Distasio Law Firm August 2019



AUG 2019



(813) 259-0022 | www.distasiofirm.com


T here are many misconceptions surrounding auto accident cases, most of them perpetuated by massive insurance companies looking to protect their bottom line and warp public perception in their favor. While these myths come in a variety of forms, perhaps the most destructive is the idea that if you bring suit after a car accident, the other party is the one who’s responsible. There are very clear reasons why this falsehood persists, which I’ll get into in a bit, but first, I want to erase any confusion surrounding the matter. The insurance company will pay for your damages, not another person. In fact, our insurance system is set up for this very purpose. You pay insurance premiums monthly so the company will protect you in the event something goes wrong. Of course, insurance companies lose money every time they pay out a claim, so they are always going to squeeze regular people to accept the lowest settlement possible. To keep them from doing so, you have to be willing to continue your fighting to the absolute conclusion of a case. Far too many personal injury attorneys work for settlement mills that want to resolve your case as quickly and easily as possible. They may get you a few extra bucks

than you’d be offered on your own, but they have little interest in making sure you receive everything you deserve. Instead, they want to give you a sense you’ve won, even if you really haven’t, and move on to the next case. When you’re working at high volume, turnover is the name of the game. I take the exact opposite approach. If need be, I’ll take a case to trial and beyond. The only way to hold these companies accountable is to use the full might of the law on your behalf. The insurance companies have made that a complicated and arduous process in an effort to deter you from pursuing them. Don’t fall for it. The biggest reason people assume their fight isn’t with the insurance companies is because the powerful insurance lobby has warped the lawsuit process in Florida, creating an extra layer of defense for their large institutions. In your first suit, it is the other party’s name on the case file, but it’s not their money on the line. Once a verdict is rendered, the insurance company of the other party will attempt to lessen the amount they have to pay. If that happens, we then bring suit against the insurance company to make sure you actually receive what you’re owed. It’s the insurance company who has the resources to pay you, and we will not rest until they take accountability.

The beauty of being willing to litigate every case you take is that you often don’t have to. It’s a lot harder for insurance companies to bluff you into a lower offer, as it were, if they know you’re going to call their bluff. The vast majority of cases settle before they enter court, but they only do so in your favor if your adversary, the insurance company, knows you’re serious. If they sense weakness or a willingness to give up, they’ve got you right where they want you. Should you ever feel remorse about bringing suit in a car accident case? Absolutely not. The insurance companies have a social obligation to do what they purport to do. When they don’t, it’s on you and a skilled attorney to get what’s yours.

“The beauty of being willing to litigate every case you take is that you often don’t have to. It’s a lot harder for insurance companies to bluff you into a lower offer, as it were, if they know you’re going to call their bluff.”



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Emotional Intelligence THE KEY TO SUCCESS:

At season’s end, the brand new Bucs became the first team in NFL history to finish a season 0-14, but that statistic doesn’t encapsulate the full scope of their woes. The team scored only 125 points in the entire season and gave up 412. They were shutout five times. By the time the season hit the home stretch, some fans were actively hoping for a winless mark. Going completely defeated — utterly, totally, and hopelessly defeated — is at least its own kind of milestone. All these years later, the Bucs are a firmly established NFL franchise with a Super Bowl victory and plenty of accomplishments. Their first 14 times on the field, however, will always be remembered as an enduring example of growing pains. Some fans even recall the comically bad season with fondness, but that can’t be said of the players who had to suit up and lose over and over again. TRACK YOUR FEELINGS Start by making this part of your morning routine: When you wake up, acknowledge how you are feeling. If it helps, write down a bulleted list of your feelings. Use “I feel” statements. You might write, “I feel anxious about everything I have to get done today,” or, “I feel happy that I get to work on the new project today.” IDENTIFY SOURCES Are there certain triggers — people, activities, habits — that always cause you to feel a certain way? Which of those are propelling you to achieve your goals, and which are hampering that progress? Make a list of everything that’s causing you stress — going to your doctor’s appointment, talking to your financial planner, calling back your mom — and mark a specific day and time that week to review your list. Chances are, when you come back to it, you’ll find that most of the items on the list weren’t really worth worrying

