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Has An Accident Occurred? Know Your Rights to a Claim before It’s Too Late

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you may be wondering if you have a case that requires an insurance claim or lawsuit. It is worth knowing some of the basic details regarding what kind of cases are out there, and the guidelines for each.

Personal Injury Cases

  • Personal injury cases are legal disputes that occur as a result of an accident or injury, where someone else may be liable for the harm having occurred
  • Florida extends a statute of limitations of four years from the date of the accident in regards to personal injury cases. The case must be filed in Florida’s civil courts. Unless unique circumstances apply, the court will often times not entertain the case at all if it is filed outside of this window.

Comparative Negligence

  • A situation where both parties are to be blamed for an accident
  • Florida believes that the amount of compensation you are entitled to receive will be proportionally reduced to your percentage of fault for the accident.
  • Courts in Florida are obligated to follow this rule in an injury case

Damage Caps

  • These statues set a limit on the amount of money that can be received by an individual who has been injured
  • Tend to focus on non-economic damages; i.e. damages that are subjective and more difficult to measure.
  • Punitive damages, although not often available, are limited to three times the amount of compensatory damages or $500,000, whichever is greater
  • There are no other damage cap laws applicable to personal injury cases in the state of Florida

Wrongful Death

  • There must first be a showing of wrongdoing by the defendant against whom the family seeks to collect damages. This involves a display of negligence, a four-step test that requires proof of duty, break of duty, damages, and causation.
  • Survivors of the deceased may be entitled to damages. Survivors can be classified as the spouse, children, parents or sometimes other relatives.
  • Survivors may be entitled to medical or funeral expenses paid on the deceased’s behalf, in addition to funds compensating for lost support and services
  • Children under the age of 25 can seek damages for loss of parental companionship

Auto Accident

  • Florida is a no-fault state, which means up to $10,000 is covered no matter who is at fault in the accident
  • The goal of this is to prevent small claim litigation
  • Those involved in an accident must meet an Emergency Medical Condition within 14 days in order to receive their full $10,000 compensation. If this is not found within the first two weeks after the accident, the maximum amount of compensation that can be paid is $2,500.
  • Litigation can be pursued if there has been permanent injury, significant or permanent scarring, or disfigurement.

It is worth noting that quite often, a trial will be avoided if possible. Parties will attempt to reach a settlement before a trial begins.

Attorney David Goldman has a strong belief that everyone should be treated fairly and those with the means should do what they can to bring justice in all areas of our society. That belief has led him to help Florida's injured from being taken advantage of by corporations and insurance companies. Since 1989 David Goldman has been fighting for the rights of Floridians both as an attorney and by personally supporting our community.

Has An Accident Occurred? Know Your Rights to a Claim before It’s Too Late

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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