James is admitted to practice in all Florida state courts; the United States District Courts for the Northern, Middle, and Southern Districts of Florida; and the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. He is a member of the Florida Bar, Hillsborough County Bar Association, and the American Civil Liberties Union, for which he has chaired the Legal Panel for the Greater Tampa Chapter since 2007. He graduated magna cum laude from Oakland University with a Bachelor’s degree in music composition and magna cum laude from the University of Miami School of Law, where he served as Articles and Comments Editor for the University of Miami Law Review.
September 26, 2017 PUBLICATION BUTLER ON DRONES (Second Edition): A PRACTICAL GUIDE FOR INSURERS
Drones - also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) or unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) - have left no industry unaffected, and the insurance industry is perhaps affected most of all. Unlike manned aircraft, whose risks are largely confined to the industry’s aviation sector, the affordability, versatility, and ubiquity of drones are bringing exposures to sectors of the insurance industry that were previously insulated from aviation risks. For these carriers especially, it is vitally important to acquaint themselves with this technology and the complex web of federal, state, and local laws that governs them.
September 20, 2017 PUBLICATION Florida Insurance Litigation (2017 Edition)
LexisNexis Practice Guide: Florida Insurance Litigation provides the practitioner with immediate access to knowledge and strategy on every aspect of insurance practice in Florida. The publication concisely presents the terms, conditions and exclusions that govern coverage offered against the risks under each line of insurance. This approach provides a comprehensive exploration of key concepts, policy language and insight for litigation of common and esoteric disputes under those policies. Each chapter also provides task-oriented checklists, examples, strategic points, and cross-references to governing statutory and case law.
January 03, 2017 PUBLICATION If you invade someone’s privacy with a drone, your insurance might not cover it
Drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles or unmanned aerial systems, can be equipped with cameras, thermal scanners, license plate readers and facial-recognition software.
June 08, 2016 PUBLICATION BUTLER ON DRONES: A PRACTICAL GUIDE FOR INSURERS
As one of the nation’s most preeminent jurists put it, domestication of horses did not give rise to a “law of the horse,” and the rise of the Internet era did not give rise to a “law of cyberspace.”1 Likewise, the proliferation of drones will not give rise to a new area of law called “drone law.” What will happen instead is much more complex.
February 22, 2016 PUBLICATION Flying Witnesses: Admissibility of Drone-Gathered Evidence in Florida
If reported surveys are accurate, Americans are ambivalent about the potential consequences of operating drones in both the public and private sectors; however, mixed feelings do not seem to be slowing the growth in their ownership and use. It seems inevitable that trial courts will be called on to exclude or admit evidence that was gathered remotely. The following article explains the legal framework the Florida courts will use when ruling on drone-gathered evidence.
November 23, 2011 PUBLICATION Proximate Causation In Third-Party Bad Faith: Not Every Bad Decision Is A Bad-Faith Suit
Proximate causation is an element of a claim for bad faith. An often-overlooked element, but an element nonetheless. Even claims with grievous claim-handling errors and high excess judgments can still be very defensible if there is no proximate causation between the two. This article examines the element of the bad-faith cause of action that is most often glossed over.
February 24, 2011 PUBLICATION The Duty to Initiate Settlement Negotiations: Where Does it Begin and How Far Does it Go
In some jurisdictions, including Florida, the courts recognize a duty in some circumstances for a liability insurer to initiate settlement negotiations with a third-party claimant before the claimant has ever made a demand. This duty is a relatively recent invention in the common law and has yet to be fully defined. While most articles on the subject tend to focus on whether or not this duty should exist in the first place, this article skips that threshold question and delves into the particulars that apply in the jurisdictions that recognize it. What triggers the duty? What is required of the insurer to discharge it? What are the defenses to a claim for bad-faith failure to initiate settlement negotiations? This article tackles these emerging questions and more in attempt to define this nascent duty.
May 13, 2010 PUBLICATION (Almost) Twenty Years After Powell: Case Studies On A Liability Insurer’s Duty To Initiate Settlement Negotiations
The Florida Third District Court of Appeal’s 1991 decision in Powell v. Prudential Property & Casualty Insurance Co. recognized a duty, in some circumstances, for a liability insurer to initiate settlement discussions with a third-party claimant who has not made a demand. The case proved to have a strong ripple effect, bringing about a sea change in bad-faith jurisprudence for the next twenty years. This article examines the expansion of Powell from a unique facts-driven anomaly to an entire branch of bad-faith jurisprudence and discusses early indications that the courts may be retreating again to applications more in line with the original case.
February 25, 2010 PUBLICATION Extracontractual Recovery Without Bad Faith
Insurance intermediaries (insurance agents and insurance brokers) are especially vulnerable to claims by insureds. While bad-faith actions continue to be the favored method of pursuing recovery beyond a policy limit, some litigants turn to claims against insurance intermediaries (and the insurers they represent) for extracontractual recovery. In addition to bad-faith law, insurers need to know what kinds of claims can be brought in relation to the procurement of the insurance policy itself and what defenses can be raised. This article delves into this often-misunderstood area of the law and illuminates some legal issues with which every insurer should be familiar.
