Our Miami Injury Attorneys in the News

Serving Miami, Florida and Nationwide

FIGHTING FOR THE SAFETY OF YOU AND YOUR FAMILY

Read about Miami injury attorney John H. (Jack) Hickey and the Hickey Law Firm, P.A. in the news, including awards and recent verdicts he has obtained. If you would like to set up a free consultation to find out if you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, contact our Miami and Fort Lauderdale injury attorneys toll free at 800.215.7117 to tell us your story.

November 2017

 

October 13, 2017

John H. (Jack) Hickey honored to be a panelist on the Cruise Industry Passenger & Seafarer Claims Seminar on October 13, 2017. Hickey spoke about cruise ship design cases where injuries are caused by a fixed object. He addressed the recent holding in Pizzino v. NCL and discussed cruise lines' participation or approval in design v. constructive notice or knowledge of dangerous conditions. Over 100 maritime attorneys, defense and plaintiffs counsel, and law students attended the seminar at the University of Miami's School of Law. Thanks to Robert Gardana, The Florida Bar Admiralty Law Committee and ABA TIPS Admiralty and Maritime Law Committee for organizing this excellent event. 

October 11, 2017

John H. (Jack) Hickey represented The Florida Bar before the Miami Dade County School Board on October 11, 2017. Hickey spoke about the Florida Free Legal Answers program and its benefits to Miami Dade County Public School (MDCPS) employees and low-income Floridians. The proposal passed unanimously. MDCPS is the 4th largest school system in the nation with 466 schools, 365,268 students, and 45,914 employees. For more information on the Free Legal Answers program, visit the following site: https://florida.freelegalanswers.org/

 

 

July 2017

 

Miami, FL- The Miami based, nationally recognized trial law firm, Hickey Law Firm, P.A. is pleased to announce that its lead trial attorney, John H. (Jack) Hickey, has been elected to the Board of Directors of the Florida Justice Association (FJA) and to a 2-year term as an American Association for Justice (AAJ) State Delegate.

Originally known as the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers, FJA was formed in 1961. Its mission was to shift the focus of justice from business interests to Florida’s consumers. Directors of FJA pledge to make meaningful contributions to the Association by setting an example of leadership, committing time and energy to the Association’s activities, and providing personal and financial support.

As detailed in its history, “AAJ is the world's largest trial bar. AAJ promotes justice and fairness for injured persons, safeguards victims' rights—particularly the right to trial by jury—and strengthens the civil justice system through education and disclosure of information critical to public health and safety. AAJ has members worldwide and a network of U.S. and Canadian affiliates involved in diverse areas of trial advocacy.” The AAJ State Delegates serve as liaison between the AAJ Board of Governors and FJA. It is the responsibility of the State Delegates to assist the Board of Governors in attaining the objectives of AAJ by carrying out specific programs assigned to them by the Board of Governors or the President. 

 

December 2016

John H. (Jack) Hickey elected by peers as Advocate Member of the Miami Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA)

Miami, FL- Hickey Law Firm, P.A. is pleased to announce that its lead trial attorney, John H. (Jack) Hickey, has been elected by his peers as an Advocate Member of the Miami Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA).  Membership to ABOTA is by invitation only.  It requires a 75% affirmative vote by both the chapter Executive Committee and the National Board of ABOTA.  A lawyer, once chosen to be a member of ABOTA, can qualify for Advocate Membership only if he or she has tried at least 50 cases to verdict. 

ABOTA is a national association of trial lawyers, both Plaintiff and Defense.  ABOTA was established in 1957.  ABOTA’s mission is to improve the ethical and technical standards in the legal profession and to aid in further education and training of trial lawyers.

Hickey started his career at a large law firm representing cruise lines, railroads, and other self- insured corporations.  He switched sides and for the last 18 years has represented only Plaintiffs in catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death. 

Hickey is a member of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, the body which licenses and regulates all lawyers who practice in Florida.  He is a Past President of the Dade County Bar Association, the largest voluntary bar association in the state of Florida. 

Hickey is triple Board Certified by 2 different bodies, the National Board of Trial Advocacy (Trial Lawyer) and by The Florida Bar (Civil Trial and Admiralty and Maritime). He has an A/V Preeminent rating by Martindale Hubbell and has been named by his peers as a “Legal Elite” in the areas of aviation, admiralty, and maritime by Florida Trend magazine; Attorney of the Month in Attorney at Law Magazine; one of the “Top Attorneys in Florida” in the Wall Street Journal; and a “Super Lawyer” by Superlawyer.com. In 2015, the National Law Journal named one of Hickey’s settlements as number 1 in Florida and number 6 in the United States. In 2011 VerdictSearch named a Judgement of Hickey’s as the number 3 result that year in Florida for premises liability. 

 

September 2016

Daily Business Review Article- Jury Sides With Family of Woman with Crash-Related Brain Injury

 

 

July/August 2016

Miami, FL- Hickey Law Firm, P.A. is pleased to announce that its lead trial attorney, John H. (Jack) Hickey, has been chosen by his peers— and other lawyers around the state of Florida—as the Dade County Bar Association’s Legal Luminary in Maritime Law in Miami-Dade County.

