowly (at idle speed) and cover the brake and sound your horn as a warning when appropriate.
  4. Walk around the back of your vehicle before backing looking

Detention of Persons Present During the Execution of a Search Warrant: Bailey v. United States

Keeping up with changes in the law is crucial to a law enforcement officer’s ability to honor his oath to uphold the Constitution, to make sure the criminals the officer arrests are not released because of technicalities and to protect himself from a civil lawsuit. This article will discuss the case of Bailey v. United States, 133 S.Ct. 1031 (2013), decided last year, and offer some takeaways as to how to apply this case in the field. In Bailey, the United States Supreme Court revisited the question of when law enforcement officers may detain persons present during the…

Aggressive RTW Program Can Reduce Workers’ Comp Costs

Insurance industry experts are often asked about ways to reduce workers’ compensation indemnity costs. One of the most common responses to this question is to implement and maintain an aggressive Return to Work (RTW) program. Employers are sometimes hesitant to embrace the concept of early RTW, perhaps because they do not fully understand the benefits of an aggressive RTW program. In this article, we will look at three of the many benefits of implementing and maintaining an aggressive RTW. First, an RTW program establishes a sense of trust between the employer and the injured worker. Oftentimes, injured workers feel abandoned…

Standing Water Does Not Respect Your Authority

Following heavy rains and localized flooding in Florida, the Sheriffs Automobile Risk Program, (SHARP), has experienced a rash of engine damage claims from our members caused by driving vehicles through standing water. The water coming into engine intakes is hydro-locking the engines thereby destroying the engines’ internal components. So far the Dodge Charger is the leading vehicle for such damage claims, however the problem exists for other manufactures as well. In fact, this is a long standing issue with most manufacturers having spent a considerable amount of time and effort conducting studies only to conclude that usually the problem occurs…

WIN – With Good Decision Making

The fifth tenant of Below 100 is WIN – What’s Important Now? Many of us practice decision making every day without stopping to think about the steps we take to achieve our goals. That is true whether the decision relates to what we eat for breakfast, what route we take to work, what the priorities are in our schedules, how we operate our vehicles, or other everyday tasks. In the law enforcement and corrections environment, we must train to address not just those mundane, every day decisions. We also must train to make life and death decisions in nanoseconds –…

Stop Distracted Driving

There are three ways to avoid distracted driving:
  1. Keeping your hands on the wheel
  2. Keeping your eyes on the road
  3. Keeping your mind on your driving and avoid target fixation
Remember, you can’t do a single thing or help a single person if you don’t get there. Studies show that when a driver is not focused on the road for just 4.6 seconds at 55 MPH that it’s equivalent to driving the length of a football field while blindfolded. Always increase your safety zone if distractions arise to improve reaction time and to avoid other drivers who are distracted around…

Preventing Disease from Bodily Fluid & Needle Sticks

For years, the scariest of infectious diseases was HIV. Today’s nemesis, however, is hepatitis C (hep C), a virus that is spread by contact with the blood of an infected person and eventually causes liver disease. While health officials estimate that about 1 million people in the United States are HIV infected, about 3 million to 4 million Americans are infected with hep C. Several factors make hep C a deadlier adversary than HIV. For example, HIV cannot live outside the body, whereas the hep C virus can live outside the body for up to seven days. One drop of…

Workers’ Comp: A Summary of FWA v. State of Florida

On August 13, 2014 Judge Jorge Cueto of the 11th Judicial Circuit Court in Miami-Dade County issued an order declaring Chapter 440 unconstitutional (Florida Workers Advocates, et al. v. State of Florida). The FSRMF has no active FSWCSIP members in the 11th Judicial Circuit, therefore there is no immediate impact to the Fund. Final disposition of this issue is months away while the appeal process plays out. Steve Coonrod, partner with the defense firm of McConnaughhay, Duffy, Coonrod, Pope & Weaver, P.A., has provided an excellent summary of the FWA v. State of Florida case which is included in this