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April 15, 2012
More amendments to jury instructions in civil cases

The Supreme Court Committee on Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases proposes amendments to Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases 401.20, 401.22, 402.4, 402.12, 406.6, 410.8, 412.1, 501.1, 501.9, 502.1, 502.5 and 502.8. Interested parties have until May 15, 2012, to submit comments electronically to the Chair of the committee, The Honorable James Manly Barton II, bartonjm@fljud13.org, with a copy to the committee liaison, Jodi Jennings, jjenning@flabar.org. After reviewing all comments, the committee may submit its proposals to the Florida Supreme Court.

401.20 ISSUES ON PLAINTIFF’S CLAIM — PREMISES LIABILITY

      The [next] issues on (claimant’s) claim, for you to decide are:

a. Landowner or possessor’s negligence (toward invitee and invited licensee):
      whether (defendant) [negligently failed to maintain the his premises in a reasonably safe condition], [or] [negligently failed to correct a dangerous condition about which (defendant) either knew or should have known, by the use of reasonable care,] [or] *[negligently failed to warn (claimant) of a dangerous condition about which (defendant) had, or should have had, knowledge greater than that of (claimant)]; and, if so, whether such negligence was a legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).
NOTES ON USE FOR 401.20a

1. If there is an issue of whether claimant had status as an invitee or invited licensee, give instructions 401.16a and 401.17 as preliminary instructions before giving instruction 401.20a. The final segment of instruction 401.20a, marked with an asterisk (*), is inapplicable when plaintiff does not proceed on a theory of defendant’s failure to warn.

2. The phrase “. . . about which (defendant) either knew or should have known by use of reasonable care . . .” may be inappropriate in cases involving “transitory foreign objects.” F.S. 768.0710; Markowitz v. Helen Homes of Kendall Corp., 826 So.2d 256 (Fla. 2002); Owens v. Publix Supermarkets, Inc., 802 So.2d 315 (Fla. 2001); Melkonian v. Broward County Board of County Commissioners, 844 So.2d 785 (Fla. 4th DCA 2003).

b. Landowner or possessor’s negligence (toward discovered trespasser or foreseeable licensee):
      whether (defendant) negligently failed to warn (claimant) of a dangerous condition and risk which were known to (defendant) and of which (claimant) neither knew nor should have known, by the use of reasonable care; and, if so, whether such negligence was a legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).
NOTE ON USE FOR 401.20b

Give preliminary instructions 401.16b and 401.17 before giving instruction 401.20b if there is a jury question of whether defendant owned or had possession of the land or premises, or whether he knew of the dangerous condition, or whether he knew of claimant’s presence (if claimant was a trespasser) or should have foreseen claimant’s presence (if claimant was a licensee).

c. Attractive nuisance:
      whether (defendant) was negligent in maintaining or in failing to protect (claimant child) from the (describe structure or other artificial condition) on the land or premises in question; and, if so, whether that negligence was a legal cause of the [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).
NOTE ON USE FOR 401.20c

This instruction and instruction 401.16c, taken together, state all elements of the attractive nuisance doctrine. The committee considers subsections (d) and (e) of Restatement (2d) of Torts §339 to be unnecessary to the instruction because negligence is otherwise defined by instruction 401.4.

d. Landlord’s negligence (toward tenant):

(1). When leased premises are not residential:
        whether (defendant landlord) negligently failed to disclose to (claimant tenant) a dangerous condition on the leased premises which was known to (defendant), which was not known to (claimant) or discoverable by [him] [her] by the use of reasonable care, and which (defendant) had reason to believe (claimant) could not discover; and, if so, whether that negligence was a legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).

(2). When leased premises are residential (not common areas):
        whether, [before allowing (claimant tenant) to take possession of the dwelling, (defendant landlord) negligently failed to repair a defect that was discoverable by a reason­able inspection] [or] [after (claimant tenant) took possession of the dwelling, (defendant landlord) negligently failed to repair a dangerous or defective condition on the premises of which [he] [she] [it] had actual notice]; and, if so, whether that negligence was a legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).
NOTES ON USE FOR 401.20d

1. This instruction, reflecting a greater duty by landlord to tenant on leased residential premises, was derived from Mansur v. Eubanks, 401 So.2d 1328 (Fla. 1981), overruling to that extent Brooks v. Peters, 25 So.2d 205 (Fla. 1946). See also F.S. 83.51 (1981), which may impose on the landlord greater duties, in respect to conditions arising after a tenant’s possession, than were addressed in Mansur. If other or greater duties are imposed by the statute, this instruction should be modified to express those duties in the terms of the case. This instruction pertains to the landlord’s duties, not the tenant’s, but the committee calls attention to statutes in F.S. Chapter 83 imposing certain duties on the tenant, which may affect the landlord’s duties as expressed in this instruction.