The Dade County Bar Association (DCBA) was founded in the early 1900s and is the largest voluntary bar association in Florida. With over 6,000 nomination fields submitted, the DCBA’s Legal Luminaries is the largest award recognition of its kind in Florida for excellence in legal practice.

Hickey is on the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, the body which regulates the practice of law and all lawyers who practice in Florida, and is a Past President of the DCBA. Hickey is triple Board Certified by 2 different bodies, the National Board of Trial Advocacy (Trial Lawyer) and by The Florida Bar (Civil Trial and Admiralty and Maritime). He has an A/V Preeminent rating by Martindale Hubbell and has been named by his peers as a “Legal Elite” in the area of aviation, admiralty, and maritime by Florida Trend magazine, Attorney of the Month in Attorney at Law Magazine, one of the “Top Attorneys in Florida” in the Wall Street Journal, and as a “Super Lawyer” by Superlawyer.com. In 2015, the National Law Journal named one of Hickey’s settlements as number 1 in Florida and number 6 in the United States. In 2011 VerdictSearch named a Judgement of Hickey’s as the number 3 result that year in Florida for premises liability.

Contact: Andrea Gutierrez at 1.800.215.7117 or [email protected] with any questions.

 

April 2016: John H. (Jack) Hickey featured as "Attorney of the Month" in Attorney at Law Magazine. 

“Intense,” “determined to win,” and “engaging” are words other lawyers use to describe John H. “Jack” Hickey. Hickey was born and raised in Miami. He went to Miami Palmetto Senior High School and graduated from Florida State University and from Duke Law School. Hickey began his career on the “other side,” representing large, self-insured corporations in catastrophic and serious personal injury cases as well as handling complex commercial litigation and family law. He started as a summer clerk at Smathers & Thompson, a large fullservice firm in Miami, before being brought on as an associate. It was in this role that Hickey was first exposed to maritime law, representing cruise lines. Hickey was assigned to work for Earl Waldin on his first day at Smathers & Thompson. According to Hickey, Earl Waldin was generous with his time and patient with the new lawyer. “He was a lion of a trial lawyer but congenial and friendly outside the courtroom,” Hickey says. “I couldn’t have had a better mentor. In my first year of practice, we went to trial four times in cases involving catastrophic injuries, securities litigation and insurance disputes. I tried a case as first chair nine months out of school. Today, that kind of opportunity is unheard of in civil practice. I was just beyond lucky.” Read the full article here

 

June 22, 2016: John H. (Jack) Hickey presents on “Request for Admissions, Leading Questions, & Imputed Income” for Dade Legal Aid

April 8, 2016: John H (Jack) Hickey presents on the "Use and Admissibility of Diagnostic Films in Trial of an Auto Case” at the New Jersey Association for Justice Boardwalk Seminar

March 15, 2016- Attorney Bjorg Eikeland recognized by The South Florida Business Journal for becoming President of the Norwegian American Chamber of Commerce- South East Chapter of the United States.

 

March 2016- The Miami based, nationally recognized trial law firm Hickey Law Firm, P.A. is pleased to announce that one of its attorneys, Ms. Bjorg Eikeland, has been elected this month as President of the Norwegian American Chamber of Commerce-South East Chapter of the United States.

The NACC was created more than 100 years ago.  It is active in nine regions of the United States. Members include leaders of Norwegian and American firms doing business in the Norway U.S. market. The market areas represented by the members of NACC include banking and finance, energy, maritime and offshore, technology, and environmental resource management. The NACC South East Chapter “has always been a small cadre of Norwegian and some non-Norwegian people and businesses and now includes cruise lines, air lines, real estate and other businesses. This is really a great organization because of its people. I want to increase membership and take it to the next level,” said Bjorg when asked about her recent election as President.

Bjorg also was appointed last year as Chair of The Florida Bar Grievance Committee 11J.  Grievance committees are composed of lawyers and non-lawyers who hear complaints which are lodged against Florida lawyers.  Bjorg also has served on the Board of Directors of the Norwegian Seamen’s Church in Miami.

Bjorg is a native of Norway and speaks Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish. In addition to a J.D. degree from the University of Miami, Bjorg holds a law degree from the University of Oslo in Norway. After receiving her Norwegian law degree and before becoming a Florida lawyer, Bjorg worked for eight years for two of Scandinavia’s largest marine insurance companies. She later received her J.D. cum laude from the University of Miami and then worked for a law firm which defended cruise lines and for a firm which handled commercial litigation.  Bjorg joined Hickey Law Firm, P.A. in 2010 where she is a trial lawyer handling maritime and general personal injury and commercial litigation matters.

Bjorg graduated cum laude from University of Miami School of Law in 2006.  She practices in all state and Federal Courts in Florida and has been admitted pro hac vice to practice in the Western District of Washington. 

Hickey Law Firm, P.A. Is a Miami, Florida based, nationally recognized law firm of trial lawyers handling maritime and land based catastrophic personal injury cases. Lead trial lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey is on the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, the body which regulates the practice of law and all lawyers who practice in Florida, and is a Past President of the Dade County Bar Association. Hickey is triple Board Certified by 2 different bodies, the National Board of Trial Advocates (Trial Lawyer) and by The Florida Bar (Civil Trial and Admiralty and Maritime). 

