The negligence of another person could cost you your loved ones, your health, and your financial resources. You can feel the impact of accidents that happen due to negligence for a lifetime. Therefore, it is only fair that the negligent party compensates you for their mistakes that altered your life.
At Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorney, we help affected families and individuals in Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace file claims or lawsuits against people responsible for the damages they cause in a personal injury accident. We believe that the compensation you get helps ease your medication journey. Also, you get compensation for losing your job or missing work due to the accident.
Read on to discover the areas we handle at our practice.
Overview of Personal Injury
At the Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace Personal Injury Attorney, we deal with different areas of personal injury claims. These range from car accidents to medical malpractices and wrongful deaths.
The connecting factor amongst all our practice areas is proving that someone was negligent and that their negligence led to your injuries. We prove negligence by putting together evidence from the crime scene, witness testimony, and in some cases, expert testimony.
We help you recover the damages for different types of physical injuries, emotional losses, and sometimes, punitive damages.
Florida is a no-fault state, meaning that every motorist must hold a personal injury (PIP) insurance. PIP insurance covers medical costs resulting from an injury for up to $10,000, up to 60% of lost wages (not exceeding $10,000), and not more than $5,000 in death benefits to cover funeral and burial expenses.
The insurance enables drivers, even those at-fault, to access medical treatment for their injuries. Once your medical costs exceed this threshold or the injuries are severe, then you can sue the at-fault driver. What PIP does is reduce the amount you can sue for after an accident. You can sue directly against the negligent party or their bodily injury liability coverage.
If your medical costs exceed your PIP coverage, you can only sue for the amount above the $10,000. Therefore, if you incurred $30,000 in medical expenses, you can sue the negligent party for $20,000. You could also sue for other damages, including pain and suffering.
Another way to sue outside PIP insurance is when your injuries are under the “serious injury” category. Serious injuries include:
- A permanent injury that will lead to prolonged medical attention (other than disfigurement or scarring)
- Injuries that lead to significant or permanent scarring and disfigurement
- Permanent or significant loss of a vital bodily function
PIP insurance covers car accidents only. Here, you can sue the at-fault party if you suffered damages from another type of road accident or medical malpractice.
Car accidents are a top killer in Florida, with more than 300,000 drivers getting involved in accidents every year. What these staggering statistics mean is that one in every 4000 drivers will get involved in a fatal car crash.
The common types of car accidents in Clay County include:
- Left-turn accidents especially at intersections
- Head-on collisions when one of the drivers leaves his or her lane
- Side-impact crashes
- Sideswipe accidents
- Single-vehicle crashes where your car crashes into a stationary object or rolls over due to slippery surfaces like ice
- Multi-vehicle collisions involving many in the same accident, usually as a chain reaction with a higher risk of fatalities and extensive property damage
Car accidents can lead to minor and catastrophic injuries. The severity of your injuries will depend on the kind and severity of the accident. Regardless of the type of injury, you can file a claim against the responsible party to recover any damages.
Some of the common injuries from car accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Closed head injuries
- Fractures and broken bones
- Loss of limbs
Trucks and semi-trucks can cause the deadliest accidents on the road. The weight of the vehicle is enough to crush a small car. The law places a greater duty of care upon truck drivers due to the risks associated with truck accidents.
Other factors that increase the risk of fatalities and severe injuries in truck accidents include:
- The nature of the materials transported; trucks may contain hazardous substances which pose a health risk to other road users in case of an accident
- The weight of the load which increases the impact of the truck in an accident
- The size of a truck, which makes controlling the truck difficult (hence the requirements that trucks strictly observe speed limits)
Truck drivers must be well-rested, sober, and vigilant when driving to avoid the risk of causing an accident and respond quickly to emergencies.
The common causes of truck accidents in Clay County include:
- Distracted driving
- Fatigue leading to inattentiveness and slower reaction time
- Over speeding
- Mechanical problems in the truck
- Drug or alcohol use (including prescription drugs)
- Dangerous conditions on the road
If you are involved in a truck accident, contact our Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace Personal Injury Attorney for assistance with filing a claim against the truck driver or the trucking company.
We will help you in identifying the at-fault party, determining the value of your damages, and negotiating a settlement.
Florida is one of the riskiest states for pedestrians, with more than 4000 people dying on average every year. The injuries in pedestrian accidents are in the hundred thousand. The injuries and fatalities disrupt the lives and activities of the victims. They have to deal with medical costs, burial arrangements and realigning their lives after the accident.
Pedestrian accidents often have devastating effects due to the difference in protection between a car and a person. The vehicle and motorist alike may not suffer the slightest damage in a crash but kills the pedestrian.
The common causes of pedestrian accidents include:
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Motorists ignoring the right of way of the pedestrian
- Poorly maintained road infrastructure
- Poor visibility due to weather conditions or at night
Most of these accidents happen at parking lots when reversing, at intersections and on the crosswalks or sidewalks.