2. Common areas. With respect to common areas, the landlord’s duty to the tenant is stated in instruction 401.20d. The landlord’s duty to others in common areas is the same as that owed by any landowner or possessor of land, e.g., instructions 401.16a, 401.16b.

3. Persons invited on leased residential premises by tenant. The land­lord’s duty to persons invited on leased residential premises by the tenant is the same as the landlord’s duty to the tenant. Mansur v. Eubanks, 401 So.2d 1328 (Fla. 1981).

4. Waiver. The committee expresses no opinion about whether a tenant may waive duties owed him by the landlord. Compare Mansur v. Eubanks, 401 So.2d 1328 (Fla. 1981), with F.S. 83.51(1)(b), 83.51(4), and 83.47 (1981).

e. Municipality’s negligence in maintenance of sidewalks and streets:
      whether the city negligently failed to maintain its [sidewalk] [or] [street] in a reasonably safe condition or failed to correct or warn (claimant) of a dangerous condition of which the city either knew or should have known, by the use of reasonable care; and, if so, whether that negligence was a legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).
NOTE ON USE FOR 401.20e

City of Tampa v. Johnson, 114 So.2d 807 (Fla. 2d DCA 1959); Schutzer v. City of Miami, 105 So.2d 492 (Fla. 3d DCA 1958).
401.22 DEFENSE ISSUES

If, however, the greater weight of the evidence supports [(claimant’s) claim] [one of more of (claimant’s) claims], then you shall consider the defense[s] raised by (defendant).

On the [first]* defense, the issue[s] for you to decide [is] [are]:
      *The order in which the defenses are listed below is not necessarily the order in which the instructions should be given.

a. Comparative negligence generally:

      whether (claimant or person for whose injury or death claim is made) was [himself] [herself] negligent in (describe alleged negligence) and, if so, whether that negligence was a contributing legal cause of injury or damage to (claimant).
NOTES ON USE FOR 401.22a

1. Instruction 401.4, defining negligence, is applicable both to defendant’s negligence and claimant’s negligence. The consequences of negligence on claimant’s part are explained to the jury by instruction 401.22a. There being no need to give claimant’s negligence the special designation “comparative negligence,” the committee recommends that “comparative negligence” not be referred to in the instruction and that the term not be defined.

2. Special verdicts and special interrogatories. Special verdicts are required in all jury trials involving comparative negligence. Lawrence v. Florida East Coast Railway Co., 346 So.2d 1012 (Fla. 1977).

3 Presumption of reasonable care. The committee recommends that no instruction be given to the effect that a deceased person or an injured person or either party is presumed to have exercised reasonable care for his own safety or for the safety of others. If such a presumption is thought to take the place of evidence and make a prima facie case for the party having the burden of proof, the presumption “disappears” upon the introduction of any evidence tending to overcome it. Gulle v. Boggs, 174 So.2d 26 (Fla. 1965). If the presumption is thought to operate against the party having the burden of proof, as in the case of the presumption that a decedent was not comparatively negligent but was exercising reasonable care for his own safety, such an instruction is merely a way (and a confusing way, at that) of stating that the burden of proving comparative negligence is on the party asserting it. In either case, an instruction on the subject is superfluous. But compare Louisville & Nashville Railroad Co. v. Yniestra, 21 Fla. 700 (1886); Jacksonville Electric Co. v. Sloan, 52 Fla. 257, 42 So. 516 (Fla. 1906); and Martin v. MarkisMakris, 101 So.2d 172 (Fla. 3d DCA 1958).