 

October 2015- Hickey Law Firm listed #6 nationally and #1 in Florida in The National Law Journal's Big Money Wins Top 50 Verdicts and Settlements of 2015

                 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4/21/14:  John (Jack) Hickey appeared on ​Al Jazeera America with Host Joie Chen discusssing the responsibilities of the Captain as it relates to Maritime and Admiralty Law. 

Personal Injury Attorney Jack Hickey is representing Brooks Robinson major league baseball player for 23 years, Hall of Famer, and the greatest outfielder that ever lived after he fell 12 feet. Robinson was on the property to help raise money for Joe Demaggio Children’s Hospital. Read more about the accident here.

 

Board Certified Maritime and Admiralty Attorney Jack Hickey interviewed 4/21/14 on CNN's show continuing the discussion of the South Korean Ferry. See Jack Hickey of Hickey Law Firm PA's appearances on The Morning Show with Pamela Brown and Wolfe Blitzer.

 Maritime Attorney Jack Hickey featured on CNN's Morning Show with Victor and Christie Saturday 4/19/14 discussing the sinking South Korean Ferry.

Admiralty and Maritime Lawyer Jack Hickey interviewed on CNN's Morning Show with Carol Costello on 4/18 discussion the legal impacts a Captain leaving his ship.

Double board certified attorney Jack Hickey is representing Carnival Cruise Ship Passenger Tristen who spoke with Inside Edition about the rape she endured. Read more of the article here: "INSIDE EDITION Investigates Alleged Sexual Assault on Cruise Ship".

John H. (Jack) Hickey featured in The ABA Journal article "Cruising Toward Calamity" Read More

John H. (Jack) Hickey featured in “Legal Leaders” Catalog Distributed by the Miami Herald and the Daily Business Review

Hickey Law Firm Represents Whistleblower Fighting Fraud Against ATI Career Training Center Read More

John "Jack" Hickey featured in Legal Leaders - South Florida's Top Rated Lawyers of 2013. See the article here

Hickey Presents Papers At The Winter Convention Of The Association For Justice And At The Workhorse Seminar Of The Florida Justice Association Read More

Miami Injury Attorney John H. (Jack) Hickey Participates in “Practicing With Professionalism” Seminar Panel

Carnival Spirit Class: Carnival Cruise Ship Slip and Fall Litigation

We have received numerous calls from passengers who have slipped and fallen on the Lido (pool) Deck on the four cruise ships in the Spirit Class, which include the following ships:

  • Carnival Spirit
  • Carnival Pride
  • Carnival Legend
  • Carnival Miracle

Carnival had these ships built with, or added later, an ultra slippery flooring on the Lido (pool) deck. This flooring is colorful and has a swirling pattern of colors and shapes throughout the deck. This may or may not be pretty depending on your taste but it certainly does camouflage water, other liquids and debris. This slick, slippery multicolored floor surface is a resin and a product of API USA, INC. API is a company that produces multiple types of flooring surfaces. The API surface that Carnival has chosen for the Carnival Spirit Class of cruise ships has proven to be extremely slippery, especially when wet.

This deck is dangerous. It has caused accidents and injuries. If you have slipped and fallen on this deck, or on any other deck or cruise ship for that matter, or know of someone who has, call us TOLL FREE (1.800.215.7117) now for a FREE CONSULTATION.

 

January 12, 2015

In January of 2015, John H. (Jack) Hickey was listed on the 2015 annual edition of The South Florida Legal Guide’s list of Top Lawyers. This makes for the 11th year Hickey receives the prestigious title. The South Florida Legal Guide is a nationwide publication which focuses exclusively on highly regarded attorneys in Southeastern Florida. It recognizes attorneys deemed noteworthy by their peers.

September 12, 2014

John H. (Jack) Hickey was recently appointed Vice Chair of the Certification Plan of Appeals Committee (CPAC) of the Florida Bar Board of Governors.

The Board of Governors is the governing body of The Florida Bar which has over 80,000 members.  The Florida Bar licenses, regulates, and disciplines lawyers in Florida. The CPAC is responsible for hearing and ruling on appeals relating to the certification plan, basic skills, course requirement, and the continuing legal education requirement.

Hickey is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and of Duke Law School.  He is Double Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Civil Trial and Admiralty and Maritime Law. Hickey is Past President of the Dade County Bar Association and currently serves on The Florida Bar Board of Governors.  He is top rated A/V by Martindale Hubbell and has been named by his peers to the “Legal Elite” in the area of aviation, admiralty, and maritime by Florida Trend magazine, as a Top Lawyer by the South Florida Legal Guide, and as a “Super Lawyer” by Superlawyer.com.

For the first part of his career, Hickey was a defense lawyer for cruise lines, railroads, and insurance companies.  For the past 17 years, Hickey has been on the other side, representing people in personal injury and wrongful death cases in the areas of cruise line claims (admiralty and maritime), products liability, and premises liability.  He also practices complex commercial litigation.  Hickey has won many multi-million dollar jury verdicts. 

For Immediate Publication

On July 27, 2014, John H. (Jack) Hickey spoke and presented a paper on the “Use of Corporate Representative Depositions in Maritime cases” for the Admiralty Section at the Annual Convention of

the American Association for Justice (AAJ), in Baltimore, Maryland.