January 15, 2019 BLOG POST The Federal Aviation Authority Reauthorization Act of 2018 and Its Effect on Drones
The Federal Aviation Authority (“FAA”) Reauthorization Act of 2018 (the “Act”) was signed into law on October 5, 2018, by President Donald Trump. The Act was the first five-year FAA reauthorization since 1982. Such reauthorizations provide the FAA with guaranteed funding for the next five years. The Act contains a plethora of supplementary provisions in addition to the provisions regarding the authorized funding of the FAA. The Act can be broken down into five areas: (1) funding authorizations; (2) airline customer service; (3) aviation safety; (4) airports; and (5) unmanned aviation systems (“UAS”), also known as drones.
December 14, 2018 BLOG POST Drone Accident Excluded Under CGL Policy’s Aircraft Exclusion
In the most recent edition of our book, Butler on Drones, we reported that ISO has issued specific exclusions for unmanned aircraft for inclusion into CGL policies, but it was an open question whether a CGL policy’s standard aircraft exclusion already excluded coverage for liability arising from the use of a drone. A California federal district court has now weighed in on the question - the first to do so, as far as we are aware. And we like the answer.
May 24, 2017 BLOG POST The D.C. Court of Appeals Just Scrapped the Drone Registry and May Have Also Turned Homeowners Insurers into Aviation Insurers
Model-aircraft hobbyist John Taylor didn’t want to register his model aircraft with the FAA pursuant to the newly created drone registry. So he took on the FAA, challenging new regulations aimed at unmanned aircraft registration and flight restrictions.
April 13, 2017 BLOG POST The Answers to Some of Your Questions About What Airlines Can Do When a Flight is Overbooked and Someone Is Going to Have to Get Off of the Plane
Suddenly, the entire world is interested in learning about the laws governing airlines’ actions when a flight is overbooked. It isn’t every day that the entire world suddenly wants to learn all about something that you’ve spent years studying, so this post is for our clients who insure aviation risks, our clients who are frequent air travelers, and perhaps a few curious strangers who have no business with our law firm but have nonetheless been led here by their quest for answers.
May 20, 2016 SPOTLIGHT American Civil Liberties Union
I came to see that it was a lot more complex than that, that they were actually protecting the rights themselves from being slowly eroded away, and standing up for people was one of several ways to do that. It was thankless-but-essential work, and it impressed me that there were people doing it for no reason other than that they thought it should be done.
May 09, 2019 EVENT The Use of Drones and Other Remote Technologies in Property Insurance Claim Adjustment
Claims professionals are increasingly using drones and other remote technologies to assist with the investigation and adjustment of property losses. In this session, the panel will address legal and regulatory hurdles, as well as potential extra-contractual exposure, which can arise from the use of drones in the adjustment process.
March 08, 2018 EVENT It’s About More Than The Cake
James Shaw from Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig and Chairman of the Legal Panel for the Greater Tampa Chapter of the ACLU was part of a panel in Tampa, FL at the It’s About More Than The Cake , an important conversation on the First Amendment and anti-discrimination law.
February 07, 2018 EVENT NAMIC Claims Conference - Aerial Imagery - Advantages and Liabilities: A Discussion Panel
James Shaw from Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig presented in Orlando, FL at the 2018 NAMIC Claims Conference on the topic of Aerial Imagery - Advantages and Liabilities: A Discussion Panel .
October 03, 2016 EVENT Schoolchildren & the Constitution in 2016
American Civil Liberties Union
June 01, 2012 EVENT PAF’s 2012 Spring Seminar
Civil Liberties and New Technology
October 17, 2018 NEWS Partner James Shaw, Jr. Featured on Fox 13 News
Partner James Shaw, Jr. provided comments for a Fox 13 news report on the growing privacy concerns about increased traffic cameras in the Bay Area.
October 11, 2018 NEWS Partner James Shaw, Jr. Was LIVE During the MidPoint Radio Show
On October 11th, 2018, Partner James Shaw, Jr. was LIVE on air during the MidPoint show on radio station 88.5 WMNF. James spoke with radio host Shelley regarding the Florida state ballot amendment.
March 09, 2018 NEWS James Shaw, Jr. awarded the American Civil Liberties Union’s Greater Tampa Chapter First Amendment Award
Partner James Shaw, Jr. was awarded the American Civil Liberties Union’s Greater Tampa Chapter First Amendment Award. James has a 20 year history with the organization that began in high school and continued throughout college and his professional career. He is the Chair panel for this organization and has held this title for over 10 years. In this panel, James and other volunteer attorneys meet regularly to review complaints and act on them. Sometimes this requires a simple phone call to fix the complaint, other times it could be as extensive as filing a suit through cooperating counsel. James’s “tireless dedication to civil rights and civil liberties” was one of many reasons that the ACLU honored him with this award at the Florida Annual meeting.
February 17, 2017 NEWS Drone Insurance: Because You Will Crash Your Drone
Ryan Hilton and James Shaw, Jr., Partners at Butler Weihmuller Katz Craig, were featured in NerdWallet.com’s latest article written by Barbara Marquand, “Drone Insurance: Because You Will Crash Your Drone.” Be sure to read the article as Hilton and Shaw explain why it is important to check with your insurer about coverage for your drone, and why renters or home insurance doesn’t cover drones in certain instances.
•American Bar Association (ABA)
•American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
•Aviation Insurance Association
•Defense Research Institute (DRI)
•Drones: Regulations, Operations and Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association's Forum on Air and Space Law
•Florida Defense Lawyers Association (FDLA)
•Hillsborough County Bar Association (HCBA)
•Order of the Coif
•Phi Delta Phi
•The Florida Bar
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