Miami Gardens, FL, Car Accident Lawyer

It's no secret that Florida attracts visitors from around the globe. With locals, it's common to see everyone rushing from one destination to another. Yet, with more people using the roads, car crashes are a common occurrence.

Miami Gardens has traffic laws that exist to maintain everyone's safety. Regardless, people sustain injuries yearly from car accidents involving negligent drivers. Our Miami Gardens, FL, car accident lawyers can represent your best interests as an auto crash victim (by appointment only).

Car Accidents in Miami Gardens, Florida

Miami Gardens, Florida, is a prominent city in Miami-Dade County and has its fair share of car accidents yearly. Victims must first file claims with their insurance provider to seek compensation when this happens. This is because Florida is a no-fault state.

Sometimes, insurance offers may be unfair or insufficient to cover damages. As an auto accident victim, hiring a Miami Gardens car accident lawyer can be the best next step.

Top Causes of Automobile Accidents in Florida

Car accidents in Miami Gardens happen due to different causes. However, in some cases, several factors are at play. Generally, car accidents may happen due to any of the following:

  • Negligent or Distracted Driving

Negligence while driving can manifest in different ways. This typically refers to being inattentive and neglecting the conditions on the road. As a result, distracted driving is a significant cause of many auto accidents, claiming 3,142 lives in 2020.

  • Drunk or Impaired Driving

Drinking and driving is a problem among drivers. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a common alcohol-related offense.

Although there are TV and radio ads, public service announcements, law enforcement warnings, and information about harsher penalties for drinking and driving. They have not stopped the occurrence of DUI accidents.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 32 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes every day — that's one person every 45 minutes.

  • Ignoring Road Traffic Signals

Traffic lights, signs, and other safety measures are on the roads for our safety and security. Miami Gardens drivers still commit traffic errors.

Some fail to halt when the traffic light turns red or proceed with caution at intersections or pedestrian crossings. These mistakes cause harm to other cars and road users as they cannot prepare for colliding with another car that runs a red light or fails to drive cautiously.

  • Changing Lanes Improperly or Dangerously

It's not uncommon or illegal to change lanes while on the road. However, some drivers do not take adequate measures when doing it. As a result, changing lanes improperly can cause car crashes yearly.

There's a reason why cars have rear-view and side mirrors. Always use them to check for oncoming traffic before changing lanes.

  • Refusing to Yield the Right-of-Way

Every driver must understand traffic laws in special road situations. One case is the issue of the right-of-way. Four-way stops, roads merging into highway traffic, and similar instances are some examples of where people fail to yield the right of way. Refusing to follow traffic rules and regulations in these cases can cause collisions.

  • A Vehicle Suffering Mechanical Fault or Failure

Sometimes, an at-fault party may not act negligently on the road. The accident can happen because the car had a problem, such as a faulty brake. In this case, many parties may be responsible. Our Miami Gardens car accident attorneys will identify the at-fault parties and proceed (by appointment).

Common Injuries That Car Accident Victims Suffer

Suffering injuries in an automobile accident is often a stressful and painful experience. Car accident injuries vary greatly; some collisions may result in minor injuries such as cuts and scrapes. Unfortunately, many car accidents result in much more severe injuries that affect the victim and their loved ones. Below are several injuries people may suffer from car accidents:

  • Broken bones and joints
  • Bruises and scrapes
  • Spinal cord and brain injuries
  • Mental distress and anguish, such as depression and anxiety
  • Permanent disability or disfigurement
  • Whiplash and other neck injuries
  • Wrongful death of a loved one

If you are an accident victim, consult an experienced Miami Gardens attorney to help file an accident injury case to ease your burdens when seeking a fair settlement.

After Sustaining Injuries in a Car Accident, What is Next?

Consulting an attorney is beneficial after being involved in a car accident. However, victims must also have a legitimate claim. This starts with obtaining vital information at a car accident scene.

These details will help an accident lawyer to build a compensation case. The following are the steps to take after a car accident in Miami Gardens, Florida:

Call the Local Authorities

The first responders at a crash include local law enforcement such as the police or the local sheriff's office. Ensure to call 911 immediately after the accident so law enforcement and emergency care providers can be on-site to assist.