 

Hickey also spoke, the next day July 28, 2014, at the same convention but before another group, the Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section, and Inadequate Security Litigation Group. The topic of that talk was “Why Corporate Representatives may be the Most Neglected Key Witness and how they can Make Your Commercial Motor Vehicle Case.”

As detailed in its history, “AAJ is the world's largest trial bar. AAJ promotes justice and fairness for injured persons, safeguards victims' rights—particularly the right to trial by jury—and strengthens the civil justice system through education and disclosure of information critical to public health and safety. AAJ has members worldwide and a network of U.S. and Canadian affiliates involved in diverse areas of trial advocacy.”

May 2014

 

John H (Jack) Hickey spoke on a panel at and prepared a paper for the Torts and Insurance Practice Section meeting of the ABA in Boca Raton on May 16, 2014.  Hickey's paper was on Tour Operator liability. Hickey also authored “Cruise Ship Accidents: What are the rights of the passenger,” published in the Spring Edition of The New York Bar Association’s Senior Lawyer Magazine.

 

For Immediate Publication:
$2.998 Million Final Judgment Against Carnival Cruise Lines

On Friday, May 13, 2011, Federal Judge Ursula Ungaro awarded $2,998,155.70 to a Carnival cruise ship passenger who was injured in a slip and fall accident. The case is styled: Denise Kaba, plaintiff v. Carnival Corporation, defendant; United States District Court Southern District of Florida Case No. 10-21627-CIV-UNGARO. Plaintiff’s attorneys: John H. (Jack) Hickey, Esq. and David C. Appleby, Esq. Hickey Law Firm, P.A. Defendant’s attorneys: Thomas Scott, Esq. and Armando Rubio, Esq. Cole, Scott & Kissane, P.A. The accident was caused by the cruise line, which had installed on the pool deck of its ship a resin surface. This surface was hard and slippery as ice. Carnival had known about numerous prior accidents on this same flooring surface on this and other ships. After discovery into this surface establishing these facts, the cruise line admitted liability. The Plaintiff, Denise Kaba, slipped and fell on this pool deck surface on the Carnival Pride on August 22, 2009. As a result of the fall, Mrs. Kaba suffered a fractured patella and underwent six surgeries. Mrs. Kaba will need one to two total knee replacements in the future. The trial to determine damages started on May 9, 2011. Final Judgment was entered on Friday, May 13, 2011. The breakdown of the award is as follows:
Loss of earning capacity from the date of trial………………………………………. $ 170,483.00
Past medical expenses ………………………………………………………………… $ 221,910.55
Future medical expenses ……………………………………………………………… $ 373,564.00
Past non-economic damages (pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life,
mental anguish, scarring, disfigurement, and disability) …………………………… $ 200,000.00
Future non-economic damages……………………………………………………… $1,960,000.00
Pre-judgment interest …………………………………………………………………. $ 72,198.15
TOTAL ………………………………………………………………………………… $2,998,155.70

John H. (Jack) Hickey is a Miami native and practices all over Florida. He is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Jack is Chair of the Admiralty Section of the American Association for Justice, Past Chair of the Admiralty Law Section of The Florida Bar, a member of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar, and Past President of the Dade County (Miami) Bar Association. He is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and of Duke Law School. This year alone, Hickey was named by his peers to the “Legal Elite” in the area of personal injury by Florida Trend magazine; as a “Super Lawyer” by Superlawyer.com; and as a “Top Lawyer” in the areas of personal injury and maritime by the South Florida Legal Guide. For the first half of his career, Hickey was a defense lawyer for insurance companies and cruise lines. For the past 14 years, he has been on the other side, representing people in personal injury and wrongful death cases. He has won many multi-million dollar jury verdicts. See more at www.hickeylawfirm.com or call 800.215.7117.

Kaba Final Judgment

Kaba Judgment Press Release

For Immediate Publication:
Miami Lawyer Sworn in to The Florida Bar Board of Governors

John H. (Jack) Hickey, of Miami, Florida, was sworn in for the third year in a row to The Florida Bar Board of Governors. The Board of Governors is the body which makes policies and rules and which disciplines the more than 85,000 lawyers licensed to practice law in Florida. Hickey was sworn in at The Florida Bar Convention in Boca Raton, Florida on Friday, June 25, 2010. Hickey has been appointed to the Disciplinary Review, Rules and Certification Plan Appeals Committees of the Board of Governors.

For the fifth year in a row, Hickey has once again been included in Florida Super Lawyers in the areas of Personal Injury and Admiralty. Hickey is also a Past President of the Dade County Bar Association and is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by The National Board of Trial Advocacy. Hickey Law Firm, P.A. continues to represent seriously injured people in cases of Transportation Torts (maritime and cruise ship accidents and trucking and car accidents), Product Liability, Premises Liability, Negligent Security and Medical Malpractice cases.

See more at www.hickeylawfirm.com or call 800.215.7117.

Read the ad for this press release.

For Immediate Publication:
Attorney David Appleby Joins
Hickey Law Firm, P.A.

David C. Appleby, Esq. has joined the Miami maritime and plaintiff personal injury firm of Hickey Law Firm, P.A. Appleby is a graduate of Florida State University College of Law and studied International Law at Stockholm University. He was admitted to The Florida Bar in 1985. Appleby worked for 20 years as a medical malpractice defense attorney and for the past four years with a prominent plaintiff’s personal injury firm in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Appleby is a member of The American Association for Justice and The Florida Justice Association. He specializes in personal injury, medical malpractice and transportation torts. Hickey Law Firm, P.A. continues to represent seriously injured people in cases of Transportation Torts (maritime and cruise ship accidents and trucking and car accidents), Product Liability, Premises Liability, Negligent Security and Medical Malpractice cases.

