A car accident can be a traumatic event, which can lead to health and mental issues immediately and years later. If you need a New Port Richey auto accident lawyer to secure a settlement that will help you recover, make sure you pick the right one.
I was hurt in a car accident in Pasco County. What are my next steps?
1. Go to the Doctor: If you are hurt, you need to seek medical help. Whether it is a trip to the emergency room, your primary care, or a walk-in clinic, Florida Statute’s Personal Injury Protection (PIP) law requires you to seek initial care within 14 days of your accident.
2. Seek an Auto Wreck Lawyer Who Represents Car Accident Victims: An attorney will handle all aspects of your car accident claim to ensure a maximum settlement. Our Pasco auto accident attorneys operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning no money is collected up front, and all fees are collected out of the settlement received.
Do I Really Need a Lawyer If I am in a Car Accident In Pasco County?
Accident Lawyers Deal With Insurance Claims Adjusters On Your Behalf
Despite how nice the claims adjusters seem on the phone, they do not have your best interest at heart. They have hundred of hours of training where they are taught to be sweet as pie to you, and to minimize the amount of money that is paid out to you.
The claims adjuster works for the insurance company. Not you.
Far too often, injured person settle their claims with a nice insurance adjuster at the outset of the case. They have not treated to the point where they have been recovered as much as science allows. Sometimes they have not treated at all.
That injured person may settled their cases for thousands on hundreds of thousands less than there case is worth. And that injured person may walk into a car accident law firm like ours and express sour grapes. Unfortunately, once the injured person has settled his or her case, there is nothing a lawyer can do to fix the problem.
A car accident attorney has the training and experience to handle the adjuster to advocate on your behalf. The right lawyer can evaluate your claim during your treatment to make sure that you are getting a fair and equitable settlement to your car accident case.
Your Lawyer Will Coordinate with Your Treatment Providers
Picking a Doctor and the right course of treatment can be a difficult process. Coordinating with the treatment providers to make sure proper documentation is provided is even more difficult.
Your car accident lawyer will track the medical treatment and reports provided by your treatment providers. The New Port Richey Car Accident lawyer makes sure the reports and information is organized in such a way to “tell your story” to the insurance company when it comes time for settlement.
Your New Port Richey Car Accident Lawyer Will Prove That the Accident Was Not Your Fault
Getting treatment is only half of the battle. Your auto wreck lawyer is responsible for making sure that liability in your case can be proven at trial. Liability simply means proving that the person who caused your injuries was at fault. Your Pasco negligence attorney uses police reports, witness statements, admissions by the other party, accident reconstruction testimony and more to prove liability on the part of the at fault party.
You want a settlement in your case. However, the best way for your attorney to get an excellent settlement is to show the insurance companies and their lawyers that the case is strong enough to win convincingly in trial.
Your Car Accident Lawyer Will Demand a Settlement to Fairly Compensate You for Your Injuries
After your lawyer is able to tell your story by gathering evidence to prove medical damages and liability, your attorney will attempt to settle your case before trial. This is often called the “demand” letter, but is usually much more like a book then a letter with the supporting documentation.
If your attorney and the insurance company is reasonable, he will be able to settle your case. Otherwise, he will:
Finally, You Accident Lawyer Will Litigate the Case For You
If your car accident attorney cannot settle your case for a value that is fair and equitable to you, he will need to set the case for trial.
Litigation includes depositions, the discovery process, and further chances to settle. If an agreement cannot be settled, your case will proceed to trial.
Our attorneys are experienced, aggressive trial attorneys with more than 150 cases to jury trial between us. If you’d like to consult with one of our car accident attorneys in New Port Richey, contact us at 727-753-0049 or submit a contact form.
Definitions of the Law
Injuries: Naturally, the most important element to a recovery in a car accident case is the extent of injuries suffered. Generally the greater the injuries, the longer it takes to recover.For instance, broken bones, scarring, and permanent disfigurement demand a greater recovery than soft tissue injuries, aches, and pains.
Your medical treatment and corresponding medical bills is is the greatest evidence available to your New Port Richey Car Accident Attorney when settling your Pasco Car Accident claim. Your car accident lawyer will work with your medical providers to make sure all the documentation, reports, and conclusions are gathered to be utilized in settlement negotiations.
Liability: To recover from the at fault party or the uninsured motorist coverage, your Car accident attorney must establish liability. That means your lawyer must establish that you were the victim of the negligence of another.
In some cases, the element of liability is easier to establish. A client who is injured because he was rear ended at a stop light on Main Street in New Port Richey will have an easier time establishing liability than a client who who was merging into the lane of another. Generally speaking, the stronger the liability claim, the greater the recovery.
Coverage: A preliminary issue to be resolve by your attorney is the amount of coverage available to you to help pay for your injuries and final settlement.
- PIP: Florida is a “no fault’ insurance state. That means everybody who is driving must carry a certain minimum amount of Personal Injury protection, or “PIP”, to cover at the very least the initial expenses and medical bills received after an accident. PIP coverage, if properly invoked, will pay 80% of your medical bills even while your case is pending.
- At Fault Liability: This is the first coverage to review. The at fault party’s liability insurance will often provide the bulk of the monies available for your settlement.
- Uninsured Motorists: Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Pasco County is 1st party insurance Coverage that you have in case you are in an accident where the at fault person has no insurance or is under-insured. If you have exhausted your “PIP” coverage and the at fault party had a minimal amount of coverage, then you will turn to your Uninsured Motorist Coverage to cover the balance of the value of your case.
You must consult with your attorney early in the process to discuss which coverages are available to you.
How Does My Attorney Prove Fault?
Your car accident lawyer in new Port Richey will look at:
- Police Reports by New Port Richey Police, Port Richey Police, Pasco County Sheriff’s office, or Florida Highway patrol.
- Interview with the investigation officers) from the agencies above.
- Testimony of the at-fault driver on scene
- Testimony of the at fault driver at a hearing on a subsequent traffic ticket if any
- Photos of the damaged vehicles
- Estimates from the car repair shops
- Accident reconstruction experts in certain cases
- Brake experts in certain cases
- Testimony at deposition of the parties in the case if a lawsuit is filed
- Request for admissions or interrogatories if a lawsuit is filed.
- Testimony at trial if a lawsuit is filed