For fans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the 2018 NFL season was not one to remember. After sputtering to a 5-11 finish, the Bucs fired head coach Dirk Koetter and replaced him with Bruce Arians. Whether Arians can right the ship and make the Bucs playoff contenders again is anyone’s guess, but it’s safe to say he has a slim chance of leading the team to their worst seasons ever. That’s because the Bucs set a standard for futility in their very first season that would remain the benchmark for sorry pro football teams for over 30 years. When Tampa finally got an NFL team ahead of the 1976 season, fans were elated. Expansion teams rarely perform well in their inaugural season, so nobody was expecting huge things from the newly christened Bucs. Whatever limited expectations folks had for the team were quickly adjusted downward. By the end of Week 3, Tampa was winless and hadn’t even managed to score a touchdown. Feelings are a good thing. Companies want to hire people who have high emotional intelligence, and emotions are what differentiates you from an electronic device that can even mimic your voice. But what happens when your feelings overwhelm you? Anyone who’s awoken in the middle of the night with a racing heart and panicked thoughts can relate to this. And it may be what’s keeping you from achieving your goals. Brianna Wiest, who writes about emotional intelligence, suggests that by organizing our emotions, we can use them to reach our goals. By using aspects of cognitive behavioral therapy and learning to organize your emotions to reach your goals, you can prevent them from controlling you. As Wiest says, you’ll learn “where they come from, whether or not they serve you, and what they are trying to tell you.”

about. For every item that’s still a source of stress, make an action plan for how and when you’ll resolve it. For those worries that can be dealt with immediately, note how much satisfaction you get from taking care of them.


Wiest points out that people often have an all- or-nothing mentality. Many think, “I feel great today, so I’m going to get all my work done!” Or, “I’m tired today, so I’m going to put all my work off for tomorrow.” The problem is that this mentality is not sustainable. If you track your emotions, you’ll understand how they influence your behavior. For example, if you notice that you feel a certain emotion during afternoon meetings, see if you can shift them to the morning. Implement these strategies today and allow your emotions to nurture rather than restrict your goals.

WHEN THE BUCS WENT 0-14 The Most Inglorious Season in Tampa Sports History

“You almost come to a Buddhist detachment from the outcome,” defensive end Pat Toomay said of the repeated defeats. “It was a nightmare of the highest order.” Well, at least it was a historic nightmare, one which looked to be unique for a very long time. It wasn’t until 2008 that the Lions went 0-16, setting a new bar for awfulness. That mark would be matched by the 2017 Browns. So, the ‘76 Bucs aren’t the worst team in NFL history, but they’ll remain the most beloved bad team for many years to come.

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But What Happens if You Get Hurt? T he fact that companies are seeking out ways to provide folks with alternative transportation methods is a very promising trend. Fewer cars on the road means less traffic and a smaller impact on the environment. While these experiments are important, they aren’t always handled in the safest manner. Case in point are the electric scooters flooding American cities.

You can’t walk a couple blocks in most downtown areas without coming across somebody zipping around on an electric scooter. They can be both an effective way to get around and a heck of a lot of fun, but they don’t come without risks. Because many of the companies who create these scooters have used guerrilla marketing tactics, like unexpectedly dropping hundreds of scooters overnight, the rules and regulations surrounding these devices are being made up on the fly. This means riding them can involve assuming a lot of risk. Like most digital services, scooter apps come with user agreements that riders are theoretically supposed to read in detail before WE’RE HERE TO HELP

ever taking their first ride. Of course, that rarely happens. For example, did you know that every single one of these companies requires its users to wear helmets? You’d never think that rule was in place, given that nearly nobody you see on a scooter is wearing one. These agreements also state that the manufacturer is not responsible for any injuries that result from riding one of their scooters. When somebody gets injured, the company will use this agreement as a means to resolve itself of any responsibility. Earlier this year, a man was struck by a semitruck while riding a scooter in Tampa. Tragically, he died as a result of his injuries. Stories like these demonstrate how pressing

it is for Florida law to determine the status of accidents involving scooters. As of now, everything’s up for debate. If you are injured in an accident involving an electric scooter, it’s easy to feel like you have no one to turn to. Working with an attorney can help make sure somebody is held responsible for your injuries. Call us at (813) 461-6725 to find out how we can help.