The emergency care team treats injured people and tries to stabilize those with severe injuries before conveying them to the hospital. Then, law enforcement closes off the scene until they clear the accident debris and conclude the preliminary investigation.

The investigators record the result of the investigation and make an official report from it. This accident report is crucial evidence for car accident claims.

Seek Medical Help

As mentioned, victims often receive emergency care at a crash site. However, other medical care at a hospital or clinic may be equally vital. Florida drivers can benefit from personal injury protection (PIP) insurance if they have one. However, there's a two-week limit for medical treatment after the accident.

Additionally, car accidents often result in severe injuries. Seemingly minor pain can lead to life-threatening injuries in the future. Finally, medical records help prove your wounds' extent, treatment, and payment.

Notify the Insurance Company

Filing with the insurance company is critical in a car accident regardless of who's at fault. However, avoid admitting fault or improperly filling out official forms. You may lose your chance at a settlement if you do. This is why we advocate having sound legal counsel from a car accident lawyer.

Record Everything

Medical bills are not the only form of paperwork that can be vital for accident victims. Work absence records are also necessary as they show the loss of work-related benefits.

Additionally, note all the property damage costs. If your car was badly damaged or totaled, have repair estimates, details of the vehicle's condition, and maintenance pre- and post-crash.

Contact a Car Accident Lawyer

A fundamental rule for Florida drivers is holding at least $10,000 in property damage liability and personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. This allows victims to claim reimbursement for personal and financial damages.

PIP has limits and may not cover all the prescribed treatment procedures. Therefore, individuals can still file personal injury claims against the negligent driver and other third parties.

However, the process can be frustrating without the proper legal and procedural knowledge. It is well-advised to contact a Miami Gardens car accident lawyer rather than handle your case alone.

Understanding Florida Laws That Affect a Car Accident Case

Florida requires all drivers to hold no-fault insurance or PIP coverage. It's non-negotiable that a driver must have a minimum of $10,000 worth of personal injury protection (PIP) and property damage liability.

After sustaining injuries in an accident, you must understand the legal process and laws that affect compensation. Usually, a victim first files an accident claim with their insurance provider. Then, PIP comes in to cover injuries related to the crash. At this point, it does not matter who's at fault. Still, PIP may not be enough, and a victim can file an injury lawsuit instead of relying on an insurance offer.

This lawsuit involves suing the at-fault driver for damages, sometimes resulting in a fairer outcome than is available with insurance. PIP insurance only covers medical bills and loss of income due to the accident. It does not pay for a person's pain and suffering.

A legal claim for car accident injuries allows a victim to recover non-economic damages and other monetary compensation not covered by PIP. In any case, we advise that an attorney is on hand to offer quality legal advice.

Moreover, we suggest not accepting the first money offered by the insurance company. It may not be enough to cover your losses. Always have an attorney evaluate the case’s facts first.

Florida is a Comparative Negligence State

Florida law allows you to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver when your losses exceed the PIP coverage limit. You can also sue if the injury leads to disfigurement, permanent scarring, or disability. Beneficiaries of deceased relatives may also file a suit.

However, compensation requires strong evidence. Additionally, a plaintiff may not be eligible for full compensation if they were partially at fault. Under Florida's comparative law, they can potentially be offered a settlement relative to the percentage of liability. For example, you can receive 80% compensation if you were only 20% a fault. Additionally, your fault percentage must be less than 50%.

Recovering Damages in a Florida Car Accident Lawsuit

Aside from comparative negligence, several factors affect how much compensation applies in a car accident lawsuit. Some examples are the amount of insurance the at-fault driver has and the severity of a victim's injuries.

Furthermore, the presence of these three types of damages impacts your potential compensation:

Economic or Special Damages

Special damages are measurable losses resulting from a car accident. This list includes all expenses that can estimate to a dollar amount.

Examples include:

  • Bills for in-patient treatment, hospital visits, rehabilitation, alternative treatment, etc.
  • Loss of income due to days off work, lost employment benefits, and loss of earning capacity.
  • Property damage resulting in expenses for repairing or replacing a car (or other vehicles).
General or Non-Economic Damages

General damages refer to all the non-monetary losses in a car accident. These are injuries that affect a victim's mental, emotional, and psychological well-being.

