Each day in the United States, millions of people go about their days in a safe, prudent manner intended to keep themselves and everyone else safe from avoidable harm. This behavior is based on the legal concept of a “duty of care,” which, according to the Legal Information Institute, is the expectation that a person “must act in the same manner as a reasonably prudent person in their position would.” Depending on context, this duty can range from things like providing prudent medical care to simply not assaulting someone on the streets. When someone violates their duty of care and causes undue harm to another, whether due to negligence, recklessness, or criminal malice, this is called a “tort,” which is, per the Judicial Education Center, “when someone either intentionally or negligently causes injury to another person or his property.”
You Deserve Fair Compensation
When a tort occurs, the victim has a legal right to seek compensatory damages from the responsible party, commonly through an insurance claim but otherwise as a lawsuit directly against the at-fault individual, company, or other entity. Many people believe that they only need to hire a personal injury lawyer in the event that they plan to file a lawsuit, but this could not be further from the truth. Insurance companies prefer when a victim moves forward with a personal injury claim without legal representation, but this is because there is a better chance that they can settle a claim for as little as possible — not for what the victim is actually entitled to.
Contact 1-800-Injured Today
1-800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service. If you have been injured due to someone else’s dangerous or negligent behavior, you are entitled to compensation in the form of a range of damages. Often, people choose to go through the claims process alone — often because they believe they do not have the financial ability to pay for an experienced Miami personal injury attorney. This could not be further from the truth. Most personal injury attorneys operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning that they receive a predetermined percentage of their client’s award, and the client does not pay a dollar if they do not win their case. With this structure, anyone with a legitimate right to compensation has the ability to work with Miami personal injury lawyers without worrying about how to pay for it.
Schedule a Free Consultation Now
1-800-Injured connects victims with attorneys for a free consultation about their case. In the days and weeks after an accident or serious injuries, it can feel impossible to go through the process of finding a personal injury law firm, connecting with a Florida personal injury attorney who is willing to take their case and continue to manage the difficult day-to-day process of recovering from their injuries and prioritizing their needs. When an experienced Miami personal injury lawyer is handling the personal injury case on their behalf, a victim can remain focused on taking all of the necessary steps to facilitate the best possible recovery.
Whether you are certain that you have a case, or if you just want to speak with a Miami personal injury lawyer to learn more about your situation and how you can best move forward, contact 1-800-Injured now to be connected with a proven law firm in your area now. The sooner you reach out to us, the sooner you can get experienced legal representation from a diligent and aggressive Miami, FL law firm. Read more about personal injury law in Miami, FL, and contact us today to get started on your personal injury lawsuit or claim now.
Do I Have a Personal Injury Case?
In order to determine whether or not you have a case, a Miami personal injury lawyer will go through the four factors that must be present for a victim to seek restitution. This is the first step during your free consultation, but you may be able to consider the following factors on your own to get a general sense of your situation.
Did the Other Party Owe You a Duty of Care?
In personal injury cases, the defendant’s duty of care will be the first factor to establish in order to determine the matters of liability and fault. Depending on the situation, their duty of care will vary greatly. If you were injured in a car accident, the duty of care to be examined is the other driver’s responsibility to operate their own vehicle in adherence to all laws and statutes on the roads and acted reasonably to avoid a collision. If the defendant is a medical practitioner, the matter will center on their obligation to provide you with the same standard of care as any other reasonable professional would in the same context.
As you can imagine by these two distinctly different examples, this is a highly variable factor that is entirely specific to your unique situation. There is no “one size fits all” approach to personal injury cases, which is why it is so important to work with an attorney who will work to build a detailed case for the accident victims they represent.
Did The Other Party Fail To Uphold Their Duty of Care?
When an individual ignores the speed limit, they are putting all others on the road at an increased risk of being injured in an accident. At this point, though, they are only guilty of a criminal speeding violation, subject to criminal punishments only. The same is true if you were given an incorrect first opinion for medical care but followed through on a second opinion that led to a favorable outcome. The first doctor failed their duty of care, but a tort has not occurred because the issue was resolved beforehand.
