By Marcus Fernandez
If you suffered injuries in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you may be considering not hiring an attorney to represent you. Relying on adjusters and investigators for insurance companies to do what is best for you can be a mistake.
When you hire a personal injury attorney at KFB Law, you have someone on your side looking out for your best interest. While you focus on getting the medical care and rest needed to recover from the accident, a Tampa personal injury attorney fights to protect your rights. You deserve the maximum compensation the law allows. Here are some reasons to hire an attorney after a car accident that wasn’t your fault.
Attorneys know how to gather and use evidence to prove your claim
If you are injured in a car accident, the law places the burden on you to prove that someone else’s negligence caused the crash and your injuries. Lawyers know what evidence the law requires to prove that someone was at fault. Also, the nature and severity of the harm it caused.
The attorney you hire to represent you begins by gathering the evidence needed to prove your claim for damages. Evidence may include the following:
- Police report and any photos they took at the scene of the crash.
- Locate and obtain statements from eyewitnesses.
- Obtain video recordings from security or traffic cameras near the accident.
- Get copies of your medical records and written reports from treating physicians about the nature and severity of your injuries. This includes a description of any long-term disability.
It’s better to have the evidence to prove all elements of a claim. This includes fault and damages, in case an insurance company disputes the cause of the crash or the severity of your injuries.
Insurance companies rely on Florida comparative fault laws
Tampa car accident attorneys have experience with recent changes to Florida’s comparative fault law. Insurance companies use this to defeat or weaken claims against the drivers they insure. The law adopted modified comparative negligence in car accidents and other personal injury cases except for medical malpractice. Courts awarding damages must consider the negligence of the injured party that contributed to causing the accident or their injuries.
The law works by preventing a claimant who is 50% or more at fault from recovering compensation for injuries caused by an accident. If they are 50% or less at fault, the damages awarded are reduced by their degree of fault. For example, if a jury decides the evidence proves an injured person is entitled to recover $90,000, but they were 30% at fault, the compensation is reduced by $30,000 to $60,000.
The other party has the burden of proving that you were partially at fault with evidence of negligence. A Tampa car accident attorney gives you someone with the knowledge, experience, and skills to challenge the effort and protect your right to the maximum compensation you are entitled to.
A car accident attorney knows how to evaluate a claim
A common practice is for insurance adjusters to contact someone injured in a car accident who does not have an attorney and offer to settle the claim. A quick settlement may be hard to resist, but accepting it could be a mistake.
You need to know how much your compensation claim is worth before accepting an offer to settle. Personal injury attorneys know how to evaluate a case, determine how much an injured person is entitled to receive, and negotiate with the insurance company or defense attorney for the at-fault party to get you what you deserve.
Florida is a no-fault state. Do you need an attorney?
Suppose you are injured in a Florida car accident. In that case, no-fault laws require that you submit a claim to pay your medical expenses through the personal injury protection coverage of your auto insurance policy. PIP pays 80% of covered medical expenses for treatment of injuries caused by a car accident.
The minimum PIP coverage is only $10,000. Your medical expenses could easily exceed the insurance limit unless you purchased additional coverage. A car accident attorney can help you get more than your PIP coverage. They do this by filing a lawsuit against the person at fault for causing the collision.
Contact a Tampa car accident attorney
There is too much at stake when someone’s negligence causes you to be injured in a car accident. Do not attempt to take on insurance companies on your own. Let the Tampa personal injury attorneys at KFB Law show how they can help get you the compensation you deserve. Contact KFB Law for a free consultation.