See more at www.hickeylawfirm.com or call 800.215.7117.

Read ad for this press release.

For Immediate Publication:
Miami Lawyer Sworn in as Chair of AAJ Admiralty Section

John H. (Jack) Hickey, of Miami, Florida, was recently elected Chair of the Admiralty Section of the American Association for Justice (formerly ATLA), the national trial lawyers association. The American Association for Justice (AAJ) is the largest plaintiffs bar association in the world. Hickey was sworn in at the 2010 AAJ Annual Convention in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Hickey is a member of The Florida Bar Board of Governors, Past President of the Dade County Bar Association and is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by The National Board of Trial Advocacy. Hickey Law Firm, P.A. continues to represent seriously injured people in cases of Transportation Torts (maritime and cruise ship accidents and trucking and car accidents), Product Liability, Premises Liability, Negligent Security and Medical Malpractice cases. (View attached note).

See more at www.hickeylawfirm.com or call 800.215.7117.

For Immediate Release:
Hickey Re-elected for Second Term to The Florida Bar Board of Governors

This month The Florida Bar announced the results for the Board of Governors’ races. John H. (Jack) Hickey, a trial lawyer and Past President of the Dade County Bar Association, was re-elected without opposition to seat seven.

The Board of Governors is the governing body of The Florida Bar, which has over 80,000 members. The Florida Bar licenses, regulates and disciplines lawyers in Florida.

John H. (Jack) Hickey is a Miami native and practices all over Florida. He is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. He is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and of Duke Law School. This year alone, Hickey was named by his peers to the “Legal Elite” in the area of personal injury by Florida Trend magazine, which has only the top .05% of lawyers in Florida. Hickey was also named as a “Super Lawyer” by Superlawyer.com and as a “Top Lawyer” in the areas of personal injury and maritime by the South Florida Legal Guide.

For most of his career, Hickey was a defense lawyer for railroads, cruise lines and insurance companies. For the past 11 years, Hickey has been on the other side, representing people in personal injury and wrongful death cases in the areas of cruise line claims (admiralty and maritime), products liability, and premises liability, and he practices complex commercial litigation. He has won many multi-million dollar jury verdicts.

See more at www.hickeylawfirm.com. P: 800.215.7117 E: [email protected]

FOUR MILLION DOLLARS PAID BY CRUISE LINE

For Immediate Release:
Multimillion Dollar Verdict Against Royal Caribbean is Affirmed
Record breaking verdict for a “non-operated disc”

On January 16, 2008, the Third District Court of Appeal, the mid-level appellate court in the Florida state courts, affirmed a judgment following a jury verdict against Royal Caribbean Cruise Line in the amount of $3,384,185.

The jury verdict was for the personal injury of a seaman, a First Officer onboard a Royal Caribbean cruise ship. The seaman, Goran Bakalar, suffered a herniated disc in a fall from a ladder while entering a boat. He received no surgery for the condition but could not work on a ship again. The seaman was represented by John H. (Jack) Hickey of Hickey Law Firm, P.A. in Miami, Florida. (See, www.hickeylawfirm.com).

The story starts when the cruise line required its officers to man a fast rescue boat to provide security when the ship was in the Port of Miami. The United States Coast Guard had written letters to this cruise line and others requesting that the cruise lines provide such patrol boats and requested that the patrol boats be manned with 2 people.

Royal Caribbean chose to man each boat with one person and required that its people enter the boats from a bent, broken ladder affixed to a pier at the Port of Miami. The ladder was a vertical “fixed ladder”. That is, the ladder was vertical and attached permanently to the concrete pier. The only problem was that the last 3 feet or so of the ladder was bent in at a 45-degree tilt from the vertical and the end of the ladder was not fixed or bolted to anything.

When First Officer Goran Bakalar went to get into the boat from that ladder for the first time, the boat moved, the ladder moved and he fell back about 6′ down onto his back. He suffered a herniated disc in his back. As a result of that injury, the cruise line said that he could not work on a ship again.

Because Mr. Bakalar was an employee on the ship, he was a Jones Act Seaman. That means that he had all of the rights under the Jones Act, 46 U.S.C. Sec. 688, et. seq. which means the right to sue for pain and suffering, and the seaman had all the rights under the General Maritime Law. That in turn means that the seaman is entitled to Maintenance and Cure. This is an old expression in the General Maritime Law for the obligation of the ship-owner to pay for the medical expenses and for the reasonable living expenses of the seaman until the seaman is declared by a physician to be a “Maximum Medical Improvement”.

