Despite the deceptively harmless appearance of a parking lot accident, these fender benders can lead to significant personal injuries and damage to your vehicle. Even a low-speed crash can leave you with neck injuries, head trauma, or other serious injuries. If the incident involves a pedestrian or bicyclist, the potential for severe injuries increases.
Determining fault and liability for damages can present a challenge since most parking lots are private property. However, with a dedicated parking lot accident lawyer in Port St. Lucie, FL on your side, you can hold the at-fault party accountable for their negligence and collect an equitable settlement for your damages.
The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine provides a free introductory consultation and case evaluation, to help you determine whether you have a viable case. Contact us today at 1-800-747-3733 to learn more.
Common Types & Causes of Port St. Lucie FL Parking Lot Accidents
Parking lot accidents typically occur under one of four scenarios:
Two Vehicle Accident With Both Moving
This involves colliding with another car while you were both in motion. To determine fault, we must establish who had the right-of-way. For example, another vehicle backs out of a parking space and strikes your car as you pass behind them. In this case, the car backing out would likely have fault for the accident and liability for your damages.
Two Vehicle Accident With One Moving
In this scenario, another driver strikes your car while you are parked or stopped. In most cases, the moving driver has fault, as they had the ability to avoid the parking lot accident by changing their actions. The exception is if the vehicle parked or stopped illegally.
Single Vehicle Accident
This scenario typically involves a vehicle striking a structure, object, sign, barricade, etc. If the object posed a safety hazard for motorists in the parking lot, you can potentially pursue a premises liability or negligence claim against the property owner or party responsible for the object struck.
Vehicle-Pedestrian or Cyclist Accident
In this example, a motorist may have struck you as you walked or cycled through a parking lot. This commonly occurs when someone backs their car out of a parking space and collides with you.
The causes most often associated with parking lot accidents include the following:
- Distracted driving
- Impaired driving
- Disregard for signage
- Excessive speed
- Reckless driving
- Poor parking lot maintenance
- Inadequate parking lot lighting
- Inadequate parking lot signage
In each of these examples, the at-fault party likely acted (or failed to act) with negligence, setting the stage for a potential personal injury or premises liability claim.
The Challenges of Winning a Parking Lot Accident Claim
One of the biggest challenges posed by parking lot accident and injury claims stems from the Florida laws governing accidents that occur on private property. In most cases, the police will not respond or take a report for a car accident that takes place outside a public roadway.
Consequently, we must identify ways to prove negligence to establish liability. The legal elements of negligence are as follows:
- Duty of care
- Breach of duty
- Actual Damages
To achieve this goal, the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine will put our team of investigators to work, collecting photos of the scene, talking to potential witnesses, and potentially reconstructing the scene.
If you become involved in a parking lot accident, do as much as you can at the time to collect evidence. Here is what to do after a car accident to help your case:
- Call the police and request an officer on scene to make a report.
- Take photos of the scene and the vehicles involved.
- Ask witnesses for contact information, and ask them to share any photos or video they took.
- Ask the facility if they have security cameras in the parking lot.
- Make detailed notes about the incident as soon as possible before your memory fades.
Seek medical attention, even if you believe you sustained no injuries. Whiplash and other soft-tissue injuries can take days to manifest. Also, have your car evaluated by a collision damage repair shop. Even low-speed crashes can tweak the frame, weaken the motor mounts, or cause a malfunction with your airbags.
Finally, contact the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine to schedule a complimentary consultation. The sooner we have the opportunity to examine the details of your parking lot accident, the sooner we can help you decide on the next step. If you have a viable claim, getting started on it quickly will help us preserve as much evidence as possible.
Calculating, Submitting, & Negotiating Your Parking Lot Accident Claim
Our legal team will assemble all your costs, bills, and economic damages to arrive at the value of your claim.
Medical expenses: We will include any medical treatment costs you had as well as estimate the value of your future treatment and care needs.
Property damage: We will include the cost of any required car repairs (plus diminished value) or the cost to replace your vehicle if the insurance company declares it a total loss. We may also include towing charges and any personal property you have lost.
Lost wages and income: We will include any lost income or benefits incurred to date and, if your injuries prevent you from going back to work for some time, we will project the value of your future lost wages, benefits, and opportunity costs.
Depending on the circumstances and nature of your injuries, we may include pain and suffering and mental anguish in your claim, as well as the value of any permanent injury or disability you developed.
Once we submit your claim to the at-fault party or their insurance company, we will pursue settlement negotiations as soon as possible. If the insurer refuses to negotiate in good faith, we can discuss the possibility of filing a lawsuit and presenting your case in court.
You Can Meet With a Parking Lot Accident Lawyer in Port St. Lucie for Free
To discuss the viability of your parking lot accident case, contact the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine to speak with a parking lot lawyer in Port St. Lucie, FL today. We will answer all your questions, describe your options, and help you make an informed choice about your next steps.
We offer a free consultation and case evaluation to parking lot accident clients. Contact us at 1-800-747-3733 to learn more.