Car Accident Lawyer Tampa, FL
A Tampa car accident lawyer knows that car accidents range from extremely severe crashes to minor fender benders. No matter what kind of accident you’re involved in, it’s important to avoid panic and to take a few basic steps in the minutes following your collision.
Car Accident Lawyer Tampa, FL
- Check Everyone for Injuries
- Contact the Police
- Move to Safety
- Swap Information
- Things to Give Your Lawyer After An Accident
- Next Steps
- Statute of Limitations
- Minors and Statutes
- Filing Against Public Entities
- Do Stay Behind the Suspected Drunk Driver
- Do Get Out of the Way and Expect Anything To Happen
- Do Wear Your Seat Belt
- Do Pull Over and Call the Police
- Don’t Try To Pass the Suspected Drunk Driver
- Don’t Follow the Suspected Drunk Driver Too Closely
- Let a Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Help
- 3 Ways to Prevent a Road Rage Accident
- Getting Medical Help After Your Car Accident
- How will a doctor help my car accident claim?
- What should I do when I seek help from the doctor?
- Can I Still Get Compensation If the Accident Was Partly My Fault?
- Why Do I Need a Car Accident Lawyer for Negotiations With the Insurance Company?
- What Happens If the Things I’m Remembering Now Are Different From Statements I Made After the Accident?
- Tampa Car Accident Lawyer
- What Are Common Car Accident Injuries?
- Back and Neck Injuries
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Infographic
- Common Causes of Speeding
- Dangers of Speeding
- How to Deal with Drivers Who Are Speeding
- Should I Only See a Doctor for Severe Injuries?
- If I Believe I’m Partially to Blame for the Accident, Should I Admit Fault?
- What Types of Evidence Do I Need for My Claim?
- Should I Accept the First Settlement from the Other Driver’s Insurance Company?
- How Much Compensation Can I Recover?
- Are Injuries Obvious Immediately After a Car Accident?
- Is Texting a Common Cause of Car Accidents?
- How Much Time Do I Have to File an Accident Claim?
- What Evidence Do I Need for My Car Accident Case?
- How Much Will a Lawyer Cost Me?
- What Can a Car Accident Lawyer Help Out With?
- Reasons for Car Accidents
- Documents and Seasoned Experience
- A Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
- How Do I Prove Negligence In A Car Accident Case?
- Is Florida A Comparative Negligence State?
- Contact our Tampa Car Accident Lawyer
First and foremost, you’ll want to attend to your injuries and the injuries of anyone else involved in the crash. Everything else can wait until your health is evaluated. Second, you’ll want to preserve your legal options by connecting with an experienced Tampa, Florida car accident lawyer from Jeff Murphy Law. Once your health has been prioritized and your legal interests are being protected, your next steps will become clearer. If you’ve just suffered an accident, please consider the following steps –
Beginning with yourself, check everyone for injuries. If you are not seriously injured, check on your passengers. After they have checked out, move to the other drivers and passengers in other cars. If pedestrians are involved, you should check on them as well.
If you are severely injured and unable to check on everyone else, it’s ok to stay put until someone who can help arrives on the scene. If anyone is able to administer first aid, he or she should do so until professional medical personnel arrives.
Some states require you to contact the police after an accident, but even in states where it’s not required, it’s a good idea. Calling 911 will get proper medical personnel there if you or anyone else needs medical assistance. The responding police officer will probably speak with everyone involved in the accident to get a better understanding of what happened. He or she will then write up a report that can be used during the claims process or as evidence for a lawsuit. If you are uncomfortable calling for law enforcement until you have your car accident lawyer on the scene, that’s okay. Call our firm and we’ll help to ensure that law enforcement is alerted while we’re en route to assist you.
If you and the others involved in the accident are able to safely leave your cars, you should move to safety instead of hanging out in the middle of the road. If traffic allows and your physical abilities allow, you may want to push the cars out of the way as well. This can help others to avoid getting in an accident with your already crashed cars.