Here Mr. Bakalar needed back surgery, which included back fusion at 2 levels. By the time of trial, however, the cruise line had provided to Mr. Bakalar no such treatment. In fact, the cruise line contended that Mr. Bakalar did not need surgery and that the back condition was merely a bulging disc.

e for years, and would not settle. We went to trial. The jury’s verdict for this injury is a record breaker. The cruise line after the verdict appealed. Interest accrued on the verdict at 9%. By the time the appellate court affirmed, the interest alone which was owed was over $500,000.00. Thus, with interest, the final amount owed after the appellate decision was just under $4 Million. The full amount was paid. Here is the opinion:

__________________
The Third District Court of Appeal
State of Florida, January Term, A.D. 2008
Opinion filed January 16, 2008.
No. 3D06-2960
Lower Tribunal No. 03-24475

Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd.,
Appellant,
vs.
Goran Bakalar,
Appellee.
An Appeal from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County, Scott Bernstein, Judge.
Salas, Ede, Peterson & Lage; Hicks & Kneale and Dinah Stein and Mark Hicks, for appellant.
John Hickey; Elizabeth K. Russo, for appellee.
Before RAMIREZ, SUAREZ, and ROTHENBERG, JJ.
PER CURIAM

Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. appeals a jury verdict of $3,384,185 as being against the manifest weight of the evidence. As we recently stated in Glabman v. De La Cruz, 954 So. 2d 60, 62 (Fla. 3d DCA 2007), “despite the fact that a jury verdict is higher or lower than the reviewing court believes it ought to have been, the court should decline to interfere with the verdict.” Unlike Glabman, Royal Caribbean has not pointed to any highly emotional testimony that caused anyone to cry. We find no abuse of discretion in the trial judge’s refusal to grant a new trial or remittitur. See Lassitter v. Int’l Union of Operating Eng’rs, 349 So. 2d 622, 627 (Fla. 1977) (stating that the court may order a remittitur or new trial if it believes “the amount is so great or small as to indicate that the jury must have found it while under the influence of passion, prejudice or gross mistake”). Affirmed.

John H. (Jack) Hickey represented cruise lines for the first 17 years of his career. For the last 11 years, he has represented passengers and crew members in their claims against cruise lines. He is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Hickey lectures frequently across the country on Maritime Law and on claims against cruise lines, and in March of 2007 testified before Congress on claims against cruise lines. He is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell, listed in Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in American Law, and has been named as a “Superlawyer” by Superlawyer.com, as a “Top Lawyer” by the South Florida Legal Guide, and as a member of the “Legal Elite” by Florida Trend Magazine. Hickey is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and Duke Law School. He is a civil trial lawyer specializing in personal injury, admiralty and maritime, medical malpractice, and commercial litigation with offices at 1401 Brickell Avenue, Suite 510, Miami, Florida 33131. Call TOLL FREE: 800.215.7117. Website: www.hickeylawfirm.com.

Twelve Year-Old Girl Raped Onboard Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship

A lawsuit was filed on October 5, 2009 against Royal Caribbean Cruise Line on behalf of a 12 year-old child who was the victim of statutory rape while in the care of the cruise line’s teen program.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Line advertises and markets that it has programs and caters to pre-teens and teens. In fact, the cruise line advertises on its website that it provides as “adventure ocean youth facilities including teen only areas” and advertises and represents that “our 12-14 and 15-17” teen groups give them the freedom to come and go as they please for sports, themed parties, movie nights, and more. Teens can also meet up and chill-out in the laid back Living Room lounge, or cut loose at Fuel, the teen only night club.

Royal Caribbean also markets, advertises and represents that and “parents don’t have to worry about you hanging out there, because every member of our team staff holds a college degree and education, recreation or a related field and has experience working with youth ages 3-17.” Their advertisement also states that this program is “available on all ships.”

However, on this particular cruise, despite its representations, Royal Caribbean allowed an adult man to attend a teen-only event. In turn, the adult man then seduced our client, a minor child, 12 years-of-age at the time of this incident, drugged her and raped her.

The 12 year-old child had a serious psychological and psychiatric condition, which has been aggravated by this incident.

John H. (Jack) Hickey of Hickey Law Firm, P.A. in Miami, FL is representing 12 year-old Jane Doe’s mother as natural guardian of the minor child.

Hickey is a Past President of the Dade County (Miami) Bar Association, the largest voluntary bar association in Florida. This year, he was named by his peers (other lawyers) as a “SuperLawyer” by SuperLawyers.com, a member of the “Legal Elite” by Florida Trend Magazine, and a “Top Lawyer” in the areas of personal injury and maritime by the South Florida Legal Guide. Hickey is rated A/V, the highest rating possible, by Martindale-Hubbell, the international directory of lawyers. He is also Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by the National Board of Trial Advocacy (the only national board of certification, which is accredited by the American Bar Association).

Hickey is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and Duke Law School. He is a civil trial lawyer specializing in personal injury, admiralty and maritime, medical malpractice, and commercial litigation with offices at 1401 Brickell Avenue, Suite 510, Miami, Florida 33131.

Call TOLL FREE: 800.215.7117.

Website:  www.hickeylawfirm.com.

Illegal High Speed Police Chase Kills Mother of Three

On February 23, 2009, Anayency Velasquez was on her way home from work when a Miami-Dade Police Officer caused a collision, which resulted in Ms. Velasquez’s death. The Miami-Dade Police Officer was negligently and recklessly operating his police vehicle at the time of the crash, which occurred at the intersection of NW 112th Street and NW 12th Avenue in Miami, FL. Ms. Velasquez leaves behind 3 minor children.

