After The Crash: How An Orlando Car Accident Lawyer Can Protect Your Rights
At The Mendez Law Firm, we understand the difficulties that can arise after a car accident. We’ve witnessed firsthand the serious injuries, damages, and even deaths that have resulted from an auto accident. And we understand the struggle that so many auto accident victims face in trying to recover just compensation for their injuries, pain and suffering, and even the wrongful death of a loved one.
In Florida, there are specific laws, rules and regulations that can complicate auto insurance claims, the payment of your property damage to your car, and even the recovery of your personal injury damages, such as pain and suffering; especially in cases of serious injury or wrongful death.
To help ensure you receive full compensation for your personal injuries and losses, it’s important to contact an Orlando accident attorney with experience in handling auto accident claims. At The Mendez Law Firm, we have a long history of success in handling automobile accident cases in Orlando, and throughout Florida. And we make it our goal to protect you and your rights.
In an auto accident case, the strength and success of your claim will likely hinge on the ability of your attorney to collect, analyze, and present evidence. Make sure that you ask your auto accident attorney about his experience in handling auto accident cases.
If you’ve been in a car accident and are unsure of your next step, please fill out our FREE Case Evaluation form. Our firm will review your claim, at no cost to you, to determine if our Orlando accident attorneys may be able to help.
How Can an Orlando Car Accident Attorney Help Me?
At The Mendez Law Firm, you’ll get an Orlando auto accident attorney with over 29 years of experience. With that experience, we can help ensure that you receive all of the benefits from the insurance company that you’re entitled to. At The Mendez Law Firm, your Orlando auto accident attorney can even help you determine whether you can file a claim for personal injury damages, like pain and suffering, against the party at fault for the auto accident.
PIP and Its Limitations
In Florida, all drivers are required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (P.I.P.) insurance. If you’ve been involved in an auto accident in Florida, your P.I.P insurance will cover 80% of your medical bills arising from the auto accident, and 60% of your lost wages up to your $10,000 P.I.P. insurance limits, regardless of who was at fault. But you MUST seek medical treatment within 14 days of an auto accident in Florida.
According to the Florida Legislature, these auto insurance laws and regulations were enacted in an attempt to reduce the number of crash-related lawsuits filed by Florida residents, as well as to lower auto insurance rates. Unfortunately, for many injured drivers, this auto insurance coverage may not be enough to cover the total cost of their medical bills, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and other personal injury damages.
What Can The Mendez Law Firm Do To Help You?
If you have suffered a serious injury, we may be able to help you collect just compensation, in addition to what your P.I.P. insurance provides. If you, your family members, or friends have suffered a serious personal injury or death from an auto accident, such as:
- Brain damage
- A significant head injury or serious bodily injury
- Permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Broken bones
We at The Mendez Law Firm will begin immediately to prepare your auto accident case by:
- Collecting police and accident scene reports
- Questioning witnesses
- Reconstructing the accident scene
- Taking photographs of the accident scene, car damage, and your personal injuries
- Analyzing medical reports and speaking personally with your doctors
- Contacting expert witnesses to review evidence
- Speaking with the insurance adjusters, so you won’t have to
You can be sure that the insurance company for the negligent driver from which you are attempting to collect just compensation will claim that your injuries are minimal, pre-existing, or temporary, rather than serious, permanent and caused by your auto accident.
That’s why you need an auto accident attorney with years of experience in handling auto accident cases. At The Mendez Law Firm, you’ll get over 29 years of experience in handling auto accident cases! And we’ll use our years of experience to immediately begin organizing your case on your behalf to prove the insurance company is wrong.
Your Settlement Demand Package
around 6 months to a year after you’ve been treating, your doctors will declare that you’ve reached the point of maximum medical improvement from your medical treatment. You’ll then likely be released from your doctors’ care. At that point, our office will then request a Final Report from your doctors. But that’s not all.
Our legal team has been trained to obtain all of your medical records and itemize all of your medical bills from all of your medical providers. We’ll then organize all of this voluminous evidence, and we’ll prepare a comprehensive Settlement Demand package that’s personally tailored for your case.
Your Settlement Demand package will even include an analysis of your personal injury damages, and a detailed evaluation of the value that we have calculated for your auto accident case. Our office then will send your Settlement Demand package to the insurance company to review. Thereafter, settlement negotiations will begin on your case.
