The days following a Florida car accident can be brutal. Victims are often so overwhelmed by phone calls, insurance paperwork, police questions, medical bills and the demands of daily life that focusing on their physical recovery goes on the back burner. So do questions about their legal rights. But under Florida law, car accident victims are able to receive compensation if they were injured due to someone else’s negligence. It is important to talk with a Tampa car accident lawyer who can explain your legal options based on the state’s personal injury and wrongful death statutes.
If you or someone you love was injured in a Florida car accident, the experienced attorneys at the Disparti Law Group, P.A., can help. Our law firm has successfully represented Florida car accident victims for more than 30 years. We work hard so that victims can get compensation to help with doctor’s bills, property damage, lost wages and pain and suffering and more.
We work on a contingency fee basis, which means that you don’t owe us anything unless you recover money in your case. For a free consultation, contact our Florida car accident lawyers at 866-695-0035 or online. We serve clients in Miami, Tampa, Holiday and throughout Florida. Don’t fight the insurance companies alone. Let us put our decades of experience and knowledge to work for you.
Our Tampa Car Accident Lawyers Can Help
Florida is one of the most dangerous places to drive in the country. The state had the third-largest number of motor vehicle accident fatalities nationwide in 2010, with 2,445 deaths. More than 195,000 travelers were injured in car accidents statewide that same year. Both of those numbers represent a decline from previous years – but that is little comfort to victims and families dealing with the aftermath of a serious Florida auto accident.
The overwhelming majority of fatal and injury accidents in Florida each year happen in Miami-Dade County. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, there are more than 40,000 car accidents in the Miami area each year. On average, about 290 people lose their lives in those wrecks, and thousands more suffer life-threatening injuries. The Tampa area (Hillsborough County) and Pasco County also rank among the top 10 counties in the state for car accident fatalities.
Car accidents have a variety of causes, but most arise from driver behavior or driver error. According to Florida transportation data, the top causes of fatal and injury crashes in the state in 2010 involved the at-fault driver:
- Operating a motor vehicle in a careless or negligent manner.
- Failing to yield the right of way.
- Running off the roadway.
- Failing to keep in the proper lane.
- Driving too fast.
Many other factors also play a role in dangerous and deadly accidents, such as:
- Drunk driving (DUI): There were 794 alcohol-related car accident fatalities in Florida in 2010. Another 12,168 injuries resulted from crashes where alcohol was a contributing factor.
- Distracted driving: Cell phones, text messaging and other mobile technologies can cause drivers to lose focus on the road. This is particularly true in the case of young drivers. In a recent survey, nearly half of 16 and 17-year-olds acknowledged texting behind the wheel.
- Following too closely: Tailgating limits visibility and reduces a driver’s ability to react to a sudden, dangerous road condition. Rear-end collisions are often the result of following too closely.
- Running a stop sign/red light: Failure to yield at intersections is responsible for car accidents, but also some of the worst pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities and injuries.
- Hit & run: Some at-fault drivers don’t stop like they are supposed to. In these cases, it could be possible to recover damages under your policy’s uninsured / underinsured motorist (UM / UIM) coverage.
Florida ‘No Fault’ Insurance And Comparative Negligence
Florida is a “no fault” insurance state. That means that your insurance company must pay any damages resulting from your car accident regardless of who was at fault. However, there are instances where you may still seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company, particularly in accidents resulting in permanent injuries, scarring and disfigurement and death.
Florida uses a legal principle called comparative negligence. When you sue for damages in a car accident case, the courts will assign a percentage of fault to each of the involved parties. If you are found to have contributed in any way to the accident, your compensation may be reduced based on the percentage assigned to you.
Because the no-fault and comparative negligence laws in Florida are complex, it is important to speak with a Tampa car accident lawyer as soon as possible after the wreck.
What You Should Do If You’re Involved in A Florida Car Accident
Seeking medical treatment is the first priority after any type of motor vehicle accident. Here are some tips about other things to do following a collision, if possible:
- Gather insurance information, names and contact numbers for all of the involved parties and any witnesses.
- Request copies of all accident reports and photos.
- Take photos of the accident scene yourself, even if just on a cell phone.
- Take pictures of your own injuries.
- Keep all medical records and receipts for treatment.
- Never admit fault for the accident.
- Do not give a statement to the insurance company without speaking with a car accident attorney first. Don’t sign anything either.
Contact Our Tampa Car Accident Lawyers Today
If you’ve been injured in a car accident in Miami, Tampa, Holiday or anywhere in Florida, contact the Disparti Law Group, P.A. toll free at 866-695-0035 or through our online form for a free consultation. Our attorneys are committed to providing quality legal representation so that you can get the money you need to rebuild your life.