When you or someone you love are injured in an accident, chances are, it’s not just your recovery that you’re going to have questions about. Between determining whether or not you have the basis for a claim, what to say to the insurance company and figuring out how you’re going to pay your bills and support your family, personal injury victims are plagued with more than the pain and suffering associated with their injuries. At Gonzalez & Cartwright, P.A., we don’t believe you should have to pay the price for someone else’s negligent or reckless behavior. Below we answer some of the most common personal injury questions we hear from our clients.
What is a Personal Injury?
Legally speaking, a personal injury is one that is the direct result of someone’s negligent or harmful actions. If you trip and fall on the sidewalk due to slipping over your untied shoelace, you won’t have the basis for a personal injury claim. If you were shopping at one of our major Florida retailers and broke your leg as a result of a slip and fall because the property owner didn’t maintain a reasonably safe premises, you might have the basis for a valid claim.
Should I Contact My Insurance Company?
After an accident, you should contact your insurance company, especially since not doing so may interfere with the coverage they can provide. However, it’s important to be cognizant of what you tell your insurance company. Moments following an accident, it’s normal for individuals to be rattled. And as such, a natural response to an accident is to apologize; it’s important to not admit fault to the other drive or the insurance company until a thorough investigation is completed. There may be details you’re unaware of, such as a defective product being the cause of the crash or a distracted driver who you didn’t realize was texting moments before the crash. While it’s a good idea to contact your insurance company, stick to the facts. You should always consult your attorney before providing any other information to your insurance company.
How Long Do I Have to Report My Accident?
Florida residents have a very short window to report an accident: 10 days. This accounts for any accidents that result in at least $500 worth of property damage to either vehicles involved, any injuries (or deaths) and if one of the vehicles had to be towed from the scene of the crash. If the police are not notified at the time of the accident, they must do so within this timeframe under Florida statute § 316.066.
Can I File a Claim if I Was a Passenger?
Yes. If you were a passenger in a vehicle that was involved in an accident and you were injured as a result, you have recourse to file a personal injury claim. In the event of an accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance policy will cover your losses.
How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Claim in Florida?
Individuals in Florida have four years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury claim. This window is known as the statute of limitations and once it closes, so does an individual’s opportunity to recover compensation. If you were injured, it’s important to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible so that you can get the financial compensation and justice you deserve.
Contact a Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Accident Case in Florida
Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to an accident in Florida? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Gonzalez & Cartwright, P.A. represent clients injured because of car accidents, slips and falls and more in Davie, Boca Raton, Sunrise, Plantation, and throughout Florida. Call (561) 533-0345 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 813 Lucerne Ave., Lake Worth, FL 33460, as well as offices in Pompano Beach.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.