b. Driver’s comparative negligence (when owner sues third party):
      whether (driver), while operating a vehicle owned by (claimant) *[with [his] [her] consent, express or implied,] was [himself] [herself] negligent in the operation of the vehicle and, if so, whether that negligence was a contributing legal cause of the injury or damage to (claimant).
          *The phrase within brackets should be used only if there is an issue as to the owner’s knowledge and consent.

c. Joint enterprise (driver’s negligence):
      whether (driver) was operating the automobile at the time and place of the [collision] [incident in this case] to further the purposes of a joint enterprise in which [he] [she] was engaged with (claimant passenger); if so, whether (driver) was negligent in the operation of the automobile; and, if so, whether that negli­gence was a contributing legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant). A joint enterprise exists when two or more persons agree, expressly or impliedly, to engage in an activity in which they have a common interest in the purposes to be accomplished and equal rights to control and manage the operation of an automobile in the enterprise. Each member of a joint enterprise is responsible for the negligence of another member in the operation of the automobile if that negligence occurs while [he] [she] is acting under the agreement and to further the purposes of the joint enterprise.

d. Comparative negligence of parent predicated on other parent’s negligence (claim for death of child):
      whether (parent) was negligent in caring for and supervising the child, (name); if so, whether that negligence was a contributing legal cause of the death of (child), and, if so, whether (other parent), in the exercise of reasonable care, should have anticipated that negligence on the part of (parent).

e. Comparative negligence of custodian of child other than parent:
      whether, before the incident in this case, (claimant) placed (child) in the care and custody of (custodian), if so, whether (custodian) was negligent in caring for and supervising the child, (name); and, if so, whether that negligence was a contributing legal cause of [injury] [and] [death] to (child).
NOTE ON USE FOR 401.22e

Wynne v. Adside, 163 So.2d 760 (Fla. 1st DCA 1964). See also Winner v. Sharp, 43 So.2d 634 (Fla. 1950).

f. Apportionment of fault:
      whether (identify additional person(s) or entit(y) (ies)) [was] [were] also [negligent] [(specify other type of conduct)]; and, if so, whether that [negligence] [fault] [responsibility] was a contri­buting legal cause of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant, decedent or person for whose injury claim is made).
NOTE ON USE FOR 401.22f
    See F.S. 768.81 (1993); Fabre v. Marin, 623 So.2d 1182 (Fla. 1993). In most cases, use of the term “negligence” will be appropriate. If another type of fault is at issue, it may be necessary to modify the instruction and the verdict form accordingly. In strict liability cases, the term “responsibility” may be the most appropriate descriptive term.


g. Assumption of risk:

      whether (claimant) knew of the existence of the danger complained of; realized and appreciated the possibility of injury as a result of such danger; and, having a reasonable opportunity to avoid it, voluntarily and deliberately exposed [himself] [herself] to such danger.
NOTE ON USE FOR 401.22g

Blackburn v. Dorta, 348 So.2d 287 (Fla. 1977), abolished the assumption of risk defense except in cases identified in that opinion.
402.4 MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE

a. Negligence (physician, hospital or other health provider):

Negligence is the failure to use reasonable care. Reasonable care on the part of a [physician] [hospital] [health care provider] is that level of care, skill and treatment which, in light of all relevant surrounding circumstances, is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by similar and reasonably careful [physicians] [hospitals] [health care providers]. Negligence on the part of a [physician] [hospital] [health care provider] is doing something that a reasonably careful [physician] [hospital] [health care provider] would not do under like circumstances or failing to do something that a reasonably careful [physician] [hospital] [health care provider] would do under like circumstances.

[If you find that (describe treatment or procedure) involved in this case was carried out in accordance with the prevailing professional standard of care recognized as acceptable and appropriate by similar and reasonably careful [physicians] [hospitals] [health care providers], then, in order to prevail, (claimant) must show by the greater weight of the evidence that his or her injury was not within the necessary or reasonably foreseeable results of the treatment or procedure.]
NOTES ON USE FOR 402.4a

1. See F.S. 766.102. Instruction 402.4a is derived from F.S. 766.102(1) and is intended to embody the statutory definition of “prevailing professional standard of care” without using that expression itself, which is potentially confusing.

