Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorneys

South Florida has always been infamous for our bad drivers. Whether we are talking about drunk drivers, negligence, drivers who are uninsured, South Florida’s roadways can be fairly dangerous roads to travel on.

Most people tend to believe that Miami is more dangerous because of its larger population and urban sprawl. However, data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that Fort Lauderdale is actually a lot more dangerous.

Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Statistics

Fort Lauderdale is actually such a dangerous city to drive in that it is ranked as the United States’ most dangerous city for driving in. The NHTSA’s study was focused on car accident fatality rates. Despite the fact that Miami has twice as many drivers, the car accident fatality rate in Fort Lauderdale is much higher. Data from 2015 shows that there were 22.39 deaths for every 100,000 people involved in auto accidents in Fort Lauderdale. Many more than that were severely injured.

An Extremely Dangerous City to Drive in

Fort Lauderdale’s population is only around 165,000 according to the latest census. Since it is an extremely popular tourist destination, however, around 12 million people visit the city each year. It should be no surprise, then, that it is also the site of many thousands of auto accidents.

The Florida Department of Highway Safety & Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) released data according to which Broward County had over 41,000 car crashes in 2015. It was the second highest number of reported car crashes in Florida.

In Fort Lauderdale, over 6,200 accidents were reported in 2015 and around 2.4% of those were alcohol-related. If you have been involved in an auto accident in Fort Lauderdale, the best thing to do next is get in touch with a car accident lawyer who can help you with legal advice, get you the best medical treatment available, and ensure that your rights are protected.

Deadly Roads

It’s true that 6,200 may not seem that high a number when compared to larger metropolitan cities, but the traffic accidents in Broward County are often deadly. As far as pedestrian fatalities are concerned, Fort Lauderdale has the second highest rate in the United States. The rate of traffic fatalities ranks fifth. Over the past six years, the average yearly fatality count on Fort Lauderdale’s streets was 20.

Why Is Fort Lauderdale so Dangerous for Drivers?

There are several good reasons for why Fort Lauderdale is so dangerous and here are some of them:

  • Many international drivers – Fort Lauderdale regularly draws more international visitors than other cities and they tend to not be as familiar with American driving laws. The result is many drivers one the road who are more likely to cause an accident and injure people.
  • Tourists who are unfamiliar with the city – GPS devices are extremely helpful in navigating roads and finding your way, but they are not infallible and there are still many drivers who manage to get lost and make poor decisions while in traffic.
  • Spring Breakers – Fort Lauderdale has always been a very popular destination for college students looking to have fun on Spring Break. Unfortunately, many of these young and inexperienced drivers often drive under the influence of alcohol and even drugs.
  • People from New York – The data shows that Fort Lauderdale has a huge number of visitors from New York who are still beginners when it comes to driving. With so many inexperienced drivers on the road, it’s easy to see why auto accidents are so common.
  • Proximity to I-95 – Interstate 95 is considered to be among the most busy and dangerous roads in South Florida. It is a major artery running through Fort Lauderdale and it is filled with a very high number of motorists driving at high speeds.

Car Accidents in Fort Lauderdale

The number of auto accidents in Fort Lauderdale is alarmingly high. There are numerous motorists who are injured in crashes because of other drivers’ negligence. As if the physical and emotional suffering wasn’t enough, accidents can also result in huge medical bills and lost wages.

As Fort Lauderdale’s population continues to increase, the dangers of the city’s roads show no sign of decreasing any time soon. Accidents can happen on a moment’s notice. If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, it is imperative that you contact a Lauderdale car accident lawyer.

Our highly skilled trial lawyers have an extensive track record of helping our clients receive the compensation they deserve. We can protect your rights and give you the legal counsel necessary to ensure you recover the maximum settlement to cover all your expenses.

Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorneys

Do I Really Need an Attorney?

Making a case for yourself, as well as proving that you were not at fault for the accident is rarely an easy task. An experienced Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney who handles this type of cases can help you evaluate the evidence and prove that the accident was the other driver’s fault. Your injury attorney can offer you advice that can help with understanding your case’s strengths and weaknesses, thus allowing you to make better and more informed decisions, increasing your chances of winning the lawsuit.

Hiring an attorney is one of the most important things you should do after an auto accident. Car accident lawyers can protect your rights and ensure that no evidence gets destroyed. Insurance companies often want to take statements as soon as possible after an accident, but it’s in your best interest to speak with an attorney and receive legal advice beforehand. An attorney will fight for full compensation for your vehicle, as well as the best medical treatment for your car accident injuries.

Palm Legal Group is an injury law firm specialized in auto accidents and wrongful death. We stand out from other personal injury law firms because we genuinely care about the wellbeing of our clients. Our lawyers in Fort Lauderdale are some of the best around and the always give it their all when fighting for our clients. If the insurance coverage from your insurance company won’t cover every cost, we are here to help you receive full financial compensation.

Are you looking for legal representation following a car accident in Fort Lauderdale? Palm Legal Group has a team of experienced and knowledgeable injury lawyers who will fight to protect your rights and get you the best possible settlement for your injury case

Call 1-561-781-9679 for a FREE consultation

Sources: https://flhsmv.gov/pdf/crashreports/crash_facts_2015.pdf

You might also be interested in: Average settlements    Who is Liable?    Medical Bills    #1 Car Accident Lawyer in Miami

Tampa Car Accident Lawyers

Over 37,000 people die each year in auto accidents in the United States. Another 2.4 million are injured or even permanently disabled. Car crashes like these occur because of reckless or negligent drivers, pushing victims to search for accident lawyer representation in order to receive the compensation they are entitled to.

Tampa Car Accident Lawyers

If you or someone you love has been involved in a car accident caused by someone else, the best way to move forward is to contact a car accident lawyer in Tampa who will file a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf.

Our skilled car accident lawyers in Tampa, FL have years of experience fighting for car accident victims and will do everything they can to ensure that you get financially compensated for your injuries.

