You’ve been injured in a car accident due to the reckless actions of another driver. “How will I pay my medical bills?” “What will happen if I can’t go back to work?” “Who will take care of my family?” These are just a few of the questions you’re probably asking yourself.
The questions you should really be asking are: “Who will represent my rights in this difficult time? Who will fight on my behalf to get me the compensation I deserve for all my pain, suffering and financial losses?”
The dedicated Lutz auto accident attorney team at Rivas Law Group are here to stand beside you in your time of need. During our many years of practice, we have helped hundreds of victims get the full compensation they deserve for the damages resulting from their automobile accidents, including:
- Medical bills
- Ongoing medical expenses
- Damage to your vehicle
- Lost wages
- Rental car fees
- Towing and impound fees
- Damage to personal property
- Pain and suffering
Florida’s Auto Insurance Policy Requirements
Drivers in Florida are required to carry an auto insurance policy with a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) and $10,000 of property damage liability (PDL) coverage. PIP will cover medical bills and lost wages regardless of who is at fault for the accident. PDL will cover damages to the other driver’s vehicle.
It’s important to keep in mind that while this is the minimum required, it is unlikely to be enough to fully cover damages after an accident. It is recommended that drivers carry a policy with much higher limits.
If you are hit by a driver who does not have any insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover your damages, having uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage can help pay for the damages. UM/UIM is optional in Florida, but it is highly recommended that drivers carry this coverage.
Common Causes of Lutz Car Accidents
Many different factors can contribute to a car accident. In some cases, it may be clear who is at fault, while in other cases, liability may not be so clear. Some of the most common causes of car accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Reckless driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Fatigued driving
- Defective car parts
- Poor road conditions
- Adverse weather conditions
No matter what causes your accident, even a minor crash has the potential to cause serious injuries.
Common Car Accident Injuries
The injuries resulting from a car accident can vary greatly in severity. Some victims may only suffer minor cuts and bruises, while others may suffer life-altering injuries or even death. Some of the most common car accident injuries include:
- Head injuries
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
Some of these injuries are severe enough that they may require hospitalization and long-term care; others may cause permanent disability or disfigurement. The physical, emotional and financial toll of these injuries can be devastating.
What to Do If You Are in a Car Accident
If you are involved in a car accident, there are certain steps you should take to protect your rights and ensure you get the full compensation you deserve:
- Do not leave the scene of the accident. Leaving the scene of an accident is a crime in Florida.
- Call the police. The police will create a report which will be important if you need to file a personal injury claim.
- Get the other driver’s insurance information.
- Take pictures of the accident scene, including any property damage and injuries.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you don’t think you’re injured, it is important to be evaluated by a medical professional.
- Call a Lutz car accident lawyer. The sooner you call an attorney, the better. An experienced lawyer will know how to investigate and preserve evidence that is critical to your case.
An auto accident can be a traumatic event with long-lasting consequences. You should not have to go through this difficult time alone. Let the experienced attorneys at Rivas Law Group help you get the full compensation you deserve.
Total Commitment to Our Clients
At Rivas Law Group, we are fully committed to the welfare of our clients. We do all the hard work, so you don’t have to, including gathering the evidence to establish the facts in your case and aggressively negotiating with the insurance companies to get you the total amount you’re due. If the insurance companies don’t offer an amount that satisfies your needs, then we are ready and able to argue your case in front of a judge and jury.
Rivas Law Group is Here to Protect Your Rights
It’s critical to seek the services of an experienced Lutz auto accident attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Never give a statement to the insurance company until after you’ve spoken with an attorney at Rivas Law Group.
The insurance companies aren’t interested in any long-term problems you may have as a result of the negligent actions of their clients — they just want to make your case go away as quickly and cheaply as possible. Giving them a statement before speaking with a could prevent you from claiming the total amount of damages you are owed.
Another important factor affecting the outcome of your case is the comparative fault or comparative negligence of each party involved in the accident.
In automobile accident cases in Florida, liability for the collision must be established in order for you to collect any accident-related compensation.