Corn is plentiful during the summer months, and this easy-to-make salsa is sure to be a hit at your next get-together.

A referral is the greatest compliment you could ever give us. If you know someone in need of our services, we welcome the opportunity to help. Please pass along this newsletter and tell them to give us a call at (813) 259-0022. We greatly appreciate it.


1 large tomato, cored, seeded, and finely chopped

• •

2 medium ears of corn, shucked

1 jalapeño or Fresno chile, seeded and thinly sliced

• • •

1/4 bunch cilantro leaves, sliced

Juice of 1 lime

1/2 red onion, diced

Kosher salt, to taste


1. Heat a cast-iron skillet to high. Char corn, turning occasionally, for 10–14 minutes until kernels begin to blacken in spots. 2. Using a sharp knife, remove corn kernels from cobs and transfer to a large mixing bowl. 3. With a wooden spoon or potato masher, gently crush corn to release starch and juices. 4. Add jalapeño, onion, tomato, and cilantro. Mix to combine.

5. Top with lime juice and season with salt. 6. Serve alongside your favorite tortilla chips.


(813) 259-0022

Inspired by Bon Appétit magazine

(813) 259-0022 | www.distasiofirm.com LIFE & THE LAW ISTASIO PERSONAL INJURY LAW D


1112 Channelside Dr., Ste. 5 Tampa, FL 33602

Auto/Truck/Motorcycle Accidents Personal Injury | Slip and Falls Pharmacy Medication Errors

ALF/Nursing Home Abuse | Medical Malpractice | Wrongful Death |

Inside This Issue


Why You Should Never Hesitate to Bring Suit


Are Your Emotions Preventing Your Success?


You Call That Swashbuckling?


The Electric Scooter Conundrum


We’re Here to Help


Roasted Corn Salsa


Staying ‘Cool’ With Your Canine This Summer

Staying ‘Cool’ With Your Canine


SOME INVALUABLE INVENTIONS There are many contraptions to help you keep your canine cool in the summer heat. Booties to insulate their toes and protect their paw pads from the hot asphalt, cooling vests that reflect sunlight off darker fur, and pressure-activated cooling pads are just a few of the gizmos you can purchase to stave off those scorching temps. The Dog People, a website powered by Rover.com, also recommends making frozen “pupsicles,” a yogurt-based frozen treat that can satisfy doggy cravings while keeping them cool. inventions are great, the best thing you can do to keep your dog cool is be careful about when you decide to go outside. Taking your pup out in the early morning or later in the evening, when the sun isn’t at its highest point in the sky, will help keep them cooler in the long run. Additionally, keep in mind that some breeds deal with the heat TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE While fun water toys and helpful cooling

With all this late-summer sunshine, it’s the perfect time to take your dog out for some fun. And while spending time basking in nature’s beauty can be a great source of fun and exercise for you and your pets, it’s important to keep a careful watch on your dog’s core temperature to prevent heat exhaustion. There are several detectable signs of heat exhaustion that you can watch for, including abnormal lethargy, vomiting, or a brightly colored blue or red tongue. Here are some tips to keep your canine cool this summer. climates, all pups need a little extra care when it comes to staying hydrated during the summer. For starters, always make sure they have ready access to drinkable water. If you are going on an adventure, consider bringing a collapsible water bowl. If you are doing some backyard chilling, consider filling up a small wading pool with water for your pooch to splash or lounge in. WATER IN ALL ITS FORMS While certain dog breeds thrive in hotter

better than others. If you’re unsure, do a little research to determine your dog’s susceptibility to heat exhaustion. Just because the heat is sizzling doesn’t mean your dog should be! Keep these tips in mind before taking your canine out in the summer sun. They will thank you for it!

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