Common Car Accident Causes in Tampa

Many car crashes are the result of genuine mistakes. However, there are other cases where the cause is less forgivable. These are the most common car accident causes in Tampa:

  • Distracted driving. This is the number one reason for auto accidents these days. It’s no surprise, given that we live in the age of smartphones.
  • Each time you go over the speed limit you are endangering yourself and those around you.
  • Drunk driving. When you are under the influence of alcohol, you lose the ability to maneuver a car as you would normally.
  • This usually means speeding, tailgating, and changing lanes too quickly.

Frequent Car Accident Types in Tampa

These are the most frequently occurring types of car accidents in Tampa:

  • Rear end collisions
  • T-bone collisions
  • Head-on collisions
  • Accidents involving only one vehicle
  • High-speed crashes
  • Lane departure accidents

tampa car accident lawyers

What to Do After a Tampa Car Accident

  1. Never leave the scene. Even if you are the victim, wait for first responders to arrive.
  2. Ensure everyone is alright. Your top priority is ensuring you are alright. After that, check on everyone else involved in the accident. Always seek medical attention after an accident as not all injuries are immediately obvious.
  3. Call the police. If anyone involved has suffered any injuries or there was significant property damage, it’s best to call the police and get their report.
  4. Get everyone’s information. Speak to anyone involved or any witnesses and get their names, phone numbers, license plate numbers, addresses, and insurance information.
  5. Take photographs. Take photos of any injuries you may have sustained. Also take photos of any damaged property, such as the vehicles. These photos will be very important if there are any legal or insurance issues.
  6. Do not accept settlements from insurance companies. Before speaking with anyone from an insurance company, contact a Tampa car accident lawyer. This way you will ensure that no one is taking advantage of you.
  7. Contact a Tampa, FL car accident lawyer. An experienced Tampa car accident lawyer is your best bet to getting the compensation you deserve. Our lawyers have handled hundreds of auto accident cases and are well equipped to explain all the legal options available to you. When you hire a lawyer, you maximize your chances of receiving compensation for your pain and suffering, any missed days at work, property damage, and any past and future medical expenses related to the accident. At Palm Legal Group, we work on a contingency fee basis, meaning that you don’t pay a single dime unless we win your case.

Car Accident Laws in Florida

Understanding the Florida car accident laws can prove essential in knowing what your rights and responsibilities are in the event of an auto accident in Tampa, FL.

Our experienced legal team is always available to answer any questions you may have and guide you in your auto accident case. In the meantime, here is an overview of what you should know about the auto accident laws in Florida:

  • No-fault. When it comes to car accidents, Florida is a no-fault state. This means that you will receive insurance coverage regardless of who was at fault. Each driver goes to their own insurance company first and if the accident resulted in severe injuries, you can file a claim outside of the no-fault system and ask for compensation from the other driver’s insurer.
  • Statute of limitations. If you have grounds to file a personal injury claim, you have a maximum of four years to do it. If you do not file your claim within four years, you lose the right to pursue any compensation for your injuries or property damage.
  • Pure comparative fault rules. When dealing with traffic accidents, Florida abides by pure comparative fault rules. This means that if you take your case to court, a judge may also assign you a percentage of fault for the accident. This will factor into the award you receive.
  • Cap on punitive damages. The amount a person can receive in punitive damages is limited in the state of Florida. An injured party can receive up to $500,000 or three times the amount of compensatory damages, whichever of the two is greater.

Learning and understanding the state laws is the first step toward protecting your rights and avoiding liability for a Tampa car accident. These laws determine the circumstances under which someone can sue another person for damages after an auto collision instead of just settling for the insurance coverage.

When in doubt, you can always contact our team of skilled Tampa car accident attorneys. We have many years of experience in dealing with complex car accident claims and we have an excellent understanding of Florida laws. If your car accident case has merit, we will do everything in our power to ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.

Seeking legal help following an auto accident? Palm Legal Group has a highly skilled team of lawyers who will fight to get you the best possible settlement.

Call us today at 1-561-781-9679.

Sources:
https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812603

Medical Bills You Will Face After an Auto Accident

Cost of a Car Accident Settlement.

After you have been injured in an auto accident, it’s clear that the first thing you need to do is seek medical attention and ensure that you are OK. Some injuries do not become apparent until much later after the accident, so it is imperative that you undergo every necessary check. After all, your health is the most important thing.

Once you have received hospital treatment after a car accident or seen a healthcare provider, the medical bills will start to appear. You’ll get bills from the ambulance service used to rush you to the hospital, the ER doctor, the hospital, the radiology department, and so on.

Everyone knows they will be billed, but most people are often surprised by just how much they owe. They may be faced with unexpectedly huge medical bills which can be very problematic for most people.

cost of a car accident settlement

How Do the Bills Get Paid?

In Florida, the beginning of your medical bills will be covered by your personal injury protection (PIP), or “no-fault” insurance. Your personal injury protection applies regardless of who was responsible for the accident, as Florida is a “no-fault” state.

However, PIP may not pay all your medical treatment bills. There are limits to what it covers and how much:

  • $10,000 for medical bills

PIP will pay up to $10,000 for medical bills relating to bodily injury or sickness. In order to qualify for the whole sum, a physician, physician assistant, dentist, or an advanced nurse practitioner will need to determine that due to the person’s injuries, they had an emergency medical condition (EMC).

 

  • $2,500 for medical bills – if you do not have an EMC

If your injuries are not deemed an emergency medical condition, you will only qualify for $2,500. The topic of EMCs has been under debate for a long time. This is because the exact process for diagnosing EMCs and what they are is rather vague.

 

  • $10,000 for lost wages

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you are likely unable to return to work. This can result in lost wages. PIP will pay up to $10,000 for lost wages so you can focus on getting your life back on track.

 

  • $5,000 death benefits

If a loved one has unfortunately died in an auto accident, the immediate family is eligible to receive $5,000 in death benefits. This should help cover certain expenses, such as funeral costs.

One thing to note about PIP is that the law which governs it is designed in such a way that it will cover people even if they are uninsured, not driving, and even if the are not in the car. If a person is injured as a result of an auto accident, they should be covered by PIP.

As mentioned earlier, though, PIP may not cover everything, paying only 80% of any reasonable medical bills. Reasonable expenses include any medically necessary treatment, X-rays or other scans, surgery, and so on. It may also cover things like rehabilitative services, ambulance, nursing, and hospital services.

