We’ve all seen scenes in movies or television shows that involve a car accident. Even if the incident is just a fender bender, things can get dramatic between the drivers involved. One driver may even threaten to call their lawyer and sue the other driver.
While yelling and screaming after a fender bender may exaggerate the emotions involved in a car accident, it’s not uncommon for a lawyer to help people through the process of getting compensation and dealing with the aftermath of a car accident if someone was seriously injured. Dealing with your insurance provider or getting the other driver to cough up money for damages can be a long process. Reaching out to an experienced personal injury lawyer can help to make that process smoother, faster, and more effective for you.
How do you know whether or not you should hire an attorney to help you deal with your auto injury?
When Car Crash Injury Victims Should Contact an Attorney
You Don’t Know Your Rights. Lawyers can be extremely helpful if you want to learn more about your rights and what is ahead after a car accident. Laws are always changing, and this may be your first time entering the world of personal injury law as it relates to car accidents.
Insurance companies may incorrectly try to tell you that you don’t have the right to do something in order to lower their payout to you. Reviewing your rights and your options after a car accident is the number one way to get the best outcome.
If you are new to Florida, or you are not familiar with Florida’s policies and procedures, it is especially important to talk to a lawyer who, has experience in the Sunshine State. Each state has different laws and policies regarding insurance, fault, and negligence claims, and ours vary more than most.
You Need to Negotiate with Your Insurance Provider. Damages from an auto accident can’t always be calculated with a few receipts: an auto accident can cause financial damages in the form of lost work, loss of transportation, and so on. Your insurance provider can therefore negotiate these damages.
Haggling for the compensation you deserve can be extremely stressful and confusing, especially if this is your first time filing a claim of this sort. From writing a demand letter to finalizing your settlement, a lawyer can represent you, negotiate for you, and help get you the best settlement.
If you get involved with another driver’s insurance company, or if your insurance provider gets a lawyer involved, get on the phone with your lawyer immediately.
Filing a “Bad Faith” Insurance Claim. Even after you negotiate with your insurance provider, they may deny your claim, leaving you with car repairs and hospital bills to pay.
An insurance company may deny you because you failed to make certain deadlines or applied for payments that are not covered under your plan. However, if they unlawfully deny you, it may be necessary to file a “bad faith” insurance claim. A lawyer can lead you through the process of negotiating a bad faith claim and fighting for the compensation that you deserve after an accident.
Damages Aren’t Fully Covered By PIP. After many smaller, less serious car accidents, insurance will cover most of the damages and everyone can move on. Unfortunately, if your damages exceed $10,000, PIP will not cover them. Other types of coverage can step in to ease the blow, but if there is no additional insurance or if your damages go beyond even that, you may have to take the other driver to court.
This only works if your injuries are truly serious and you believe you can prove that the other driver’s negligence caused the crash. If you are able to do this, a lawsuit can help to get you the compensation you need and deserve.
Be prepared for blame to be cast in your direction as well, though. To defend their actions, the defendant is likely to try to argue that you are at least partially at fault for what happened. Even if they succeed, though, it doesn’t mean that you won’t be compensated.
Florida’s comparative negligence laws mean that it is possible to assign a percentage of blame to each driver and base compensation accordingly. So if you sue the other driver for $20,000 and win, but you are found to be 25% at fault, you will only get $15,000.
The best way to get needed compensation is to find a lawyer who has experience dealing with these types of lawsuits. They will know how to collect the right evidence and make the most effective arguments to help you win your claim.
About the Author:
Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The Injury Law Firm of South Florida, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.
Car accidents can result in tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of dollars in medical bills, lost wages, and car repairs. How is it decided who will have to pay for these damages and bills? In Florida, it usually starts with personal injury protection (PIP). If you experience damages that add up to less than [..]
For many people, the last night of the year is the most fun. You dress up, get together with all of your friends, have some booze, hit the clubs, and ring in the new year. What happens when your New Year’s Eve isn’t so fun, though? We’re not just talking about hangovers. Sticky floors, spilled [..]
No matter what type of sendoff you choose to give a deceased loved one, you want it to be respectful of them. This why many people turn to funeral homes – in the hope that they will show their loved one the care and dignity they deserve on their journey to their final resting place. [..]
You’ve probably heard the old superstition, “What you do at New Year’s is what you’ll be doing all year.” Well, a recent study by SmartAsset (a financial website) finds Florida drivers rank among the worst. Factors contributing to the rank included insured driver statistics, DUI data, and average fatalities per miles driven. SafeAuto.com also reported [..]
