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Florida Personal Injury Lawyers / Boca Raton Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer

Boca Raton Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer

Many people multitask their ways through their days. While they work at their keyboards, they often drink coffee, talk with co-workers, and let their minds wander. These activities are perfectly safe in the office. They’re extremely hazardous behind the wheel. Road and traffic conditions change extremely quickly, so drivers must concentrate on driving. That’s one of the basic elements of a motorist’s duty of reasonable care.

When drivers breach their duty of reasonable care and cause injury, the energetic Boca Raton distracted driving accident lawyers at Smith, Ball & Báez spring into action. We quickly evaluate your case and determine your legal options. Once we develop a plan, we diligently put that plan into motion. This simple and straightforward approach helps us achieve results that, in many cases, exceed our clients’ expectations.

Negligence Per Se

Sometimes, but not very often, this plan involves the negligence per se doctrine. Tortfeasors (negligent drivers) could be liable for damages as a matter of law if:

  • They violate safety laws, like the distracted driving law, and
  • That violation causes injury.

In Florida, violation of a non-penal safety law, like a traffic law, is usually a presumption of negligence, as opposed to absolute proof of negligence.

Additionally, Florida has a very weak device distraction law. Generally, it only applies to texting and driving. This law applies to all text-based communications, including emails and blogs. But it doesn’t apply to streaming, talking, picture-taking, or any other smartphone use. Some other laws could apply, like the reckless driving law. But enforcement of these laws is even weaker.

Even if they could do so, emergency responders often don’t issue distracted driving citations. Since they view car wrecks as civil matters, they don’t want to write tickets and get involved.

Ordinary Negligence

So, to obtain compensation in these cases, a Boca Raton distracted driving accident lawyer must normally use the ordinary negligence doctrine. This doctrine has four basic elements:

  • Duty: The duty of reasonable care not only requires drivers to watch the road. It also requires them to drive defensively, be at their physical and mental best when they drive, and avoid accidents if possible. Commercial drivers, like Uber drivers, have a higher duty of care.
  • Breach: Some distracted driving doesn’t violate the duty of care. If Sam turned his head to talk to a passenger, he was technically distracted. But most jurors wouldn’t see that as a breach of care. If Sam was having a lengthy, animated argument with a passenger, that’s different.
  • Cause: Victim/plaintiffs must establish legal and factual cause. Legal cause is basically foreseeability (possibility) of injury. If a doctor makes a medical mistake during surgery on an accident victim, that injury isn’t foreseeable. Factual cause is “but for” cause. Bad weather contributes to crashes, but it doesn’t cause them.
  • Damages: Generally, victims must sustain a personal injury or property damage to obtain compensation for their economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.

Comparative fault is probably the most common defense in a distracted driving ordinary negligence claim. If an insurance company lawyer shifts part of the blame for the accident to the victim, the tortfeasor is liable for a reduced amount of damages.

Beating the comparative fault defense usually depends on the cause of the accident. For example, if Bill was speeding when distracted driver Ted hit him, Bill’s speeding might have contributed to the accident, but it probably didn’t cause it.

Count on a Savvy Palm Beach County Accident Lawyer

Injury victims are entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced distracted driving accident lawyer in Boca Raton, contact Smith, Ball, Baez & Prather, Florida Injury Lawyers. Attorneys can connect victims with doctors, even if they have no insurance or money.