For several years now, a person looking for PIP coverage has a limited window of 14 days in which they must report their injuries to a medical professional. If they fail to do so, PIP coverage will be unavailable to them.

As such, PIP only pays for medical benefits if you receive care during the first 14 days after the accident. That is why it is extremely important that you go see a doctor as soon as possible.

Who Pays for the Medical Bills?

It is a fairly common misconception that attorneys pay their clients’ medical bills until their settlement comes in. However, this is not the case.

Attorney keep track of their clients’ medical bills as the case moves forward. They do this so they know the amount of damages to ask for. Ultimately, it is the injured person who is responsible for their own bills.

When it comes to property damage, either your auto insurance or the other driver’s should cover it. Medical bills, however, are an entirely different story.

As mentioned previously, your PIP insurance will cover up to 80% of your initial medical bills. Your health insurance may cover other medical bills, but it depends on the contract with your health insurance company. If you don’t have insurance and you exhaust your PIP, your lawyer may be able to find other medical financing.

If the other driver’s negligence is clearly the cause of the accident, their insurance company will pay for any additional medical expenses as a result of the settlement.

The insurer will likely offer you money early on, before you actually recover from your injuries. However, you should always decline this initial offer. Accepting it will release the other driver and their insurance company from any responsibility. As a result, they will not have to pay for any ongoing or future care that you receive.

Medical issues can often arise at a later time and if you have already accepted a payout, you will have to cover them, out-of-pocket. The best way to handle these situations is by getting the medical treatment you need before making any final deals.

Other types of insurance may also be available, such as medical payments coverage, or Med-Pay. While this is not a sure thing, if you do have it, you will receive at least $5,000. In some instances, you may also use Medicare or Medicaid if you have such insurance.

Insurance After an Auto Accident Can Be Confusing

Auto accident insurance contracts are often lengthy and complex, as auto insurance policies can include several different insurances.

Typically, car accidents likely involve four or even more types of insurance from several different companies. This is why it can be very useful to hire a car accident lawyer. They can help you efficiently use the insurance that is available to you. It can save you a lot of stress and headaches to have someone who understands the law by your side.

cost of a car accident settlement

Subrogation

Sometimes, after people’s health insurance covers their bills, they are also awarded money for those specific bills. If you find yourself in this situation, you will need to pay the insurance company back the cost of a car accident settlement.

This is called subrogation. Its purpose is to ensure that people do not receive compensation for an injury twice. This may also happen if your private health insurer covers a bill and PIP also pays for it later.

How Long Before My Bills Are Paid?

Once you settle your case, you can pay any bills that PIP or other insurance did not cover. This may take months or even longer if your car accident case goes to trial. This is not uncommon, as these types of cases involve a lot of bureaucracy.

In most personal injury cases, the settlement process begins once the injured individual finishes their medical treatment and their attorney gathers every medical record and bill and sends them to the insurance company for review.

The process works this way for two reasons; first of all, your attorney will want to be certain that they are asking for enough financial compensation to cover your treatments and any losses. Secondly, it will be much easier to negotiate when there are no other variables – such as an upcoming surgery. This way, both your attorney and the insurance company have a complete picture of your case and can better negotiate a settlement.

How Do I Make Sure My Medical Bills Get Paid?

Whenever you receive any sort of medical bill, always send a copy to your lawyer. As mentioned earlier, they will keep track of all your bills and will know the total amount you have incurred and where you have received medical care. Your should always inform your laywer about the doctors you are seeing, what happens at your appointments, and when the doctors release you.

Your lawyer will keep track of all this on their own by studying your medical records, but it will make their jobs much easier if you speak to them directly and tell them what is going on.

After you have completed your treatment, your lawyer will request copies of every bill from every medical provider so that they may submit them to the responsible person’s insurance company.

It’s important to remember that just because you expect a settlement, it doesn’t mean that you do not have to pay medical bills until you receive the settlement. Do not allow bills to pile up without paying them. You need to remember that your lawyer is not paying those bills and you are responsible for them.

If you do not pay those bills, they can go to collections and harm your credit score. You should contact the medical providers and make sure that they are aware of your situation. You can explain that your bills are the result of an accident and you can ask them if they are willing to put your account on hold until you settle your car accident case and are able to pay the bills.

The bottom line is that your medical bills are your responsibility and you should take deliberate steps to pay them or postpone payments without it coming back to hurt you.

cost of a car accident settlement

Do I Really Need a Personal Injury Attorney to Help With the Cost of a Car Accident Settlement?

An attorney has the knowledge and skills necessary to be of great help to you during your time of need. They will give you legal advice, keep track of all your records and associated costs of collision settlements  and ensure that you pay them, and strive to be as efficient as possible. An attorney will also see to it that when everything is over, you receive the maximum possible compensation for your injuries.

At Palm Legal Group, we have helped thousands of car accident victims get full compensation. It can be a complicated and confusing process, but our skilled and experienced personal injury lawyers are with you every step of the way so you can focus on your recovery while we do our best to make sure that you receive maximum compensation.

Involved in an auto accident and in need of legal help? Palm Legal Group has a skilled team of lawyers who can get you the best possible settlement for your case.

Call us now at 1-561-781-9679

See Also:

Settlements for Car Accidents Concussions

Car Accident Lawyer in Florida

How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement

While you are dealing with hospital bills, insurance claims, and trying to find a new car or repair the one that was damaged in the accident, you probably feel overwhelmed by the whole situation. You may well want to know how much to expect from a car accident settlement if this is the situation you’re in.

How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement

Finances are a burden when you’ve got a ton of paperwork that you don’t understand, signing every highlighted line and hoping your lawyer was doing his best work when getting you financial reward after a motor accident. As difficult as everything seems, taking a step back and examining everything a little more slowly can provide you with some clarity that will help you know just how much you are entitled to after your accident.

Average Settlement Amounts for Auto Accidents

Determining average settlements is no easy task, as every case is unique. There is, however, a basic guideline to expect, depending on various circumstances.

  • $10k – $25k for minor injuries
  • $50k – $75k for injuries that are long-lasting and require surgery or physical therapy
  • $75k – $100k for spinal injuries
  • $100k – $250k for brain injuries

Settlements for debilitating injuries such as severe brain injuries or paralysis which require daily assistance can increase the compensation paid after a car accident to hundreds of thousands or even millions.

There are some insurance policies, however, which have limits. The other driver may have had insurance, but it is possible that their company will not compensate the full amount because of their limit. If your settlement is worth $20k, you may only receive compensation after an auto accident of up to $10k. For the other portion of the money, you will have to directly sue the other person.

How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement

Factors Which Affect Your Car Accident Settlement’s Worth

The compensation after a car crash can vary based on several factors. Depending on who was harmed in the accident, the damage the vehicle received, whether you sustained physical and permanent injuries or you experienced further suffering after the event, and your medical bills all impact the settlement you could receive. Indeed often people are under the misapprehension that a settlement will only cover your vehicle’s damage, and indeed you do stand to win a higher settlement because of longer-lasting injuries or the missed wages you had to face on account of your recovery period and indeed the property damage sustained.

How Much Can I Get for Whiplash?

When it comes to car accidents, whiplash is a very common injury. Due to the delayed symptoms and perhaps the difficulty in documenting them, making a claim for whiplash could prove tricky. To ensure that you receive the settlement you deserve, you have to document your symptoms as best you can before suing and have a carefully documented medical record. Your personal injury lawyer and law firm should be able to provide the best advice in a case like this and also give you a sound idea of the average car accident settlement that similar accident victims have been awarded including the types of injuries.

As mentioned earlier, whiplash is considered a minor injury and the average settlement ranges from $10k to $25k. More often than not, for moderate cases of whiplash, the amount ranges between $2k and $10k. In cases where the injury is severe and requires ongoing treatment, it may even go as high as $30k.

How Is Pain and Suffering Calculated?

Pain and suffering involve any distress that comes as a consequence of being injured in an accident. It can mean several things:

  • Physical pain, be it temporary or long-lasting
  • Emotional and psychological disorders
  • Physical disabilities

There are several ways you can calculate pain and suffering; the simplest way is by totaling your bills – medical expenses, therapy, lost wages, and vehicle damage. These are called special damages, but they are separate from your personal pain and suffering, which falls under general damages. They are all important things to take into account when considering compensation after an auto accident.

In order to calculate pain and suffering as accurately as possible, you must first determine under what category it falls under: current, or current and future. The first category describes pain and suffering until the conclusion of your medical treatment. The latter covers any pain and suffering that extends into the future. As you’d expect, your claim will be higher for this category.

Attorneys and insurance adjusters calculate pain and suffering by using the multiple method, which means they take your special damages and multiply it by anywhere from 1 to 5 times, based on how serious your case is. For whiplash cases, the multiplier will likely fall between 1 and 3. With broken bones, it would probably be between 3 and 5. For severe injuries it may go even higher than 5.

Should I Hire a Lawyer?

How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement

Employing the services of a car accident lawyer can greatly help you receive a fair compensation and it will also give you a good idea how much to expect from a car accident settlement, which will very likely exceeds the amount the insurance company would offer you if you were on your own. A good lawyer will present every detail regarding your case to the insurance company or a judge and they may bring up certain information that you would have missed if you were the one doing the negotiations.

The insurance company will offer you the lowest possible amount as settlement – that’s how insurance companies work. Insurance adjusters may even try to prove that some of your treatment was unnecessary, or that you were in fact able to go to work. A good lawyer knows how to handle these situations and will help you take every necessary measure to protect yourself if you have suffered injuries in an auto accident.

To maximize your settlement, you will need to do more than just submit a claim through the insurance company. A lawyer will try to persuade the insurance company that they should take a closer look into the matter. An investigation may be initiated, and your lawyer will negotiate the settlement with the insurer.

You may not have to file a lawsuit in order to get a settlement payout for your injuries, as your lawyer and the insurance company may reach an agreement. If they don’t, the matter can continue in court. A car accident attorney is essential for your case and will be able to answer any questions you may have.

How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement? We Get you the Highest Possible Car Accident Settlement!

To ensure that your claim is the highest possible, documentation is essential. Write down everything about your injuries and the discomfort you are facing or go see a therapist who can record your psychological effects. Any receipts you can provide or even testimony from friends and family who can corroborate your claims will help you with your claim.

Settlement claims can be tricky. Each case is unique, so attorneys and insurance adjusters need to examine every aspect of your accident when calculating your claim. You should prepare yourself for a few setbacks, but if you are diligent with your record keeping, things will be easier.

Here’s a really useful infographic from collisionsciences.ca 

How Much to Expect from a Car Accident Settlement

(image c/o https://collisionsciences.ca/)

 

Involved in a car accident and seeking legal help? Palm Legal Group has an experienced team of skilled lawyers that can get you the best possible settlement for your case.

 

Call Now for a FREE Consultation!

(561) 781-9679

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What to Do If Someone Sues You for a Car Accident

Sued for a Car Accident?

If someone sues you for a car accident case or if you have been involved in a car accident and the other party has decided to pursue legal action against you, largely to put a monetary value on their pain and suffering; you may find yourself feeling lost and scared at the potential major implications when the other party decides to file a lawsuit.

Being sued is never something to take lightly. However, before you start to panic, there are several things you can do to make sure you handle the situation as best as possible. Your objective is to either come out unscathed or facing minimal consequences. Of course, the first thing you need to do is to contact a lawyer. Ideally, a skilled car accident attorney to represent you and hire a law firm to help you if the other party has engaged a personal injury lawyer to help you deal with any insurance claims

sued for a car accident

1. Stay calm.

First thing’s first: don’t panic. Keep a level head and give yourself a moment to take everything in. Panicking never helps anyone and you need to think rationally about what you need to do next. The best way to approach things is to calmly evaluate your situation and take action step by step.

2. Contact Your Insurance Company

If someone is suing you, the first thing to do is let your insurance company know of the situation.  Send them the lawsuit papers so that they may hire a lawyer to defend you. Not reporting the suit in a timely manner may end up jeopardizing your coverage.  So make sure you don’t waste any time.

