In St. Petersburg, FL, car accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. Unfortunately, with more vehicles on the roads and increased traffic congestion, car accidents in St. Petersburg are becoming more commonplace. Every time you travel by automobile in the St. Petersburg/Tampa area, either as an operator or passenger, you expose yourself to the risk of significant property damage, personal injury, and even death in a car accident.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident, you may be feeling overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next, especially if you’re laid up and unable to work due to accident-related injuries. St. Petersburg car accident attorney Tania Rivas and Rivas Law Group are here to help. If your accident happened due to the negligent actions of another driver, you may be able to recover compensation for the damages (medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, etc.) resulting from your injuries by filing a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver and their insurance provider.
Types of Car Accident Cases
In order to recover compensation after a car accident, you’ll have to establish your claim of personal injury. You’ll have to be able to show that:
- You were involved in a car accident;
- This accident happened due to the negligent actions of another person;
- You suffered injuries as a result of the accident; and
- You suffered damages (losses) as a result of these injuries.
St. Petersburg car accident attorney Tania Rivas possesses the expertise and resources to fully investigate an accident and obtain the evidence you’ll need to establish your claim. Tania has extensive experience defending clients injured in a wide range of car accidents, including:
- Head-on collisions. These are among the most serious types of auto accidents.
- Rear-end collisions. Rear-end collisions often result in neck and back injuries.
- Sideswipe collisions. Since the side sections of automobiles lack the bumpers and other collision protections found on the front and rear of a vehicle, sideswipe collisions can be especially serious.
- Distracted driving collisions. It only takes a moment of distraction for a car accident to happen.
- DUI collisions. Drivers impaired by drugs or alcohol have been responsible for devastating car accidents in St. Petersburg.
- Big truck collisions. Because of the difference in size and mass, 18-wheeler and other big truck accidents often result in more serious injuries than other types of collisions.
How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Claim in Florida?
It’s important to take steps to protect your rights as soon as possible after your accident. The longer you wait, the more difficult it may be to gather evidence from the accident scene or reliable eyewitness testimony. Delays could also lead the at-fault driver’s insurance to question the severity of your injuries.
In addition, Florida state law only allows a limited time in which to file your claim. The statute of limitation for filing a personal injury claim in Florida is two years from the date of the accident. If you wait longer than two years, the court may refuse to hear your case.
What Should I Expect During My Initial Consultation with a Car Accident Attorney?
Most attorneys offer prospective clients a free, initial consultation to discuss their case. This is important for both the attorney and the client. It will help you determine if the attorney is someone you trust and can work with; the attorney will use the consultation to evaluate if your case is one they can handle.
During the consultation, you and the attorney will discuss your accident and the events leading up to the accident. It will be helpful to share medical records, police reports, and any other evidence you may possess. The attorney will review your injuries, evaluate your liability in the accident, and discuss possible damages.
If you decide to move forward, the attorney will describe the fees they’ll be charging and how they expect to get paid. They’ll ask you to sign a retainer agreement or engagement letter. This is a legally binding contract, so it’s important to review and understand the agreement and raise any concerns you may have before signing it.
How Much Will It Cost Me to Hire an Attorney for My Car Accident Case?
With all your other accident-related expenses, the last thing you can afford to do is hire an expensive St. Petersburg car accident attorney, right? Wrong! Unlike other types of attorneys, who charge their clients retainer fees and hourly rates, personal injury attorneys like Tania Rivas work on a contingency basis. This means there are no upfront costs if they decide to handle your case; Tania collects her fees after you’ve been awarded your claim as a predetermined percentage of your settlement.
How Can an Attorney Help Me With My Case?
A car accident attorney can help you in many ways when it comes to filing a claim after an accident. As stated above, their assistance is crucial in gathering the evidence you’ll need to support your personal injury claim. In some cases, more than one party may be responsible for your accident. It will also help you determine the accurate dollar value of your accident-related damages. However, this is just one step in the personal injury claim process.
Your attorney will put this evidence to good use during negotiations with the insurance company. They will argue forcibly to obtain the total compensation you deserve for your injuries. If the insurance won’t agree to a satisfactory settlement, your attorney can argue your case in front of a judge and jury. (It rarely comes to this; the vast majority of St. Petersburg claims are settled before they go to trial.)
Speak to a St. Petersburg Car Accident Attorney About Your Case
Tania Rivas is a leading St. Petersburg car accident attorney. Rivas Law Group has successfully represented clients injured in a variety of car accidents in St. Petersburg, as well as motorcycle, pedestrian, and big truck accidents. Tania’s formidable legal skills and dedication to protecting the rights of her clients have resulted in hundreds of millions in settlements for her clients, including a $1.4 M settlement for a client who suffered spinal injuries and traumatic brain injuries after she was rear-ended by a dump truck.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was caused by someone else’s negligent actions, contact Rivas Law Group without delay. You can contact us online or call us at (877) 299-5539 to schedule a free, initial consultation to discuss your case with an experienced St. Petersburg car accident attorney.