RKC Attorneys Win Verdict Rejecting $10 Million Termite Damage Claim
RKC attorneys Daniel J. Gerber, Douglas B. Brown, Richard S. Geller, and Sara Burton won a jury verdict on behalf of a leading termite control company. After a three week trial in the case of Lighthouse Bay Apartments v. Orkin Exterminating Company, Inc., the jury entered a verdict on all counts in favor of RKC's client, Orkin.
Lighthouse Bay, a partnership owning a 320 unit apartment complex in Tampa, sought over $10 million in damages for past and alleged future termite damage. Lighthouse Bay also sought $30 million in damages under the "Florida Civil Remedies Act." Lighthouse Bay's attorney announced on his web site he would seek $100 million in punitive damages; however, the Court never reached the trial's punitive damages phase due to the jury's verdict, rejecting all of Plaintiff's claims.
Lead attorney Daniel Gerber, in his closing argument, reviewed evidence of thousands of gallons of termiticide applied to the property. Gerber demonstrated how the apartment complex maintained the buildings poorly, allowing rain water to enter into the structures. Photographs taken by Lighthouse Bay's engineer showed termite damage occurring in patterns, mostly following the water intrusion.
The Plaintiff has moved for a new trial and for a judgment notwithstanding the verdict. Hillsborough County Circuit Court Judge James Barton denied the motion for new trial and entered a judgment for Orkin on April 12, 2007.