If it’s been a while since the accident happened and you’ve changed insurance companies, get in touch with the same company that handled your case the first time. This is because your original coverage should still be valid and the same company should still be obligated to provide you with the protection you were afforded in the policy when the accident occurred; especially if you are being sued for a car accident

3. Know the Statute of Limitations in Your State

It is imperative that you find out what the statute of limitations is in your state. If too much time has passed since the accident occurred, filing new claims against you would be completely pointless. Attorneys know this and if a reputable attorney files the suit, the statute of limitations is likely not an issue. There are, however, disreputable representatives who may attempt anything to pressure you into paying more than you are liable for.

Most of the time, an at-fault person’s insurance policy is enough to cover any penalties and injuries if someone sues you for a car accident. If that is not the case, however, you will typically know about it very shortly after an accident. If a lawsuit is filed against you a year or later, those suing you will need to show a great deal of causative effect and they will need to provide convincing explanations for their delay.

4. Know Who Was at Fault

Sometimes it can be fairly obvious who was at fault for an accident by simply looking at the damage and the environment in which the accident took place. Other times, though, determining whose fault it was is a matter of looking into the local laws.

Determining whose fault it was can be a complicated question with many facets. There are states, for example, called “no-fault” states, where your insurance company is responsible for any injuries you sustain or any property damage. This is regardless of who was at fault for the accident. In these cases, knowing who the responsible party was is only important for determining points on your driver’s license and being sued for a car accident is less of an issue. There are exceptions, however, in the case of severe injuries.

Look at the facts

One thing to consider is whether your car was parked or simply stopped. Road conditions are also very important to consider when determining who was responsible for an accident. Was is raining or foggy? Even high winds could potentially play a part in the fault involved. In many states, hitting another car’s rear automatically puts you at fault since you are supposed to always keep enough distance between yourself and the car in front of you. If you have to suddenly brake, you would have enough time to stop your vehicle without a collision. However, if another vehicle is backing out of a blind drive in your way, there’s not much you can do about it. Determining who is at fault in an auto accident means comparing all the individual factors involved. You must then make a ranked list of all the causes involved. Another example of an automatic fault is the failure to yield right-of-way as this article explains.

sued for a car accident

If you happen to live in a no-fault state, your insurance company will be responsible for your damages, regardless of who was at fault for the accident and you run a much lower risk of taken to court for a collision. This can sometimes be beneficial to a driver and frustrating for others. The thinking behind the law in no-fault states is that everyone is responsible for their own problems and a driver can’t hold another driver liable for any property of injury damage. The problem in these states is that your car insurance will fluctuate, typically going slowly upwards, as the claims filed by the company are then reflected back on everyone they cover. In many ways, no-fault is a sort of cooperative insurance where every member participates in covering other members of their insured network.

Aside from no-fault situations, you will probably need to know how to determine fault in an accident before one happens. The vehicles’ speed, the angle of the collision, the condition of the road, and even the time of day can be important in deciding fault.

All of this is exactly like it sounds: extremely complicated and confusing. That’s why an experienced auto accident attorney can be very helpful with investigating the specifics of your accident and making sure all the relevant information is put forward in your case.

Are you seeking legal help following a car accident? Palm Legal Group has a very skilled team of lawyers that will fight to get you the best possible settlement for your case.

Call us today at 1-561-781-9679

5. Hire an Attorney

First of all, as we’ve already established, car accidents can be very complex, and the last thing you want to do is attempt to wrap your head around every little detail, especially if you’re still recovering after the accident. Second, lawsuits can also be particularly complex; that’s why lawyers need to go through law school and pass a difficult exam before being able to practice.

While it is technically true that anyone can represent themselves when dealing when being sued for a car accident, that’s almost never a good idea, as one single mistake on a point of laws or rules of a lawsuit can end up having a significant impact on your case. That’s where attorneys come in. They are specially trained in dealing with complex laws and rules and they are able to help you make the best and most informed decisions for your case.

Representing yourself?

If you try to handle things on your own, you may very well end up losing. Representing yourself can also be extremely stressful if you don’t possess all the knowledge that an experienced lawyer normally would. A lawyer will deal with all the complexities of the law so that you don’t need to put everything else in your life on hold until finished with the lawsuit.

If you think the attorney provided by the insurance company has everything covered, you may be mistaken as to what his goals are. Defense attorneys provided by insurance companies have only one goal: to minimize the costs of the accident, which means paying as little money as possible. This does not necessarily mean clearing your name if you have been falsely accused, or sued for a car accident as they are not interested in justice, only in saving money. They will try to protect the insurance company and its policy and deciding whether to settle a case or not is entirely up to them. Your input won’t be taken into consideration as they will do anything that serves their own interests.

All things considered, the best way to defend yourself and your interests is to hire a lawyer. Defending yourself will very likely have you losing the battle and counting on the lawyer provided by the insurance company can be risky as your best interests and the company’s best interests won’t necessarily align.

If you are being sued for a car accident, the experienced lawyers at Palm Legal Group can help protect you at every step of the way.

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(561) 781-9679

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Can Someone Sue You for a Car Accident if You Have Insurance?

In this article, we examine the topic of whether someone can sue you for a car accident if you have insurance. 

If you have been involved in a car accident and think you may have been at fault, you may be worried about any legal action the other party might want to take against you. Before even considering your insurance policy, it’s important to know how your state’s laws deal with these types of situations.

can someone sue you for a car accident if you have insurance

Are You in A No-Fault State or a Tort State?

In no-fault states, a person who has been involved in a car accident is generally required to seek any form of compensation from their own car insurance coverage. The circumstances under which someone can step outside of the no-fault system and file a lawsuit are very limited.

That means that even if you don’t have insurance but live in a no-fault state, the other driver most likely can’t sue you and seek compensation directly from you. This is typically the case when injuries aren’t deemed “serious” or “significant” or when the medical expenses don’t exceed a certain amount of money.

