The short answer is that if your injury occurred while you were performing job duties related to your employment then it is a workers compensation claim. If you were not working at the time of the accident, then it is most likely a personal injury claim. However there are times when you may have both a workers compensation claim and a personal injury claim. For example you are working and an outside vendor comes to your place of employment is negligent and causes you injury, or you are driving in a company car for work purposes, and another driver is negligent and causes a car accident and injures you. You may then have a workers compensation claim and a personal injury claim.
Personal injury cases, as with any legal matter can be resolved in one of two ways, either by settlement or by a trial. Approximately 85 percent of personal injury cases can be resolved by settlement with the insurance company. It is necessary to file a lawsuit in approximately 15 percent of all personal injury cases. The reason that some cases do not settle is due to a dispute about liability, in those cases, the focus of the trial will be on whether the other driver is at fault. In some cases there is a dispute about the amount of damages and in those cases the focus of the trial may be limited to the issue of damages.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging is a type of imaging process that allows physicians to see spinal injuries that do not show up on Xrays. An MRI will assist in detecting herniated disc problems, as well as disc bulges and other spinal injures that cannot be seen in an X Ray.
One way to find a good personal injury lawyer is by referral from a friend or former client of a personal injury lawyer that was satisfied by that lawyers work on their case, or referral by a physician familiar with that lawyer. You should hire a personal injury lawyer that will offer you personal attention and handle your case themselves, rather than handing your case over to a non lawyer case manager or paralegal in their firm. In addition you can call your state bar association and find out if that lawyer is in good standing with the bar, and whether there have been ethical complaints brought against that lawyer.
Normally a claim is brought against the property owner through their insurance coverage. Just as the case with car accident claims, it is necessary to diagnose and evaluate your injuries as a result of the negligent property owner. Therefore it is essential that you see a doctor for any injury you have suffered. A personal injury lawyer will make a demand for settlement of your claim to the property owners insurance company and will base that claim upon the nature and extent of your injuries and other losses which were the fault of he property owner. If no settlement can be achieved, then a lawsuit against the property owner can be filed in an appropriate court of law.
Premises liability describes a type of personal injury case where a person is injured as a result of a dangerous condition on the property of another.
Property owners have a duty to provide a safe environment for their guests, and to warn of known dangerous conditions. A property owner may be liable for your injuries suffered on their property under the theory of premises liability, where the property owner breached his duty to provide you with a safe environment, or to warn you of any known hazardous conditions.
The types of injuries covered under premises liability include slip and fall, injury due to fire, exposure to chemicals or toxic substances, assault and battery due to negligent security, elevator injuries, and dog and animal bites.
Rental car coverage is intended to provide alternate transportation until your car has been repaired or until the total loss payment is made. However most insurance policies have limits for how long they will pay for a rental car or the maximum amount they will pay. For example a policy may provide a rental car for 30 days, or a maximum amount regardless of how long the car is needed.
First and foremost you should wear seat belts. This is the most important safety feature of your car. Second, you should be sure that the seat belts are properly positioned. This means that you should have your seat back adjusted so that the shoulder and lap belts fall across you in the proper place. Often you see people driving around with the seat in a reclined position, which may result in the failure of the seatbelt in the event of a car crash. Third you should be sure that the driver seat is the proper distance from the steering wheel. This is because airbags are intended to protect the driver only if the driver is the correct distance from the airbag. If are too close or too far back the airbag may not protect you from injury. Fourth, children must be in a car seat or use a booster seat. The reason for this is because car seat belts are not made for children and may cause injury if the child is not tall enough such that the seat belt fits the child properly. Fifth, secure loose objects in the trunk or securely on the car floor. Loose objects may become flying missiles in the event of a car accident and cause injury to the occupants of the car. Sixth, don’t drink and drive, as your reaction times will be impaired and increase the likelihood that you will be injured in a car accident. Seventh, be sure that your car is in good mechanical condition, check the tires and brakes, and property maintain your car.
Normally knee injury occurs when the occupant of a car is thrown forward or the dash board is shoved backward in a car accident. The result is that there is contact between the dashboard and the knee. This injury may be quite severe depending on the type of car and the severity of the impact.