No one wants to spend the holidays in the emergency room, but every year about 500,000 US families are forced to do just that because of child injuries. Unfortunately, child accidents become much more common over the holidays, putting a damper on the season for Florida families, and potentially leading to serious – or even [..]
Electrical mishaps with Christmas decorations are a common theme of classic Christmas comedies. However, in real life, electrical hazards are nothing to laugh about. Electrical fires, such as those resulting from faulty holiday decorations, cause about 25% of all house fires. Moreover, Christmas tree fires are a leading cause of house fires around the [..]
Although parking lot crashes are rarely high-speed, they do happen – a lot of them. Moreover, parking lot accidents often result in expensive repair bills and insurance increases. A parking lot crash can also cause serious or even fatal injuries, especially if pedestrians are involved. Below we’re going to break down how parking lot auto [..]
Consumer products regulations ensure that most products on the market are safe for their intended use. However, some consumer products companies push the boundaries of regulations or cut corners in the design or manufacturing process, which can lead to dangerous defective products reaching US consumers. When consumers are injured by a defective product, it may [..]
Medical malpractice is a type of professional negligence, and it can take many different forms. For example, it may be based on a negligent action that the doctor took, or conversely, on something the doctor failed to do. However, in order to successfully hold a doctor liable for medical malpractice, you must be able [..]
Florida policyholders purchase insurance and pay premiums with the understanding that – should disaster strike – their insurer will pay out damages to compensate for losses covered in the policy. That’s the whole point of insurance! Paying out covered damages is considered to be acting in good faith on the part of the insurance company. [..]
Bars and advertisements for alcoholic products often encourage people to “drink responsibly,” but in some cases, the establishments or bartenders serving these drinks may be at least partially liable for a patron’s alcohol-related injury or death. Under certain circumstances, bars can—and should—be held responsible for over-serving patrons. Many states have “dram shop” laws (named [..]
The death of a loved one is traumatic and devastating experience— regardless of the cause. However, the ordeal can be especially upsetting if the death could have been avoided had it not been for the negligent actions of another. In Florida, surviving family members and loved ones may be able to recover compensation for [..]
Summertime is quickly approaching, which means barbecues, family vacations, and a lot of days sitting by the pool. While you and your loved ones enjoy the hot summer weather and cool water, it is important to keep yourself safe. In this post we will be focusing on swimming pool injuries and how to prevent them. [..]
Right now, all Florida drivers are required to have car insurance coverage that pays personal injury protection (PIP) benefits, but that may come to an end in 2019 if some lawmakers get their way. Florida currently operates under a “no-fault” system when it comes to paying insurance claims after a car accident. If a [..]
When you become a parent, every little decision regarding your child’s safety and development can become a hot debate. We’re not going to tell you how to raise your child, but we do have one piece of advice backed up with statistics from the AAP and NHTSA. When you are driving with your child, [..]
It’s not every day that you get into an accident and need to file a personal injury protection (PIP) suit. This type of litigation may be confusing to many, especially since PIP laws are constantly being debated and changed in Florida. However, it is possible for you to get through this process and receive [..]
What are your chances of getting hit by someone driving a rental car in Florida? Every year, the state of Florida has 15 million active drivers on its many roads and highways. About 250,000 drivers end up in car crashes annually in Florida. Since almost 85 million visitors come to enjoy Florida every year, [..]
School is out, but that doesn’t mean your child has to be stuck at home for the summer with no structure and nothing to do. Summer camps are a great way to keep your child active, supervised, and having fun – while also allowing them to branch out. However, summer camps come with a lot [..]
Image: http://pixabay.com/en/dog-man-attacking-canine-training-78117/ When Pets Attack, They Can Cause Serious or Even Fatal Injuries Most people like dogs. How can you resist those adoring eyes, the wagging tail, and the warm, fuzzy head that seems to appear in your lap just when you’re feeling your lowest? So many Americans like dogs, in fact, that [..]
The recent death of a Tampa couple is an example of what might have been a potential product liability lawsuit had they lived. On Thanksgiving Day, Kevin and Michelle Livingston were traveling home from a visit to south Florida. Reports indicate that their sport utility vehicle drove into the waters of a canal along [..]
This law firm helped me with my car accident case and helped me to get the most of the medical benefits that were needed after the accident, and gave me fair and helpful expectations on what I would recieve back for the pain and suffering after the accident.