Looking for a Car Accident Lawyer in the Greater Tampa Bay Area?
Serious auto accidents can require the experience of a car accident injury attorney. And when you want the best guidance, turn to Brooks Law Group serving Florida.
Your insurance company may want you to think the claims process is simple. However, the way a claim is submitted and handled can be the difference between getting the financial help you need to get your life back on track and getting left with nothing but a stack of bills.
Every day in our offices across Florida we hear from people who are seriously injured. Some even lost a loved one because of a car accident.
A serious car accident can leave someone physically and financially vulnerable, ill-equipped to fight an insurance company and their trained legal team on their own. Often, the tragedy becomes even more difficult for the victim because their insurance company works hard to withhold the financial help the injured person needs to get their life back on track.
An experienced car accident attorney will ensure that the insurance company provides you with the full benefits you need and recovers any additional damages you are eligible for.
If you or a loved one have been hurt in an auto accident, we want to help you get the compensation you need.
Hearing about your legal options is free, and if you decide you want us as your Florida auto accident attorney, you don’t pay anything if we don’t win your case.
Causes of Car Accidents
If drivers are careful, sometimes they can avoid accidents. However, many accidents happen because another driver isn’t paying attention
These are the most common causes of severe car accident cases:
Driving Under the Influence:
Driving under the influence (DUI), also known as driving while intoxicated (DWI) or operating a vehicle while impaired (OWI). No matter how you spell it, besides a few exceptions, it is a criminal offense in the United States. The first time will show up on your criminal record as a misdemeanor, but repeat offenses will be charged as felonies.
A DUI involves operating a vehicle, such as a car, truck, or motorcycle, while under the influence of a mind-altering substance that inhibits your ability to drive well.
When a driver is either drunk, high, or under the influence of drugs, it negatively affects their ability to control their motor vehicle. Usually, the substance is alcohol or cannabis, but even some prescription medications have side effects that impair quick reflexes and good judgment.
DUI is one of the most common crimes in the United States. Every year, police arrest one million people for DUI.
Penalties for DUI convictions can include jail time, fines, loss of driver’s license, and mandatory education courses. DUI can be fatal in the most serious cases due to impaired decision-making or physical incapacity.
When speeding, motorists are a greater risk to themselves, their passengers, and other motorists on the road. Speeding increases the chance of crashing, and when crashes occur, the impact can be devastating.
High speed crashes are more likely to cause serious injury or death to the parties involved. In addition to the danger to the driver and passengers, speeding also causes damage to property.
A speeding vehicle is more likely to cause property damage in the event of a crash. A driver caught speeding may be subject to a traffic ticket or other penalties. If you speed and cause a car accident, you may also be held liable for the damages caused.
Severe Weather Conditions:
There are many dangers to driving in severe weather conditions. Slippery roads, low visibility, and high winds can all lead to accidents.
In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 6,000 accidents occur each year in the United States due to severe weather conditions.
Certain factors cause drivers to be at greater risk of a car accident, especially poor vehicle maintenance. If the car, truck, or SUV has worn tires, broken headlights, or bad brakes, its chances of causing an accident increase.
When inclement weather occurs, drivers need to take caution when operating their vehicles. Drivers should slow down, increase their distance from other vehicles, consider postponing their travels, and avoid sudden stops and turns.
Experts estimate that distracted driving accounts for up to 25% of all car accidents in the United States. Distracted drivers are a serious problem that can lead to death or injury for those involved.
Common distractions for drivers include any activities that take the driver’s eyes off the road or their hands off the wheel.
- Cell phone calls
- Loud music
- Adjusting the radio
The best way to prevent tragedies related to distracted driving is to make sure that all drivers make safety a priority when they’re on the road.
Rollovers can cause accidents, but there are many other factors that can lead to the incident. Uneven ground or excessive speed when driving around a curve or corner can cause the vehicle to tip.