Before you leave the scene, and even if the police officer has already done this, you should swap information with any other drivers involved in the accident. You’ll want both their contact information and their insurance information. It could benefit you to collect contact information for passengers and witnesses as well. If you have to leave the scene (in an ambulance) before you can obtain this information, your car accident attorney can help to track it down on your behalf.
If you were involved in a car accident, there’s no time to waste. Contact a car accident lawyer so you can get everything squared away as soon as possible, and so you can preserve your legal options and protect your rights.
Things to Give Your Lawyer After An Accident
If you’ve been involved in an accident you are probably thinking of hiring an attorney—we hope that’s something you’re considering. When acquiring an attorney you need to provide them with documents so they can have a full view of your case and create the best tactic to win your case.
Your lawyer may ask you for your insurance policy—they’re going to want to review the type of insurance you have, and the insurance recovery clause that you’re entitled to. Don’t panic if you don’t have a copy of your insurance, your lawyer can obtain one as long as you approve, from the insurance company itself. This is because your lawyer is working for you and needs these records—however, they cannot get them without your approval.
You’ll need to provide evidence of premium payments. They’ll also need to see proof of premium policy coverage. This is because your policy should be sending you statements or bills about your premiums that are due—and your insurance has to be up to date and paid for it to be active during your case, and to cover the accident that you had. You should provide this evidence so that your lawyer can prove your policy is paid up and in force.
You also need to provide information exchanged at the accident scene—witnesses’ names, phone numbers, emails, photos, and more. This is because your attorney can use this later, even if you’ve already spoken to those involved.
You also need to provide information that was provided to you by the police. In most cases, the police are called to the scene of an accident, and they are required to draft an accident report. This includes a diagram that shows where the various cars and parties were during the accident. The report has an on-scene officer’s initial impressions of the cause of the accident, too. This report is crucial for your attorney to get a true sense of your case. Providing this to your attorney—even if you don’t have a copy, they can get one for you—helps your case immensely.
You also want to acquire tickets that were related to the accident, if you were given one. If you were charged with something like “failure to yield” it can be used in your case too. And last but not least, get any photographs of the damage to your car and the crime scene in general to your lawyer. If you did not take photos, the insurance representative may have.
Florida car accidents typically bring about a lot of questions. You may wonder if you are okay immediately following the collision. Then, your mind fixates on the amount of property damage caused by the wreck. Then, as you go to the hospital and get checked out, reality sets in. You are in over your head financially and you have no idea how to move forward.
Thankfully, for victims struggling with injuries and property loss after an accident, there is a way forward. Car accident injury claims can help you recover some or all of your losses. However, you cannot delay. You must file before the statute of limitations runs out. A Tampa car accident lawyer from Jeff Murphy Law can answer all your questions and help pursue damages against the at-fault driver.
Statute of Limitations
Every state has different laws regarding personal injury statutes. That means that if you have not filed within that limitation, then you lose your right to seek damages. In Florida, victims have up to four years from when they were injured to file their claim. However, depending on the age of the victim(s) and the negligent party or entity, you may have a longer timeline. A car accident lawyer in Tampa can determine when exactly the statute for your case expires.
Minors and Statutes
Minors are not beholden to the same statute of limitations as adults. Most states agree that the clock should not start against a minor until they are 18. Therefore, if you are in an accident at the age of 16, then you have until you turn 18 plus the limitation, meaning that you would have until the age of 19 or 20 to file a personal injury claim, depending on your state.
Filing Against Public Entities
Unfortunately, if you wanted to file a claim against a public entity, you have a lot less time. For example, if you were riding a public bus when the accident occurred, you may only have a very limited time to file a lawsuit against the city. While this seems unfair, you can consult with a Tampa car attorney to find out if there is any leeway on the stricter timeline. For instance, if you sustain severe injuries or were in a coma, you may be able to cut through the red tape and file later than is typically permitted.
When you are in a car accident, you probably want to file sooner rather than later, unless you are a minor. However, to understand the statute of limitations and get a better idea of where your potential claim stands, you should contact an experienced car accident lawyer. Don’t wait to discuss your claim; talk to a lawyer, and figure out how to move forward before your time runs out.
