If you have been in a car accident, you may have a claim for compensation for any losses that you incurred as a result of injuries, damage to your property, and other damages. You need an experienced Plantation car accident lawyer to find out if you have a claim, what you can claim for, and how much you can claim.
A lawyer will provide you with the following benefits:
- Investigate the accident
- Prepare your case
- File your lawsuit
- Negotiate a settlement
- Represent you in a court of law
Contact Englander Peebles today for a free consultation and find out if you can sue for compensation in a personal injury lawsuit.
Table of Contents
Car Accident Statitics In Florida
Even a minor car accident can result in injuries. According to the latest statistics, an estimated 400,000 car accidents take place in the state of Florida every year. Of these, around 250,000 results in injuries. The average settlement for a personal injury claim after a car accident is $15,000.
How Much Does A Plantation Car Accident Lawyer Cost?
Englander Peebles, we work on a contingency basis. This means that they don’t charge a retainer or any upfront fees for their legal services. You won’t get billed as the case progresses. Our lawyer fees are contingent or dependent on winning your case. If we lose, we don’t get paid. If we win, we charge a small percentage of the settlement amount or the claim that is awarded by a court for our services.
Working on a contingency basis benefits you in two ways. Firstly we will work harder to win your case to ensure that we get paid. Secondly, we will ensure that you claim for and are awarded the maximum settlement amount for the losses that you incurred.
What Should I Do After A Car Accident?
There are certain steps that you should take after an accident that can help your case when the time comes to claim compensation:
- Call the police to the scene of the accident.
- Check on the other parties involved in the accident. Never leave the scene of the accident.
- Exchange contact, insurance, and license information.
- Record the scene of the accident by taking photographs or a video. Make sure that you capture any factors that may have played a role in the accident such as road works. Also, take photos of injuries and damage to property.
- Get contact details from anyone at the scene that witnessed the accident.
- Be careful what you say. Don’t admit fault and don’t apologize as this can make you appear guilty.
- Seek medical attention. Even if you don’t feel hurt, get checked out by a doctor or visit an emergency room. Some injuries can take time to appear.
- Call a car accident lawyer!
What Is The Average Settlement For A Car Accident?
A settlement is when you reach an agreement with the party who caused the accident to be paid a specific amount in compensation without going to court. On average, a settlement for a car accident is around $15,000 in Florida. However, the settlement amount can be far less or far more depending on a number of different factors. These factors include:
- The severity of your injuries.
- The amount of damage that was caused to your property.
- Whether you lost time at work and need to be compensated for your loss of income.
- If you incurred other losses such as pain and suffering.
A permanent disability is going to cost you much more in immediate and future medical care plus you may not be able to work and enjoy activities that you did before the accident. This will result in a much bigger settlement than a car accident that only resulted in minor injuries.
When Should I Get A Lawyer For My Auto Accident?
You should get a lawyer as soon as possible after you have been in a car accident. It is usually the insurance provider for the person who caused the accident that you will be dealing with. They have a team of expert in-house lawyers who will do their utmost to avoid paying a settlement or to settle for as little as possible. Your car accident lawyer knows how to deal with insurance companies and their lawyer to ensure that you receive the settlement you deserve.
You should also contact a lawyer before signing a settlement agreement. Some insurance companies will rush to offer you a settlement and pressure you to accept it. This settlement is often far less than you could claim for and doesn’t take into account your future expenses. Your lawyer will ensure that you are compensated well into the future.
Why Do I Need A Lawyer?
A lawyer will assist you in every aspect of your lawsuit from providing you with sound legal advice to having your back throughout the process. Englander Peebles attorneys offer the following services:
- Prepare your case.
- Determine who is liable.
- Figure out what you can claim for and how much.
- File your lawsuit.
- Negotiate a settlement.
- Present your case in court if necessary.
Unless you are determined to go to court, your lawyer will do their utmost to reach a settlement agreement. The main reason for this is that court trials take time and there is no certainty about the outcome. It is up to a judge and jury to decide whether to award your claim and in what amount that claim should be.
What Types Of Damages Can I Sue For?
There are three categories for damages or losses that you can sue for in the state of Florida:
Economic damages are losses of a financial nature to which an exact amount can be assigned. These include:
- Medical expenses
- Damage to property
- Loss of wages or income
- The cost of services. For instance, a gardener or house cleaner because you couldn’t perform these tasks due to your injuries.
- Transportation to and from medical appointments.
- Home renovations necessary to accommodate you after being injured or disabled.
These damages include your current expenses as well as losses that you will continue to incur into the future.
These are damages to which no exact monetary value can be assigned and include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium or companionship
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress
An amount for each damage will be negotiated and decided between the lawyers representing the different parties or by the court.
Unlike economic and non-economic damage that are awarded as compensation for your losses, punitive damages are intended as an additional financial punishment for the liable party in the hopes of deterring from entering into the same behavior that caused the accident.
The courts do not award punitive damages easily, and gross negligence or a willful act must be proven. For example, if a drunk driver knew he was drunk and got behind the wheel of a car anyway and then caused the accident that resulted in your injuries, the court may award punitive damages.
How Is Fault Determined?
The state of Florida uses comparative negligence to assign a percentage of fault to each party involved in the accident. The amount of compensation that is awarded is relative to the percentage that is assigned.
For example, if you are found to be 20% at fault in causing the accident because you were driving above the speed limit when the accident occurred, the other party is 80% at fault and therefore needs to pay 80% of the amount that is awarded in a court or the settlement amount.
How Long Do I Have To File A Claim?
The statute of limitations to file a personal injury claim in the state of Florida is 4 years. This means that you have exactly 4 years from the date of the accident to file a claim. If this period of time expires, you will no longer be able to claim compensation for the losses you incurred as a result of the car accident.
How Can A Lawyer Help Me File My Insurance Claim?
The most important role that your lawyer can play in helping you file an insurance claim is to ensure that you are claiming for all the damages that you have incurred. They will assist you in completing your claim, submit your claim, and follow through with the insurance provider as your claim is processed.
What Can I Do If Insurance Denied My Claim?
It is common for insurance companies to deny claims and they aren’t required to give you a reason for denying your claim. A lawyer can assist you in getting your claim approved and suing the insurance provider. Often, a letter from a lawyer is enough to get the denial overturned.
What If The Other Driver Doesn’t Have Insurance?
It is more important than ever to hire a lawyer if the other driver is uninsured. The driver probably won’t have the funds available to pay your claim. Your best option is to seek compensation from your insurance company based on your policy’s uninsured motorist coverage.
When suing an uninsured driver, a Plantation car accident lawyer can arrange for a lien to be placed on an asset such as a house or car. When the house or car is sold, you will receive proceeds from the sale in the amount of the claim that was awarded to you. Alternatively, your lawyer can arrange for the claim to be paid in installments.
How Can I Obtain An Accident Report?
You can contact the police that arrived at the scene of the accident for a copy of the accident report. Your lawyer can assist you in obtaining the report.
Contact Our Plantation Car Accident Lawyers Today
Our team at Englander Peebles is here to assist you with every aspect of your personal injury claim after you have been in a car accident. Simply contact us today at (954) 231-1384 for a free consultation and we will get working on your case. We operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning we charge no fees unless we win you compensation.