Air bags are intended to deploy in an instant and provide a cushion between you and some part of your automobile. They deflate almost immediately. Because airbags deploy in a rapid, and often violent manner, it is possible that you may receive minor injury from the airbag deploying, however the airbag may have prevented more serious injury that may have resulted from the crash.
The answer to this question is not medical advice, and you should consult with a physician before attempting to treat yourself with ice or heat. Any injury should be evaluated by a physician. As a general rule of thumb, you should ice an injury that is acute, or fairly recent. For example if you fall and strike your knee you would apply ice, or if you strain your back after a day working in the yard, you would apply ice to the area that hurts. If you have chronic pain such as arthritis, heat may be appropriate.
Yes, you stand a better chance in a large vehicle, truck or SUV in most accidents. While many small cars do have great safety features such as side air bags, and antilock brakes, your chances or surviving are much better when you are in a large vehicle. This is especially true if you are driving a compact car and are hit by someone driving a large vehicle where their bumper is about the height of your car window. Unfortunately with the cost of gasoline, and concerns about the environment, and the supply of oil remaining, more people are forced to drive compact and subcompact cars.
There is no answer to this question that applies across the board to all cases. Each personal injury case is going to have its own specific set of facts that will determine how much the case is worth. Certain variables will affect the value of the case, primarily the extent of your injuries, whether you needed to have surgery, whether you have a permanent injury, and the extent to which the injury affected your life. In some cases the value of the case may be limited by the amount of insurance coverage available. Often it is necessary to make a decision to accept an insurance settlement, or file a lawsuit against the at fault party. If the at fault party does not have sufficient assets from which to pay a judgment, it may not make sense to file a lawsuit because any judgment you obtain may be un-collectible.
Under Florida No fault law or PIP, insurance will pay 60% of your lost wages which were the result of a car accident, with certain limitations.
Chiropractic physicians are trained in evaluation and treatment of back injuries related to car accidents. Your chiropractor will most likely begin by asking you to provide him with a description of the accident, and complete medical history including any prior injuries. He will then take X-Rays of your spine, and will physically examine you to determine the extent of your injuries. The Chiropractor may then use any number of treatments such as hot packs, electrical stimulation, massage, and chiropractic adjustment of your spine. Normally some or all of these treatments will relieve the pain you are experiencing as a result of your car accident. You may have to visit your chiropractor three times a week for a period of months in order to correct the damage caused by the car accident. In addition the chiropractor may recommend that you have an MRI of your spine to complete his evaluation, and may send you out for a consultation with an orthopedic doctor or TMJ specialist. Your chiropractor will then be in a position to write a final report outlining the nature and extent of your injuries, any permanent injury you may have, and the amount of any future care you may require.
Florida law requires drivers to carry a minimum amount of insurance, unfortunately drivers are not required to carry bodily injury liability coverage. Therefore it is a good idea to purchase uninsured motorist coverage when you obtain car insurance. When you carry uninsured motorist coverage, and you are involved in a car accident where the other driver has no insurance, you may be able to make a claim under your own uninsured motorist coverage.
No matter how minor the car accident, you should always obtain the other drivers license, and insurance information. In addition you should note the make and model of car the other driver was driving, as well as the location of the damage to both vehicles, and make a diagram of where the accident occurred. You must report accidents to your insurance company in accordance with the terms and conditions of most insurance policies. Failure to report a claim may constitute a basis to deny the claim. Even if you don’t wish to pursue damage to your car, you should report the claim as informational. Often injuries in a minor car accident are not immediately apparent. You may find that you are experiencing pain or discomfort the next day after an accident that you did not notice at the time of the crash. If you experience pain following an accident you should see a physician and determine if you are injured.