However, that also means that you will probably be unable to take any legal action against the other driver if they were technically at fault for the accident and your own insurance will be responsible for covering your damages. The thinking in no-fault states is that everyone is responsible for their own problems and drivers cannot hold someone else liable for property or even injury damage.

States that don’t follow the “no-fault” insurance system – which are in the majority – are called tort states. In those states, if you are responsible for a car accident and someone is injured, they can sue you for all the damages they suffered from the accident, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and physical and mental suffering.

If you are uninsured, you are personally responsible for paying these damages and you will have to pay everything out of your own pocket.

I Have Insurance, Can I Still Get Sued?

can someone sue you for a car accident if you have insurance

Unfortunately, yes; even if you have a car insurance policy, it may still be possible for the other party to sue you if the damages exceed your auto insurance’s coverage level and you were found to be at fault for the accident.

Fortunately, an auto insurance policy reduces the financial repercussions of being sued. Having liability coverage ensures that the insurance company will pay for any settlement or judgment against you up to the limit you purchased. You may also receive a lawyer that will represent you in a lawsuit as well as coverage for certain expenses relating to the lawsuit.

The insurance policy should be enough to cover injuries and penalties in most cases, but if that isn’t the case and you can’t make the remaining payments out-of-pocket, your personal assets can be taken to satisfy the judgment won by the other person.

If you are being sued, the first thing you should do is notify your insurance company and give them the suit papers so that they can hire counsel which will defend you. Failing to report the suit in a timely manner may jeopardize your coverage, so be sure to take care of that as soon as possible.

can someone sue you for a car accident if you have insurance

If it’s been a while since the accident and you are hit with a lawsuit: immediately contact your insurance company. If you’ve changed companies since the accident occurred, contact the company that originally handled the case, as your original coverage should still be valid, and they should still be responsible for providing you with the protection afforded in the policy at the time of the accident.

Statute of Limitations

One important thing you should do is find out what the statute of limitations is in your state. If too much time has passed, filing any new claims against you would be pointless. Lawyers know about the statute of limitations and if the suit is filed by a reputable attorney, that will likely not be an issue. However, some disreputable representatives may try anything to pressure you into paying more money than you are liable for.

In most situations, the policy of the at-fault person is enough to cover any penalties and injuries. In those very few circumstances where this is not the case, you will know about it very shortly after the accident. If someone files a lawsuit a year or more later, they will have to show a great deal of causative effect and they will have to explain their delay.

Can They Sue Me After Agreeing to Settle?

Typically, when settling a claim with the insurance company, the other driver is required to sign a release which prevents them from filing any other claims in the future. This applies regardless of whether they face any other accident-related expenses in the future.

The only way a case may be reopened after agreeing to settle is if the other party disagrees with your attorney or insurance company on the terms of the settlement. The release the other party needs to sign is usually very straightforward in car accident cases, but disputes can still arise.

can someone sue you for a car accident if you have insurance

If the dispute is serious enough, the other party can sometimes back out of the settlement, depending on whether they settle before or after filing a suit.

If the settlement was reached before any lawsuit was filed but the claimant doesn’t want to sign the release, their only option is to file a lawsuit and hope that a judge will allow them to back out of the settlement or have the release changed.

If the case is settled in a suit and the attorneys can’t come to an agreement, the dispute will be submitted to the judge, who will either order the plaintiff to sign the release as it is, order that it be changed, or cancel the settlement and allow both of you to continue with the lawsuit.

In conclusion, if you have auto insurance, that means that most of the time there’s no need to worry. Cases, where the insurance policy doesn’t cover everything, are very rare and once the other party accepts payment from your insurance company, they also sign a release that prevents them from filing any further claims.

Involved in a car accident and seeking legal help? Palm Legal Group has an experienced team of skilled lawyers that can get you the best possible settlement for your case.

Call Now for a FREE Consultation!

(561) 781-9679

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Who Is Liable in a Car Accident – Miami Personal Injury Attorney – Open 24/7

Who Is Liable in a Car Accident

Who Is Liable in a Car Accident? Car accidents can occur at any given time, however vigilant or careful an individual driver may be. They are sometimes simply the result of poor road conditions or even vehicle malfunctions, but more often than not, car accidents are the result of human error.

While some car accidents are fairly simple affairs and the responsible party is easily identifiable, in some cases it’s not as cut and dry. One such example might be when the liable party is not the owner of the car they were driving.

Miami Personal Injury Attorney

Who Is Liable in a Car Accident, the Owner or the Driver?

In most car accidents, the person driving a car is also the owner. However, that is not always the case, and the answer to “who is liable” depends. If you loan your car to someone and they get into an accident, you may still be liable, even if you were not the one driving the car.

There are two legal doctrines which have been developed in order to hold vehicle owners liable in the case of negligent operation of their vehicles by others, and those doctrines are called negligent entrustment and vicarious liability.

Vicarious liability has been recognized in Florida ever since 1920 and under this doctrine, the vehicle owner is liable for any damages caused by the negligent operation of their vehicle by a consensual driver. An exception to this doctrine is when the vehicle was stolen. The doctrine may still be applied against the owner, however, if a non-consensual driver comes into possession of the vehicle as a result of the owner’s negligence. An example of this might be when the owner attends a house party and leaves their car keys unsupervised.

Any damages available from a vicariously liable vehicle owner are capped by Florida Statute 324.021(9)(b)3, meaning that the damages may exceed the owner’s exposure.

The difference between vicarious liability and negligent entrustment lies in the fact that the owner is independently at fault for granting the driver consensual use of their vehicle. Florida courts hold that if someone negligently entrusts another person with their car, they are liable for any damages that may come as a result of the misuse of the car. Negligent entrustment is recognized in nearly every U.S. state and Florida is no exception.

As opposed to vicarious liability claims, the damages that are awardable under negligent entrustment are not limited by the arbitrary damage caps of Florida Statute 324.021(9)(b)3.

What Happens After a Deposition in a Car Accident Case?

After filing a lawsuit in a car accident case, a key step in developing your case and ascertaining who is responsible in a car accident is a process called “discovery.” This is how the parties involved in a lawsuit obtain information from each other that may end up being helpful to their case.