Did This Failure Lead to an Accident?
The third factor of a tort is that an accident did occur. In the examples above, this would mean that the speeding driver caused an accident, or the medical professional’s incorrect diagnosis led to an actual medical error in treatment. This accident is any adverse outcome of the situation you were involved in, and depending on the context, may not actually be an accident. There are many examples of civil cases stemming from criminal acts like assault or murder.
However, there is a fourth and final factor that must also be present when determining whether or not you are the victim of a tort, and therefore whether or not you have the right to seek compensation.
Did This Accident Cause You Measurable Damages?
Finally, your Miami personal injury lawyers will need to determine whether or not you have suffered damages as a result of the accident. If a speeding driver causes a single-vehicle accident where nobody else is hurt, then again, no tort has occurred. If a medical professional prescribes the wrong medication, but the patient has no adverse reaction, then again, it is unlikely that you will be able to move forward with a personal injury case.
Damages, in a legal sense, are any measurable impact that a victim suffers, whether or not they are explicitly measurable in financial terms. You can learn more about damages in the specific section below titled “Calculating Damages For a Miami Personal Injury.”
Common Types of Personal Injury Accidents
The following are a few of the most common personal injury accidents that Miami personal injury lawyers represent. Whether or not you see your particular accident mentioned below, contact 1-800-Injured as soon as possible to schedule a free consultation with Miami personal injury lawyers to get specific clarity on your case.
On average, there is a car accident in Miami-Dade County roughly every 9 minutes, meaning that these are exceptionally common causes of personal injury claims in South Florida. Many people choose to file a claim without the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer, but this typically works to the advantage of the insurance company, not the claimant. Working with a Florida personal injury law firm is one of the best decisions you can make in order to get the compensation you deserve after a car accident.
Florida has the unfortunate distinction of being the most dangerous state in the country when it comes to fatal motorcycle accidents. There is a multitude of factors that lead to this statistic, one of which may be the fact that Florida, and particularly South Florida, is a natural destination for someone looking to take advantage of great weather and scenery on such an exciting type of motor vehicle. Be sure to know that there is a legal team that can help you recover fair compensation after a motorcycle accident in Miami-Dade, and 1-800-Injured can connect you with them for a free consultation.
After being seriously injured in a motorcycle accident, injury victims will have significant medical expenses as they work towards a recovery. Insurance companies will attempt to settle a claim for these expenses, as well as lost wages, but will work to avoid the many other complications that a victim will suffer — working with an aggressive legal team can help counteract these tactics.
A truck accident comes with much greater risks than most other types of motor vehicle accidents, simply due to the fact that an 18-wheeler or semi-truck accident is commonly between two vehicles of significantly different sizes. Commercial truck accident insurance often has policy limits in excess of millions of dollars due to the increased risk of serious injury or death for people in a passenger vehicle when colliding with such a massive vehicle. However, getting a fair settlement after a truck accident may not be any simpler for accident victims regardless of whether or not the policy limits are much higher than with a personal insurance policy.
Dealing with a commercial insurance company means that you will need to go through many more details relating to the specific legal requirements, standards, and regulations that a truck driver must adhere to. These additional details can help experienced personal injury attorneys piece together a more clear picture of the Miami-Dade accident but can quickly overwhelm someone without experience handling truck accidents.
Premises Liability Accidents
Each time you legally visit someone else’s property, you have a right to expect that the owner or manager (depending on who is contractually liable for maintenance issues) has taken the appropriate steps to ensure that your visit is safe by addressing any hazards. A slip and fall accident is one of the most common premises liability cases and results when, as the name implies, a victim encounters a hazard like a wet floor, uneven surface, or other obstacle that causes them to slip and fall.
Premises liability cases after a slip and fall can be confusing, especially when trying to determine who to file your personal injury lawsuit or claim against. 1-800-Injured can connect you with experienced legal representation with years of handling slip and fall and many other premises liability cases for Miami injury victims.