Every car accident is going to have a different value based upon the severity of the crash, the amount of property damage and the extent of injuries. There is no standard answer to this question, however the value of your car accident may be broken down into several components. First there is the damage to your vehicle, also known as the collision component of your claim. The amount of the collision claim will vary depending on the amount of damage to your car, or possibly the total loss of the vehicle in which case it will be the market value of the car. Second, you may have a claim for lost wages if you are out of work as a result of your car accident. The dollar value of your lost wages will depend upon how much you normally earn and how much time you are out of work. Third, your claim may include your medical bills, normally paid by your Florida No Fault or PIP insurance, and again this component will also vary depending on the severity of your injuries and the extent of medical care required. Fourth your claim will include a bodily injury component (BI) which includes compensation for pain and suffering, permanent injury, scarring, loss of consortium, travel time to and from the doctor, as well as any necessary future medical care. The total value of the bodily injury portion of your claim will vary depending on the nature and extent of your injuries and medical treatment. The total of all of these components will comprise how much your car accident is worth.
Florida Statutes Section 95 (d) An action for wrongful death shall be commenced within 2 years.
Florida Statutes Section 95 (b) An action for medical malpractice shall be commenced within 2 years from the time the incident giving rise to the action occurred or within 2 years from the time the incident is discovered, or should have been discovered with the exercise of due diligence; however, in no event shall the action be commenced later than 4 years from the date of the incident or occurrence out of which the cause of action accrued, except that this 4-year period shall not bar an action brought on behalf of a minor on or before the child's eighth birthday. An "action for medical malpractice" is defined as a claim in tort or in contract for damages because of the death, injury, or monetary loss to any person arising out of any medical, dental, or surgical diagnosis, treatment, or care by any provider of health care. The limitation of actions within this subsection shall be limited to the health care provider and persons in private with the provider of health care. In those actions covered by this paragraph in which it can be shown that fraud, concealment, or intentional misrepresentation of fact prevented the discovery of the injury the period of limitations is extended forward 2 years from the time that the injury is discovered or should have been discovered with the exercise of due diligence, but in no event to exceed 7 years from the date the incident giving rise to the injury occurred, except that this 7-year period shall not bar an action brought on behalf of a minor on or before the child's eighth birthday.
The length of time to bring a claim is determined by the Statute of Limitations in Florida, as stated in Florida Statutes Section 95. WITHIN FOUR YEARS for the following: an action founded on negligence, such as for a car accident, or an action for injury to a person founded on the design, manufacture, distribution, or sale of personal property that is not permanently incorporated in an improvement to real property, including fixtures, or an action founded on a statutory liability, or an action for trespass on real property, or an action for taking, detaining, or injuring personal property, or an action for assault, battery, false arrest, malicious prosecution, malicious interference, false imprisonment, or any other intentional tort, except as provided in subsections (4), (5), and (7).
You have an obligation to report accidents under the terms and conditions of your car insurance policy and failure to report the accident to your own insurance carrier may be a basis for them to deny coverage for your accident.
No fault refers to personal injury protection or PIP. In Florida if you are injured in a car accident, your own PIP insurance covers your medical bills following a car accident regardless of who is at fault. No fault only pertains to payment of your medical bills. You may have a claim against the other driver for pain and suffering, loss or enjoyment of life, loss of consortium, as well as medical bills not covered by PIP.
This concept is known as diminution of value and relates to the reduced value of an automobile that has been involved in a crash. Because records are maintained documenting damage repairs, anyone buying a used car can and most likely will find out whether a car has been in an accident. As a result the resale value of the car will be less than a similar car that was not involved in a crash. There are formulas used by insurance companies that take into account the age, condition, and mileage of your vehicle in arriving at a specific amount of compensation which you are entitled to receive as a result of diminution of value of your car after a car crash.
The average time is one year from the date of the accident. However this time may be longer or shorter depending on the extent of your injuries, and the length of treatment necessary for you to reach maximum medical improvement (MMI). Your case should not be settled until your medical condition has been properly evaluated, and you have received necessary treatment for your injury. Often you may have to undergo chiropractic treatment or physical therapy for a period of months before your doctor determines that you have reached maximum medical improvement. At that time your doctor will prepare a final report outlining your medical condition, treatment, injuries, and may make a finding of some degree of permanent injury. It is important not to be in a hurry to settle your car accident case, and to follow any recommended course of treatment your doctor recommends through to completion.