But will the insurance company just agree and send you a check for your personal injury damages? No! Absolutely not! The insurance company will have conducted an investigation of its own. And ALL insurance companies want to minimize ANY money that they have to pay you. And that’s why we’re here. The Mendez Law Firm is on your side, protecting you, your loved ones, and your friends! If your attorney and the insurance company cannot agree on a settlement, the case may proceed to trial.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Accidents in Florida
After exhausting PIP coverage, if the other driver has no other insurance or an amount of coverage that is insufficient to cover the costs related to your injury, your uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage may cover the damage caused by the negligent party. If the negligent party was underinsured, your insurance will cover the difference between your losses and the amount you received from the other party’s insurance company. If you do not have this coverage, you should contact an attorney to obtain compensation for injuries resulting from the accident. An attorney may be able to seek damages from the negligent party’s homeowners’ insurance, your own insurance carrier or your health insurance provider.
Attempting to collect compensation through your uninsured motorist coverage can be complicated and will likely require the assistance of an experienced attorney. Your insurance company will likely try to limit your payout amount, based on their own investigation of the accident and how much they believe your claim is worth. If you receive an amount that you believe does not properly cover your losses, your attorney may be able to file a lawsuit against your insurance company in an attempt to recover additional compensation.
Lawsuits for Additional Personal Injury Compensation
Florida’s “no-fault” insurance law attempts to limit the number of lawsuits filed over minor car accidents. Civil suits to recover additional compensation for personal injury damages are only permitted under certain circumstances.
Types of Car Accident Claims
Most car accident lawsuits will be based on negligence, or the other party’s failure to exercise a reasonable standard of care while operating a vehicle or using common roads. The initial investigation by your insurance company and attorney will help to prove that the other party acted carelessly or violated traffic laws. To prevail in a negligence lawsuit, the injured must show the defendant did not meet this standard of care, this negligence caused the accident, and the breach of this duty caused his or her injuries. Potential defendants may include negligent drivers, reckless drivers, intoxicated drivers, passengers, pedestrians, or bicyclists.
If a defect in the vehicle contributed to the accident, the injured party may have a claim against the manufacturer of the vehicle or one of its parts. In some cases, the manufacturer will be liable, regardless of negligence, for injuries sustained as a result of faulty design, manufacturing, or labeling. To prevail, the plaintiff must prove that the defect occurred during the manufacturing process and contributed to their injury. In most cases, expert testimony and analysis will be required to determine whether the defect manifested during the manufacturing process or after the vehicle was purchased. Successful lawsuits will require the plaintiff to show:
- The defective car or part was “unreasonably dangerous”
- The vehicle was being operated as intended
- The vehicle’s performance had not changed since its initial purchase
Some claims against manufacturers have been based on defective tires, seatbelts, airbags, accelerators, brakes, and engines.
In some cases, faulty construction, design, or maintenance of roads can contribute to accidents. Some common causes include:
Embankments: When a road curves, the outer edge is set at an incline as a safety precaution. These raised areas serve the purpose of managing traffic so that vehicles can approach the outer edge of the road without driving off it. If the embankment is too steep or not elevated properly, motorists may be in danger.
Barriers and Guard Rails: Barriers, guard rails, speed bumps, medians, and curbs help to influence safe driving. If any of these structures are poorly designed or placed, driver safety may be compromised.
Surfaces: Various alterations in road surface alert drivers of approaching hazards or that they are leaving their lane unexpectedly.
Signage: Signs give drivers prior notice of approaching intersections, sharp turns, animal crossings, etc. They should be positioned in obvious locations and brightly illuminated for maximum visibility.
Traffic Control: Traffic lights, stop and yield signs, lights to warn drivers of intersections and crosswalks, and other devices are utilized to dictate traffic flow. Proper placement and operation of these devices is imperative.
If you have lost a loved one in a car crash, you may have legal recourse through a wrongful death lawsuit. In these cases, the family or survivors of the victim must prove that their loved one was killed as a result of another’s negligence. Economic, non-economic, and punitive damages may be available.
Because each accident is different, the extent of injuries suffered will vary between cases. In many cases, the costs for treatment of the injuries sustained will not be covered by PIP insurance and will require additional litigation or negotiations. Some injuries that we may attempt to collect compensation for include:
- Burns and scars
- Loss of limbs
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head injuries
- Joint, muscle, back, neck, and bone injuries
- Knee damage
- Permanent disability
- Wrongful death
If you’ve been in an auto accident in Florida, don’t wait. Call Us Now. (407)380-7724. The consultation is FREE! And there’s no obligation to you. Remember, there’s a limited window of time in which to file an insurance claim or bring a claim against a negligent driver for your personal injuries. To learn how our Orlando auto accident attorneys may be able to help you, just fill out our FREE Case Evaluation form today.