How Does Comparative Negligence Affect Compensation in Lutz Auto Accident Claims?
In the state of Florida, a law known as comparative fault or comparative negligence is used to determine liability for auto accidents.
Liability is based on the percentage or proportion of “fault” assigned by the court to each party involved in the accident. It’s important to have a qualified Lutz auto accident attorney in your corner to protect your rights and provide sound advice during this phase of the case, since this determination directly affects the amount of compensation you recover for your accident.
For example, if the court finds that the other driver was 75% at fault and you were 25% at fault, then you would be entitled to recover 75% of your total damages from the other driver. If you are found to be more than 50% at fault, you will not be entitled to recover damages.
Comparative negligence can be a complicated concept, but Rivas Law Group has the experience and knowledge necessary to ensure you are fairly compensated for your injuries.
Frequently Asked Questions About Auto Accident Claims
Is There Any Reason to See a Doctor if I Feel Fine After a Minor Auto Accident?
Because automobiles are such big, heavy objects (usually between 2,000 and 3,000 pounds), even a collision at slow speed can create a great amount of force. Even though you may feel fine initially after an accident, there are many problems that may arise later. Some common ones are lumbar spine sprains or strains, thoracic sprains, or displaced and slipped discs. It is better to be safe and see a doctor after your accident, just in case any of these show up down the road.
Also, for the purposes of a collision claim, it will always be better to have documentation from a doctor as proof that you really were injured, no matter how minor the injury is.
Am I Required to Give a Recorded Statement to a Defendant’s Insurance Company.
Despite what an insurance adjuster might tell you, you are not required by law to give a recorded statement to a defendant’s insurance company. The reason they may be insistent that you talk to them on the record is that they are looking for holes in your story. Your answers can absolutely be used against you in a personal injury suit. For instance, if you don’t remember what you said in a recorded statement and you inadvertently contradict yourself, they may try to portray you as untrustworthy.
At some point in the process, you may need to get a recorded statement, but you shouldn’t do so without an attorney present. You also want to make sure that you are only answering the questions that are asked; don’t offer up any extra information.
Who Is At Fault if You Are in a Multiple Car Accident?
In the event of a several-vehicle accident, compensation for any injury and damage will be given out in direct proportion to the driver’s percentage of the fault. With more and more distracted drivers on the road, there are more of these kinds of accidents than ever.
Each driver must demonstrate which party is responsible for the accident, and a judge or jury will use this evidence to decide who was at fault and what percentage each party will pay of the damages.
The longer you wait to contact an experienced auto accident attorney, the harder it will be to gather critical evidence for your case.
How long do I have to file an auto accident claim?
In the state of Florida, you have two years from the date of your accident to file a personal injury claim. If you fail to do so within this time frame, you will be barred from bringing a claim in the future, no matter how severe your injuries are. This is why it is so important to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible after your accident.
At Rivas Law Group, we understand the complexities of the Florida justice system and will do everything in our power to make sure your claim is filed on time and that you get the compensation you deserve.
Speak with an Experienced Auto Accident Attorney in Lutz, Florida
How much do our outstanding legal services cost? Rivas Law Group handles most car accident and other personal injury cases on what’s called a contingency basis, meaning we don’t collect a fee unless we win your case.
Rivas Law Group has successfully represented clients in Lutz and other Central and South Florida communities injured in a wide range of auto accidents, including:
- Head-on collisions
- Rear-end collisions
- Roll-over accidents
- Side impact collisions
- 18 wheeler accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Road debris accidents
We will use all the resources at our disposal to get you the compensation you deserve.
Don’t put off seeking legal help after you have been injured in a car accident in Lutz, Florida. The hours and days after a wreck are critical to collecting the evidence in your case.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, please contact Lutz auto accident attorney Tania Rivas, online or by phone at (863) 213-1457 as soon as possible to set up a free confidential consultation. Tania will review the facts in your case, answer all your questions and help you determine the best way to move forward with your claim.