Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyer
Being in a car accident can be incredibly stressful, even if you only faced property damage or minor injuries. However, if you or a loved one experienced serious injuries, was paralyzed or suffered permanent disabilities because of a car crash, you could be entitled to substantial compensation and may need years of medical treatment and physical therapy. For moderate or severe injuries after a crash, it might be appropriate to file a lawsuit to get compensation for the medical bills, lost wages and other damages.
At my firm, Jared Newman, Esq., I represent car accident injury victims and their families and fight to make sure my clients are taken care of. If you or a loved one needs compensation for your injuries, call me, attorney Jared Newman, today to discuss how to file a claim and maximize the financial compensation in your car accident injury case. Contact my firm at 954-281-7709.
Filing A Car Accident Lawsuit In Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Florida’s car accident laws work on a “no-fault” system. Under this system, each driver carries car insurance that is designed to cover their own vehicle damage and injuries regardless of who was at fault in the crash. This means that when you get into a crash, you file a claim with your own car insurance company first, and if they can pay for everything, then they cover the damages regardless of whether you or the other driver caused the crash. However, when drivers suffer severe injuries or their damages are worth more than the insurance company covers, you can go after the at-fault driver in court instead.
When victims suffer “permanent” injuries that include significant scarring, injuries to a body system or organ damage, they can sue for damages instead of filing a car accident claim. Additionally, when the damages for medical bills and lost wages are worth more than $10,000, the case can go to court instead of having to be filed as a car insurance claim. Filing a lawsuit instead of an insurance claim can often open access to pain and suffering and other damages that are not paid through insurance.
Determining Fault In A Car Accident Case In Florida
When you sue instead of filing a no-fault insurance claim, you must first prove that the other driver caused the crash in order to get compensation. In most car accident cases, this means showing that the driver did something wrong behind the wheel that constitutes “negligence.” Negligence is a breach of any legal duty, which, for drivers, typically means either a traffic violation that caused the crash or a breach of standard safe-driving practices that reasonable drivers do behind the wheel.
To prove that there was a traffic violation, you can point to anything the driver did wrong that caused the crash. This can include simple things like running a red light, speeding, or even failing to use a turn signal. Most car accidents involve some level of speeding, and other crashes are commonly caused by drunk driving, distracted driving and other violations while behind the wheel. Other errors and mistakes that might not be official traffic violations can also be the cause of a crash, such as drowsy driving or sharply increasing speed to beat a yellow light.
In many cases, car accidents involve multiple drivers whose mistakes or oversights contributed to the crash. If you were hit by multiple cars whose drivers each made errors, you can often sue all of them, and the court can divide fault among all drivers involved. When damages are paid, the total damages are apportioned out to each driver based on the percentage of fault that they shared. For example, two drivers who were 25% and 75% liable for a crash would pay $25,000 and $75,000, respectively, in a $100,000 injury case.
In some cases, this means assigning partial blame to the victim as well. Under Florida law, the victim is responsible for whatever portion of the damages was considered “their fault,” and these are kept out of the damages. For instance, a driver who was 10% at fault for their own crash because they reached down to adjust the radio would only be awarded $90,000 in a $100,000 injury case.
Evidence Needed In A Fort Lauderdale Car Crash Claim
If you are going to file a car insurance claim or a car accident lawsuit with the help of an experienced personal injury attorney, there is some evidence you should try to collect first. If you were severely injured at the scene of the crash and had to go to the hospital, you might have been unable to collect some of this evidence at the time. However, much of the information you need will be contained in the police report, so it is important to always report the crash to the police and get a copy of the accident report.
You will first need to know who to sue, which means gathering the at-fault driver’s contact information and insurance information. You will also need to know who any other witnesses were, so get their info as well. It is also important to know where the accident took place, so write down the name of the street, the nearest cross-street and the closest mile marker, if that info is available. Also take note of the weather, the road conditions, the lighting conditions and other details.
Otherwise, most evidence will be supplied by your testimony of what happened in the crash, plus any testimony from witnesses. You can also take photos of the crash, and if anyone had a dashcam or there were any nearby traffic cameras or security cameras that captured the crash on film, you should request a copy of that evidence as well.
I Can Help
If you were injured in a car crash, there are many aspects of your case that you should get help with. I help victims and their families seek compensation for their injuries and work to hold at-fault drivers accountable for their errors. For a free legal consultation on your case, call Jared Newman, Esq., today at 954-281-7709.