Florida Car Accident Lawyers
Choose a Team That Will Defend Your Best Interests
A damaged or totaled car, mounting medical bills, and an inability to work can leave a victim feeling overwhelmed and stressed. While most Florida residents know they have an option of making a claim, many people do not know where to start. They wonder, Do I really need an attorney?
Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather has the knowledge and experience necessary to help you through the complicated legal and insurance issues you face after being involved in a motor vehicle crash. The team at Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather has helped thousands of Florida residents get the compensation they deserve after car accidents.
We have recovered millions of dollars for our clients, allowing them to get the medical care and peace of mind they need. After a collision, don’t choose just any Florida car accident lawyer to represent you. Let us fight for you, so you can stop worrying about the financial aspects and put your energy into your recovery.
Call 561-500-HELP today to speak to one of our skilled Florida car accident attorneys. We are committed to ensuring that you get the compensation you deserve following an injury.
How Many Car Crashes Happen in Florida Every Year?
According to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) Annual Report, there were over 400,000 automobile crashes in the State of Florida in the year 2019. Of those crashes, over 250,000 resulted in injuries and over 3,100 resulted in deaths.
Being involved in a motor vehicle crash is a traumatic experience. Victims of car crashes can be left with devastating injuries. In addition to handling the pain and suffering associated with their injuries, injured parties and their loved ones also face the financial burdens caused by an accident.
What Are the Causes of Florida Car Accidents?
Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather investigates accidents to determine the cause or causes and fight to make sure the responsible parties are held accountable.
There can be a variety of causes of car accidents. Some of the more common causes of car accidents include:
- Failing to drive safely in construction zones or during inclement weather
- Impaired driving including driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Aggressive driving and road rage
- Drowsy or fatigued driving
- Reckless driving and street racing
- Improper Lane Changes
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Wrong-way driving
- Poor road conditions
- Failing to yield the right-of-way
- Road design or construction issues
- Manufacturing defects
- Distracted driving, including cell phone use, eating, drinking, or adjusting the radio or GPS
- Failing to properly maintain the vehicle including the brakes, steering, and tires
What Types of Car Accidents Commonly Happen in Florida?
There are many types of car accidents that happen on Florida’s roadways.
Different categories of crashes include the following:
- Head-on collisions where the front ends of two vehicles strike one another;
- Rear-end accidents where the front end of one vehicle collides with the rear or back end of another vehicle;
- Side-swipe accidents, which occur when one vehicles side makes contact with another vehicles side;
- Side impact or T-bone crashes, where the front of one vehicle strikes the side of another vehicle;
- Multi-vehicle accidents, where several or multiple vehicles are involved;
- Roll-over accidents, in which one vehicle rolls over, often as a result of mechanical and/or manufacturing problems, poor road conditions, or very excessive speed.
What Steps Should You Take After Being Involved in a Car Accident?
Regardless of the type of accident you have been involved in, there are some important steps that you should follow after a car crash:
- Report the accident. The other driver may try to encourage you to leave the scene and just exchange information. This is not a wise decision, especially if you are injured. There are laws that require you to report accidents in Florida. Also, documentation is paramount when it comes to getting your car repaired and bringing a claim if you are injured. Call the police and wait for them to arrive.
- Seek medical care. If you are injured, you should seek medical attention right away, even if your injuries seem minor at first. Many times, adrenaline has kicked in after a car crash. In the hours and days to follow, your symptoms may increase. Also, under Florida law, in order to receive benefits for your medical bills, it is crucial to obtain timely medical care. When you do see a health care provider, make sure to tell them about all the parts of your body that are hurting.
- Exchange information with the other driver and obtain any witness information. Sometimes witnesses leave the scene before police arrive. Therefore, ask the witnesses for their names, addresses, and phone numbers. They may provide key testimony for your claim to get your car repaired and your medical bills paid.
- Take photographs and videos at the scene if possible. If you are able, take video and photographs of the position of the vehicles, vehicle damage, and individuals at the scene. This evidence will help prove how the crash occurred and the extent of the damage.
- Take photographs of your injuries. Pictures speak a thousand words. If you have cuts, bruises, abrasions, or other evidence of injuries, take pictures of those injuries. Many times, insurance companies argue that your injuries are not serious. Injury photographs can be helpful to prove you were, in fact, hurt in a crash.
- Notify your insurance company. You will need to notify your insurance company of the accident. Provide the basic facts, but do not speculate about what might have happened. Do not provide any formal recorded statements without consulting with an attorney first.
- Contact a car accident attorney. An experienced car accident lawyer can provide you with important guidance as to the legal and insurance issues involved. They can also help preserve necessary evidence, including surveillance or evidence at the scene that may not be available later.
Do All Car Accident Cases Go to Court?
In many instances, the process begins with attempts to negotiate with the at-fault partys insurance company. Settlements are often reached before a case goes to trial. In fact, The team at Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather has reached numerous high-value settlements.
However, if a fair and reasonable settlement cannot be reached, your attorney will fight for your rights in the courtroom at a trial. During the trial, your attorney will present evidence to back up your personal injury claim, including expert testimony.
While some law firms are afraid to go to trial, the attorneys at Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather have secured millions of dollars in judgments from juries throughout the State of Florida. Our attorneys have the necessary knowledge, expertise, and confidence in the courtroom.
Is Florida Is a No-Fault State?
Yes, Florida is a no-fault state for automobile insurance law purposes. This means that whenever you are involved in an automobile accident, regardless of who is at fault, you are initially required to make your injury claim through your own automobile insurance company under your PIP or Personal Injury Protection coverage.
However, this does not bar you from making a claim against the at-fault party.
Our team at Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather will fight to recover for the losses, injuries, and damages you suffer due to someone else’s negligence including:
- Damage to your vehicle or loss of personal property;
- Past and future medical expenses;
- Lost Income; and
- Pain, suffering, inconvenience, loss of enjoyment of life, and other non-economic damages.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases in Florida?
Car accident lawsuits have a statute of limitations or time limitations on when you must file a lawsuit. If you dont file the lawsuit within that time limitation, your claim could be forever barred.
Under Florida law, most car accident lawsuits have a two-year statute of limitations. While that seems like a long time, waiting too long to take the necessary steps can harm your case. Many times, critical evidence needs to be preserved. Also, there are often complicated legal and insurance issues that need to be addressed and handled. Delays could make your case harder to win.
For these reasons, if you or a loved one has been involved in a motor vehicle accident, get a free consultation with a car accident lawyer in Florida right away to protect yourself and your family. Contact Smith, Ball, Báez & Prather today to begin.