Medical malpractice cases are civil actions against a licensed medical professional or medical facility due to negligent or reckless treatment that results in additional injury to the patient. One of the most common types of medical malpractice is a failure to diagnose a patient appropriately, therefore leading to a worse outcome than if they had been treated for the correct issue. However, there are many other types of medical malpractice, including using dangerous or unconventional treatment methods, misprescribing medications, surgical errors, and more.
Florida poses strict non-economic damage caps in medical malpractice cases, which range between $300,000 and $1.5 million depending on the specific situation. It is important to work with a Miami, Florida attorney who practices medical malpractice specifically, as these cases are often much different than other types of claims.
Product Liability Accidents
There are many different parties involved in the process of designing, developing, manufacturing, advertising, and distributing a product, and each participant has their own specific set of responsibilities and assumed liabilities for offering a safe product to the general public. Even inherently dangerous products, such as a kitchen knife, must clearly convey these risks to a potential purchaser in order to provide customers with all of the necessary information to avoid a serious injury. In the event that you are injured, while properly using a product due to a manufacturing defect, improper marketing or safety material, or any other number of reasons, you may be entitled to compensation through a Florida personal injury case.
Negligent use of a product is not a valid cause for personal injury lawsuits since the consumer willingly ignored the instructions for proper use; however, it may be challenging to determine what actually went wrong and who is responsible, but personal injury lawyers understand how to identify all of the facts.
Wrongful Death Cases
A wrongful death claim is a case against someone liable for an individual’s death from tortious injuries. Most of these cases are handled like other personal injury claims, but it is the surviving family members or dependents seeking compensation for the many damages that stem from a wrongful death. In addition to the standard damages like medical bills, the claimants will also be able to seek compensation for things like the loss of financial support from the deceased, as well as the loss of companionship and the emotional trauma of such a tragic loss.
The fatality rate per 100 million Vehicle-Miles Traveled decreased 3.4 percent from 1.17 in 2017 to 1.13 in 2018.
Wrongful death cases can be exceptionally taxing on the family members seeking the compensation they deserve, which is why it is so important to work with compassionate attorneys who understand how to best support their clients through these difficult personal injury cases.
Common Personal Injury Types
The following are a few examples of the many common types of injuries that may be included in a Florida personal injury case. Again, whether or not you see your injuries listed below, simply contact us now to connect with a law firm in Miami-Dade County that will help you make sense of your situation and move forward towards the compensation you deserve for this painful and difficult experience.
Something to keep in mind after a Miami injury is that seeing a doctor will serve two important functions: first, that you will receive timely care and maximize your recovery; secondly, that you will generate important documentation about your injuries with each visit. These documents will play an important role in your claim to ensure you get the compensation you deserve — insurance companies will work hard to deny compensation for any injury that does not have tangible evidence.
Fractures are common in any type of impact injury in Miami, whether stemming from a product liability issue, car accident, or slip and fall. These types of impact injuries must often be reset and placed in a stabilizer like a cast or a splint in order to properly heal and require immediate medical attention.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries can range from mild concussions to permanent brain death and must be treated by an experienced medical professional immediately to ensure proper care and the best chance of recovery. Concussions are referred to as a “silent killer” because of how common it was, historically, for victims to ignore these symptoms and carry on their normal life.
Whiplash is a soft tissue injury that is common in car accidents or other motor vehicle collisions when the victim’s head is snapped forward, down, and back in a rapid motion. This type of injury typically does not show itself until 24+ hours after the accident, which is a great example of why it is so important to NEVER state that you are uninjured at the scene of an accident.
Spinal Cord Injuries
The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves running from the brainstem to the tailbone and allows the brain and extremities to communicate and carry out motor functions, sensations, and more. Disruption to these nerves can result in loss of sensation or paralysis and can have a life-long impact on the victim and their loved ones.
Road rash is a common injury in motorcycle accidents or pedestrian accidents when the victim is thrown to the ground and suffers serious abrasions from the ground. This type of injury often looks and acts like a burn and may require skin grafting and other surgical interventions depending on severity.
