Friday, January 27, 2012

Florida Supreme Court Cases 1/26/12


Bright v. State, 2012 Fla. LEXIS 1060 (Fla. May 31, 2012) reiterated the need for a contemporaneous objection at the time an improper closing argument is made, not at the end of the argument.  Here defense counsel failed to lodge a contemporaneous objection to the State’s closing statement. Instead, defense counsel waited until the prosecutor completed her argument to object and move for a mistrial. The court concluded that the objection to the prosecutor’s closing statement was not preserved for appeal. 


In Universal Ins. Co. of N. Am. v. Warfel, , 82 So. 3d 47, 2012 Fla. LEXIS 195 (Fla. 2012), the court held that there was nothing in the sinkhole claim process statutory scheme enacted in 2005 to apply that scheme in the litigation context.  Even if the scheme did apply, in the absence of clear language to the contrary, statutory presumptions are governed by F.S.§ 90.303 (the “vanishing” presumption), rather than F.S. § 90.304 (the presumption shifting the burden of proof).

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