John H. (Jack) Hickey of Hickey Law Firm, P.A. in Miami, FL is representing two gentlemen, individually and as Personal Representatives of the Estate of Anayency Velasquez.

Hickey is a Past President of the Dade County (Miami) Bar Association, the largest voluntary bar association in Florida. This year, he was named by his peers (other lawyers) as a “SuperLawyer” by SuperLawyers.com, a member of the “Legal Elite” by Florida Trend Magazine, and a “Top Lawyer” in the areas of personal injury and maritime by the South Florida Legal Guide. Hickey is rated A/V, the highest rating possible, by Martindale-Hubbell, the international directory of lawyers. He is also Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by the National Board of Trial Advocacy (the only national board of certification that is accredited by the American Bar Association).

Hickey is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and Duke Law School. He is a civil trial lawyer specializing in personal injury, admiralty and maritime, medical malpractice, and commercial litigation with offices at 1401 Brickell Avenue, Suite 510, Miami, Florida 33131.

Call TOLL FREE: 800.215.7117.

Website:  www.hickeylawfirm.com.

Hickey Wins The Florida Bar Board of Governors Race in Miami

On Wednesday, April 23, 2008, The Florida Bar announced the results of the hotly contested race for one of the Miami seats on its Board of Governors. John H. (Jack) Hickey, a trial lawyer and Past President of the Dade County Bar Association, won the seat. This victory came after a 3-way race, which then resulted in a run off election. Hickey received the most votes in both elections.

The Board of Governors is the governing body (or board of directors) of The Florida Bar which has over 80,000 members. It licenses, regulates and disciplines lawyers in Florida. Hickey ran on the campaign theme of vision, leadership and experience. He said that The Florida Bar can be better and more responsive to the everyday, hard working lawyer in Florida.

John H. (Jack) Hickey is a Miami native and practices all over Florida. He is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Lawyer by The Florida Bar and by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Hickey is a Past President of the Dade County (Miami) Bar Association (the largest voluntary bar association in Florida), Past Chair of the Admiralty Law Section of The Florida Bar, and currently serves as a member of the Board of Governors of The Florida Bar. He is a graduate of Florida State University (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and of Duke Law School.

This year alone, Hickey was named by his peers to the “Legal Elite” in the area of personal injury by Florida Trend magazine; as a “Super Lawyer” by Superlawyer.com; and as a “Top Lawyer” in the areas of personal injury and maritime by the South Florida Legal Guide.

For most of his career, he was a defense lawyer for railroads, cruise lines and insurance companies. For the past 11 years, Hickey has been on the other side, representing people in personal injury and wrongful death cases in the areas of cruise line claims (admiralty and maritime), products liability, and premises liability, and he practices complex commercial litigation. He has won many multi-million dollar jury verdicts. See more at

www.hickeylawfirm.com. P: 800.215.7117 E: [email protected]

Hickey Testifies Before Congress About Crimes on Cruise Ships

On March 27, 2007, Hickey testified before the United States Congressional Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation in Washington, D.C. Hickey was invited to speak before the Subcommittee by its Chair, Congressman Elijah Cummings. The topics included crimes on cruise ships. Other topics discussed were the injustices of maritime law in passenger and crewmember claims. Hickey provided a paper on these topics to Congress and it is available here. The panels of speakers on that day included Rear Admiral Justice of the U.S. Coast Guard, a representative from the F.B.I. and the CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. The Chair of the Committee promised that the subcommittee would meet again and that legislation on the reporting of sexual assaults of U.S. citizens on cruises ships would be put into place.

Click the links below to read more about the hearing

FBI Memo for “Hearing on Crimes Against Americans on Cruise Ships

Invitation from the Chair of the Congressional Committee – 1

Paper Submitted to the Congressional Subcommittee on Cruise Line Justice in Our Legal System

Paper on the Jones Act

Congressional Hearings Transcript

Follow Up Letter

In the last 25 months, Jack and his team have won the following jury verdicts for their clients:

Goran Bakalar v. Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd.: Miami Dade County Circuit Court Case No. 03-24475-CA 25. Date of verdict: May 19, 2006
Amount of verdict: $3.384 million.

Liability: First Officer getting into a fast rescue boat by climbing down a fixed ladder at the port of Miami. The ladder was broken. Steps and falls back. Jury found 100% negligence against the Defendant and 0% negligence against the Plaintiff. Injuries: Un-operated herniated disk at L 5 S1. This is reported to be the highest award in the state of Florida and possibly in the United States for this type of injury by a multiple of approximately three.
Click here for official Bakalar verdict
Click the links below to read more on this cruise ship accident case
Bruising for a Cruising
Jury Awards 3.4M to a Former Ship Worker
Cruise Ship’s First Officer Gets 3.4M For Fall From Ladder

Nancy Goodfellow v. Roadhouse Grill: Miami Dade County Circuit Court Case No. 99-17990 CA 30. Date of verdict: May 3, 2004
Amount of verdict: $1.733 million.

Liability: Nancy Goodfellow went to get out of a booth at Roadhouse Grill and put her hand down on the booth seat. The seat gave way because it was broken. She jammed her hand against the underlying structures. She severed a tendon and broke one bone. No external injuries after several surgeries resulting in a partial fusion of the wrist.
View Medical Illustration
Click the links below to read more articles about this personal injury case
Verdicts by Association
Diner Wins Suit for Injured Hand

Alexander Husni v. The Mandarin Oriental Hotel: Miami Dade County Circuit Court Case No. 02-20744 CA 32. Date of Verdict: August 20, 2004
Amount of verdict: $2.59 million.