Bruising occurs when the blood vessels closest to the skin rupture or are otherwise damaged, causing unsightly discoloration from the pooling blood, and can be extremely sensitive to the touch. Most often, bruising will dissipate on its own; however, a bruise may be an indication of a more serious injury and should be looked at by a doctor immediately.
Determining Fault After a Personal Injury
One of the first things a law firm will set out to establish in a personal injury case is the issue of fault: who caused the accident, how did they cause it, and who is liable for paying for the many damages that the victim has suffered as a result? Florida law uses an instrument known as “comparative fault” in personal injury cases, which allows for a victim to assume a portion of the blame while still being able to seek compensation. Without comparative fault, a victim would be unable to seek compensation if they contributed to the cause of the accident in any capacity.
While this law is extremely helpful for a Miami accident victim, an insurance company will use it to their advantage in order to cut down on their costs while settling your claim. Your attorney will need to work hard to ensure that you do not assume any more fault than necessary if any at all.
Calculating Damages For a Personal Injury
Once fault has been established (or as your attorney continues to work towards a final agreement), the next step is to identify all damages and calculate a fair settlement for the range of impacts that a victim suffers. These are known as compensatory damages, and they are divided into two sub-categories: economic damages and non-economic damages. Each addresses unique types of impacts of a personal injury, and while they are very different, each is equally important for your case.
The category of economic damages includes any impact of a Florida accident that has a measurable dollar value. This includes things like medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and much more. Since these are the most apparent damages, it is common for an insurance company to offer a settlement to cover a victim’s property damage costs, medical bills, and lost wages without offering much more. However, there are many other economic damages recognized in Florida, including things like services a victim must hire to carry out their daily tasks, as well as many other less-obvious financial impacts of a serious accident.
Trustworthy Miami law firms have spent years building playbooks that help their attorneys track down every last damage. This attention to detail and a granular understanding of all impacts of a personal injury case is what makes the difference between a victim representing themselves or working with a law firm.
Non-economic damages are those impacts that do not have express financial values, including things like the actual pain and suffering of an injury, the emotional impact of a traumatic injury, and more. An insurer is likely to avoid these types of damages while calculating their own initial settlement offer and will be more aggressive at pushing back on these calculations due to the abstract, subjective nature of something like “pain and suffering.” However, the fact that they are more complicated to calculate is no reason for a victim to not receive this type of recompense, and a diligent Miami attorney will seek the maximum non-economic damages allowable for their client.
There are many methods for calculating non-economic damages. One common way to do so is by using a scale to indicate the severity of each damage and using the average as a multiplier against the total economic damages. For example, if a victim determines that their pain and suffering is a 4 out of 5, and their economic damages total $100,000, then their attorney would seek $400,000 in non-economic damages.
The Importance of Working With Miami Personal Injury Lawyers
When you connect with a law firm after a personal injury, you will be able to get a clear understanding of your rights and options from day one. Whether it makes more sense to settle your case or to go to the Florida courts, you will be able to benefit from the experience of personal injury and trial lawyers who have spent years fighting for fair compensation after Miami personal injuries. At the same time that your attorney is handling your legal issues, you can focus on your recovery without the added stress, anxiety, or uncertainty. Making sure that you get the money you deserve for a Miami accident takes a lot of work, and this work will take away from the very important recovery process that you should be prioritizing.
The Florida Circuit Civil division handled almost 200,000 civil filings in 2020.
When an insurance agency is first contacted by a law firm, not the victim, to initiate an accident claim, they know from the start that the victim means business. Even so, the adjuster will likely make a stunningly low settlement offer, at which point your attorney will begin the long process of negotiating a fair settlement agreement. If they are unable to reach an agreement, or if your lawyer believes that your case will be better handled by going directly to the courts without any serious attempt at negotiations, the next step will be to file a personal injury lawsuit. Personal injury lawsuits are typically a last resort for when all attempts at negotiations fail, but there are particular instances where these are preferable. This information, and more, will all be conveyed to you by your personal injury lawyer as they work to build a comprehensive and aggressive case on your behalf.
To get started, contact 1-800-Injured now to begin working towards a settlement you deserve, not just a settlement the insurance companies want to pay.