2. The second bracketed paragraph is derived from F.S. 766.102(2)(a) and should be given only in cases involving a claim of negligence in affirmative medical intervention.

b. Negligence (treatment without informed consent):

[Negligence is the failure to use reasonable care.] Reasonable care on the part of a [physician] [health care provider] in obtaining the [consent] [informed consent] to treatment of a patient consists of
      (1). When issue is whether consent was obtained irregularly:
obtaining the consent of the patient [or one whose consent is as effective as the patient’s own consent such as (describe)], at a time and in a manner in accordance with an accepted standard of medical practice among members of the profession with similar training and experience in the same or a similar medical community.
      (2). When issue is whether sufficient information was given:
providing the patient [or one whose informed consent is as effective as the patient’s informed consent, such as (describe)] information sufficient to give a reasonable person a general understanding of the proposed treat­ment or procedure, of any medically acceptable alternative treat­ments or procedures, and of the substantial risks and hazards inherent in the proposed treatment or procedure which are recognized by other [physicians] [health care providers] in the same or a similar community who perform similar treat­ments or procedures.
NOTE ON USE FOR 402.4b

This instruction is derived from the provisions of F.S. 766.103.

c. Foreign bodies:

[Negligence is the failure to use reasonable care.] The presence of (name of foreign body) in (patient’s) body establishes negligence unless (defendant(s)) prove(s) by the greater weight of the evidence that [he] [she] [it] was not negligent.

NOTES ON USE FOR 402.4c

1. This instruction is derived from F.S. 766.102(3). The statute uses the term “prima facie evidence of negligence.” The committee recommends that term not be used as not helpful to a jury. Rather, the committee has used the definition of prima facie. See, e.g., State v. Kahler, 232 So.2d 166, 168 (Fla. 1970) (“prima facie” means “evidence sufficient to establish a fact unless and until rebutted”).

2. Before this instruction is given, the court must make a finding that the foreign body is one that meets the statutory definition. See Kenyon v. Miller, 756 So.2d 133 (Fla. 23d DCA 2000).

d. Failure to make or maintain records:

[Negligence is the failure to use reasonable care.] The law requires (defendant) as a licensed health care provider to prepare and maintain health care records.

[Because (defendant) did not [make] [or] [maintain] (describe the missing record(s))

or

[If you find that a person who was responsible for [making] [or] [maintaining] (describe the missing record(s)) and failed to do so]

you should presume (describe the missing records(s)) contained evidence of negligence unless (defendant) proves otherwise by the greater weight of the evidence. You may consider this presumption, together with the other evidence, in determining whether (defendant) was negligent.]
NOTES ON USE FOR 402.4d

1. The second bracketed paragraph should be used if there is no issue about whether the records were made or maintained. If there is an issue about the making or maintenance of the records, then the third bracketed paragraph should be used.

2. This instruction applies only when records are required to be made and maintained and the court determines that the inability or failure to locate a record or records hinders the plaintiff’s ability to establish a case. Public Health Trust of Dade County v. Valcin, 507 So.2d 596 (Fla. 1987).

e. Res Ipsa Loquitur:

[Negligence is the failure to use reasonable care.] If you find that ordinarily the [incident] [injury] would not have happened without negligence, and that the (describe the item) causing the injury was in the exclusive control of (defendant) at the time it caused the injury, you may infer that (defendant) was negligent unless, taking into consideration all of the evidence in the case, you find that the (describe event) was not due to any negligence on the part of (defendant).
402.12 ISSUES ON CLAIM OF ATTORNEY MALPRACTICE
ARISING OUT OF CIVIL LITIGATION

The [next] issue(s) for you to decide on (claimant’s) claim against (defendant) [is] [are] whether (defendant) was negligent in (describe alleged negligence) and, if so, if (defendant) had not been negligent, whether (claimant) would [have been successful] [have obtained a more favorable outcome] in [his] [her] [their] [its] [claim against (original adverse party)] [defense in (original proceedings)].

a. Negligence of plaintiff’s counsel:

In (claimant’s) claim against (original defendant) (claimant) would have had to prove by the greater weight of the evidence that (original defendant) was negligent in (describe conduct involved in original claim) and that (original defendant’s) negligence was a legal cause of the [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] to (claimant).

Depending on the particular cause of action in the original proceeding, add appropriate substantive law instructions from section 400 to frame the appropriate issues from the original proceeding.


