Car Accident Lawyer in Lakeland
Unfortunately, car accidents are a daily occurrence in Florida, and nobody on the road is truly safe from a possible collision. If you have been injured in a car accident in Lakeland, contact us at Abercrombie, P.A. now in order to find out if you are entitled to compensation for your injuries, and how we can help get you the money that you rightfully deserve.
Car accidents can cause extensive physical injury, and in addition, they cause extreme anguish for the victims. We will work to ensure that you are compensated for all of the damages, physical and emotional, that you suffer if someone else caused the crash. It is likely that you will be dealing with the driver’s insurance company, or in some cases dealing directly with the driver, but you can be certain that whoever you are dealing with is going to try to pay you as little as possible while protecting themselves from additional legal issues.
The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can begin building a case that clearly illustrates the amount of money that you are truly owed, whether it is through settlement negotiations or a full case through the Florida court system. Read more below for some overview information about car accidents and personal injury law in Florida, and contact us now to get started.
DEALING WITH FLORIDA CAR INSURANCE COMPANIES
From a consumer’s perspective, an insurance company is there to make sure that they only need to pay a deductible if they are responsible for an accident. While this is true, the goal of the insurance company is to pay as little as possible as well. This means that when you are dealing with an insurance agent, they are compiling information about the accident that their client caused, and the injuries that you have sustained, so that they can determine an amount that will satisfy you, avoid future legal issues, and cost them as little as possible. The amount they will offer you is highly unlikely to cover all of the injuries that you have suffered.
Before you accept an offer from an insurance company, it is very important that you discuss your options with a personal injury attorney. This offer is a start to negotiations, although they would like you to believe that it is your only chance. A personal injury lawyer will handle these negotiations, and will move to a full case if they are unable to reach an agreement. Once you accept an offer, you waive your rights to any future legal action for the accident, so it’s essential that you are confident in your compensation.
COMMON CAR ACCIDENT CAUSES AND INJURIES IN FLORIDA
CAUSES OF CAR ACCIDENTS IN FLORIDA
There are many different ways that car accidents are caused in Florida, but below are some of the more common instances that result in personal injury lawsuits:
Drunk driving is a serious issue, and victims of this careless decision deserve to be compensated aggressively. In Florida, anyone over the age of 21 operating a passenger vehicle is guilty of drunk driving if they are found to have a BAC (blood alcohol concentration) in excess of .08. Any CDL driver who is operating a commercial motor vehicle is restricted to a .04 BAC, although a CDL driver operating a passenger vehicle is held to the same standards as any other passenger vehicle driver. Any driver under the age of 21 found with a BAC in excess of .02 will be found guilty of DUI.
Distracted driving comes in a wide range of forms, and one of the most common types of distracted driving is the use of a smartphone while operating a vehicle. While most people simply refer to this as “texting while driving,” texting is one of many different things that a person may be doing on their phone that led them to cause an accident.
In addition to smartphone usage, distracted driving can include things like updating a GPS, eating while driving, trying to get something out of the back seat, or a variety of other actions. Essentially, a driver is guilty of distracted driving the moment they take their attention off of the road.
Unfortunately, Florida is consistently found to be the most dangerous state in our country when it comes to motorcycle-related fatalities. This means that each time someone starts their motorcycle to go for a ride, they are seriously increasing their risk of injury or death as a result of another driver’s actions or negligence on the road. Part of the problem with a motorcycle is that there is a lack of physical protection for the driver or passenger since there is no frame around the vehicle to absorb impacts or to keep the victim from being thrown off of the machine.
Speeding or recklessness
Speeding and reckless driving are easy ways to increase the risk of an accident for the driver fo the speeding vehicle, as well as all others that they are sharing the road with. Speed limits are posted in order to keep everyone on the road safe and take into account things like the handling abilities of passenger vehicles, the driving skills of the average driver, obstacles on the road, and other things such as whether or not the road goes through a neighborhood or school zone. Choosing to ignore these legal limits is one common way that people cause avoidable accidents and injuring innocent victims.
Cutting through red lights or ignoring road signs
There are many reasons that someone may cut a red light or another road sign intended to bring order to an intersection. Whether they are drunk, distracted, speeding, or any other reason, if the other driver violated traffic laws by cutting a red light or stop sign then you will have many rights as a victim. We will work to prove how negligent their actions were, and will aggressively fight to get you the compensation that you deserve after being injured by their careless actions.
