What to do After a Car Accident in Miami
After getting into a car accident, it can feel like there is a hole in your wallet that money keeps falling out of no matter how hard you try to stop it. Medical bills, car repair costs, loss of income and other expenses become stressors that make healing from your injuries and gaining financial freedom seem unattainable. When you are still recovering from an accident, it is easy to let other people dictate to you what your next move should be. Filing a personal injury claim to recover for your losses does not have to be as tedious or stressful as it seems if you retain the right personal injury attorney to help you.
If you are recovering from injuries sustained in a car accident, and you are unsure of how to receive the compensation, look no further than the Law Offices of Prosper Shaked. Prosper Shaked is a Miami car accident attorney who takes pride in providing high quality legal services to his clients to get them back on their feet again.
Seek Medical Attention and File a PIP Claim
Florida law mandates that every motorist must carry a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance. When a driver is in a car accident, he or she can immediately begin to collect from this policy for damages in the form of medical expenses and lost wages. Florida is a no-fault insurance state, meaning that drivers can collect from their own individual policies regardless of who was at fault in the collision. PIP policies cover 80% of medical bills and 60% of lost wages up to $10,000. In order to be reimbursed for medical benefits, injured drivers are required to seek medical attention within 14 days of the accident or else they risk their claims being denied.
File a Personal Injury Lawsuit
If a victim’s PIP insurance does not cover all medical expenses or if a claim expired, that person could be forced to pay for medical bills out of pocket. This is especially true for individuals who do not have health insurance or have health insurance with a high deductible amount. This can become very expensive especially if the injuries were severe. The alternative route for a victim to take in order to receive compensation is to file a personal injury lawsuit against the party who was at fault. An experienced Florida personal injury attorney can walk a victim through the process of filing a claim. In the case of a car accident, an injured party will typically file a personal injury claim against an at fault driver based on a negligence theory. There are three essential elements that a plaintiff must prove in order to succeed on a theory of negligence. These elements are:
- The defendant owed a legal duty of care to the plaintiff;
- The defendant breached the legal duty of care; and
- As a result of the breach, the plaintiff suffered damages
Sometimes, injured parties are worried about filing lawsuits against at fault drivers because they fear that they might be partially at fault too and thus will not be eligible to recover damages. The State of Florida follows the Pure Comparative Fault Doctrine which states that plaintiffs who were partially at fault for accidents can still recover damages. The damages they recover will be reduced by the percentage of fault apportioned to them. For example, a plaintiff recovers $100,000 in damages for injuries sustained in a car accident. The judge determines that the plaintiff was 30% at fault for the accident. In that case, the plaintiff’s damages will be reduced by $30,000 and he or she will recover $70,000 in total damages.
Florida Statute of Limitations
Victims must stay abreast of their timeline for filing claims so that they do not miss the statute of limitations deadline. Florida has a four year statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim. A victim who wishes to file a personal injury claim against an at fault driver has four years from the time of the accident to file a claim. Florida also has a two year statute of limitations for wrongful death claims. A victim’s family has two years from the date of the victim’s death to file a wrongful death cause of action. Two years is not a lot of time to file a claim, so it is especially important for the families of deceased victims to consult with a Miami wrongful death attorney to make sure claims are filed in a timely manner.
Miami Car Accident Attorney
If you or someone you love were injured in a car accident in the greater Miami and South Florida areas, contact an experienced car accident attorney right away. The Law Offices of Prosper Shaked take pride in helping victims and their families gain financial recovery so that they can get back on their feet again. Call attorney Prosper Shaked at (305) 690-0244 to schedule a free and confidential consultation a Miami car accident attorney you can trust.