Sit Down with Attorney Jeff Murphy to Answer the Question: What Does it Mean to be Fully Covered in an Auto Accident?
Do’s and Don’ts To Avoid Accidents Involving Drunk Drivers
Do Stay Behind the Suspected Drunk Driver
You want to make sure there’s plenty of room between you and the driver you believe may be drunk. Drunk people have a habit of doing anything, at any time, with no warning at all. You don’t want to be in the line of fire should they suddenly decide to swerve into another lane without signaling or try to turn left from the rightmost lane.
Do Get Out of the Way and Expect Anything To Happen
Your car accident lawyer in Tampa, at Jeff Murphy Law, might advise you to pull over for some amount of time if there’s a drunk driver on the road. That’s because your attorney knows how unexpected drunk drivers can be behind the wheel of a car. From driving on the sidewalk to stopping dead in the middle of the highway, your attorney has probably seen it all.
Do Wear Your Seat Belt
While you should always wear your seat belt when you’re in a car, it’s even more important when there’s a drunk driver on the road. Drunk drivers don’t tend to cause minor fender benders; accidents involving a drunk driver tend to be more catastrophic because the driver may have no idea of what they’re doing or how it could be dangerous.
Do Pull Over and Call the Police
When it’s safe for you to do so, pull over and call the police. Describe the vehicle, including its license plate, make, model, color, location and direction of travel. Tell the police what the driver was doing that led you to suspect impairment. Your car accident lawyer in Tampa, can’t recommend talking on the phone while you drive — distracted driving can be as deadly as drunk driving.
Don’t Try To Pass the Suspected Drunk Driver
It’s not safe to be close enough to the drunk driver to try to pass. The driver could decide to turn left in the middle of the interstate, straight into your passenger side door. You never know when the driver may lose control of his car altogether. A car accident lawyer in Tampa, FL, might advise you to just hang back and wait until it’s safe to move up and pass.
Don’t Follow the Suspected Drunk Driver Too Closely
Make sure to leave at least three to four car lengths between you and the suspected drunk driver, to give yourself plenty of room to maneuver in the event he loses control of his car. Your Jeff Murphy Law attorney might have other guidelines on how to avoid drunk drivers on the road.
Let a Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Help
If you have been injured in a car accident caused by another party, contact our car accident lawyers from Jeff Murphy Law. Our legal team will work diligently to get you the financial compensation you deserve for the losses your injuries have caused you to suffer. Call our office today for a free and confidential consultation.
3 Ways to Prevent a Road Rage Accident
Getting into an accident is something everyone tries to avoid, but when things get heated on the road, anything can happen. Road rage can become a real danger, especially during stressful traffic times or weather conditions. A car accident lawyer in Tampa understands how road rage increases the risks of being injured in a crash.
Some of the reasons why drivers exhibit road rage includes:
- People running late for work or an appointment, causing them to lose their patience.
- Many drivers feel anonymous around other drivers they think they will never see again, thus they feel more comfortable doing disrespectful things like cutting other drivers off, tailgating, and honking more than necessary.
- Some drivers are coming from an area where aggressive driving is the norm, especially big-city drivers.
It is good to understand how to play defense when you see an angry driver, and it’s even more important to know how to keep situations from escalating, especially when you yourself can become the angry driver. A Tampa car accident lawyer can explain how a victim’s road rage can hurt their car accident lawsuit.
Plan Ahead and Stay Calm
It’s always better if you’re not in a hurry to get to where you’re going. This automatically will keep your stress levels lower while you’re driving. You can also do other things to stay calm like listening to good music, keeping your grip on the steering wheel relaxed, and deep breathing. It’s helpful to remember that everyone has their reasons for doing things the way they do them, such as slow drivers. There are many reasons someone could be driving slow, such as being lost or having car troubles.
Avoid Engaging with Angry Drivers
While it’s sometimes tempting to get mad at another angry driver, this could escalate the situation into dangerous territory. Resist the temptation, let tailgaters go by, ignore angry gestures, honking horns, and try not to make eye contact. Keep as much space between the two of you as possible to stay out of an accident. It’s always good to make positive gestures when relevant, such as when someone lets you merge into traffic.
