We understand that the process of dealing with insurance companies is not always easy, especially since the goal of an insurance company is to pay out as little as possible—even your own insurance company. Fortunately, your car accident lawyer will deal with the insurance companies.
A lawyer can help you:
- Gather evidence to build a strong case for your claim
- Calculate the total cost of your damages to be in a good position to negotiate a fair settlement
- Avoid making mistakes that could cost you money
Without the help of an attorney, you may find that you are vulnerable to the tactics of insurance companies trying to reduce their responsibility in covering your damages. This is why we often recommend that our clients do not speak with insurance companies directly, as their words may be taken out of context in order to claim that you deserve less money. By leaving communications to your lawyer, you eliminate this risk.
We often find during the free consultation that many clients may be entitled to additional compensation through a third-party insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. This can allow the victim to collect damages not available through PIP insurance coverage. In order to hold the at-fault driver responsible, we must prove that:
- The other driver is liable for the accident
- Your injuries meet the serious injury threshold
For a free legal consultation, call (800) 747-3733
Establishing Liability in Your Car Accident Case
In order to prove that the other party was negligent, we need to prove that these four things are true:
- The driver had an obligation to drive carefully, according to traffic laws
- The driver breached his or her duty to be careful
- The breach of duty caused a collision
- You suffered serious injuries as a result of the accident
In order to prove that these four statements are true, our team will launch an investigation, gathering evidence like:
- Reports from the Orlando Police Department
- Witness statements
- Video surveillance from traffic cameras
- Examination of skid marks
- Medical records that show the full extent of your injuries
- Proof of financial losses
We may even contact an accident scene reconstruction expert to confirm that the other driver was liable for the collision. It is also during this investigation that we will estimate the total value of your losses, including both economic losses like medical expenses and noneconomic losses like pain and suffering.
Once we have a strong case establishing liability and know the total monetary value of the damages you have suffered, we will approach the at-fault party’s insurance company or file a personal injury lawsuit.
Understanding the Serious Injury Threshold
The ability to pursue compensation beyond your PIP insurance policy also hinges on the seriousness of your injuries. Florida law bars you from holding the at-fault driver financially responsible unless the injuries meet the definition of “serious.” Serious injuries include:
- Significant scarring and disfigurement
- Permanent injuries that lead to a disability
- A significant impairment that impacts an important body part
- Death or a condition that will lead to your death
Damages You May Recover After an Accident
Your PIP coverage will only cover a portion of your medical expenses and lost wages. These policies work well until your injuries are severe, and your damages are substantial. Neither will your PIP insurance pay for the repair or replacement of your vehicle.
Damages you may be entitled to recover through a third-party insurance claim or lawsuit include:
- Medical expenses, such as ambulance rides, hospital stays, or doctor’s examinations
- Ongoing treatment and rehabilitation
- Lost wages
- Future missed wages and benefits if you are unable to return to work
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
If you have been involved in a car accident and want help filing your claim with your insurance company or want to see if you may qualify for additional compensation, contact the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine at 1-800-747-3733 for a free, no-risk consultation. We may have a limited time to file under FL § 95.11, but you can rest assured that your car accident lawyer will deal with the insurance companies for you.