Texting and driving
As mentioned above, texting and driving is a problem of epidemic proportions, in the United States and across the world. However, since there are so many different apps constantly trying to catch our attention on our smartphones there are many different things that someone may be doing on their phone while driving. Regardless, it is important that you report what you saw to the police who respond on the scene so that they can investigate and hopefully get proof in their police report. Any possible eyewitness accounts that you can get will be very helpful for your case as well.
Failure to yield
Failure to yield to oncoming traffic, whether while merging, entering a rotary, or any other situation where you had the right of way but were struck by a yielding vehicle is another common type of accident. These types of accidents are especially common with inexperienced drivers who are not familiar with all of the rules of the road, tourists who are distracted by trying to find their way or someone who is drunk or distracted.
Of courses, there are many other situations that can result in a car accident that will qualify for a personal injury lawsuit. If you are unsure, contact us immediately to learn about your options.
COMMON INJURIES IN CAR ACCIDENTS
There are many different ways that people can be injured in car accidents, and we understand that no two accidents are alike. However, below are some of the more common injuries that we seek damages in Florida after car accidents:
Broken or fractured bones
Broken or fractured bones are common injuries from impacts such as car accidents. They typically happen because the victim collides with the inside of the vehicle, or is thrown against their seatbelt at high velocity.
Whiplash happens when the head is rapidly jerked forward, down, and then back. In this motion, the muscles, tendons, ligaments and spinal disks are compressed and stretched in a way that causes extensive tearing and can lead to serious neck pain.
While a seatbelt is one of the most important safety tools in a vehicle, there are also some instances where a person can experience injuries from the belt. These are typically things like fractured ribs or bruising along where the belt crossed their body.
Airbags, like seatbelts, are very important safety devices that protect passengers during a crash. Airbags rapidly inflate to create a softer impact for the passengers, but in some cases they may experience some bruising or other injuries directly from the airbag.
Concussions range from grades 1 to 3, where 1 is the least severe and 3 is the most severe. No matter how severe a concussion is, though, it should be addressed and treated by a medical professional to avoid any future issues or more serious effects.
Traumatic brain injuries
A concussion is one example of TBI, but there are many more including things like brain contusions or anoxic brain injuries. A contusion is a bruise on the brain tissue, and an anoxic brain injury is a situation where the brain loses its supply of oxygen. Each of these have serious consequences if left untreated.
Internal bleeding can cause serious, lasting impacts if left untreated, and can even be fatal. These types of injuries are an example of why it is so important that you see your doctor after an accident to make certain that there are no injuries that go unaddressed or unnoticed.
Spine and neck injuries
The spine and neck are very susceptible to injuries in a car accident, ranging from things like compressed disks and whiplash to situations where the nerve bundle is severed, causing paralysis. If you suspect that someone has suffered from a spine or neck injury, it is important that you do not move them.
Everyone suffers from different injuries in a car accident, and we work to make sure that each injury, both emotional and physical, are accounted for in the personal injury lawsuit.
CALCULATING DAMAGES IN A CAR ACCIDENT LAWSUIT
Calculating the damages that a victim is owed in a personal injury lawsuit can be complicated, but our team is experienced in these situations and will be able to account for all of your injuries and suffering and apply a fair dollar amount applied to them. Take a look below at how damages are divided in these cases, as well as some examples of common injuries that are included.
Economic damages in a personal injury lawsuit account for all of the injuries and treatments that have measurable monetary values. This includes things like expenses for medical treatment, hospital stays, and surgical procedures, as well as lost income because the victim had to miss work. This also includes any paid time off or sick leave that the victim has used in order to keep their income steady during this time.
These damages are intended to repay the victim (and the victim’s insurance company) for the economic costs of the accident and the associated injuries and can be fairly simple to calculate after comprehensively compiling all of these costs.
Non-economic damages can be more complicated to determine than economic damages because they seek compensation for things that do not have a set, measurable value attached to them in an accident. This includes things like the actual pain and suffering of an injury, as well as mental anguish, sadness, depression, and a general lack of enjoyment in life after these injuries. An insurance company will work to avoid compensating a victim for these types of damages during their initial offer, and will likely push back through negotiations. Just because there is no set, the agreed-upon dollar amount for things like pain does not mean that it is any less important during a personal injury case.
CONTACT US TODAY TO GET STARTED
If you have suffered injuries after a car accident that someone else caused, then you may be able to collect damages that exceed the offer an insurance company will offer you. Your best bet at getting the money you deserve is by partnering with an experienced personal injury attorney who will fight for your rights while you focus on recovery. Contact us today for your initial consultation, and let us start to fight for the money you deserve immediately.