A motor accident, a boating accident, a dog bite, medical malpractice, or a slip and fall are some of the cases that could make you eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit. A successful lawsuit should help you get compensation for damages such as medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, burial expenses, among others. However, Florida has a statute of limitations that guides the time frame for filing a claim. Contact a personal injury attorney to help you understand these limits and help you file a lawsuit as required by law.
Our Starke personal injury attorney at the Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorney takes cases on a contingency basis. Thus, we will not take an upfront fee, and we will be paid only if you get compensation. We advise you to get in touch with our experienced attorneys as soon as possible to ensure your lawsuit is filed within the legal time frame.
Understanding Personal Injury Laws of Florida
If you were seriously hurt in an accident that was caused by another person, then you should become conversant with different state laws that may impact your claim. For you to receive compensation, you must prove that:
- The respondent had a duty to protect you but they failed in his/her duty, resulting in injuries
- The failure of their duty is directly related to your physical injuries
- You suffered significant damages because of your injuries
Auto accidents are an exception to these personal injury laws. Most personal injury claims in this state usually arise from traffic accidents. However, Florida is a no-fault state, meaning that each driver’s vehicle insurance should pay for his/her damages or injuries that result from the accident, irrespective of who was at fault.
The law necessitates all drivers to carry a personal injury insurance coverage of not less than 10,000 dollars, per person and per accident. In most cases, an individual cannot file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver who caused the accident. Your own vehicle insurance policy will cater for the loss of income and medical expenses. If you are an injured passenger, then you will turn to the no-fault coverage of the driver whose vehicle you were riding in.
However, there are situations where Florida laws allow injured individuals to file a lawsuit after an accident if it caused serious/ catastrophic injuries. According to Florida law, serious injuries are those that result in:
- Permanent or significant scarring or disfigurement
- A permanent injury
- Permanent or significant loss of a crucial body function
If you feel that your personal injury is serious, then you should consult a seasoned Starke personal injury attorney regarding the possibility of filing a personal injury claim. It is crucial that you seek legal advice as soon as possible because Florida's statute of limitations restricts the time that you have to file a claim.
What Counts As a Personal Injury in Florida?
A personal injury occurs when an individual suffers a physical injury. The injury should occur on the physical body of a person and not their property. However, a personal injury claim may also include damage to the property, but it must always involve physical harm.
A personal injury lawsuit refers to court cases intended to hold someone responsible for causing personal injuries on the victim. Florida law allows injured individuals to demand compensation for their losses from the responsible party. A successful personal injury lawsuit is one that results in compensation to the victim for the damages and injuries incurred.
What You Should Know About Florida Negligence Law
Florida negligence laws allow victims to recover when they suffer a personal injury at the hands of another person. Negligence means that the person who caused the injury did not act in a similar manner that a careful and responsible person would have acted in a similar situation. For the victim to win a negligence lawsuit, he/she must prove beyond doubt that the other party was supposed to act carefully, they breached their duty of care, and you suffered injuries because of their failure to observe their duty. Florida laws allow individuals to collect fair compensation for their losses if they can prove there was negligence.
Common Types of Florida Personal Injury Claims that an Attorney Can Help You with
Different personal injury lawyers are specialized in different types of lawsuits. Our Starke personal injury attorney will handle the following cases:
Traffic accidents are generally the same, whether one is riding a motorcycle or a passenger vehicle. The damages and injuries suffered are quite similar, but differences will depend on the case. In the case of traffic accidents, both vehicle drivers and bikers may need medical expenses and compensation for pain, suffering, and damages. Claims will also take into account a lack of income from the recovery time, therapy, and other treatments for current or future costs. Usually, the greater the damage caused, the more the victim will need compensation.
A big number of civil suits usually occur because of medical malpractice. These incidents may involve unnecessary treatment, incorrect procedures, leaving equipment in the patient’s body, or other actions by medical staff. A lawsuit can also be filed if the doctors or nurses are negligent in carrying out their duties. Most malpractice suits usually involve misdiagnosis, missing an injury that becomes fatal, and improper medication dosage. Adequate evidence must be gathered in these cases to prove the hospital or the doctor is responsible. Your attorney will have to interview medical staff or hire a medical expert witness to help with the case.
Elder Abuse and Neglect
Elderly abuse and neglect are one of the most prevalent personal injury claims in Florida. This usually occurs in assisted living units or nursing home facilities. In some cases, an older person or a retired individual may encounter different situations where injury stems from a person or company. To proceed with the lawsuit, the ender may need additional care and legal support from a Jacksonville Personal Injury attorney. Seniors who do not have a supportive family may have challenges proceeding with this claim.
