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Florida Fifth DCA rules that new trial on damages ordered after defense rejected remittitur need only be held regarding specific damages subject to proposed remittitur

On May 25, 2018, in Nieves v. State Farm, No. 5D17-893, the Florida Fifth DCA ruled that a new trial on damages ordered after the defense rejected the remittitur proposed by the trial court need only be held regarding the specific class of damages that were the subject of the proposed remittitur. The trial court had found that the future medical expenses that the plaintiff was awarded were not established with sufficient certainty but denied the defense request for remittitur regarding all other classes of damages. The defense rejected the proposed remittitur and exercised its right to a new trial in accordance with Section 768.043. Florida Statutes. The trial court subsequently granted a new trial as to all classes of damages, based on a literal reading of Section 768.043. The Fifth DCA cited prior precedent that it is only necessary to retry the damages that were subject to the remittitur. See ITT Hartford Ins. of the Se. v. Owens, 816 So. 2d 572, 577-78 (Fla. 2002); Astigarraga v. Green, 712 So. 2d 1183, 1184 (Fla. 2d DCA 1998).