The Cloud Law Firm represents clients who have been injured in a Highlands County motor vehicle accident.
Prior to your auto accident, you may have believed that you would never need to hire an attorney. However, your car accident may be the most violent and stressful thing that has ever happened to you. Now your life is in disarray, and you’re simply trying to recover the cost of your vehicle repairs, medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The insurance company will likely try to rush you to settle your claim for a small fraction of your actual loss. The decisions you make shortly after the accident, such as contacting the right Highlands County, Fl car accident lawyer, will play a large role in determining the strength and value of your injury claim. You will only get one bite at this apple. You need a compassionate and experienced Highlands County auto accident attorney who will out-think and outwork the at-fault party and their insurance company.
If you or your loved one has been involved in a car accident, please contact an Highlands County Personal Injury Attorney now for a free consultation at: (863) 402-2207. We will be happy to speak with you over the phone or meet with you in person at our Highlands County office located at 205 S Commerce Ave, Sebring, FL 33870. We want you to know your rights and we will provide the advice and help you are searching for. If you retain us, we will get to work on your case right away. You have nothing to lose by calling because there are no attorneys’ fees unless we win your personal injury case.
Causes of Auto Accidents
There are myriad causes for motor vehicle accidents. They commonly occur at stop lights, in intersections, on highways, and everywhere in between The fact is, automobiles are part of our everyday lives here in Florida. Most of us drive or ride in some type of motor vehicle (be it a car, truck, bus, or motorcycle) almost every day. Because of this, we often forget just how dangerous automobiles are and how serious car crashes can be.
Car Accident Injuries
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration there were more than 11 million motor vehicle accidents in 2015, resulting in more than 22,000 fatalities. Indeed, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control, auto accidents are one of the leading causes of injury and death in the United States. Moreover, of those who survive these car accidents, nearly half suffer permanent injuries or serious ailments that negatively affect them for the remainder of their lives.
Car crashes caused by roadway hazards and negligent drivers can range from moderate to very severe. Common Highlands County auto accident injuries include: cuts and bruises; sprains; broken bones; neck, back and spinal cord injuries; shoulder, arm, wrist and hand injuries; hip, knee, ankle and foot injuries; joint dislocations; concussions; traumatic brain injuries; and even death. Many of these types of injuries require costly surgical and/or long term treatment.
Florida Statutes Concerning Operation of Motor Vehicle
The Florida Uniform Traffic Control Law, codified in Chapter 316 Florida Statutes, contains many of the statutory laws which govern the rules of the road in the State of Florida. Within this Chapter, are many of the rules concerning operation of motor vehicles, such as: the right of way, yielding, stopping, parking, passing, use of lights and signals, interaction between cars, pedestrians, and bicyclists, etcetera.
Proving Negligence in a Highlands County Car Accident Case
Most auto accident claims are based on the legal cause of action called “negligence.” Simply put, every person and business owes a duty to use reasonable care. If a person or business fails to use reasonable care, then they have acted negligently. If that negligence injures someone, the injured person has a civil cause of action against the negligent party for money damages. Without getting too technical, in car accident cases, negligence is typically proven based upon the circumstances of the accident and/or violation of applicable Florida statutes (e.g. speeding or failing to obey a traffic control device), which may be used as evidence of negligence.
Florida follows the rule of “pure comparative negligence.” This means that the jury may determine that more than one person negligently contributed to an accident, and allocate a percentage of fault for the accident to each of the negligent persons. The negligent persons may include the injured person, to the extent he or she contributed to the accident. If the jury allocates fault to the injured person, following the trial, the court will reduce the injured party’s award of money damages by the percentage of fault allocated to the plaintiff in the lawsuit.
Car Accident Victims Are Generally Entitled to PIP/No-Fault Insurance Benefits
Under Florida law, every motor vehicle owner is required to maintain $10,000 Personal Injury Protection (PIP) auto insurance coverage that pays 80% of his or her own medical bills and 60% of his or her lost wages, up to the $10,000 PIP benefit limit, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. § 627.733, Fla. Stat. Irrespective of who was at fault for the accident, pedestrians and bicyclists qualify for PIP: (1) from your own auto insurer if you have auto insurance; (2) if you do not own a vehicle, from a resident relative’s auto insurer; or (3) if the foregoing are not applicable, and you were a passenger in someone else’s vehicle, from the host driver’s auto insurer.
You should also know that in order to qualify for PIP benefits, you must seek treatment within fourteen (14) days following the accident. Treatment during that period qualifies a person for $2,500 PIP benefits. To qualify for the full $10,000 PIP benefits, a doctor must certify that you have suffered an “emergency medical condition.”
Please Read the Frequently Asked Questions Below
For additional information, please read the frequently asked questions presented below: