Do I need an attorney when I am injured in an auto accident?
Yes. When you hire an attorney at Tuttle Larsen, P.A., you will get a team of people organizing and collecting evidence as well as negotiating and advocating on your behalf. Without an attorney, you will be forced to navigate your injury claim not knowing the applicable laws and can make a mistake that no attorney can fix.
What does it cost?
Tuttle Larsen, P.A. gets paid the same way every injury attorney in the state of Florida gets paid, on a contingency fee basis. Our fee is typically 33 1/3% of your recovery. That means that we only get paid if we get a recovery for you.
Why should I hire Tuttle Larsen, P.A.?
We are different than the firms you see on TV and billboards. At Tuttle Larsen, P.A., you will speak to an attorney, not a case manager, about your case and your injuries. We understand that this is a difficult process and we do everything we can to make ourselves available for you.
Tuttle Larsen, P.A. almost exclusively handles personal injury cases so we have made a strong impression on insurance companies by proving time and again that we will fight to defend our clients from their aggressive tactics.
What are the initial steps of my auto accident case?
Who will pay for my medical bills?
In Florida, motorists are required to have $10,000 of personal injury protection (PIP) coverage on their automobile insurance policies. When you are injured in an auto accident, your own PIP coverage pays your medical bills and lost wages until the PIP coverage is exhausted. PIP pays 80% of your medical bills and 60% of your lost wages. At the conclusion of your case, the defendant’s insurance company will pay any unpaid amount of your medical bills and lost wages. Once your PIP coverage is exhausted, you can also use your health insurance to pay your accident-related medical bills, if you have health insurance. If your health insurance pays accident-related medical bills, you will likely be required to reimburse your health insurance company for these payments at the conclusion of your case.
In the beginning stages of your case, we will notify the other party and any involved insurance companies that you have retained us to represent you. We will also request the insurance company to give us a copy of any statements you may have given them before you retained us.
We will send letters to your doctors and hospitals, notifying them that you have retained us to represent you and requesting that they do not give medical information to the insurance adjuster for the other party. We will contact the investigating officer and witnesses for their statements. We may also request your employment information to document your economic loss.
How long will my auto accident case take?
It is important to understand that your case cannot be settled until your injuries have been fully evaluated. It generally takes some time to obtain the necessary medical information because a doctor cannot answer many questions until your treatment has reached a plateau. Typically, we will have to wait six to nine months from the date of an accident before we receive a full medical report regarding your injuries from your doctor. Once we have a clear picture of your injuries, we can then prepare a settlement demand letter to the responsible party.
What is my case worth?
What do I need to prove to win my auto accident lawsuit?
First, you must prove that the other driver was negligent. Second, under Florida law, you must prove that you sustained a permanent injury to be eligible for compensation for your pain and suffering. For this reason, you will need to have your injuries thoroughly evaluated and we will need to obtain a final report from your doctor before we can move forward with your case.
What are the most common causes of auto accidents?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the leading causes of auto accidents are speeding, distracted driving, running red lights, drunk driving, and rain.
Determining the worth of a personal injury claim depends on many factors some of which are: how seriously you are injured, the specific facts of the case, and the insurance limits that are available. Ultimately, there is no special formula to decide your case value but the attorneys at Tuttle Larsen, P.A. have years of experience that will be utilized to maximize your compensation.
How much auto insurance is required in Florida?
Under Florida law, drivers are only required to carry $10,000 of property damage coverage and $10,000 of personal injury protection coverage. Unfortunately, Florida is one of only a few states that does not require drivers to carry bodily injury liability coverage. Bodily injury liability coverage pays for injuries a negligent driver causes to other people.
If a negligent driver does not have this coverage, the injured party can look to their own insurance policy to see if they have purchase uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This coverage provides protection when the at-fault driver doesn’t have any coverage, or doesn’t have enough coverage, to compensate the injured party for all damages.
How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit?
For the most part, you must file a lawsuit in a personal injury case no later than four years after the date of the incident, or you will be forever barred from pursuing your claim. Please note, there are a number of situations which require lawsuits or notice to the defendant much sooner than four years. If you are considering the possibility of hiring a lawyer, it is generally best to do it as soon as possible.
A Guide to the Most Common Types of Car Accidents
Car accidents are never pleasant, but they can be especially frustrating when they could have been avoided according to a Florida motor vehicle accident lawyer who deals with these types of cases constantly. Understanding the most common types of car accidents can help you stay alert on the road and avoid dangerous situations. Learn more, and then contact Tuttle Larsen P.A. for help.
These accidents occur when one car crashes into another from behind. They often happen in slow-moving traffic or at stop lights when a driver is distracted or following too closely. To avoid a rear-end collision, be sure to leave plenty of space between your car and the one in front of you, and always pay attention to the road ahead.
T-bone accidents, also known as side-impact collisions, occur when the front of one car crashes into the side of another car. These accidents often happen at intersections when one driver fails to stop at a red light or stop sign. To avoid a T-bone accident, always make sure to come to a complete stop at traffic signals and look both ways before entering an intersection.
Head-on collisions occur when two vehicles crash into each other from opposite directions. These accidents are often the most severe, resulting in serious injuries or fatalities. According to a Florida motor vehicle accident lawyer, they can happen for a variety of reasons, such as a driver swerving into oncoming traffic or taking a curve too quickly. To reduce your risk of a head-on collision, stay alert on the road and always drive within the posted speed limit.
Sideswipe accidents occur when two cars are traveling parallel to each other and collide. This type of accident is often caused by a driver not staying within their lane or failing to check their blind spot before changing lanes. To avoid a sideswipe accident, always use your turn signal when changing lanes and be sure to check your mirrors and blind spots before making any lane changes.