In some cases, a rollover can be due to oversteering or a vehicle defect. SUVs are particularly susceptible to rollovers due to the structure of the vehicle. If a rollover crushes the roof of the vehicle, it can be deadly. It can lead to severe head and neck injuries.
In 2016, There Were More Than 15,000 Automobile Accidents Across Polk, Hillsborough, and Pinellas Counties in Florida.
Running Lights and Stop Signs:
When drivers fail to stop at a stop sign or run a red light, they can cause serious accidents that could result in injuries or fatalities. Drivers endanger themselves and other people when they are careless and disregard traffic signals.
Disobeying traffic signals and signs is a serious driving infraction that can put innocent, unsuspecting pedestrians and motorists in harm’s way.
Head-On Collisions / Wrong Way Driving:
The most common way that wrong-way driving can occur is when a driver takes a wrong turn onto a one-way road. This can happen due to driver inexperience or impaired judgment, but sometimes it’s because the driver is confused or unfamiliar with the area.
When a vehicle is traveling in the wrong direction down a one-way street, the speed of both cars results in a higher rate of impact. Those who are at fault for this type of vehicle collision may be subject to criminal charges depending on the situation.
Head on collisions are a very dangerous form of car crash. When a vehicle enters a Florida interstate highway in the wrong direction or veers outside its lane on a two-lane street, the resulting head-on crash can be devastating to the occupants of both vehicles.
Reckless driving can include any behavior from excessive speeds to drag racing to tailgating. When drivers engage in reckless behavior, they put themselves and other motorists at risk.
Drivers who follow too close are more likely to hit the car in front of them, and drag racers put themselves and other drivers in danger because they go fast and don’t pay attention to traffic signals or laws. Both activities are illegal and can lead to serious injury and death.
Lane Changes / Highway Accidents:
Lane changes can contribute to highway accidents in several ways.
- When drivers make a lane change without first properly signaling or checking their rearview and side mirrors, they can cause a crash by cutting off another driver.
- Depending on the speed at which they move, drivers can create hazardous conditions by making their lane change too quickly.
- Lane changes can cause accidents if drivers fail to pay attention to oncoming traffic when they make their move.
Florida is home to many dangerous interstates and divided highways. Changing lanes on a highway without taking the necessary precautions can cause serious and deadly car crashes.
Seeing a Doctor After a Car Accident Injury
If you are involved in a car accident, it is important to ensure your physical health. Even if you or your passengers do not feel any initial pain or injuries, it is important to get a medical evaluation. Internal injuries can go undetected and can be life-threatening.
One of the most common injuries after a car accident is whiplash. Whiplash can cause potentially serious long-term problems such as disc herniation and spinal cord injury in extreme cases.
It is best to see a doctor as soon as possible following a car accident in order to receive identification and treatment for any injuries caused by a vehicle collision. Long-lasting injuries can affect your quality of life for years if left untreated.
Additionally, if you are involved in a car accident in Florida, it is important to seek legal advice from an experienced auto accident injury lawyer to protect your rights. Fees for a doctor’s visit and medical treatment may be covered by your insurance.
Do not settle claims from an accident until a doctor has examined and advised you about the extent of your injuries and treatment options.
Insurance Companies After a Vehicle Collision Injury
If you are dealing with an insurance company after a car accident, it is important to be aware of your coverage, keep track of all communication with the company, and make sure to read your policy carefully. Having reliable legal representation can help ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
If you have been in a serious automobile accident, especially one that has resulted in personal injury, you need a car accident injury attorney in Florida near you to help. Brooks Law Group wants to speak with you and discuss your auto accident injury case.
Insurance companies want to take a recorded statement from an unrepresented person to obtain information they can use against you. The insurance company will minimize any vehicle damage and claim that such a “minor” impact cannot result in a personal injury.
The insurance company will often hire expert witnesses to testify that a person was not injured in a specific automobile collision. They will do everything they can to deny or delay paying on any auto accident insurance claim.
