After being involved in an accident that someone else caused, there are many steps that you will need to take in order to get the compensation that you require and deserve in order to get your life back on track. This is especially true if you have suffered from serious, life-changing injuries, and it is exceptionally important that you have appropriate legal representation for your case. Working with an insurance company on your own can be an overwhelming experience, and when you realize that the claims adjuster is trying to find as many ways as possible to limit the settlement amount they will offer you.
Rather than experiencing the overwhelming feeling that you’re on your own against a major insurance company, hiring an attorney can help make the process as painless and productive as possible. Unfortunately, finding an attorney can in itself be exhausting, which is why 1-800-Injured has assembled a robust network of proven, experienced attorneys who are ready to take your call immediately.
Read more below to get a better idea about what you can expect as you begin working towards a personal injury settlement after your injury, and contact us now to be connected with an attorney who is ready to help you as soon as possible. Take advantage of your free initial consultation to learn about what an experienced lawyer can do for you and start building your case today.
About Personal Injury Law
After an accident, it is important to determine who was at fault. This is especially important if the accident caused injuries. This is the basis of all personal injury cases: where the victim seeks monetary compensation from the party responsible for their injuries in order to compensate for the damages that they caused. In order to determine whether or not you have a personal injury case, it makes sense to speak directly with an attorney. However, you can ask yourself if your situation is in line with the following three statements that are the central pieces of a personal injury claim in Tampa:
- The “at fault” party had a responsibility to act in a way that kept those around them safe from possible harm and failed at this duty
- This failure of responsibility caused an accident, which you were involved in
- The accident caused measurable injuries and damages to you
If you are able to answer “yes” to these questions, or if you are uncertain about whether or not your circumstances fit these requirements, then you should contact a lawyer immediately.
How Much Is a Personal Injury Case Worth?
After you are injured and need to file a claim with an insurance company, the main question to be answered during the investigation of your claim is the amount of money you deserve for your accident. While the insurance company certainly attempts to make this process as simple for you as possible, it is not with the intention of reducing your stress and getting you the money you deserve. Instead, the insurance company will try to make getting a settlement seem effortless in order to keep you from hiring an attorney. Without a history of experience and knowledge about personal injury claims, it is very difficult to determine what you truly deserve for your accident, and the insurance company will take advantage of this to pay you as little as possible.
The following is an overview of how damages are calculated in a personal injury case but are not intended to provide you with any concrete answers about your own case. The sooner you partner with a personal injury attorney in Tampa, the more time they will have to investigate your situation and reach a concrete determination about the amount that you deserve.
Calculating Economic Damages
Economic damages are the basis of a personal injury claim and are the simplest to calculate for a variety of reasons. Primarily, these damages are the easiest and most prevalent in a claim because they come with measurable, calculable values. They include any impact on your life that has a dollar value, including any bills, expenses, or impacts on your income.
All treatment-related costs, such as ambulance bills, hospital bills, surgery costs, and any medications, copayments, physical therapy, or other medical losses, are included in economic damages. In addition, any changes to your earning capacity or income, such as missed days of work or decreased earning capacity, are also included in these calculations. If you used any vacation days or paid time off in order to cover missed work, then these will be treated the same as cash and should also be included in your compensation.
Calculating Non-Economic Damages
Non-economic damages are much harder to calculate, and much more likely to be contested by the insurance company because of this fact. These types of damages seek compensation for things like the actual pain and suffering that comes with an injury. In order to determine a dollar amount that a victim deserves for these abstract effects of an accident, there are a variety of methods that your attorney will utilize, each of which is intended to get you the most amount of money that is fair and possible.
One method for determining non-economic damages is by using a multiplier. This multiplier is a number chosen on a predetermined scale that indicates the severity of these damages and is then applied to your total economic damages in order to convert these issues into monetary terms. For example, a multiplier of 1.5x and economic damages of $100,000 will result in you seeking non-economic damages of $150,000.
Why You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer
Prioritize Your Health
It may not seem immediately obvious, but working with an attorney is a great way to help yourself recover from your injuries quicker. First, your attorney will be able to take on a lot of the work necessary in order to get your claim started and keep the process moving along smoothly. Secondly, and more importantly, reducing your stress while trying to recover from a physical injury is a great way to help speed up the process, and has been proven in a variety of studies.