Alexander Husni was getting into the trunk his car in the “ramp” or front driveway in front of the hotel. The valet parker retained by an independent contractor slammed into the back of the car causing crush injuries of the left knee requiring only one surgery and the insertion of one pin. Testimony about future medical care and treatment was that Mr. Husni would have to have a knee replacement in ten to fifteen years. This is reported to be the highest award in the state of Florida and possibly in the United States for this type of injury.
View Medical Illustration of the Knee
Click the links below for more case details
Accident Results in 2.59M Judgment
Accident in Hotel Driveway Leads to 2.59 Million Award

Jack Hickey: Formerly A Lawyer For The Cruise Lines And Insurance Companies …Now A Lawyer For You

Jack was chosen by his peers to receive the following honors:

“Legal Elite”
(2006)
by Florida Trend Magazine
Click here to view the official announcement

“Top Lawyer”
(2006)
in the areas of Personal Injury and Maritime by the “South Florida Legal Guide”
Click here to view our Top Lawyer listing in the South Florida Legal Guide

“Florida Super Lawyer”
(2006)
in the area of personal injury plaintiff in “SuperLawyers”
Click here to view the Florida Super Lawyer listing

Board Certified as a Trial Lawyer by the National Board of Trial Advocacy

Jack has been Board Certified as a Trial Lawyer by the National Board of Trial Advocacy (NBTA) for 2006. The NBTA is the only national certification program for trial attorneys and is accredited by the American Bar Association. Jack has been certified since 1990 by The Florida Bar as a Civil Trial Lawyer.

John H. (Jack) Hickey has been interviewed numerous times on national TV on cruise line issues. He has appeared 5 times on the MSNBC show, Scarborough Country, and many times on Fox News. Hickey appeared 9 times on the George Smith Honeymooner disappearance case alone, and has been interviewed about the pirate attack on a cruise ship. A selection of video clips from these programs can be viewed below.

John H. (Jack) Hickey Speaks to the Coral Gables Bar Association

John H. (Jack) Hickey on Wednesday July 21, 2004, spoke to the Coral Gables Bar Association about maritime law and claims of passengers against cruise ships. Hickey is Board Certified by The Florida Bar as a Civil Trial Attorney and has been recognized by the South Florida Legal Guide as “Top Lawyer” in the areas of personal injury and maritime law. He is Past Chair of the Admiralty Law Committee of The Florida Bar and is the immediate Past President of the Dade County Bar Association. Hickey continues to practice maritime and personal injury law throughout South Florida.

Personal Injury and Maritime Lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey Receives Award From the Florida Bar

On June 23, 2004, personal injury and maritime lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey, Immediate Past President of the Dade County (Miami) Bar Association, was recognized by the Florida Counsel of Bar Association Presidents at its annual meeting. John H. (Jack) Hickey was presented with a certificate “In recognition of your dedicated leadership to the members of your legal community during your service as president.” John H. (Jack) Hickey, a board certified civil trial attorney, has been recognized as a “Top Lawyer” by the South Florida Legal Guide in both personal injury and maritime. John H. (Jack) Hickey is a Lifetime Member of the Florida Counsel of Bar Association Presidents, a Fellow and Lifetime Member of the Florida Bar Foundation, and a Sustaining Member of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America.

Personal Injury and Maritime Lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey Repeatedly Awarded Honor of “Top Lawyer”

In 2004, the South Florida Legal Guide named personal injury and maritime lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey as a “Top Lawyer” in both the personal injury and maritime categories. He was also named “Top Lawyer” by the same publication for 2004-2005.

Interviews

In addition, personal injury and maritime lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey has been interviewed about cases by: the Miami Herald; the Daily Business Review; WNBC Channel 6 News (Miami); Lawyers Weekly USA; Associated Press; CNN; and the Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel.

Recognition from Prominent Figures in the Legal Community

Click on the links below to read letters of encouragement and congratulations from elite members of the legal community.

Katharine T. Bartlett

Dean and A. Kenneth Pye Professor of Law

Howard C. Coker
President-elect
The Florida Bar

Eduardo J. Padrón, Ph.D.
District President
Miami-Dade Community College

 

Howard J. Brafman
Kislak, Inc., J.I.

 

Burton Young
Young, Berman, Karpf, & Gonzales, P.A.

 

Charlie Crist
Florida State Attorney General

 

George A. Smathers
Former United States Congressman and Senator

Personal Injury Attorney Jack Hickey is representing Brooks Robinson major league baseball player for 23 years, Hall of Famer, and the greatest outfielder that ever lived after he fell 12 feet. Robinson was on the property to help raise money for Joe Demaggio Children’s Hospital. Read more about the accident here.

Admiralty and Maritime Lawyer Jack Hickey interviewed on CNN's Morning Show on 4/18 discussion the legal impacts a Captain leaving his ship.

 

News Banner Title: 
Hickey Law Firm, P.A.
News Banner Title2: 
EXPERIENCE. LEADERSHIP. RESULTS.®
News Banner Text Positions: 
Left