Getting fair compensation for your losses and medical bills can often come down to how accidents are handled. Finding free auto accident legal help is often the best way to do this.
When a Lawyer can Help in Car Accident Insurance Cases
Many strong, hardworking people believe that they can simply push through a car accident injury in Florida. They don’t want to cause trouble for other people or be seen as trying to game the system.
Unfortunately, often those very good people end up being taken advantage of by the insurance industry. Insurance companies profit when customers choose not to pursue just compensation.
A Brooks Law Group attorney can help after an auto accident when the:
- Insurance company is disputing liability
- Insurance company is refusing to pay
- Accident resulted in severe injuries
- Accident resulted in long-term injuries
- Victim is asked to sign legal documents
Timing is critical in car accident cases. In the state of Florida, there is a limited amount of time in which someone can file an auto accident claim.
Reaching out early to understand your rights can be critical to ensure you get the level of help you have a right to receive.
Car accident injuries that often benefit from auto accident injury lawyers:
- Brain damage
- Permanent disfigurement
- Broken bones
- Permanent or long-lasting loss of physical ability
At Brooks Law Group, we aren’t a huge multi-state law firm with a hot line ringing an overseas call center. We’re members of the Florida community who are committed to helping our neighbors who have been hurt in automobile accidents.
If you or a loved one has been in a vehicle collision that resulted in loss of property, personal injury, or loss of life, reach out to us today. We want to hear from you.
Releasing Medical Records in Personal Injury Claims with Personal Injury Lawyers
In a car accident case, the release of medical records is not recommended until you have consulted with a qualified Florida car accident lawyer from the law office of Brooks Law Group in Florida. Auto accident attorneys can advise you about releasing medical records, as well as any potential privacy rights or issues involved.
Your auto accident lawyer is aware of the rules governing the exchange of records between a physician and an insurance company. He or she will also know any limitations on what records you can access during an auto accident insurance claim process or auto accident injury lawsuit in Florida.
Your attorney can negotiate and secure the most favorable release of your medical records in exchange for any auto injury settlement offer or insurance coverage.
Before you decide whether to release your medical records, talk to your auto accident injury lawyer about your options. He or she will provide advice about how to proceed. Your lawyer in Florida may also suggest that you hire an expert witness who can explain how and why your records are important to your Florida auto accident injury case.
You should never sign a blanket release of your medical records.
It’s best to never release medical records without first consulting with an attorney. Medical record releases should only be signed under limited circumstances. If the insurance adjuster obtains your medical information, it may jeopardize your case.
Automobile Property and Personal Property Damage in Auto Accidents
When a car accident occurs, both the property and personal property of those involved may be damaged. If the accident was caused by the carelessness or negligence of someone else, then the owner of the damaged property may be able to seek compensation for those damages.
Most of the time, the responsible party is the driver’s insurance company. They may pay for repairs, replacements, and other costs that come with fixing or replacing the damaged property.
You may think that to receive compensation, it is important to gather all of the evidence and provide it to the insurance company. This includes documents such as accident reports, photos, and repair or replacement estimates.
But the insurance companies are not on your side. They don’t want to pay you for damages. That’s why you should always consult with an automobile property damage lawyer from Brooks Law Group. We are familiar with the damage recovery process and will ensure the best possible outcome.
Understanding At-Fault and No-Fault in Florida Law: Car Accident Injury Claims
The term “at-fault” is often highly misunderstood. It relates more to which carrier your claim goes through than who caused the accident.
Florida is a no-fault state for car insurance and auto accident injury claims. This means the injured driver’s own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance covers their medical costs, regardless of who was at fault for causing the accident.
However, in Florida, an injured driver may pursue a claim directly against the other driver if they meet certain conditions, including if they suffer “serious” or “permanent” injury or death.
In these cases, the injured driver’s Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance can still be used to cover medical costs and lost wages, but the claim against the other driver can also be used to seek compensation for pain and suffering, as well as other related damages.