One type of discovery is called a deposition, which is an out-of-court testimony that is given under oath. The person giving the sworn testimony is called a “deponent.”

Deposition testimony may sometimes be used as evident at trial in order to impeach a witness if their trial testimony differs from their deposition testimony.

Miami Personal Injury Attorney

Who Attends Depositions?

Typically, depositions are held with the participation of the person being deposed, the parties to the lawsuit, their attorneys, and a person who is qualified to administer oaths, such as a court reporter. They will also record the testimony and prepare a written transcript upon request.

You Will Most Likely Be Deposed by the Defendant’s Side

Filing a personal injury lawsuit is a near guarantee that the defendant or their attorney will ask to take your deposition. The rules of procedure which govern civil lawsuits typically require that parties to a lawsuit participate in a deposition if it has been requested by the other side.

Defense counsel should work with you to find a convenient date for you and if you have an attorney, they can help prepare you for the deposition, but being represented by counsel is not a requirement.

You will be asked many questions during the deposition, many of them seeking background or personal information. You will be asked to testify as to your recollection of the circumstances surrounding the car accident. You may also be asked about where you were going, in order to determine of you may have been in a hurry and distracted, thus contributing to the accident.

Your medical records will have likely been reviewed by the defense counsel and you will probably be asked to expand on the information in those records. If you are also claiming lost wages, they will ask you about your employment history, your current job duties, the income you earn, and why you were unable to work as a result of the accident.

It is important that you listen carefully to each question and answer honestly. If you do not know an answer with absolute certainty, say so, do not make anything up. It can be aggravating to answer questions which seem irrelevant or intrusive, but try to be patient and polite. An obstructive attitude or refusal to answer may hurt your case. If you are truly being asked irrelevant or overly intrusive questions, you can object and refuse to give an answer. You may also ask the court for assistance.

An important thing to remember is that you can review your deposition afterward and ensure that all your statements were accurate and there weren’t any incomplete answers or things you said which may be interpreted differently than they were meant. It is better to be certain about everything you said in your deposition than risk it being used against you if you go to trial.

Under Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.360, filing a lawsuit for personal injury allows defendants to hire a physician of their choice to perform a Compulsory Medical Exam (CME), also called an Independent Medical Exam (IME). The doctor assesses your injuries and provides their opinion regarding the cause of the injuries, whether they are related to the car crash, what exact injuries were sustained, the necessary treatment, and whether you suffered a permanent injury.

Remember, though, that the doctor performing the CME is not your treating physician and they do not establish a doctor-patient relationship with you. They are not responsible for your medical care and do not provide any medical treatment. Their sole purpose is to evaluate you on behalf of the defendant and give their opinion on your injuries.

What Happens After Discovery Is Complete?

After the information from discovery has been collected, the lawyers for each side will again try to reach a settlement once it’s clear who is responbile for the car accident. This is known as an alternative dispute resolution and sometimes lawyers can settle a case by simply talking among themselves.

Typically, this is when mediation will be attempted. This is a process where the clients and their lawyers meet with a mediator approved by both parties who will help them reach an agreeable settlement. Florida courts generally require that mediation be attempted before allowing the case to proceed to trial.

Mediation will typically include both parties, their counsel, the mediator, and an adjuster from the defendant’s insurance company who has authority to offer a certain amount of money to get the case resolved. The process begins by each attorney making opening statements on behalf of their clients which outline the case for the mediator and include each party’s theory of liability, injuries suffered and damages. Mediation is always confidential, meaning that the parties are not allowed to discuss anything that goes on during the process with anyone who is not involved, and no information about the process will ever be discussed during the trial.

After the attorneys have finished with their opening statements, the parties are separated into two rooms and the mediator then acts as a conduit of negotiations, going back and forth between them until a settlement is reached or the parties conclude that the case will not settle.

A second type of alternative dispute resolution may follow, called arbitration. A hearing typically takes place between the plaintiff and the defendant, which is judged by a neutral third-party. The difference between mediation and arbitration is that mediation is not binding, while an arbitrator’s decision about the settlement is final.

In some cases, if the judge thinks that a reasonable settlement can be reached, they may require the case to go to arbitration instead of to actual court.

The Trial

Miami Personal Injury Attorney

Finally, if none of the above actions are successful in reaching a settlement, the case goes to trial. Personal injury cases can last anywhere from hours to months. At the trial, all the information gathered through discovery is presented to the jury and they decide on the settlement amount.

Predicting the outcome of a trial is next to impossible, as it ultimately depends on the jury, which is made up of different individuals from different walks of life. Your attorney should talk with you prior to the trial and explain to you what the whole process entails and what the risks and benefits are of trying your personal injury case.

Who Pays the Medical Bills in a Car Accident?

In most accidents, damages are covered by one of the involved drivers’ insurance company, most likely the one who is liable for the crash. However, things can get a little more complicated when the liable party does not own the car he was driving.

While the process of filing a claim may become more complicated, there are certain protocols in place meant to resolve such issues. The bottom line is that as long as the owner of the car has insurance, their policy will handle the damages.

If the driver also has insurance, then their policy will act secondarily to the car owner’s policy. That means that if the owner’s insurance doesn’t cover all the damages and other expenses, then the driver’s insurance will kick in and cover any leftover bills.

If you have been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, or you want to find out for sure who is liable in a car accident you should contact the Palm Legal Group with our skilled and experienced lawyers go above and beyond to ensure that our clients get the full compensation they deserve.

 

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(561) 781-9679

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Average Settlement for A Concussion Car Accident

Average Settlement for Concussion Car Accident

When it comes to settlements after car accidents, concussions rank highly in the litigated subjects. A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and they are a common result of car accidents. They can vary in severity and the cost of getting treatment and the amount of time until you heal will have a direct effect on your settlement. It’s worth also knowing that TBI is a major cause of death in the United States as this article from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention illustrates.

What Are Concussions?

Concussions are injuries to the brain which result from bumping, jolting, or hitting the head. It’s not the actual blow that causes the concussion, but the motion that causes the brain to quickly move back and forth.