Single Car Accidents
These accidents can happen for a variety of reasons, such as driving too fast around a curve or losing control of the vehicle on a wet or icy road. To avoid a single car accident, always drive within the posted speed limit and pay attention to road conditions.
Motor Vehicle Accidents Infographic
Car accidents can happen to anyone, but understanding the most common types can help you avoid dangerous situations. Remember, you can never be too careful when it comes to driving, so always stay alert and be prepared for the unexpected. If you do get into an accident, contact a Florida motor vehicle accident lawyer at Tuttle Larsen, P.A. for help.
Learn More About What to do at an Accident Scene
As a motor vehicle accidents lawyer from Tuttle Larsen, P.A. knows, car accidents are a common occurrence on the roads, and they can be stressful and confusing. Knowing what to do at the scene of a car accident can help protect your safety and legal rights. Here are some important steps to follow:
- Stay Calm and Safe. The first thing to do at a car accident scene is to stay calm and safe. Check for injuries and call 911 if someone is hurt. If possible, move your vehicle to a safe location out of the way of traffic and turn on your hazard lights.
- Exchange Information. Exchange information with the other driver, including names, phone numbers, insurance information, and license plate numbers. If there are witnesses, get their contact information as well.
- Document the Scene. Take photos of the accident scene, including the damage to the vehicles, the location, and any skid marks or debris. This documentation can be crucial evidence in determining fault and assessing damages.
- Notify Your Insurance Company. Notify your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. Provide them with the information you gathered from the other driver. You will need to notify your insurance even if you plan to file a claim against the other driver.
- Seek Medical Attention. Even if you don’t think you are injured, it is essential to seek medical attention after a car accident. Some injuries, such as whiplash or concussions, may not show symptoms until later. Seeing a doctor also documents any injuries you sustained in the accident, which can be important evidence for your case.
- Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer. If you were injured in the accident, it will be highly beneficial to speak with a motor vehicle accidents lawyer. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal process and ensure that you receive fair compensation for your injuries, lost wages, and other damages.
- Follow Up with Medical Treatment. If you were injured in the accident, follow up with any medical treatment prescribed by your doctor. This includes attending appointments and following any prescribed medication or rehabilitation.
- Keep Track of Expenses. Keep track of any expenses related to the accident, including medical bills, repair costs, and rental car fees. This documentation can help you seek compensation for your damages.
- Be Cautious About Statements. Be careful about what you say to the other driver, witnesses, and insurance adjusters. Do not admit fault or apologize for the accident, as this can be used against you in legal proceedings.
- Stay Organized. Organize all the documentation related to the accident in a safe place, including police reports, medical records, and correspondence with your insurance company and lawyer. Having all this information in one place can help you and your legal team build a strong case.
Following these steps can help protect your safety and legal rights after a car accident. Remember to stay calm, exchange information, document the scene, seek medical attention, contact your insurance company, and seek legal guidance if necessary. By taking these steps, you can navigate the aftermath of a car accident with confidence and ease. When you’re ready, reach out to Tuttle Larsen, P.A. to speak with our motor vehicle accidents lawyer for help.
Maximize Your Compensation
Learn about how you can maximize your compensation if you have been in an auto accident with the help and guidance of a Vero Beach, FL auto accident lawyer. Damages in auto accidents refer to the losses incurred by the victim, which can be both economic and non-economic. Economic damages encompass measurable monetary losses like medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, encompass intangible losses such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, and mental anguish. In some cases, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the at-fault party for their extreme negligence.
To maximize compensation, it is crucial to gather evidence and document all losses meticulously. At the accident scene, collecting photographs, witness contacts, and a detailed account of what happened can strengthen your case. Seeking medical attention immediately, even for seemingly minor injuries, is essential as some injuries may not manifest symptoms right away. It is also crucial not to admit fault or make statements that could be used against you later. You should be mindful about what you share on your social media platforms as well, since it can impact how your case goes.
Have a Lawyer Review Settlement Offers
While handling straightforward auto accident claims on your own may be possible, certain situations necessitate the expertise of a lawyer. If you have severe injuries with long-term consequences, an attorney can assess the value of your claim, including future medical expenses and loss of earning capacity. In cases where liability is disputed or multiple parties are involved, an attorney can help investigate the case and prove liability. You can look to a skilled auto accident lawyer if you are offered a settlement that is much lower than what you deserve. Moreover, the complexity of auto accident laws and the differences between states require a lawyer’s expertise to navigate effectively.
It is critical to prepare adequately before your consultation with a Vero Beach auto accident lawyer. Bring all accident-related documentation, such as the police report, photographs, and witness contact information. Provide your medical records, including bills and receipts, to support your injury claim. Share details about your auto insurance policy and any communication with your insurance company. If you have lost wages due to the accident, bring evidence of your income and employment status. Additionally, prepare a list of questions you have about the claims process, the lawyer’s experience, fees, and what you can expect throughout the case.
Learn More About Legal Services
Understanding damages in auto accidents and following essential tips to maximize compensation are vital for those involved in such incidents. Hiring a lawyer becomes necessary in complex cases or when dealing with unfair settlement offers. Being well-prepared for a consultation with a personal injury lawyer will strengthen your case and increase your chances of receiving fair compensation for your losses. If you have suffered injuries in an auto accident, discover your legal options by setting up a consultation with a skilled Vero Beach auto accident lawyer from Tuttle Larsen, P.A. and get help with your claim.
Contact Us Today
According to Florida law, you have a limited amount of time to file suit against the party that caused the accident. Give us a call today at 772-563-0032 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation at our Vero Beach offices. Our fees are contingent; we do not get paid unless you win your case.