If you suffered a personal injury in Florida as a result of another’s negligence, you likely suffered physical, emotional, and financial hardships. As a victim of negligence, Florida law protects your rights. You could recover many types of compensation after your accident.
Learning about how Florida personal injury cases work can help you recover fair payment for your injuries and losses. Read on to learn more about personal injury law in Florida.
What Are Personal Injuries?
Personal injuries include harm to yourself and your property. Personal injury law holds those who cause accidents responsible for the damages they cause to other people.
The underlying legal theory for most personal injury laws is negligence. Negligence involves a breach of a duty of care that causes harm. Florida law protects those affected by negligence.
Two Main Issues
Two issues are central to negligence claims. The first is the question of liability. Liability is concerned with who was responsible for your personal injury and whether they are legally obligated to compensate you.
The second issue is the nature and extent of the damages. In other words, what kind of compensation is fair under the law? How much does the wrongdoer have to pay you? What types of damages does the law require?
What Are Major Categories of Personal Injuries?
Personal injury cases mainly involve physical harm. Property damage can also be an issue.
The following are some examples of personal injury cases.
Medical malpractice or negligence happens when a healthcare practitioner makes a critical error, harming a patient. Those who can face medical malpractice liability include doctors (specialists and generalists), nurses, physician’s assistants, long-term care facilities, and hospitals.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
This accident type encompasses car, motorcycle, bicycle, rideshare and truck accidents. Drivers have a duty to exercise reasonable care when operating vehicles. If another driver’s carelessness harmed you on the road, you could bring a personal injury claim to pursue compensation for your accident. In some cases, trucking companies are liable for truck accidents. Passengers and pedestrians may also bear responsibility in certain circumstances.
Just as drivers can be negligent on the road, boaters can be careless in the water. If a negligent boater causes a boating accident, they could be liable for the resulting damages.
When a loved one dies because of negligence, the deceased person’s estate can secure compensation in Florida. The personal representative can bring a claim seeking payment to the estate. This payment goes to the heirs per the estate distribution. Often, wrongful death suits benefit the surviving family. As the personal representative for a late loved one, you could get justice through a wrongful death lawsuit.
Employers can be liable when their employees get hurt at work. Injured workers can receive workers compensation benefits, which compensate them for their injuries. However, they may also be entitled to file a third-party lawsuit for additional damages.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Establishments owe patrons a duty of care. They must maintain reasonably safe premises. When a person slips and falls at a business, the business could be liable.
What are the Long Term Consequences of Personal Injuries?
Personal injuries can vary in severity. Some people who suffer personal injuries recover relatively quickly, whereas others are left with permanent, life-altering disabilities. The most severe injuries are fatal.
Many victims experience a financial toll from their injuries. The costs of hospitalizations, medications, doctor visits, and physical therapy can compound.
Those with permanent disabilities often need to modify their homes. These modifications, such as wheelchair ramps, can be costly as well. Some individuals might need to move to a new home, pay for in-home care, or enter assisted living or long-term care.
Another consequence is lost earnings. Victims often need to miss work as they heal. Some will never return to the jobs they held before the injury. This can lead to additional financial losses.
Emotional consequences are also apparent. Injuries can be traumatic, causing pain and suffering.
Families can also experience adverse effects. Losing a loved one can cause family members to experience distress and depression. They may also lose the deceased’s income or other contributions, such as childcare.
What is My Florida Personal Injury Case Worth?
How much you could receive for your personal injury case depends on its severity. Settlements can range from tens of thousands to millions of dollars in certain cases.
Speak to a Florida personal injury lawyer to learn more about how much your case could be worth.
What Compensation Can I Recover For My Personal Injury in Florida?
In Florida, you could recover several types of compensation: economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages.
Economic damages cover direct financial losses. This includes medical bills, lost wages, and property damage.
Non-economic damages provide compensation for intangible harms. These damages could cover pain and suffering, emotional distress, disfigurement, and loss of the companionship of a deceased loved one.
In particularly severe cases, courts can award additional damages to punish wrongdoers. The law caps punitive damages at three times the compensatory damages or $500,000.
How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Florida?
Florida law gives you two years to file most personal injury claims. Typically, the clock starts when the accident takes place or, in some cases. The time limit rule is called the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations could be longer or shorter, depending on the case.
Keeping this time limit in mind is also important for settlement negotiations. Individuals likely will not give settlement payments after the four years have passed.
If you miss the deadline, the court will likely dismiss the case, regardless of how much compensation you could have recovered. That is why it is important to speak to an attorney right away if you suffered an injury. The sooner you act, the more time your advocate will have to build your case.
Contact Our Personal Injury Lawyers For a Free Consultation
Have you suffered a personal injury in Fort Walton Beach, Florida? If so, you could be entitled to monetary damages, and our personal injury lawyers can help.
Our experience sets our firm apart. We have over 60 years of combined experience in personal injury law. We have secured millions recovered on behalf of injury victims in the panhandle.
Contact the lawyers at Brannon & Brannon Personal Injury Attorneys by calling (850) 863-5297 for a free consultation today, and take the first step to learn more about how a personal injury lawyer can defend your rights.