The brain’s movement inside the skull causes certain chemical changes that can sometimes damage brain cells. Despite a doctor initially diagnosing a concussion as mild, it can have lasting effects and sometimes serious consequences. A car accident impact can cause a concussion that doesn’t show any symptoms for hours or sometimes even days. The fact that you may not have any obvious signs of injury on the outside can make it even easier to overlook and not having the condition diagnosed can often have serious consequences. Seeking the right diagnosis in case you are injured in a car accident can be easier if you know what signs and symptoms to look for.

Average Settlement for Concussion Car Accident

The Signs and Symptoms of a Concussion

There are several signs and symptoms of a concussion that you can look out for and these include:

  • Nausea
  • Loss of counsciousness
  • Seeing “stars”
  • Confusion
  • Memory loss
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Mood swings
  • Headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Changes in your sleep patterns
  • Seizures

If you were involved in a car accident and need a lawyer, Palm Legal Group has an experienced team of excellent lawyers that will help you get the best possible settlement for your case.
Call us now at 1-561-781-9679

Who Is Entitled to a Car Accident Concussion Settlement?

When you are injured because of someone else’s negligence, it’s referred to as a personal injury. It is an injury of the body and it is viewed separately from property damage claims. If the car accident happened because of someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to receive compensation.

The next step you should take after being diagnosed with a concussion is to hire an experienced personal injury attorney. They will know how to evaluate the situation and how much your car accident concussion settlement is worth. You need compensation for the medical services you have already received, as well as for future medical expenses.

Who Is at Fault?

As with any other accident that is someone else’s fault, receiving a car accident concussion settlement depends greatly on you being able to prove that the other person was responsible. Some states allow you to receive compensation even if you were only partially at fault, but others do not, and this can complicate matters. You can expect the opposition’s lawyer to come after you and try to prove that you were at least partially responsible for the accident, and you can definitely expect the other driver’s insurance company to do everything it can to point the finger at you. Insurance companies regularly resort to all sorts of tactics to pay as little money as possible, if at all.

Many of these cases are settled before even going into litigation, but the actions you take prior to the negotiations will greatly affect your settlement. This is especially true if you don’t get an experienced lawyer to represent your case. If you need a personal injury lawyer in Boca Raton, look no further than Palm Legal Group.

Types of Car Accidents

Depending on how the vehicles collide with each other, there are several types of car accidents. These are the most common:

    • Vehicle rollover

These types of crashes are usually complex and violent. Although the vehicle type plays an important tole in the accident, so do the driver’s behavior and the road and environmental conditions.

    • Single car accident

This kind of accident involves only one vehicle. Most of these types of crashes are collisions with animals or fallen debris, rollovers, and run-off-road collisions.

    • Rear-end collisions

This is a traffic accident where a vehicle crashes into the rear side of the vehicle in front of it. They are usually caused by driver inattention, tailgating, and reduced traction due to the weather.

    • Side-impact collision

These accidents are also known as T-bone collisions and describe situations where the side of a vehicle is impacted. They commonly occur at intersections and in parking lots.

    • Head-on collision

These accidents occur when the front end of two vehicles collide and often result in very serious injuries and even death.

What to Do After Being in a Car Accident

It’s possible that you may not have any symptoms of a concussion right after the accident, but it’s important to never assume that you aren’t really injured. If you’ve hit your head but aren’t experiencing any symptoms of a concussion, you should still seek medical attention immediately. Document all outward injuries and any follow-up symptoms that may begin to occur. Failing to keep a clear and complete record of your injuries may lead to the other side disputing your claims.

One of the first things you should do is ensure that everyone is alright, in case someone might need urgent medical attention. After the accident, you will likely be contacted by the other driver’s insurance adjuster, who may be prepared to make you a “generous offer” on the spot. If you already have a personal injury attorney, refer the adjuster to them. Otherwise, hire an attorney as soon as possible. Whatever you do, though, do not in any way negotiate with the adjuster.

If you are being sued for a car accident, Palm Legal Group has an excellent team of lawyers that will help you prove your innocence.
Call us now at 1-561-781-9679

Can Someone Sue You for a Car Accident If You Have Insurance?

Unfortunately, even if you have valid insurance, you still run the risk of being sued of the insurance policy doesn’t cover all the damages and you were found at fault.

When you purchase an auto insurance policy, you reduce the financial consequences of being sued in a car accident case. The liability coverage ensures payment by the insurance company of settlements or judgments against you up to the limit that you purchased, as well as a lawyer that can represent you.

However, when settling a claim with the auto liability carrier, the other driver will have to sign a release which will prevent them from filing any further claims, even if other expenses on their part will be required in the future.

Do You Need a Police Report for a Car Accident?

In addition to containing information about the accident, a police report is an unbiased third-party report of the accident. The report can be more effective as evidence than hearsay or the retelling of the story by either of the parties involved. Insurance companies require that they receive a police report and if you decide to file a personal injury lawsuit, it will be a very useful asset.

Police reports include:

  • The location where the accident occurred
  • The date and time when the accident occurred
  • The damage suffered by each vehicle
  • Injuries sustained by those involved
  • Statements from witnesses

This evidence can support your claim and make a huge different toward increasing your chances of a successful outcome.

Even if you are the at fault driver, the police report is still very important. If the other driver misrepresents the truth, a police report can be of great help for your case.

Average Settlement for Concussion Car Accident

Settlements After Car Accidents

It would be a disservice to tell you that you could probably get this amount or that amount of money without knowing the specific details of your case. It all varies greatly depending on several factors such as fault and injuries sustained. For example, a recent case involved a Florida man who suffered permanent brain damage following a car accident with a commercial truck. He was awarded $26 million dollars after the case went to trial. This must be a record settlement after a car accidents, but on the face of it is very much deserved. Moving down toward less serious injuries, another recent case involved a California woman who was hit in an intersection and as a result she suffered a soft-tissue head injury and a permanent scar. She settled for $100,000.

Another very important factor that influences your compensation will always be your lawyer. If you choose an inexperienced lawyer it is unlikely that they will get you the compensation you deserve. This is why it’s imperative that you find a skilled lawyer who has a lot of experience dealing with car accidents.

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