We continue to see an increased number of road accidents across the United States every year. These accidents are caused by many things, including drunk driving, malfunctioned vehicles, and disregarding traffic rules. One of the main ways of reducing these accidents is being mindful of other motorists and adhering to all the rules that govern proper road usage.
However, many people share the road, and even if you follow all the rules and drive safely, someone else’s negligence can affect you and harm you somehow. Regardless of the circumstance surrounding any car accident, it is right for you to seek the compensation you need to recover from injuries and damages after being involved in an accident. These matters are often complex and lead to lawsuits, a reason why you should enlist the services of an experienced Boca Raton car accident lawyer to guide you. Contact Englander Peebles today at (954) 231-1384 to learn how our personal injury attorneys can help your claim.
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Car Accident Statistics in Florida
On average, the state of Florida experiences about 400,000 accidents annually. In 2018, there were 401,851 accidents, partly attributed to the increased population in the state. Close to five percent of all drivers in Florida get involved in an accident annually.
Out of this figure, about 3,000 crashes result in fatalities, with over 150,000 leading to injuries. Six thousand five hundred ninety crashes involve bicycles, with about 160 resulting in fatalities. The total number of crashes involving motorcycles is 9,143, with 531 of these resulting in fatalities. Pedestrian crashes stand at 9,356, with 720 of them ending in fatalities.
How Much Does a Car Accident Lawyer Cost?
At Englander Peebles, we do not charge a fixed amount of money for our services. It all depends on the case and procedures we will have to partake in to secure the settlement you need. We work on a contingency fee agreement where you do not pay a fixed amount of money. In fact, we won’t charge you anything upfront.
We receive our fees as a percentage of the awarded compensation. This percentage is dependent on the complexities of your claim and if it is settled or goes to trial. Under this arrangement, you won’t have to pay us if your claim is denied.
What Should I Do After a Car Accident?
You will rarely find a driver who is at fault for an accident willing to admit their mistake. You should never accept liability once involved in an accident. However, you need to help your lawyers file a claim using the evidence you can gather on site. Some of the things you should do after an accident include;
Call the Police
The police have to produce their statement on the accident in court. This way, it is paramount to have them come and inspect the site. In Florida, the highway patrol police will probably not be far away, and they should be on the scene within minutes of calling them.
Check on the Other Victims
Your health should be the number one priority after an accident. This way, all the things you need to do depend on your health and whether you can do them or not. Do not risk your well being trying to do something that will aggravate your injuries.
However, if you are okay, do not leave the scene and check on the victims. Some of these people may need first aid depending on the impact of the crash, and you never know; a little help can go a long way to save someone’s life.
In some cases, the victims in the accident might only have minor knocks and here, exchange your contact information with them. It also helps to get the contacts of any eyewitnesses that might help you build a strong case.
Record the Scene
The law states that no one should interfere with an accident scene before it is documented. While the police will do this, it helps to have your recordings of the accident scene as it will help your car accident lawyer. Be sure to capture the essential aspects of the scene, such as the skid marks, position of the wrecked cars or bicycles, and any other damaged object.
Do Not Admit Fault
After a car accident, you can quickly get confused and utter words that will land you in trouble. This is mainly seen when you engage with car insurance companies that may want to coerce you into admitting fault. Do not do it and ask them to speak to your lawyer.
Seek Medical Care
It is easy to assume that you have got out of a car crash unscathed and then find that you suffered from internal injuries later. Visit a medical practitioner as soon as you leave the accident scene and have them conduct a medical check on you to make sure that you are not hurt in any way.
Call a Car Accident Lawyer
Once you have done all the things mentioned above, contact your car accident lawyers at Englander Peebles and let them finish the job for you. They will file for a claim and start building a strong case using the evidence you presented to them.
What is the Average Settlement for a Car Accident?
If you are involved in a car accident for the first time, you might wonder how much to expect as a settlement. However, there is no fixed amount as it depends on several things. Car accidents range from very minor with no injuries to extreme ones that lead to lifelong disabilities and even death. To help your lawyers determine an amicable settlement amount, they need to look into various things.
The two main ones that stand out are the severity of your injuries and the amount the insurance company is willing to pay for the claim. If you do not sustain serious injuries, the chances of getting a larger compensation are minimal. The idea behind the settlement here is to help you recover from your injuries and compensate you for the things you are missing out due to that injury.
Coupling injuries with all the other factors, statistics show that average compensation for a car accident ranges between $3,000 to $75,000. The average figure stands at $52,000, but this is not cast in stone. Only a professional at Englander Peebles Boca Raton will give you an optimal figure depending on your prevalent scenario.
When Should I Get a Lawyer for my Auto Accident?
No one anticipates being involved in a car accident, and many would wonder why they should have a car accident lawyer when they drive safely. However, after an accident, time won’t be on your side, and your lawyer needs to move fast if they are to get you the settlement you want.
In an ideal scenario, you should have a car accident lawyer on standby so that when you get involved in one, you would simply just contact them and let them proceed with the case. The best thing is to do your homework long before being involved in an accident and have a reliable Englander Peebles car accident lawyer in your contact list. It does not hurt to assess the options at hand and even looking at the experience of various lawyers trying to see which one is the best for you.
You will be better off with a tried and tested lawyer who will waste no time and swing into action immediately you notify them of your accident.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
One can look at the percentage a lawyer will get out of the monetary compensation awarded and decide to pursue a claim independently. Well, this is suicidal, and the chances of getting any compensation are minimal.
Note that the defendants, mostly insurance companies, are in the business to shoot down claims at every opportunity they get. They won’t pay you the settlement with a smile on their face since they receive many claims and cannot afford to pay all of them. They have a team of dedicated lawyers whose work is to represent the insurance companies in court and reduce the settlement amounts to a bare minimum. This way, an experienced Englander Peebles car accident lawyer is your safest bet to getting the compensation you deserve after a car accident.
A lawyer’s work will start with the case preparation. Here, they will process the evidence you presented to them and format it into a strong case. Note that if you are seeking compensation, then the burden of proof falls with you. This way, you need to convince the jury that the other driver acted negligently and owed a duty of care. Once they have prepared the case, they will file for a claim and send this notification to the defendant, mostly an insurance company.
The insurance company will go through the claim and see if it holds water or not. In most cases, they won’t decide to face off in court directly and will contact your lawyer to see if you can agree on a settlement out of court. Here, they will offer you a sum less than what you were holding out for in exchange for a quick resolution to the matter. Your lawyer will negotiate with the defendant’s attorneys and see if they can agree on an amicable amount. They will do this while consulting with you since you are the affected party and should have a say on the right amount required to compensate you for the injuries you suffered.
If the sum offered is not enough, then the matter will go to trial, and here your lawyer will face off with the defendants in a court of law. They will present their case to a jury and wait for them to decide. This happens if the amount offered in the settlement phase is way below your demands, and we believe that we can win a larger amount in court.
All this time, your lawyer will do everything while you recuperate from the injuries you suffered. They understand the car accident laws that apply in Boca Raton and leverage them to ensure that you are compensated.
How is Fault Determined in Florida?
Florida is a no-fault state. This implies that drivers have insurance to cover their own injuries, and everyone needs to file a claim with their own insurance company.
However, it is in the best interests of these insurance companies to help establish fault so that the negligent party can be held responsible for compensating damages to others. The four primary elements used to prove fault in Florida are;
- Duty of care
- Breach of duty
This way, the negligent driver had a legal duty of care and harmed another party. They must have breached their duty of care intentionally or negligently. The plaintiff should show that the breach of duty caused the accident directly, and this led to the losses and expenses. Some of the pieces of evidence that support this include police reports, witness statements, photo or video evidence from the scene, and damage reports.
How Long Do I Have To File a Claim in Florida?
The statute of limitations in Florida states that one has four years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. If you exceed this time limit, the courts will not hear your case. While four years can seem like a long time, it is prudent to waste no time and file for a lawsuit as soon as possible. Here, the details of the accident will still be fresh, and your lawyer will be better placed to collect crucial evidence needed to support your case.
How Can a Lawyer Help me File My Insurance Claim?
You can deal with the insurance company on your own, but it is advisable to let a car accident lawyer in Boca Raton, FL, do it for you.
They understand the claim processes and will start by talking with the other driver’s insurance company. They know what the insurance company will be looking for and will give them the right information needed to aid the negotiations. They will proceed and negotiate for a fair settlement while highlighting the strong points of your case and giving them a reason why they should not let the matter get to litigation.
The law states that you have to file a car accident with your own insurance company even if the other driver is at fault. Besides, you could be in for a few benefits from your insurance company, and they should be aware of the matter and how it is being handled. Let your lawyer do this for you as they understand how to engage them.
In a nutshell, your lawyer will handle the entire claims process. They know the techniques of doing it and will see to it that your issue is dealt with according to the set regulations.
What Can I do if Insurance Denied My Claim?
It is not out of the ordinary to have a claim denied by the insurance company. However, there must be a reason for it, and it can be valid or not. Insurance companies have specific terms and conditions that should be adhered to for a claim to be valid.
If your claim is denied, contact the insurance company and ask for the reason. This should be presented to you in writing. Here, you will reach your auto accident lawyer in Boca Raton and let them assess the reasons and advise you on the next steps. They understand such matters and if it was merely because of a mishap, they would help persuade the company to honor its obligations and compensate you.
What if the Other Driver Doesn’t Have Insurance?
If the other driver does not have an insurance cover, your insurance company will have to pay for the damages they caused. You will contact your company and file the claim. They will cater to your medical bills and any damage to the car provided you had an uninsured motorist coverage. From here, they will fight the other driver to recoup their money.
How Can I Obtain an Accident Report?
Accident reports are usually available at the police department that reported your accident. You can make the application in person, through an email, or via phone, depending on the specific police department. Once you do this, they should provide you with an accident report in under three days.
Contact a Boca Raton Car Accident Lawyer
When you are involved in a car accident, you need to ensure that you are compensated if it was caused by another person’s negligence. This is why it is crucial to enlist the services of our Boca Raton car accident lawyers and let us handle this case. We have a team of diligent and experienced legal professionals who understand the federal and Florida car accident statutes. We have won record compensation amounts for clients over the years and will get you the compensation you deserve for your claim. Contact our Boca Raton injury firm today on (954) 231-1384 for a free case assessment.