Unlike special damages, they are often difficult to value as there are no receipts or bills. Some examples are:

  • Anxiety, depression, and emotional distress
  • Disfigurement and scarring
  • Loss of companionship, like in a wrongful death case
  • Pain and suffering
  • Physical impairment or disfigurement due to accident injuries
  • Reduced quality or enjoyment of life
  • Shortened lifespan
Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are different from special and general damages. For example, in some car accidents, the at-fault driver may have acted in a willfully negligent manner, maliciously, or shown indifference towards other road users.

In such a case, a civil court may award punitive damages to punish the defendant for this wrongful behavior. Punitive damages also deter other drivers from acting similarly on the road. Under Florida law, you cannot be awarded more than three times the amount of compensatory damages or $500,000, whichever is greater.

Dealing With Insurance Companies After Car Accident Injuries

Ideally, people expect an insurance company to provide a fair and reasonable payout after a car accident. Unfortunately, that isn't always the case. Rather, the insurance company may attempt multiple tactics, such as stalling a claim or providing misinformation.

Don't be fooled by the insurance company's seemingly kind gesture after a crash. They put their interest above yours, so never negotiate with an insurance company without a knowledgeable lawyer.

Essentially, we recommend consulting our lawyers instead of dealing personally with an insurance company. Here are three reasons why:

  • Insurance Companies Prioritize Business Profits

Primarily, insurance companies aim to make a profit. As much as possible, they try to reduce the number of liability payouts to victims. The lower the liability victims collect from an insurer, the more money the company can retain.

  • Insurance Companies Invest in Their Legal Representation

We advise clients to consult an attorney before speaking to insurance companies. Insurers have a well-trained legal team to defend their interests. Most large insurance companies employ corporate defense attorneys. These legal professionals prioritize protecting their client's assets. By hiring an experienced car accident attorney, a victim can protect their interests and level the playing field.

  • Insurance Companies Run a Bureaucratic Environment

Usually, the structure of the insurance companies will hinder work. Victims seeking fair payouts must work through many steps with auto insurance companies. Sometimes, it can take months or years to settle a claim without the quality help of a Miami Gardens car accident lawyer. Then, when the Statute of Limitations expires, a victim may no longer be eligible to file a lawsuit to recover damages.

Contact us today to talk to our lawyers for a complimentary consultation. Our Miami car accident lawyers offer the best help when seeking fair compensation (by appointment).

Why Choose Our Miami Gardens Auto Accident Attorneys?

Not every car accident victim understands how to go about the legal process, and they might not want to hire a lawyer. As a result, they may go through the legal procedures alone. However, negotiating with an insurance company by yourself is not an option we recommend.

Our auto accident attorneys understand the state laws regarding car accidents and experience speaking with insurance companies. With our experience handling accident injury cases, we help clients explore the best possible legal options.

We can investigate the claim, explain the process, gather evidence, secure expert witnesses, and handle court trials. Whichever the situation, we represent the best interests of our clients.

How Much Will My Miami Gardens, FL, Auto Crash Lawyer Charge?

Accident lawyers usually work on a contingency fee basis. We only earn a percentage of the payment from the settlement sum, typically between 33% and 40%. The agreed-upon percentage is entered into the contingency fee agreement.

Our Miami Gardens, FL, Car Accident Injury Lawyers Are Here and Ready to Help

Sustaining injuries in a car accident due to someone else's negligent or malicious actions can be frustrating. Most times, this situation profoundly impacts our loved ones as well. Thankfully, a Miami Gardens car accident lawyer is ready to help.

Auto accidents occur in various ways. We understand that each client is unique and can meet your particular needs. Our attorneys offer free initial consultations to ease your burden.

Call us at (561) 800-8000 to speak with our experienced Florida car accident lawyers today.

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Mr. Frankl was such an asset to have on my team while I picked up the pieces following an accident. Right from the beginning he assisted handling the insurance companies, rental car companies, auto body shops, police reports, it was incredible. His guidance allowed me to focus on the most important thing and that was my medical condition & recovery. Should you find yourself in this unfortunate situation do yourself a favor & trust this man & his expertise. By Damon