Getting hit in an auto accident is trying.
One moment you are simply heading to your destination. Then, in a blink, your vehicle is destroyed. Your dealing with police. You have to deal with insurance companies. And you are in pain.
You are not a Doctor, but you know your body. And you know this soreness is not right. It's like you were hit by a mack truck.
But what do you do? Your not the type to run right away to a lawyer, but you know that the stupid driving of someone else has caused pain and discomfort in your life. And you know enough to know that the insurance company is not your friend.
You know you need to talk to a local St.Pete auto accident lawyer to figure this all out.
We have put together a team of 7 trial lawyers that live and practice in Pinellas County who excel at maximizing the value of car accident settlements.
While you will have an assigned accident attorney for your case, we do leverage the knowledge of our firm by running every case by everyone in a group meeting to determine optimal strategy. We have 3 lawyers that have been awarded Super Lawyers Rising Stars for 2017.
A common question is simply: Do I need to hire a car accident attorney after my wreck?
If you have been in an auto accident where there is property damage and you were not the faulty driver then you need to discuss your case with an accident attorney. And you will need to be examined by a qualified medical professional to determin if you have suffered injuries.
See, to have a car accident claim you need to have been hurt. And the accident can't solely be because of you bad driving.
Car accident settlement are for those who are injured through no fault of their own.
But if you do have property damage to your vehicle in excess of $250, then you have been in a traumatic accident. You may be hurt and not know it. One of the most unfortunate parts of car accidents is that vicitm may not feel the effect of soft tissue damage, strained ligaments, and more for weeks or months after the accident. Alteranatively, victims view their injuries as short term pain that will go away and therefore not "permanent".
Yet a qualified treatment provider may conduct an MRI on the victims ligaments, spinal colum, or should joint and see a genuine injury that is caused by the auto accident. These injuries need significant treatment to fully improve. That's why we encourage everyone to take advantage of their PIP auto insurance and see a medical doctor to determine if the car accident has caused a genuine injury.
Investigation: Insurance companies are always looking for ways to deny that their insured was at fault and therefore no claim exists. In St. Petersburg, we have an accident investigation specialist who works in our office that can go out to any accident scene in Pinellas County to investigate. This includes checking the road for oil spills, checking lighting, and speaking to any witnesses.
Check with treatment providers: We coordinate with your treatment providers to make sure that they are giving you the best possible care. We keep track of the medical bills and medical reports to build the narrative for the insurance companies to explain your injuries. We can execute letters of protection for the doctors promising that they will get paid out of any settlement proceeds so that they will give you the very best treatment possible.
Negotiation: Our most important function is to press hard on the insurance companies to give you the best possible financial settlement for your accident claim. We will even report the insurance company to the state if we think they are acting unfairly. Everything we can do to get the best financial settlement for your case.
Court and litigation: Sometimes the insurance company refuses to play fairly. In these cases we file an auto negligence lawsuit with the State or Federal Court. We attend depositions, motions, hearings, mediation, and trial if needed.
Negotiate medical bills When your case is resolved we can negotiate with your treatment providers to make sure the settlement you receive in dollars is as much as possible.
Auto accident cases include all types of motor vehicles, including cars, buses, vans, trucks, semis, 18-Wheeler's, motor-cycles and more.
Semi-truck accidents on the highway (usually US-19 or I-275) require specialized knowledge and training on behalf of the accident lawyer. That's because Federal Law regulates massive trucks, and a violation of these regulations can result in punitive damages for your auto accident claim.
Significant and/or permanent loss of an important bodily function Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability
Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
Human beings were not designed to withstand the force and trauma of being struck by a multi-ton vehicle traveling at high speeds. Auto accident injuries are varied, and include the following:
1. Head injuries, include brain damage
2. Loss or impairment of limbs
3. Burns and/ or scarring
5. Muscle and neck injuries
6. Back injuries, including herniated disks and other impairments
8. Wrongful death
9. Paralysis or death
Damages that are recoverable by a St. Petersburg car accident lawyer for an injured party are usually divided into two types: Financial and Non-Financial.Financial Damages include:
1. Medical Expenses: These are the first damages that are quantified in a car accident case, and include the initial hospital visit, ambulance ride, MRI’s, CT scans, and rehabilitative treatment, including chiropractic care.
2. Future Medicals: In many cases, doctors will want to continue treatment at varying intervals to maintain and rehabilitate the injured driver even after the case is settled. The amount of rehabilitation required is determined by the doctor.
3. Lost Income or Wages: If an injured driver misses time from work and loses wages, these are quantifiable and included in auto accident settlements.
4. Future Lost Wages: Much like lost wages, if the injured person is unable to work in the foreseeable future for period of time, or if the injured party will need to take time off from work to have a future surgery, then compensation will be considered for these wages.
5. Mileage Reimbursement: Going back and forth to treatment during your rehabilitation phase after an auto accident will likely put substantial miles on your vehicle. Your tampa car accident attorney can factor in these costs when arguing your case.
1. Pain and Suffering: Pain and suffering is the term of the emotional and physical stress caused from the car accident.
2. Mental Anguish: This is the mental sensation of pain, and includes fear, fright, anger, and other mental emotional responses. One common example in auto accidents is the anguish felt when thinking about getting behind the wheel again after a serious wreck.
3. Loss of Consortium: This refers to the loss of the ability to enjoy time with your family due to the accident. This includes the loss of the ability to play with your children or to be intimate with your wife.
In any car accident where no-fault insurance is involved, they may receive compensation when the following occur:
Fees are simple in every St. Pete case.
Simply, there is no money required from you to your accident lawyer.
We take cases on a contingency fee basis. That simple means, at the end of the day, we get a set percentage of what we recover. In other words, the better we do for you, the more we get paid.
The set rate is 33 1/3 % if we settle your case presuit, or before filing a lawsuit. If we file a lawsuit, the fee goes up to 40%. If we are filing a lawsuit it is because we know we can get a significanlty higher money result for you if we do so.
Florida passed a law a few years ago requiring each person who is seeking to use their personal injury protection insurance for medical bills to seek medical treatment within 14 days.
The general rule is to get checked out in any case after an auto accident. You can go to a walk-in clinic or urgent care. Or you can seek the help of a qualified treatment provider who specialized in auto accident victims and treatment. However like everything else in life there are good providers and bad providers. We know the good ones from the bad ones in St. Pete, so we can discuss this at our initial case evaluation meeting.
To get started, simply text us or call us at 727-493-5610, fill out the contact form below, or chat with one of our representatives with the chat bar to the right. For our meeting you will be welcome to come to our St. Petersburg, Downtown office to discuss your case and next actions. We are conveniently located just a few blocks from the I-375 downtown exist, and a few blocks behind All Childrens Hospital. We can UBER you in if your vehicle is out of commission. Of course if your injury prevents you from coming to us we are more than happy to come to you. We have met with clients throughout the St. Petersburg area, including over by the beaches (St. Pete Beach, Treasure Island, Madeira Beach), down to the Soutside of St. Petersburg, and North of Gandy Bridge. Because of our central location we can get to any part of St. Petersburg in less than 20 minutes. If you are unfortunately still in the hospital we can meet with you there, including St. Petersburg General Hospital and Bayfront Hospital. We can even put you on skype with one of our attorneys. If you choose to proceed with our team we can send you digital paperwork to sign. We can have you on your way from the convenience of your couch using a smarphone!