A car accident can leave you confused. You might not think about what you should do after a car accident in Florida until it happens to you. There are things that you can do to protect yourself and your rights under Florida law. You may need to work with a Tampa car accident attorney to protect your right to recover compensation. Here are 10 car accident FAQs for Florida accident victims.
1. What should I do right after a car accident?
There are important things to do right after a car accident occurs. Immediately after a car accident, you should do all of the following:
Call emergency services if anyone is even possibly injured
Call the police in almost all cases
Take photos of the accident scene
Exchange insurance, license and contact information with the other driver
Get contact information for witnesses
Ask witnesses what they saw
Write down what you remember about the crash as soon as you can
2. What should I say on the scene of a car accident?
It’s important not to admit fault on the scene of a car accident. You shouldn’t apologize even if you’re only trying to express sympathy. It’s best to say very little to preserve your legal rights, other than exchanging contact information.
3. Should I go to a doctor if I’m in a car accident?
Florida has strict laws about physical injuries after a car accident. Florida law 627.736 says that you have 14 days to see a doctor after a car accident if you want to claim no-fault insurance benefits for physical injuries. Even if you don’t think you have physical injuries, it’s important to see a doctor.
You may have injuries that you don’t realize. You might also have injuries that don’t show right away. When you see a doctor right away, you preserve your right to compensation for your physical injuries. Also, it’s essential to document the types of injuries you have as soon as possible.
4. How do I know if I have a legal claim after a car accident?
In most cases, Florida no-fault law says that each side covers their own losses after a minor car accident. But when your injuries are serious or permanent, you can bring a legal claim for the person responsible for your injuries.
If someone else’s behavior led to your accident, you might be able to bring a lawsuit for a full range of damages from the crash. The standard is typically whether you have an injury that’s serious like a broken bone or a permanent injury like irreversible nerve damage or scarring.
5. What can I collect if I’m hurt in a car accident?
If you have injuries that qualify for a legal claim, there are many categories of damages that you might be eligible for. Your medical bills are one category, and medical bills include things like physical therapy, safety aids, and mobility devices.
You can also ask for compensation for lost work, the cost of help with chores around the home, your physical suffering, and your emotional pain. Your car accident attorney can help you make sure that you don’t leave anything out.
6. Are there things that I can do to build my case for recovery when I’m hurt in a car accident?
When you’re in a car accident, you can feel helpless. But there are things that you can do to build your claim. You can write down everything that you remember about the accident. You can ask witnesses to do the same, and you can ask to interview them. It’s also important to seek medical treatment, go to follow-up appointments, and follow your medical care plan.
Your accident lawyer can help you take advantage of legal procedures that you can use to ask for evidence in a more formal way. You can ask for records from the other party. You can even ask witnesses to produce records or sit for a deposition to talk about what they observed. All of these things can give you the assurances that you’re taking steps to protect your rights and build your claim.
7. When I’m in a car accident, can I keep driving my car?
You might need to keep driving your car while you wait for your accident claim to resolve. It’s okay to keep driving your car, but you should have an expert perform a car inspection first.
The condition of your car right after the crash might be a significant issue in the case. Having an expert look at your vehicle can give you a third-party that’s ready to testify on your behalf if there are disagreements about your damages or how they occurred.
8. Will my car accident case go to trial?
Most car accident cases don’t go to trial. The vast majority of cases don’t end up going to trial. Building your case can narrow the issues and make it clear to everyone what happened. You may even use a trained mediator to discuss how you can settle the case without needing a formal trial. Your attorney can help you negotiate your case with the other party.
9. How long do I have after a car accident to bring my case?
You have only a short period of time to bring your case after a car accident. The name for the time limit is the statute of limitations. The Florida statute of limitations for negligence cases is four years.
The time limit is strict, and it can be unforgiving. It’s essential to begin working on your case far in advance of the time limitations. Working on your case as soon as possible allows you to preserve crucial evidence and make sure that you meet important deadlines.
10. How can a car accident lawyer help?
Your car accident lawyer can help you make sure you that you do the right things after you’re in a car accident. Whether it’s one day after your accident or many days, there are things that you can do right now to protect your rights and make sure that you handle your case in the best possible way.
At Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys we have the expertise to answer all of your car accident questions. We have handled hundreds of car accident cases and can offer the help you need for a successful accident case.