Fight Back With Help of an Experienced Lawyer
When you are working with an experienced personal injury attorney in Tampa, the insurance company will know that you will not allow them to take advantage of you. Insurance companies rely on the inexperience of the individual filing the claim in order to avoid paying for things like non-economic damages and many of the economic damages that an attorney will know to include. If the insurance company disagrees, your attorney will be able to handle negotiations for you.
Personal Injury Data and Statistics
According to a report by FHSMV (Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles), there were around 400,000 car accidents in 2017 across Florida, which was a 2% increase from 2016’s accident statistics. Out of 400,000 crashes, 2,924 were fatal and amounted to 3,116 fatalities. There were 254,310 injuries reported in these 400,000 accidents.
By working with an attorney, you can keep yourself from feeling like just another statistic that the insurance companies try to dismiss as quickly as possible.
Why Choose 1-800-Injured?
As you can imagine with the information we have already gone through, personal injury cases are stressful. Trying to manage your injuries, filing an insurance claim, dealing with missed work and other obligations, juggling family needs and more all add to the stressors. How are you supposed to also find an attorney that you can depend on? 1-800-Injured works on your behalf to maintain a strong network of reliable and proven attorneys who are ready to work with you as soon as possible. Instead of needing to worry about interviewing a multitude of lawyers and trying to make sense of who to choose, we want to reduce your stress and take care of this step for you by offering our referral service.
Common Personal Injuries Cases
The following are just a few examples of common personal injury cases that the lawyers in our network handle, but there are many more that they have worked with, and will continue to represent. Whether or not you see a situation in the list below that resembles your own type of personal injury, contact 1-800-Injured as soon as possible to learn about your options and find an attorney who can help you fight for the money you deserve.
Car accidents are extremely common in Florida—as we already mentioned, there were nearly 400,000 reported accidents in 2017 alone, with a total of more than ¼ million injuries reported. Texting while driving is a growing trend in these types of personal injury cases, and unfortunately, drunk driving and recklessness are two other very common causes of crashes. Regardless of the cause of the accident, if the other driver was acting negligently, recklessly, or in any way that put you at risk leading to the crash, then you deserve to be compensated.
Slip and Fall Cases
A slip and fall is just one type of case known as a “premise liability,” which states that a property owner is legally responsible for maintaining their premise in order to avoid injuries to a visitor from unsafe or hazardous conditions. A slip and fall can result from a failure to maintain safe conditions such as a wet tile floor, a dangerous staircase, or, in colder climates, an icy public walkway.
Florida is the most dangerous state in the United States for motorcycle accidents, which is unfortunate because of the wonderful weather in the Sunshine State that a rider can enjoy. Motorcycles have an increased risk of being lost in another vehicle’s blind spot, and in addition to this danger, the motorcycle itself affords minimal protection during and after the impact. As a result, the injuries from a motorcycle accident can be significantly worse than from an accident between two cars at the same speed.
Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injury
Should I accept the insurance company’s first offer?
As you may have been able to gather from the previous sections, an insurance company’s primary focus is to restrict the amount of money that it pays out for any given claim, NOT to pay victims the amount of money that they truly deserve. As such, the initial offer from the insurance company should be treated as a first step for negotiations towards a settlement amount that you truly deserve.
If you hire an attorney at the outset of your claim, they will be able to use the claims investigation time to come to their own understanding of what damages you deserve and will have ample evidence to counter their offer with.
How much is my personal injury case worth?
Calculating damages requires an extensive review of your medical expenses, lost wages, and other economic considerations. It will also be important for your attorney to determine non-economic damages, like pain and suffering. The sooner you begin working with a Tampa personal injury lawyer, the more time they will have to fine-tune your damages and create a comprehensive body of proof that they can present during negotiations. Until you discuss your case with an experienced attorney, it’s impossible to know the extent of recoverable damages that you have incurred.
When should I hire a personal injury attorney?
To preserve the viability of your case, you should hire an attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Since personal injury lawyers in Tampa work off of contingency fees, they will take a percentage of your final awards instead of billing you hourly. This means that you will never pay out of pocket. The sooner you involve a Tampa personal injury lawyer the sooner they can begin fighting for a full and fair settlement.