Don’t Drive Home
If there is an overly aggressive driver that decides to follow you, do not drive home. Instead, drive to the nearest police station. It’s better not to find out what that person has in their mind! As well, if an angry driver stops at a stoplight and gets out of their car, do your best not to engage with them and do not get out of your vehicle.
Getting Medical Help After Your Car Accident
After you have been in a car accident, your car accident lawyer wants you to know that one of the best things you can do for your health and for your claim is to get medical attention as quickly as possible. You may be thinking “Sure, medical treatment will be helpful if I have any serious injuries!” However, you should get medical help regardless of whether you have serious injuries or not. First, even if you do not have any injuries that present right away, getting medical help after a car accident will ensure that a doctor gives you a full physical exam to see if there is any head trauma or internal injuries. Second, your doctor can play a huge part in your car accident claim.
How will a doctor help my car accident claim?
Most insurance companies will not take your claim seriously if you have not gone to a doctor. This is because you will have a harder time proving that you were injured in the accident or that your injuries are serious enough to warrant compensation. Your doctor will take detailed notes and can show:
- You were injured and that your injuries were a direct result of the car accident you were in
- Your injuries were caused by a certain type of accident (a rear-end accident, a head-on accident)
- You sought medical attention and are going through the proper treatment plan
- You have a detailed report of all of the injuries you sustained and the severity of the injuries
- The insurance company that you are not making up your injuries and that you are doing the right thing and getting help from a medical professional
What should I do when I seek help from the doctor?
When you go to your doctor after a car accident, you will want to be open and honest with them about what happened. Let them know you were in a car accident, give them details (if you can remember them) about how it occurred and how you got injured, and let them know the timeline. You will want to know what kinds of injuries you have, how long you should expect to have these injuries, and what that means for doing your daily activities and going back to work. These are all pertinent factors to your car accident claim. Your lawyer can gather the information your doctor provides and put it together in your claim.
Common Questions About Florida Car Accident Claims
Can I Still Get Compensation If the Accident Was Partly My Fault?
First of all, you should know that it’s common for innocent drivers to feel somewhat responsible when they actually aren’t. You shouldn’t expect yourself to have superhuman reflexes when driving down the road. Often, these feelings are just the result of the panic and confusion that appear after a traumatic experience. A car accident lawyer in Tampa, is in a much better position to evaluate the circumstances of your case with a cool head and let you know what to expect.
Even if the police report finds you partially responsible for the accident, you can still file a compensation claim. At Jeff Murphy Law, we can often reach a favorable settlement with the insurance company. The total amount of compensation you receive usually takes into account the level of fault of the other party.
Under no circumstances should you accept responsibility for the accident. Don’t apologize to the other driver, sign any statements admitting responsibility or speak to the other driver’s insurance company. Even with your own insurance company, you should avoid giving the impression you caused the accident. Just limit yourself to reporting that an accident happened and let your lawyer handle any legal matters.
Why Do I Need a Car Accident Lawyer for Negotiations With the Insurance Company?
This question comes up because people have the mistaken idea that their insurer wants to help them. In reality, insurance companies are mainly interested in limiting payouts and increasing profits.
On the other hand, a car accident lawyer in Tampa is on your side. At Jeff Murphy Law, we take the time to listen to your case, understand your needs and show you the options you have. We want you to get the full compensation you deserve. That’s something you can’t say about your insurance company.
What Happens If the Things I’m Remembering Now Are Different From Statements I Made After the Accident?
This situation would normally be a big problem for drivers. The insurance company is already looking for an excuse to reject your claim. This is one reason you should avoid signing any statements after the accident.
Fortunately, your car accident lawyer in Tampa has experience with this type of situation. We know how to manage it with testimony from medical professionals and other witnesses. The truth is that it’s relatively common for people to misremember exact details following a traumatic accident.
Tampa Car Accident Lawyer
If you do get into a car accident with an angry driver, especially if it’s not your fault, consult with an experienced car accident lawyer Tampa, victims trust from Jeff Murphy Law; we will help ensure your case is handled fairly and that you receive the compensation you deserve for your vehicle damages and medical bills.
