A Miami Personal Injury Lawyer’s Take On The Film "Bridge Of Spies"

Bridge of Spies is a lawyer’s movie. James B. Donovan*, played by Tom Hanks, is seemingly plucked by chance to represent a Soviet spy, Rudolf Abel in Brooklyn, New York at the height of extreme patriotism in the late 1950s. The film, which is directed by Steven Spielberg, seems to focus on the valve of negotiation over brinkmanship.

In an early scene, Donovan (Hanks) a defense lawyer, is discussing an insurance claim with Plaintiff’s counsel. The issue is an accident case with 5 victims and one accident. The victim’s lawyer is trying to convince Donovan the $100,000 insurance policy should be paid to each of the 5 victims since each was affected by the insured car colliding with their motorcycles individually. With a simple analogy, Donovan explains that a bowling ball hitting 10 pins for a strike is not ten separate occurrences but just one event (meaning, he only has to pay $100,000 total).

This folksy approach gives Donovan a unique ability to diffuse international brinkmanship between the United States, the USSR and East Germany. As a lawyer, Donovan brings the concept of American fairness and the rule of law both to his defense of an accused criminal spy and in choreographing a two for one prisoner exchange. The role of the lawyer as a common sense and honorable figure able to resolve a complex situation triumphs in Bridge of Spies.

*(James B. Donovan was not quite the simple neighborhood lawyer he was portrayed as in the movie. He attended Harvard Law School, was general counsel at the office of Strategic Services during World War II and then served as assistant to Justice Robert H. Jackson at the Nuremberg Trials. He later served as the President of the New York Board of Education, was a published author, ran for the United States Senate and was a recipient of the Distinguished Intelligence Medal.)

Florida Court Protects Facebook Posts

Great new for all Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, etc.) – Florida Court protects posts ruling them irrelevant. Throughout the past few years, Courts throughout the United States have ruled that social media posts are fair game and “discoverable” during litigation. On February 5, 2014 the 2nd DCA held in Root v. Balfour Beatty Construction, LLC that although social media posts are discoverable, the party requesting the information still has to prove that the information requested is relevant and not just simply a “fishing expedition.”

Now, it is clear that the Court is stating that a party that is requesting these Social posts has to prove that the information that they are requesting needs to be relevant to the case.  Do not mistake this ruling for any blanket protection of social media posts if you are a party in a lawsuit. In personal injury cases, arguing that social media posts are relevant and reasonably calculated to lead the discovery of admissible evidence can be rather easy with good lawyering.

All Social Media users should always beware ( yes we know you have heard this warning before)… be careful what you post.  It may pop up later.  Although, many people know that it may hurt your prospects of getting a job or getting into the right college, if you are involved in a lawsuit, it can damage your case …  A picture is worth a thousand words.

Personal Injury lawsuits frequently have discovery requests for Social Media posts from Facebook and Instagram. The attorneys at Jeffrey R. Davis, P.A., a Miami Personal Injury law firm, specialize in personal injury cases. We pride ourselves in communicating with our clients and putting our clients first. Jeffrey R. Davis has been practicing personal injury law for over 25 years. Olga Porven, a former insurance defense attorney, has the insight into what the insurance companies strategies are in defending personal injury cases, including seeking Social mediation information.

If you or a loved on have been injured as a result of the negligence of another, contact us for a free consultation or call us at 305-577-3777.