Florida is one of the states with leading records of deaths following motorcycle accidents. If you are lucky not to die, you could sustain severe injuries. While a motorcyclist is more protected than a pedestrian is, protective clothing cannot match the metal exterior of a car.
In most cases, the cyclist gets thrown off their bike and lands on the road, amplifying the impact of the crash. Motorcycle accidents often result in severe head and spinal injuries with life-changing aftermath, including paralysis.
The common cause of motorcycle accidents is poor visibility by other motorists. A motorcycle is small, making it harder to spot in traffic. Other common causes of these accidents include:
- Road conditions
- Distracted driving
- Manufacturing defects
If you or a loved one gets injured in a motorcycle accident, you can sue the driver of the vehicle involved, the party responsible for maintaining the road, or the rider of the motorcycle.
When you are involved in any type of accident, you must gather evidence as soon as possible. The proof of an accident is displaced and cleared shortly after the accident, which can lead to loss of vital information.
If you still can, collect photographs, witness testimonies, and contact details from the scene. You can also collect the evidence on behalf of your loved one who was involved in the accident.
Healthcare providers sometimes cause mistakes, which could lead to injury of the patient they are treating. Medical malpractice lawsuits cover injuries resulting from medical mistakes such as:
- Medical negligence by failing to provide the patient with the proper standard of care
- Failure to diagnose a patient
- Failure to treat a patient
- Providing the wrong treatment to the patient
- Wrong prescription and dosage
- Leaving surgical apparatus in the body after a surgery operation
- Operating on the wrong part
- Neglecting a dependent patient in the hospital
- Harm resulting from a procedure that was done against the patient’s consent
Medical malpractice cases are usually complicated since not all mistakes are negligent. Therefore, you need a Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace Personal Injury Attorney to investigate the circumstances of your case and determine whether medical malpractice occurred.
Damages from medical malpractice are also calculated differently. Florida places a cap on noneconomic damages resulting from the injury at $500,000. The cap on noneconomic damages would rise to one million dollars if the malpractice left the victim in a vegetative state or dead.
However, in June 2017, the Florida Supreme Court ruled that these caps were unconstitutional. The ruling based the decision on the fact that capping noneconomic damages reduces the value of the plaintiff’s settlement. The court argued that medical malpractice causes severe emotional trauma as other injuries).
The limits on the damages you can recover do not apply to economic damages such as medical expenses or lost wages you lose due to medical malpractice.
When a loved one dies due to the carelessness or negligent actions of another person, you can sue the responsible party for the accrued damages. You can file a claim if you are the representative of the deceased’s estate. Other people who can sue for wrongful death damages include:
- The spouse, children, and parents of the deceased
- Relatives who are partial or full dependents of the deceased
- A court-appointed representative of the estate of the dead (if the deceased did not leave a will)
Wrongful death claims have a statute of limitations of two years from the date of death. If you file a claim within this period, you could recover several damages including:
- Medical expenses paid from the deceased’s estate for treating the injuries resulting from the accident
- Emotional suffering and anguish due to the death
- Loss of consortium, parental guidance, and support
- Lost support and services that the deceased provided
- Lost wages, benefits and the lost potential income
Types of Compensable Injuries
Some accidents occur in the course of employment (either at the workplace or when engaging in work-related activities). Florida has laws on the injuries for which you can be compensated. These include:
- Preexisting conditions that become worse due to the accident as long as the accident is a major contributing cause of the aggravation of an existing condition
- Traumatic physical injuries that are identified following the accident; these could include loss of limbs
- Occupational illness – these conditions arise due to exposure while on your job. These include lung cancer from smoke exposure
- Hearing loss due to working in a noisy environment
- Stress-related conditions
- Overuse injuries
As an employee, any accident you are involved in while in the course of employment is covered under Florida’s workers’ compensation laws. Therefore, you can recover medical expenses, lost wages, and benefits from your employer. Unfortunately, you cannot recover damages for pain and suffering from your employer.
Worker’s compensation is restrictive on the damages you can recover from your injuries. It also prevents you from suing your employer if he or she was responsible for the accident.
However, it does not restrict you from filing a claim against another party who might have contributed to the accident.
Workers’ compensation laws in Florida can be complicated to understand. Therefore, if you are involved in a work-related accident, contact an attorney who understands such statutes and has skills in personal injury lawsuits.
Find a Personal Injury Attorney Near Me
Injuries that result from the negligence of another party are compensable in Florida. You can sue the responsible party directly depending on the type of injury and its severity. Understanding these laws while recovering from an injury or the loss of a loved one is hard.
That is why our Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace Personal Injury Attorneys work on your behalf. We handle the legal side of your claim while you recover.
When you first reach out, we offer a free consultation during which we evaluate your case and determine whether you have a claim. We determine whether the statute of limitations has expired on your case, and if not, we start the investigations immediately. If you have any questions about your case, contact the Jacksonville Personal Injury Attorney at 904-800-7557.