What Are Common Car Accident Injuries?
With adrenaline flooding your system during and after a car accident, you may not notice all the injuries you sustained. Not knowing whether to blame that pain in your neck on work stress or the accident could cost you. Knowing common car accident injuries helps you and your Jeff Murphy Law car accident lawyer in Tampa, know how to proceed with your case.
Depending on the force of the collision and how your body moves, you could suffer whiplash after your car accident. Any discomfort or pain in your back or neck could indicate whiplash, so ask your doctor to run a few tests to understand the root cause. Strained ligaments and muscles may take several weeks to recover, but they rarely result in permanent damage.
Even a minor fender bender may cause bruising. While your seatbelt keeps you secure in your seat, it may damage capillaries. Check yourself for bruising or contusions, which usually clear within a week or two.
Back and Neck Injuries
Other than whiplash, the force of a car accident may injure your neck and back. Talk with any car accident lawyer and learn how common these injuries are. Specific examples of back injuries suffered in a motor vehicle accident include ruptured and herniated spinal discs. If you experienced back or neck injuries before the car accident, the legal professionals of Jeff Murphy Law recommend letting an orthopedist examine you to make sure the accident did not worsen your condition.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Even if you emerged from the car accident without a mark on your body, you may have sustained emotional or mental damage. Severely stressful situations may trigger post-traumatic stress disorder. Symptoms include trouble sleeping, experiencing anxiety about getting into a car after the accident and nightmares. If you even suspect you may experience PTSD after your collision, share your concerns with your car accident lawyer in Tampa. Together, you may determine the root cause of your symptoms and get the help you need.
Traumatic Brain Injury
One essential reason to have a doctor examine you after a car accident, no matter how minor, is you may have a traumatic brain injury and not realize it. These injuries may have a life-altering effect, changing the way your brain processes information and emotions. Your medical team can help treat your brain injury and help you recover, but it could become an extensive process.
Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Infographic
Common Causes of Speeding
Speeding continues to be one of the most common causes of car accidents in the U.S. Despite the known dangers of speeding, some people still choose to disobey the speed limit and put everyone on the road in danger. Here are some of the most common causes of speeding.
- Running late. In today’s busy world, many people are running late to work, doctor’s appointments and other important places. Some people may decide to drive above the speed limit to make it to their destination on time.
- Heavy traffic. Sitting in heavy traffic for a while can be indeed frustrating. Unfortunately, some drivers may become angry and resort to aggressive driving behaviors, like speeding.
- Alcohol use. Drivers who operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol are more likely to have poor judgment. They might not realize what the actual speed limit is and drive too fast.
- Familiarity with the road. When people drive on the same road day by day, they naturally become familiar with it. They may feel so comfortable driving on the road that they drive faster than they should.
Dangers of Speeding
As a car accident lawyer can confirm, speeding continues to be one of the riskiest actions a driver can take. When drivers drive above the speed limit, they are more likely to lose control of their vehicle and get into an accident. If they see a hazard on the road, such as a pothole or broken down vehicle, they won’t have enough time to safely stop their vehicle.
How to Deal with Drivers Who Are Speeding
Even if you are a safe and responsible driver, it does not mean other drivers are. That is why it is important to be aware of your surroundings on the road. If you recognize dangerous driving behaviors, like speeding, you should try to keep your distance from those drivers.
If the driver behind you is tailgating your vehicle, lightly tap your brakes to let the driver know he or she is following too close. Don’t feel pressure to drive above the speed limit just because the other driver is impatient.
If you were injured in a car accident caused by another motorist, you may want to talk to a car accident lawyer in Tampa, Florida. You may be entitled to receive compensation for your losses. Here are some frequently asked questions and answers about car accidents.
Should I Only See a Doctor for Severe Injuries?
Car accidents can result in many injuries, ranging from mild to severe. However, your injuries do not have to be severe to necessitate medical care. Even seemingly minor injuries should get examined by a doctor promptly to reduce the risk of future complications. Plus, some car accident injuries, like whiplash and concussions, do not always show symptoms immediately, so you might think you’re fine.
