There were over 250,000 injuries from auto accidents on Florida roads in 2021. Being in a car accident can be traumatic and life-threatening, and may also leave you with medical and auto expenses or severe injuries.
If you have been injured in a Fort Pierce auto accident due to the negligent actions of another person, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages. The process of filing a personal injury claim or negotiating a settlement can be complex. In order to increase the chances of winning and maximize your compensation, it is best to seek help from an experienced Fort Pierce car accident lawyer at Baker Legal Team.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in Fort Pierce
Every car accident is a unique case. Some car accidents can be clearly linked to a direct cause, while others may be due to multiple other factors. The following are some of the common causes of car accidents:
- Recklessness: Reckless behavior such as speeding, disobeying traffic rules, running a stop sign, and improperly designed left turns are common reckless causes of car accidents.
- Driving under the influence: According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), driving under the influence is the cause of a large percentage of highway accidents.
- Distracted driving: Distracted driving is a growing cause for concern on Florida roads due to the increasing number of accidents caused by some form of distracted driving. These can range from using their phone to text, play music, or talk to people on the phone. Many others eat and drink while driving. It may only take one second of distraction on the road to cause an accident.
Fort Pierce is known for sudden torrential rains, which can lead to hazardous conditions such as low visibility on roads, storm debris, and flooded streets. Such conditions increase the likelihood of car accidents on Fort Pierce roads as well. To determine whether the unique circumstances of your accident qualify you to file a claim, speak to the qualified car accident attorneys at Baker Legal Team.
Understanding the Elements of a Fort Pierce Car Accident Claim
Florida is a no-fault state. This means that in most cases, you may not be able to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. Instead, each driver's car insurance will cover lost income and medical expenses regardless of who was at fault. To facilitate this, Florida requires drivers to carry a $10,000 minimum in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) per person per accident. However, car accident victims can file a personal injury claim for accidents resulting in serious injuries. Florida's law defines a serious injury as any of the following:
- A permanent personal injury
- Personal severe scarring or disfigurement
- A physical condition that creates a substantial risk of death
- A protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member or organ
Florida's statute of limitations on personal injury claims is four years. However, if the claim is against the government, a different set of rules and procedures apply.
Negligence In a Fort Pierce Car Accident
In Florida, personal injury claims are founded on negligence. Negligence is defined as behavior that lacks the level of care that a reasonable person would exercise under the same situations. The burden of proof in a car accident claim lies on you, the plaintiff, to establish. To establish negligence, the plaintiff must show that:
- The defendant owed you the duty of care (every driver owes other road users a duty of care by obeying traffic rules and driving safely).
- The defendant failed to uphold that duty of care
- The failure to uphold the duty of care directly caused the victim's injuries
- You suffered damages as a result of the accident
Following a car accident, it is crucial to preserve evidence and protect your claim. If the situation is safe, you can protect your claim by taking pictures or videos of the accident from various angles, getting the contact information of any eyewitnesses, and keeping all bills and receipts resulting from the accident. You can also write down everything you remember about the accident.
Compensation For a Fort Pierce Car Accident
Injuries from car accidents may not seem severe at first. However, it is highly advisable to seek professional medical attention immediately, as some injuries may take a few days to manifest, while others may not be visible to the naked eye. To cover the damages you incur as a result of an accident, Florida courts may award accident victims compensation for the following damages:
- Future and current medical expenses
- Lost wages and loss of earning capacity
- Property damage
- Permanent scarring and disfigurement
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
Florida is a pure comparative negligence state. This means that the amount of compensation you receive is subject to the degree of fault of the at-fault party. If you contributed to the accident, the amount of compensation you can receive is reduced.
Contact the Experienced Fort Pierce Car Accident Lawyers at Baker Legal Team Today
The board-certified car accident lawyers at Baker Legal Team are here to help you identify the liable parties and work to get you the compensation or damages you deserve. Our car accident lawyers will handle all legal communications with insurance companies or in settlement negotiations. Our team strives to make sure you focus on healing as our car accident attorneys attempt to negotiate fair compensation for your claim.
Or car accident attorneys have years of experience dealing with car accident and personal injury claims. We will discuss with you all the legal avenues available to you and give our expert legal advice on the case. Our years of experience enable us to handle any curve balls that may be thrown at us. Contact us today by calling (561) 320-0000 or by filling out our contact form online for a free case review.