Whether you need criminal defense or representation for a personal injury claim, our team, lead by Chris Crawford, will fight 24/7 to guarantee that your rights are protected. These trial results should inspire confidence.
Pensacola Car Accidents Lawyer
We understand the challenges that come with being injured in an auto accident. Our Pensacola car accidents lawyer is here to help clients get the compensation they need to cover medical costs, rehabilitation, in-home care, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Call Crawford Law at (850) 220-2098 or reach out online today to set up a consultation.
What to Do After a Car Accident
The best chance to secure a fair settlement is to take the right steps in the immediate aftermath of an accident. We know this can be a crazy time, and some of the steps presume a driver is healthy enough to take the recommended action in the moment. But the more of these steps that can be taken, the stronger position an injured driver will be in.
Gather as many facts as possible, such as license plate numbers, passenger names and contact details, and the make and model of the vehicles.
Additionally, collect the contact information of eyewitnesses to the accident. It's advisable to use your cellphone camera to take photos and videos of the scene, capturing all involved vehicles from different angles.
Call the Police
Under Florida law, accidents must be reported if they result in death or injury, involve a hit and run or a driver under the influence, or cause property damage worth $500 or more. But even if the circumstances of an accident don’t mandate calling the authorities, this step is still strongly recommended.
Police reports can be valuable for both insurance claims and personal injury cases. Failing to call the police can result in evidence being lost and may harm any legal and insurance claims in the future.
After an accident, it's understandable to feel shaken and upset, but it's important to avoid apologizing or admitting fault. Doing so can be used against a driver in any future legal proceedings, even if it wasn’t intended as an admission of liability. Even simply expressing remorse could be misinterpreted as an admission of guilt. Instead, focus on providing the necessary factual information and cooperating with the authorities as much as possible.
It's also natural for friends and family to express concern about your well-being but be cautious when discussing the accident. Family and friends may be called upon as witnesses in court. Posting about the accident on social media is an even bigger risk.
A Pensacola car accident attorney is the only one a plaintiff can confide in and know that the discussion is legally protected by confidentiality.
Call Your Insurance Carrier
It’s important to inform an auto insurance company promptly after an accident, as many have strict time limits for filing claims. Delaying could increase the likelihood of a claim being devalued.
See a Doctor
Even if a driver walks away from an accident feeling physically fine, it is still important to seek a medical examination. One reason is personal health — a doctor can ensure there are no underlying internal injuries that may develop into complicated and costly conditions over time.
Moreover, failing to seek medical attention immediately can negatively impact any insurance claims. The opposing party may argue that the lack of medical attention proves that the injuries were either not as serious as claimed, or that they were not directly caused by the car accident.
Call Our Pensacola Car Accident Lawyer
At Crawford Law, clients will get solid advice on how to take their case to the next level. That means a follow-up investigation into the details of the accident, gaining an understanding of the full scope of injuries, and getting on the phone with the insurance carrier and negotiating a fair settlement claim.
Being injured in a car accident can be scary, the aftermath is usually chaotic, and it can sometimes be traumatic. People shouldn’t have to worry about their legal affairs. Let us handle that. You get healthy. We’ll focus on getting the settlement you deserve.
Common Injuries in Car Accidents
Car accidents can lead to a wide range of injuries, from minor cuts and bruises to more serious conditions such as:
- Broken Bones: Fractured bones can happen due to the force of impact, often involving the arms, legs, or ribs.
- Head and Brain Injuries: Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can result from blows to the head, causing a range of cognitive and physical impairments.
- Spinal Cord Injuries: Damage to the spinal cord may lead to paralysis or other significant disabilities.
- Internal Injuries: Organ damage and internal bleeding can occur, sometimes without immediate symptoms.
- Cuts and Lacerations: Shattered glass and debris can cause cuts and severe lacerations.
Determining Liability in Florida Car Accidents
In Florida, determining liability after a car accident follows a "no-fault" system. Drivers are required to carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, which covers medical expenses and lost wages regardless of fault. However, if your injuries meet certain thresholds, you may step outside the no-fault system and file a liability claim against the at-fault party.
Under Florida law, determining liability beyond the "no-fault" system involves establishing that another party was negligent. This requires proving that the other party owed a duty of care, breached this duty, and this breach caused your injury and resulted in damages.
Multiple Parties and Liability
In some cases, more than one party may be responsible for a car accident. For instance, if a truck driver's negligence caused an accident, both the driver and the trucking company could be held liable. Similarly, if a defective vehicle part contributed to the accident, the manufacturer could share in the liability.
Parties that could share responsibility for damages and injuries in a car accident, including:
- Negligent Drivers: Those who directly cause the accident through reckless or careless behavior.
- Vehicle Owners: If the at-fault driver doesn't own the vehicle, the owner may share liability.
- Employers: In accidents involving commercial vehicles, the employer may be held responsible.
- Manufacturers: If a vehicle defect or malfunction contributed to the accident, the manufacturer might be liable.
Tactics Used by Insurance Companies
Insurance companies may use various tactics to reduce their liability and payout. These can include disputing the severity of your injuries, arguing that you were partially at fault, or offering a quick, low-ball settlement. Having a skilled lawyer can help counter these tactics and ensure your rights are protected.
Compensation for Car Accident Victims
Victims of car accidents may be eligible to recover compensation for various damages, including:
- Medical Expenses: Coverage for hospital bills, surgery, rehabilitation, and ongoing medical treatments.
- Lost Wages: Compensation for income lost during recovery.
- Pain and Suffering: Damages for the physical and emotional distress caused by the accident.
- Property Damage: Coverage for vehicle repair or replacement costs.
- Wrongful Death: In the tragic event of a fatality, surviving family members may seek compensation through a wrongful death claim.
How a Car Accident Attorney Can Help
A car accident attorney from Crawford Law can provide invaluable assistance by:
- Investigating the Accident: Gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, and reconstructing the accident to establish liability.
- Dealing with Insurance Companies: Negotiating with insurance providers to secure fair settlements.
- Legal Representation: Advocating for your rights in court if a settlement cannot be reached.
- Navigating Legal Complexities: Guiding you through Florida's car accident laws and regulations.
- Protecting Your Rights: Ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve.
At Crawford Law, we're committed to helping car accident victims navigate the legal process and secure the compensation they deserve. Don't let insurance companies shortchange you after a car accident. Contact Crawford Law today for a consultation with our dedicated Pensacola car accident lawyer to pursue the compensation you need and deserve.
Call Crawford Law at (850) 220-2098 or contact us online today.
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