Consumers may be injured by the defects that exist in some percentage of the products. Even though some businesses may know about these defects, a recall is necessary for design defects. This is because the products that injure or cause harm to people may lead to a court case or negotiated settlements between the victim and the business entity. In some cases, other factors may arise like property damage, serious harm to customers or death, and the company may be held liable for gross negligence or intentional harm. This may lead to significant compensation claims and awards, depending on the circumstances.
A person may get an injury from the building, the ground, or outside of the property. This involves hazards existing on the property or within a building or negligence on the owner or manager’s part. Some hazards may arise from weather conditions and the person or company does nothing within a set timeframe. Complications may also arise when trespassers or guests suffer harm, even when the hazard is quarantined. In such cases, the owner may have to prove that he/she took the necessary measures to mitigate any possible risks for the well-being of the guests.
Victims of personal injury incidents will need the expertise of a personal injury attorney to help them proceed with the claim. Lawyers understand the process and how to proceed through the courts. They also know when to issue specific motions and how to gather evidence. With our legal expertise, the victim will increase the chances of informing the jury or judge of liability or negligence with the defendant.
The Statute of Limitations and Building Your Personal Injury Case
When you or your loved one is injured because of a personal injury, then you have limited time to file a lawsuit in the court system. When you work with an experienced personal injury attorney, they will begin working on your case as soon as possible to help preserve evidence of the case, talk to witnesses, and prepare crucial legal documents before the set legal deadline lapses.
Even though some legal matters do not have a statute of limitations, for instance, serious crimes, most do. In Florida, the time limitation for torts or personal injury claims will vary depending on the circumstances surrounding the case. These include:
- Nature of the claim
- When the clock starts
- The alleged party at fault, which can be a public entity or private party
- Factors that can extend the statute of limitations for individuals
In Florida, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is:
- Personal Injury – 4 years
- Product Liability – 2 or 4 years
- Medical Malpractice – 2 years
- Workers’ Compensation – 2 years
- Wrongful Death – 2 years
To understand the statute of limitations and avoid issues with your case, you should contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Our legal experts understand the statute of limitations for personal injury claims and will know the course of action to follow.
A Personal Injury Attorney Will Help You Get the Compensation That You Deserve
A personal injury lawsuit is the best way for victims to get compensation when a loved one is hurt or because of negligence. Under the strict liability law in Florida, the negligent person is responsible for paying for the percentage of the damages that they caused. Our experienced attorneys will evaluate your case to determine the best options to take and make a perfect plan for your recovery.
The victim who suffers physical injury will need documentation that proves that the accident or actions of the other party caused the damage. A medical doctor is necessary to offer both medical care and the necessary paperwork to prove the incident. Our lawyers will ensure that medical proof is available for your case. We understand that to guarantee a win, the injuries must be directly connected to the defendant, and this should be provable in the court of law. Our attorneys will help to present evidence and will assist the client in explaining the issue to the jury panel or judge. The legal team of the plaintiff may inform the courtroom of the issues involved with the use of expert witnesses such as the doctor or other unconnected physicians. Your attorney will present your case in the best way possible and ensure that you get compensated for your injuries and damages.
What Type of Damages Would a Florida Injury Lawsuit Cover?
As a victim, you may be entitled to compensation if you can prove that the other party was at fault for causing physical injuries to you. There is a range of damages that are available in Florida for personal injury cases. Most of these cases usually start seeking compensation for economic damages for a plaintiff. This is mainly medical bills, but one can also include rehabilitative care, follow-up appointments, and mobility aids.
Apart from your out-of-pocket expenses, victims can also seek compensation for non-economic damages such as pain or suffering caused by injuries, emotional distress, or mental anguish. Valuing non-economic damages is quite a challenge, but the law will consider medical expenses and the severity of injuries to come up with a rough estimate. Some of the losses that an attorney can help clients seek for compensation include:
- An estimate of past, current, and future medical expenses
- Any damages to property caused by the incident
- Lost wages from work, inclusive of time that you spend to and from medical appointments and your therapy
- Any permanent disability or disfigurement
- Emotional distress including depression or anxiety
- The cost of hiring other people to do household chores when you were not able to
- Loss of consortium or interference with family relationships
- Any other costs that result directly from your injury
Hire a Starke Personal Injury Attorney Near Me
Hiring a personal injury attorney that is conversant with personal injury laws is crucial. Some victims accept a settlement without involving an attorney or court. However, this leads to unfair settlements, and the victim cannot file a personal injury lawsuit in the future, especially if an injury is discovered later. We at the Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorney advise you to seek immediate help after your accident or injuries. Make sure to receive medical treatment, contact the police, save crucial information such as contact details for witnesses, and get in touch with a personal injury lawyer. Get in touch with us today at 904-800-7557 if you need help to file a claim.