If I Believe I’m Partially to Blame for the Accident, Should I Admit Fault?
No. Even if you think you drove a few miles above the speed limit or were daydreaming at the time of the accident, admitting fault will not do you any good. In fact, it could harm your claim. Instead, allow a judge or jury to determine who was at fault.
What Types of Evidence Do I Need for My Claim?
In order to have a successful car accident, you will need to provide sufficient evidence that the other driver was at fault. Good pieces of evidence may include a police report, photos of the accident scene and witness statements. A car accident lawyer in Tampa can assist you in obtaining the evidence.
Should I Accept the First Settlement from the Other Driver’s Insurance Company?
After a car accident, the other driver’s insurance company will likely try to contact you. They may try to settle with you right away. While this might sound tempting, you should resist the urge to accept an early settlement, as it likely is not a favorable one. Allow your lawyer time to negotiate a fair settlement.
How Much Compensation Can I Recover?
It largely depends on the individual circumstances in your case. There are many factors that can influence your settlement, such as the cost of your past and future medical bills, lost wages, emotional distress, and pain and suffering. Your lawyer can assess your case and estimate the value of your claim from there.
Are Injuries Obvious Immediately After a Car Accident?
Believe it or not, not every car accident injury presents symptoms right away. Whiplash, for example, may not be obvious until several days after an accident. That’s why it’s important to seek medical care right after being in a car accident, even if you feel fine. A doctor will properly diagnose and treat your injury so that you don’t have further complications.
Is Texting a Common Cause of Car Accidents?
Yes. Thousands of people are injured in car accidents every year due to texting and driving. When drivers read or respond to a text, they have to take their eyes off the road, which can result in an accident. If you were in a car accident caused by a driver who was texting, you may be entitled to compensation.
How Much Time Do I Have to File an Accident Claim?
The statute of limitations to file a car accident claim in Florida is four years after the accident. While that might seem like a long time, you shouldn’t put it off. It’s important to discuss your case with a car accident lawyer in Tampa as soon as possible. He or she can assess the strength of your case and help you pursue a timely claim.
What Evidence Do I Need for My Car Accident Case?
In order to have a strong car accident case, you need to obtain the proper evidence. For example, you may want to obtain a copy of the police report because it contains critical information about the collision, such as when and where it occurred and the names of everyone involved. Other important pieces of evidence may include photos of the accident scene, medical records, and auto repair bills.
How Much Will a Lawyer Cost Me?
Some people are hesitant to hire a lawyer after a car accident because they assume they can’t afford one. Fortunately, however, most car accident lawyers work on a contingency fee. This means that your lawyer will most likely take a percentage of your settlement.
Schedule a consultation with a car accident lawyer in Tampa at Jeff Murphy Law today.
What Can a Car Accident Lawyer Help Out With?
A car accident lawyer can help out with many different things. They are an extremely useful tool to have when going through a difficult car accident case. Insurance companies generally wish to settle for lower amounts than a victim deserves and this is one of the most beneficial areas where legal counsel can help out. They also possess a large amount of information when it comes to the different details of a car accident. Reach out to Jeff Murphy Law today for help with your car accident case.
Reasons for Car Accidents
Car accidents happen for a variety of different reasons. One of the leading causes of accidents is distracted driving. When someone gets behind the wheel and is too focused on other things it can greatly reduce their attention to driving. As drivers become more and more relaxed while driving so does their attention to other drivers on the road. Far too often people are attempting to text or change the music on their phones while driving. When they do this they have to take their eyes off the road and when they do so it can lead to accidents. Drunk driving is another leading cause of car accidents. When someone operates a vehicle while under the influence their response time is typically slower. They’re also easily distracted and their mind is not fully aware and prepared for operating a vehicle.