[To have been successful in [his] [her] [their] [its] claim against (original defendant) (claimant) must show that any judgment would have been collectible.]

b. Negligence of defendant’s counsel:

In (claimant’s) defense in the case of (identify original case) (claimant) would have had to prove by the greater weight of the evidence that [(original claimant) was negligent and that [his] [her] [their] [its] negligence was a contributing legal cause of the injury or damage to (original claimant)] (describe issues in other applicable defenses).

Depending on the particular cause of action in the original proceed­ing, add appropriate substantive law instructions from section 400 to frame the appropriate issues from the original proceeding.

NOTES ON USE FOR 402.12

1. When defendant’s professional negligence deprives a party of a chance to resolve a contested claim or defense and the circumstances do not readily permit determining the value of the lost claim or defense, the party may have to prove the value of the claim or defense in the form of a “trial within a trial.” Freeman v. Rubin, 318 So.2d 540 (Fla. 3d DCA 1975); Fernandes v. Barrs, 641 So.2d 1371 (Fla. 1st DCA 1994). In such circumstances, instruction 4042.12 should be used to describe the issues instead of instruction 402.11. The committee expresses no opinion on the type of evidence that may be used to prove such a claim. Farish v. Bankers Multiple Line Insurance Co., 425 So.2d 12 (Fla. 4th DCA 1983); Tarleton v. Arnstein & Lehr, 719 So.2d 325 (Fla. 4th DCA 1998). When defendant’s professional negligence results in other kinds of direct loss, such as the loss of an inheritance or insurance benefits, the normal issue instruction, 402.11, should be used.

2. Use the last bracketed paragraph in instruction 402.12a when there is an issue as to the collectibility of any judgment that could have been obtained in the original action. When, however, an attorney’s negligence makes it impossible to prove the collectibility of a claim, the burden shifts to the attorney defendant to prove that the judgment or any portion thereof was uncollectible. Fernandes v. Barrs, 641 So.2d 1371 (Fla. 1st DCA 1994).

3. This instruction should be followed by instruction 402.13, appropriately modified to describe the burden of proof in both the pending claim as well as the original proceedings.
406.6 INSTITUTING OR CONTINUING A PROCEEDING

One is regarded as having [instituted] [continued] a [criminal] [civil] proceeding against another if the proceeding resulted directly and in natural and continuous sequence from his or her actions, so that it reasonably can be said that, but for his or her actions, the proceeding would not have been [instituted] [continued]. [One is not regarded as having [instituted] [continued] a criminal proceeding against another if in good faith he or she made a full and fair disclosure of what he or she knew to the proper authorities and left the decision to [institute] [continue] the prosecution entirely to the judgment of the authorities.]
NOTE ON USE FOR 406.6

See Kilburn v. Davenport, 286 So.2d 241 (Fla. 3d DCA 1973); Zippy Mart, Inc. v. Mercer, 244 So.2d 522 (Fla. 1st DCA 1970).
410.8 BURDEN OF PROOF ON CLAIM

If the greater weight of the evidence does not support (claimant’s) claim, your verdict should be for (defendant).

However, if the greater weight of the evidence supports (claimant’s) claim, [then your verdict should be for (claimant) and against (defendant)] [then you shall consider the defense raised by (defendant)].

[If the greater weight of the evidence supports the defense, your verdict should be for (defendant). However, if the greater weight of the evidence does not support the defense, your verdict should be for (claimant) and against (defendant).]
NOTES ON USE FOR 410.8

1. The Restatement (2d) of Torts and case law discuss the defense of “privilege.” See Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. v. McCarson, 429 So.2d 1287 (Fla. 4th DCA 1983); Baker v. Florida National Bank, 559 So.2d 284 (Fla. 4th DCA 1990); Restatement §46, cmt. g. In addition to banks and insurers, merchants have asserted the defense. In Southland Corp. v. BartshBartsch, 522 So.2d 1053, 1056 (Fla. 5th DCA 1988), the court held that a convenience store manager’s conduct (having a six-year-old child arrested for stealing gum) was no more than an assertion of the store’s rights in a legally permissible way, and was privileged “as a matter of law.” In Canto v. J. B. IvyIvey & Co., 595 So.2d 1025, 1028 (Fla. 1st DCA 1992), two children were detained by a merchant who suspected them of shoplifting; citing McCarson and the Restatement (2d) of Torts, the court found “no evidence in the record suggesting that the conduct of either employee even approached the limits of this privilege.” See also Mallock v. S. Mem’l Park, Inc., 561 So.2d 330 (Fla. 3d DCA 1990).