The only way to determine if a car accident caused back injury is to have an examination by a qualified physician. Normally chiropractic physicians are utilized to evaluate back injuries following a car accident. If you have never had a back injury before, it is quite likely that your injury is caused by your car accident. If you had a prior back injury your car accident may have aggravated your prior injury or you may have a new unrelated injury. Often an MRI or X Ray is used as a diagnostic tool to evaluate a back injury following a car accident. A chiropractic physician may refer you to a specialist such as an Orthopedic surgeon for a consultation.
Often people do lie to police at the scene of an accident. They may fear that their insurance company may drop them, or that their premiums may go up. The facts of the accident as well as witness accounts often contradict the statements of the at fault driver and as a result, the fact that the other driver is not telling the truth wont necessarily hurt your changes of making a recovery against them. People purchase liability insurance to protect themselves from claims as a result of their negligence. However what many people don’t realize is that if they tell their insurance company that the accident was not their fault, they are giving their own insurance company an excuse not to pay anything on the claim, which defeats the purpose of buying liability insurance coverage.
In most cases the driver of the vehicle that hits a vehicle ahead of them is at fault. Obviously there are exceptions such as when a driver slams on the brakes for no legitimate reason and causes the driver behind them to run into them. There are other circumstances that may also mitigate or limit liability for a rear end accident, such as when there are three cars in a row, and the third car strikes the second car, pushing it into the first car. In this case, the first driver is most likely at fault and the middle car is not at fault even though they rear ended the third vehicle.
If you find that the at fault driver has no insurance, you may be able to make a claim under your own uninsured motorist coverage. You will need to review your insurance policy to determine whether you have uninsured motorist coverage. In Florida you must have signed a UM rejection form indicating that you rejected uninsured motorist coverage. If the insurance company cannot produce the signed UM rejection form then they may have to provide UM coverage, or if you made changes to your policy since you signed a UM rejection form you should have signed a new UM rejection form. If is a good idea to hire a Florida Accident Attorney to pursue a UM claim for you. Even though uninsured motorist coverage is your own insurance, most insurance companies will not pay you the coverage limits and will only want to pay a minimal amount for your claim. Florida Accident lawyers usually handle UM claims on a contingency fee basis, so you would not owe any fees unless they make a recovery for you.
You should call the police immediately at the time of a car accident. Prior to calling determine if you or anyone in your car is injured so that you can inform the 911 operator that you will need emergency medical services. Before you exit your vehicle, make sure that it is safe to get out of your vehicle. Injuries often occur with a secondary collision, meaning that another car(s) may come upon the accident scene and run into your car or the other vehicles involved in the initial accident. Therefore you should exercise caution before exiting your vehicle. You should also determine whether you or any of your passengers have serious injuries. It is better not to attempt to move a seriously injured person unless the vehicle is on fire and it is a matter of life and death that you get out of the car immediately. Only emergency personnel should attempt to move a seriously injured person who is not able to move themselves.
Call the police and let them know immediately that your child was in the car and that you would like emergency medical services to come to the scene and evaluate your child. It is recommended that you have your child evaluated in an emergency room following a car accident, even if they seem to be fine. Although children are quite resilient and tend to recover quickly after a car accident, Pediatricians are best qualified to evaluate your child’s injuries following a car accident. After you have taken your child to the emergency room, you should schedule a visit with your child’s pediatrician. If your child is complaining of neck or back pain, you should schedule an evaluation with a chiropractor, because they are trained to evaluate and treat children for back injuries.
Stop at the scene and exchange information with the other driver. Never leave the scene and don’t agree to let the other driver leave the scene.
Protect the accident scene, leave cars where they came to rest, note the location of vehicles before moving them, draw a diagram if possible.
Call the police and make a police report, insist that the police come to the scene.
Get medical attention, cooperate with emergency medical personnel, and go to the hospital if advised to do so by medical personnel.
Do not comment or make statements to the other driver or witnesses about the cause of the accident, but do provide your account of the accident to law enforcement.
