Port St. Lucie averaged more than 13 car accidents a day in 2019. While not all of these accidents were serious, they resulted in nearly 3,000 injuries. If you’re a car accident victim in Port St. Lucie, you may be able to file a claim to seek compensation.
Costs resulting from auto accidents can build over time. You also have legal rights if you’ve been in an accident, and personal injury lawyers can explain them to you. You can find out how the process of filing a claim works and understand the steps involved.
You can speak to caring, experienced Port St. Lucie car accident lawyers to learn how to file a car accident claim. Our lawyers at Florin|Roebig’s can discuss your situation with you following a car accident so you can make the most informed choices possible.
Common Causes Of Car Accidents In Port St. Lucie
The majority of car accidents are caused by human error or negligence, including many that are avoidable. Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs is a leading cause of car accidents.
Distracted driving is also a major cause of car crashes, and it doesn’t just include texting behind the wheel, which became illegal in the state of Florida in January 2020. Distracted driving can result from noisy passengers or multi-tasking while driving.
Additional causes of accidents include aggressive and reckless driving, sometimes called “road rage.” Other drivers may have impaired vision or hearing which contributes to a crash. And finally, some drivers may not see or heed road signs or signals, leading to crashes in intersections or on-ramps.
Some motor vehicle accidents are also caused by acts of nature, like severe weather or road obstructions. In Florida, potholes and sinkholes can open, leading to sudden disasters on the road. Whether caused by humans or nature, the reason an accident happens will influence the auto claims process. Drivers found responsible for an accident in Florida can be held accountable in the claims process, especially if they are found to be negligent.
Reasons To File A Car Accident Claim
If you’ve been in a car crash in Port St. Lucie, you should seek medical treatment and follow Florida law regarding reporting accidents first. Then, you should consider if you should file a claim following the accident. You are under no obligation to talk with the insurance adjusters representing other vehicles and drivers who were in the accident.
You may not be aware of all the implications of the accident or long-term results immediately following the crash. You could experience delayed injuries or other forms of damage. A car accident claim can help you to identify the damages you have suffered. Car accident lawyers are experienced and can help you understand your rights and the steps you need to take to file a claim.
Some insurance companies, even your own, may be motivated to reduce the amount of money they pay out in claims following a car accident. Having a Port St. Lucie car accident attorney to offer legal advice can help protect your rights and ensure you receive the financial compensation you are entitled to receive.
Factors That Affect Car Accident Cases
How serious the accident was and if serious injuries were sustained are two of the main factors affecting car accident claims in Port St. Lucie and other areas in Florida. You can be entitled to file a substantial claim if the accident has caused a major disruption in your life, including significant time off work, or even injuries that require rehabilitation.
As a type of personal injury claim, auto accident claims are influenced by the statute of limitations. In the state of Florida, the statute of limitations for filing a claim is four years following the date of the accident.
Florida’s laws regarding driver fault and negligence will also affect your claim. Your claim can also be affected by the type of insurance coverage you and other involved drivers have. All Florida drivers are required to have a personal injury protection (PIP) policy.
Florida uses a legal doctrine called comparative negligence to determine how awards are made. A car accident case award depends largely on how the claims process determines comparative negligence between the drivers involved.
How Much Compensation Can You Win?
If serious injuries have been suffered in a car accident, damages will be higher than if there were no injuries.
Compensation following an accident can increase depending on the following factors:
- how severe injuries are and how much treatment is required
- if anyone has lost their life (wrongful death)
- how much time off work you’ve experienced
- ongoing need for medical care or rehabilitation
- impact on your family and future plans
- how much evidence is available regarding fault in the crash
- whether you had fault in the accident, and your degree of fault
In Florida, a driver who is found to be at fault in an accident could have their damages reduced or eliminated through the principle of comparative negligence.
Types Of Damages Awarded In Car Accident Cases
In the claims process, the term “damages” means specific categories where a personal injury can be identified and a specific monetary amount can be assessed.
Damage categories in car accident claims include economic damages and non-economic damages, which cover both costs that are tangible, like medical bills, and costs that aren’t easily calculated, like pain and suffering.
Some damages which can be awarded for an auto accident case in Port St. Lucie include:
- reasonable medical expenses, including surgery, prescriptions, and hospitalization
- lost income, including wages and earnings
- rehabilitation or retraining
- psychiatric care and medications
- pain and suffering
Damages can restore financial losses and compensation for accident injuries. Florida allows punitive damages, which means you could be awarded an additional amount of money if a driver has been found to be extremely negligent in causing an accident.
An example of extreme negligence could be reckless driving with the intent to cause an accident or injure others. Although not common, punitive damages can be awarded to car accident victims in Florida.
Car Accident Rates In Port St. Lucie
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles reported over 4,780 car accidents in Port St. Lucie and Port St. Lucie County in 2019, which led to a number of related injuries and fatalities:
- Port St. Lucie County had 32 fatal auto accidents in 2019, leading to 40 fatalities.
- Over 1,930 of Port St. Lucie’s 2019 accidents caused over 2,950 injuries.
- A total of 1,070 of the accidents in Port St. Lucie County in 2019 were hit-and-runs, including two fatal hit-and-run accidents.
- Six pedestrians lost their lives in over 100 car crashes that involved pedestrians in Port St. Lucie County in 2019. In 2019, two bicyclists also lost their lives when they were struck by cars in the county.
List Of Car Accident Lawyers Serving Port St. Lucie
When you’re ready to file a claim to recover your losses following a car accident, you’ll want experience and knowledge on your side. The law offices of Florin|Roebig have been helping accident victims in Florida seek the compensation they deserve for more than three decades.
Our car accident attorneys serving Port St. Lucie and other areas in Florida include:
- Wil H. Florin, B.C.S.
- Tommy D. Roebig, B.C.S.
- Luca G. Esposito
- Michael L. Walker, B.C.S.
- Michael A. Ossi, O.C.
Find Help Filing A Car Accident Claim
If you live in Port St. Lucie and have been in a car accident, you should seek compassionate and qualified legal advice. The personal injury lawyers at Florin|Roebig are experienced trial attorneys with an outstanding track record since the firm was founded in 1985.
If you have been in an auto accident, learn your legal rights and the next best steps in filing a car accident claim in Port St. Lucie by contacting Florin|Roebig for a free case evaluation today.