Documents and Seasoned Experience
Car accidents have a lot of moving parts when it comes to what comes in the days and months after the accident. Police reports will need to be examined and many documents will need to be filed with the correct authorities and entities. A car accident lawyer can assist with these documents and also understands any timelines that exist under the statute of limitations. Along with this help also comes their experience with other previous cases. They understand the nuances that arise and can steer a case in the right direction ensuring that compensation is received for their clients.
A Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
If you have been involved in a car accident then it’s important to figure out who was at fault. If the accident was caused by a negligent driver failing to focus on their duty as a driver then it’s time to seek out assistance. A lawsuit may be filed against that driver and there also may be a battle with insurance. Insurance companies like to settle quickly and for a lower amount than is often deserved. If you received injuries in your accident then the claim may be worth a high financial amount. Things like doctor visits, therapy sessions, hospital bills, lost wages from missing work, and more all may be available. A financial amount may also be determined to cover any pain and suffering that was inflicted too. Reach out to a car accident lawyer in Tampa, FL from Jeff Murphy Law for assistance with your car accident case.
How Do I Prove Negligence In A Car Accident Case?
In Florida, defendants commit negligence when they fail to exercise a reasonable measure of care that’s expected of them in order to reduce the risk of them causing harm to another. In other words, defendants should avoid texting and driving, speeding, turning against the light, running a yellow or red light, drunk driving, etc.
Is Florida A Comparative Negligence State?
Yes, Florida is a comparative negligence state. But what does this mean? It means that a court may reduce your total recovery amount by your percentage of fault. The court literally compares your negligence with that of the at-fault driver. For example, suppose that a personal injury judge awards you $50,000 in compensatory damages but states that you’re 50% at fault. In such a case, the defendant will only have to pay you $25,000, and you’re responsible for the other $25,000.
Now, you may wonder what a judge considers when deciding your percentage of fault. Let’s suppose you were driving while distracted so that you could’ve, but didn’t, avoid the speeding drunk driver who hit you. A judge may say that had you kept your eyes on the road, your injuries wouldn’t be as severe. Here’s another example. The light for oncoming traffic has turned red, giving you the right away to turn and merge. There are three lanes of traffic for the street that you’re turning into. Rather than stay in your respective lane, you make a wide turn and merge into the farthest lane. At this same time, it just so happens that a speeding driver runs the red lights and rear-ends you. But had you stayed in your lane, this accident could’ve been avoided. Of course, the exact percent a judge will hold against you can never be assumed.
That said, you should never tell an officer, who arrives at the scene of the accident, that you believe you’re partially negligent or behaved negligently. You may exaggerate your actions or give the officer information that there’s no evidence to prove, and any testimony that’s against your self-interest is admissible in court to be used against you. Rather, let your lawyer investigate the accident scene and speak on your behalf.
Contact our Tampa Car Accident Lawyer
Tampa Car Accident Lawyer Google Reviews
“Jeff Murphy is the BEST personal injury attorney in Tampa without question. I cannot say enough wonderful things about Mr. Murphy. From the moment I contacted him regarding my accident I was treated with kindness and professionalism. With Jeff you are treated like an actual client and not just another file. He responds (not just a paralegal) immediately to calls and emails which is rare in the personal injury legal field. He went above and beyond my expectations and is fights for you to get the very best possible results. I am so grateful for his help and expertise and would recommend him to anyone I know that needs a GREAT attorney. Don’t waste your time with another personal injury attorney/firm that does not know your name and do not return your calls…don’t fall for advertising, big firms are not better! I highly recommend calling Jeff Murphy.” Chelsey M.
Why Should I Choose Jeff Murphy Law To Represent Me?
You should choose Jeff Murphy Law to represent you because Jeff Murphy has 30 years of experience you can trust. In fact, he’s even one of the reputable few to receive an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, which is the highest-ranking to bestow upon a lawyer for his legal ability and ethics. In other words, you know you’re getting one of the very best and most qualified personal injury experts when you hire Jeff. What’s more, he has a proven track record of success, ensuring that his clients are adequately compensated whether they want to go to trial or settle.
For more information on how a car accident lawyer in Tampa, FL can help you become whole again, all new clients should call us at (813) – 553 – 5517 and existing clients should call us at (813) – 443 – 5553.