Write down as much detail about the accident as possible, make a diagram, and obtain the names of any witnesses
Take photographs, you should carry an inexpensive or disposable camera in your car at all times, or use your cell phone camera.
Observe whether the other driver appears to be impaired or DUI and ask the police to conduct a sobriety test on the other driver if you believe they are impaired.
See a doctor as soon after the accident as possible to evaluate and diagnose your injuries
Call your own insurance company soon after the accident and report the claim. If you don t report your claim your insurance company may have a basis to deny coverage.
Consult with a lawyer about your rights, and; do not give a recorded statement to the at fault drivers insurance company until you have met with a lawyer.
Check your auto insurance policy and be sure that you have adequate coverage including uninsured motorist coverage. You may need to beef up your coverages.
Definitely not, you should speak with a Florida Accident Attorney before giving a recorded statement to the other drivers insurance company. Ultimately your attorney may arrange for a time for you to provide a statement to the at fault drivers insurance company, however most attorneys advise against recorded statements and will often consent to a non recorded statement only .
Yes in most cases, your insurance contract will require that you cooperate with your own insurance company and provide a statement to them. It is a good idea to arrange to have your attorney present during the statement. If you refuse to give your own insurance company a statement they may have the right to deny your claim.
If the auto accident is not your fault you have the option of making a claim through your own collision insurance coverage or going after the at fault drivers insurance to cover your loss. Normally your own collision coverage will have a deductible and you may not wish to pay the deductible. If your own insurance does pay for the damage to your car, they will have a right to be reimbursed from the at fault drivers insurance (subrogation). If there is a dispute about liability you may find that it is quicker to proceed with getting your car repaired through your own insurance coverage and then seek reimbursement of your deductible from the at fault driver.
Personal injury protection limits are normally $10,000 and may have a deductible depending on the policy provisions. Additional PIP coverage is often offered at additional policy premium.
2. Policyholders relatives in the same household
4. Other authorized drivers
5. Policyholder and family members if they are injured while riding in someone else's car or as a pedestrian when struck by another vehicle.
Personal Injury Protection, or PIP is insurance that covers medical, hospital and diagnostic testing expenses of the insured, others in the insured vehicles and pedestrians struck by the insured. This coverage applies to the insured’s and insured’s passengers medical expenses regardless of who is at fault in the accident.
Uninsured motorist coverage is insurance that covers you, and members of your household and your passengers for bodily/personal injuries, damages, or death when the at-fault driver is uninsured, underinsured, or the accident is a hit-and-run type accident.
Collision coverage is insurance that will pay for your car when your car is damaged as a result of a collision with another vehicle or object. Collision coverage will pay to fix your vehicle less the deductible, or will pay for the total loss of your vehicle.
Comprehensive coverage is insurance that will pay for your vehicle, and sometimes other vehicles you may be driving for damage resulting from incidents other than collision. Comprehensive insurance covers damage to your car if it is stolen; or damaged by flood, fire, or animals.
Property damage, also known as PD coverage, is insurance that covers your liability if your car damages someone else's car or property. Property damage liability will also provide a legal defense if another party files a lawsuit against you. It is a good idea to purchase enough of this insurance to cover the amount of damage your car might do to another vehicle or object. Coverage is limited to the terms and conditions contained in the policy.
The Bodily Injury liability, also known as BI coverage limits normally refer to the maximum amounts that will be paid per person, per incident, respectively. For example 25/50 means that the policy will cover $25,000.00 per person and $50,000 per accident.
Bodily Injury Liability, also known as BI coverage, is insurance intended to protect you against claims brought against you by other people that may have suffered bodily injuries or death as a result of your negligence or for which you are responsible. BI coverage also provides for a legal defense in the event of lawsuit against you. Claims for bodily injury include medical bills, pain and suffering, permanent injury, loss of consortium, and loss of income, loss of enjoyment of life, and out of pocket expenses such as travel costs for medical care. Bodily Injury Liability does NOT cover you or other people on your policy. Bodily injury liability coverage is not mandatory in Florida, but is mandatory in many states.