Pending further development of Florida law, the committee has not submitted a standard instruction concerning any defense.

2. For damage instructions go to instruction 501.1 et seq.
412.1 CONTRIBUTION SOUGHT BY CROSS-CLAIMS BETWEEN DEFENDANT TORTFEASORS IN INJURED PARTY’S ORIGINAL ACTION

      This instruction should follow 501.9 or 502.8, 506.10, Joint Liability of Joint TortfeasorsLiability of Multiple Tortfeasors.

Even though any damages you award (claimant) must be found in a single amount against the defendant or defendants whom you find to be liable to (claimant), if the greater weight of the evidence shows that more than one defendant was negligent and that their negligence contributed as a legal cause of injury and damage to (claimant), you should determine by your verdict what percentage of the total negligence of [both] [all] defendants (name them) was caused by each.
NOTE ON USE FOR 412.1

Model Instruction No. 6 illustrates the use of this instruction.
501.1 PERSONAL INJURY AND PROPERTY DAMAGES: INTRODUCTION

a. When directed verdict is given on liability:

You should award (claimant) an amount of money that the greater weight of the evidence shows will fairly and adequately compensate [him] [her] for [his] [her] [loss] [injury] [or] [damage], including any damage (claimant) is reasonably certain to [incur] [experience] in the future. You shall consider the following elements:

b. When there is no issue of comparative negligence:

If your verdict is for (defendant(s)) you will not consider the matter of damages. But, if your verdict is for (claimant) you should award (claimant) an amount of money that the greater weight of the evidence shows will fairly and adequately compensate [him] [her] for [his] [her] [loss] [injury] [or] [damage], including any damage (claimant) is reasonably certain to [incur] [experience] in the future. You shall consider the following elements:

bc. All other cases: When there is an issue of comparative negligence:

If your verdict is for (defendant), you will not consider the matter of damages. But if the greater weight of the evidence supports (claimant’s personal representative’s) claim, you should determine and write on the verdict form, in dollars, the total amount of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] which the greater weight of the evidence shows will fairly and adequately compensate [him] [her] for [his] [her] [loss] [injury] [or] [damage], the estate of (decedent) and [his] [her] survivors sustained as a result of [his] [her] injury and death, including any damages that (claimant) is the estate and the survivors are reasonably certain to incur or experience in the future. You shall consider the following elements:
NOTE ON USE FOR 501.1

If there is an issue of limitation on damages because of F.S. 627.737(2), use instruction 501.34. instead of instruction 501.1 and 501.2. If there is a comparative fault or Fabre issue, use the applicable parts of instruction 501.4 following either instruction 501.2 or 501.3. See Fabre v. Marin, 623 So. 2d 1182 (Fla. 1993). If there are issues involving other contributing causes of damage, use instruction 501.5. To complete the instructions for Personal Injury and Property damages, use the applicable parts of instructions 501.6 - 501.9.
501.9 JOINT LIABILITY OF JOINT TORTFEASORSLIABILITY OF MULTIPLE TORTFEASORS

a. Comparative negligence cases (special verdicts):

Even if you decide that [both] [more than one] of the defendant[s] were negligent, you should determine [(claimant’s)] [each claimant’s] damages in a single total amount, and write that amount, in dollars, on the verdict form.

b. Cases not requiring special verdicts:

If you find for (claimant) against [both] [more than one] of the defendant[s], you should assess (claimant’s) damages in a single amount against [both defendants] [the defendants whom you find to be liable to (claimant)].
502.1 WRONGFUL DEATH DAMAGES: INTRODUCTION

a. When directed verdict is given on liability:

You should award (decedent’s) personal representative an amount of money that the greater weight of the evidence shows will fairly and adequately compensate (decedent’s) estate and (decedent’s) survivors for their damages, including any damages that the estate and the survivors are reasonably certain to incur or experience in the future.

b. All other cases:

If your verdict is for (defendant), you will not consider the matter of damages. But, if your verdict is for (personal representative), you should award (decedent’s) personal representative an amount of money that the greater weight of the evidence shows will fairly and adequately compensate (decedent’s) estate and (decedent’s) survivors for their damages, including any damages that the estate and the survivors are reasonably certain to incur or experience in the future.
    bc. All other cases: When there is an issue of comparative negligence:

    If your verdict is for (defendant), you will not consider the matter of damages. But if the greater weight of the evidence supports (personal representative’s) claim, you should determine and write on the verdict form, in dollars, the total amount of [loss] [injury] [or] [damage] which the greater weight of the evidence shows the estate of (decedent) and [his] [her] survivors sustained as a result of [his] [her] injury and death, including any damages that the estate and the survivors are reasonably certain to incur or experience in the future.
    NOTES ON USE FOR 502.1

    1. If there is a Fabre issue, additional provisions will be necessary. See Fabre v. Marin, 623 So.2d 1262 (Fla. 1996), and instruction 502.5. For Wrongful Death damage instructions, use the applicable parts of instructions 502.1 - 502.4. If there is a comparative fault or Fabre issue, after giving instructions on the elements of damages, use instruction 502.5. See Fabre v. Marin, 623 So.2d 1182 (Fla. 1993). The note on use following instruction 502.5 provides more explanation of comparative fault and Fabre issues. To complete the instructions for Wrongful Death damages, use the applicable parts of instructions 502.6 - 502.8.

    2. Model Instruction No. 2 illustrates the application of instructions 502.3 and 502.4 on wrongful death damages.
    502.5 COMPARATIVE NEGLIGENCE, NON-PARTY FAULT
    AND MULTIPLE DEFENDANTS

    In determining the total amount of damages to (decedent’s) estate and [his] [her] survivors as a result of [his] [her] injury and death, you should not make any reduction because of the negligence, if any, of (decedent or survivor or any other person). The court will enter a judgment based on your verdict and, if you find that (decedent or survivor or any other person) was negligent in any degree, the court in entering judgment will reduce the total amount of damages by the percentage of negligence which you find was caused by (decedent or survivor or any other person).

    [The court will also take into account, in entering judgment against any defendant whom you find to have been negligent, the percentage of that defendant’s negligence compared to the total negligence of all the parties to this action.]*
        *Use the bracketed paragraph above only when there is more than one defendant; the reference to “responsibility” in this additional instruction is designed for use in strict liability cases.

    When a Fabre issue is involved:

    In determining the total amount of damages, you should [also] not make any reduction because of the negligence, if any, of (identify any additional person or entity who will be on verdict form). The court in entering judgment will [also] take into account your allocation of [negligence] [fault] among all persons [or entities] who you find contributed to (decedent or survivor or any other person’s) damages.
    NOTE ON USE FOR 502.5

    When the jury is instructed to apportion fault and a Fabre issue is involved, see Fabre v. Marin, 623 So.2d 1182 (Fla. 1993), and Nash v. Wells Fargo Services, Inc., 678 So.2d 1262 (Fla. 1996). The third paragraph of this instruction should be used to inform the jury of the appropriate procedure, so the jury does not make inappropriate adjustments to its verdict. There is support for giving a special instruction explaining to the jury the impact and effect of F.S. 768.81 apportionment of liability in such cases. See Slawson v. Fast Food EnteprisesEnterprises, 671 So.2d 255, 260 (Fla. 4th DCA 1996); Seminole Gulf Railway Limited ParnetshipPartnership v. Fassnacht, 635 So.2d 142, 144 (Fla. 2d DCA 1994) (Altenbernd, J., concurring in part and dissenting in part). Pending further development in the law, the committee takes no position on this issue.
    502.8 JOINT LIABILITY OF JOINT TORTFEASORSLIABILITY OF MULTIPLE TORTFEASORS

    a. Comparative negligence cases (special verdicts):

    Even if you decide that [both] [more than one] of the defendant[s] were negligent, you should determine [(claimant’s)] [each claimant’s] damages in a single total amount, and write that amount, in dollars, on the verdict form.

    b. Cases not requiring special verdicts:

    If you find for (claimant) against [both] [more than one] of the defendant[s], you should assess (claimant’s) damages in a single amount against [both defendants] [the defendants whom you find to be liable to (claimant)].

    [Revised: 12-23-2014]