If you had a car accident in which another driver was at fault, you could sue for certain damages. But in most states, you only have a fixed amount of time to file a lawsuit. In Florida, you must file a car accident lawsuit within four years from the date of the accident.
In Florida, the at-fault party’s insurance pays for the damage to all vehicles, while each driver files a claim with his or her own insurance company for bodily injury. As long as your property damage or bodily injuries do not significantly exceed the insurance policy’s limits, there is rarely a need for a lawsuit.
However, if your property damage is greater than what the at-fault driver’s insurance company is willing to pay, or if you have medical expenses and other economic damage that exceed the limits of your personal injury protection (PIP) policy, you might consider suing the at-fault driver for damages.
If you suffered injuries in a car accident, the attorneys at Anidjar & Levine could help you decide if filing a lawsuit is in your best interests. Time is of the essence. Call us today for a free case evaluation: 800-747-3733
Why You Should Contact an Attorney as Quickly as Possible After a Car Accident
After a car accident — especially one in which another party was at fault — you should contact an attorney as quickly as possible because he or she will advise you on the best course of action and project your legal rights.
Insurance companies often contact car accident victims soon after a crash — before the victim has hired an attorney — and try to convince them to accept quick settlements. However, if you accept such an offer, you almost always leave money on the table. An attorney can protect you from accepting an offer that does not compensate you fairly for your losses.
If you suffered injuries in the crash, a lawyer can help you estimate your current and future medical expenses, lost wages, as well as any pain and suffering damages you might be eligible for, and from this information can determine if a lawsuit against the at-fault driver makes sense.
Even If Your Accident Happened Months or Years Ago, You Might Still Have Recourse
Ideally, you should visit a doctor to check for injuries and contact an attorney immediately after an accident.
However, what if the damage was minor, and you did not have any apparent injuries after the crash? Perhaps you accepted the insurance company’s offer and went on with your life. Months or years later, however, you discovered you had latent injuries from the accident.
You can still file a lawsuit and have a good chance of winning — presuming, of course, that you are within your state’s statute of limitations (in Florida, four years).
The statute of limitations begins when your car accident injury happens, typically, the date of the accident. In some situations, the court will extend the statute of limitations if it determines you had no way of knowing about your injury until a later date. However, if the reason you did not know right away is that you failed to visit a doctor, you will rarely receive an extension.
No matter how long ago your accident occurred, you should contact an attorney without delay if you are thinking of suing. Your lawyer can let you know if any statute of limitations challenges lie ahead, and what your options are.
You Can Win Several Types of Damages for Your Car Accident Injuries
Even if you are not sure if a lawsuit is worth your time, you should at least sit down with an attorney and discuss your options. This is especially true if you there is a chance that you sustained injuries.
In addition to your current and future medical bills, you might be eligible for the following damages:
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages (if we can prove that the other driver’s actions were not only negligentbut reckless or malicious)
Contact The Law Firm of Anidjar & Levine for a free consultation with a car accident attorney. We will fight for you and help you win the damages you deserve. Call 800-747-3733 to set up an appointment.