FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 30, 2021
Contact: Eric W. Boyer, Esq.
305.670.1101 Ext. 1023
QPWB WINS APPEAL: TRIAL COURT UPHOLDS SUMMARY JUDGMENT
Eliseo Martinez v. Citizens Property Insurance Co., Case No. 3D20-1041 (Fla. 3D DCA June 30, 2021)
MIAMI ― Thomas A. Valdez and Vilma Martinez, members of the Appellate Practice Group and partners of the Tampa office at Quintairos, Prieto, Wood & Boyer. P.A., won an appeal from the Third District Court of Appeal, in a per curiam decision ruling made on behalf of their client, a Florida commercial property and casualty insurer.
In this first party property case, the plaintiff made a claim for damages caused by a sudden release of water into the interior of his home and accepted the amount the insurer tendered to resolve his claim; subject to the terms of the policy. Subsequently, the plaintiff paid for discounted repairs to the property and retained the difference between the cost of those discounted repairs and the amount insurer paid him to resolve the claim. Plaintiff then retained counsel and filed suit against the insurer, claiming that the payment was “insufficient” to restore the property to its “pre-loss condition” and, as such, constituted a breach of contract. The trial court entered final summary judgment in the carrier’s favor on those claims and plaintiff appealed.
On appeal, attorneys Valdez and Martinez argued the trial court’s grant of summary judgment was appropriate and its denial of plaintiff’s motion for rehearing were correct/appropriate and should not be disturbed by the Appellate Court. The Third District Court of Appeal agreed and, on June 30, 2021 affirmed the trial decision in QPWB’s client’s favor with an opinion that explained, amongst other things, that the cost of matching continuous flooring is not an item included as part of the “actual cash value calculation” under the policy and/or under section 627.7011, Florida Statutes.
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Thomas A. Valdez is a Partner in the Tampa office and Chairs the firm’s Appellate Practice Group which provides clients with both traditional appellate services and proactive trial support services before, during and after trial. Although his practice is mainly focused on appellate practice he also devotes his time to defending long term care, medical malpractice, general liability, commercial and construction claims. He earned his law degree with high honors from Florida State University College of Law in 1997.
Vilma Martinez is a Partner in the Tampa office. Her practice is emphasized in the areas of medical and dental malpractice defense, nursing home, and assisted living negligence defense, and the representation of healthcare providers in administrative proceedings. She is a Florida licensed Health Care Risk Manager and provides legal counsel to healthcare facilities and others since 2010 in all of her areas of practice and pertaining to electronic health records, e-discovery, healthcare technology, HIPAA compliance and data breach response. Her practice is also focused in premises liability, automotive liability, catastrophic injury and wrongful death matters. Ms. Martinez received her law degree from Stetson University College of Law in 2009. She is fluent in Spanish, and proficient in Mandarin Chinese and French. She served in the United States Army for two years and received numerous military honors before her honorable discharge in December 1997.
QPWB is the largest minority and women owned law firm in the nation with more than 380 lawyers serving clients from 27 offices in the U.S. and abroad. Our lawyers provide representation in litigation, business, real estate and governmental law.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]