When you are injured in an accident in Florida, you may have questions about who is responsible for your injuries, lost wages, and medical expenses. Under Florida’s personal injury laws, the person who caused your accident can be held liable for your pain and suffering, financial losses, and other damages.
Our Tampa personal injury attorneys take the time to answer your questions about a personal injury claim. During your initial consultation, we can discuss your personal injury case in detail.
But for now, our experienced lawyers have compiled answers to some of the most common questions we receive from injury victims. If you would like to learn more about personal injury cases and your legal rights, contact our legal team at Catania & Catania, P.A. for a free consultation.
What is a Personal Injury Case?
A personal injury case is a legal dispute regarding the liability for an injury or harm. Most personal injury claims are based on negligence claims. A person is negligent when they failed to act with the level of care that a reasonable person would have used under the same or similar circumstances.
Proving negligence requires you to show that:
- The person who caused your injury owed you a duty of care
- The person breached the duty of care
- The party’s breach caused your injuries
- You sustained damages
Our attorneys at Catania & Catania, P.A. can review the details of your case to determine if you have a valid personal injury case. It does not cost you anything to obtain an assessment of your options for recovering compensation for damages.
What Types of Accidents or Situations Lead to a Personal Injury Claim?
Thousands of individuals are injured in accidents in Tampa and throughout Florida each year. The type of accident may vary, but the result is the same: victims experience unnecessary pain and suffering because of another party’s negligence and wrongdoing.
Examples of accidents that can lead to a personal injury claim include:
- Car accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Truck accidents
- Defective product injuries
- Pedestrian accidents
- Premises liability claims
- Slip and fall accidents
- Bicycle crashes
- Dog bites and attacks
- Motorcycle accidents
- Construction accidents
- Boating accidents
If a person dies in an accident, the family members may file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault parties. The wrongful death claim may arise from one of the above accidents or another incident.
How Can A Personal Injury Attorney Help Me with My Claim?
Dealing with a personal injury claim can be overwhelming. A skilled personal injury attorney can help you fight for the compensation you deserve.
Our legal team handles all aspects of your personal injury case including, but not limited to:
- Conducting a comprehensive investigation into the cause of your injuries
- Identifying each party who might be liable for your damages
- Filing a claim with each insurance company that provides coverage for the accident
- Gathering and preserving evidence to prove the legal elements of negligence
- Handling all communications with the insurance companies and other parties
- Fighting allegations of comparative fault
- Providing you with legal advice, support, and guidance as we go through the claims process
- Keeping you updated on the progress of your case
- Calculating and monitoring deadlines for filing claims and lawsuits under the statute of limitations
- Working with your physicians and other experts to document the severity of your injuries and damages
- Calculating the maximum value for your injury claim
- Aggressively negotiating a settlement that compensates you for all damages
- Representing you in court, if necessary
Having a legal team to help you handle the steps of a personal injury case can relieve the stress you might feel after an accident. Instead of focusing on the claim, you can focus on healing from your injuries. Hiring a Tampa personal injury attorney can give you a better chance of obtaining a positive outcome for your case.
How Much Will I Have to Pay to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Many people worry about the cost of hiring a personal injury attorney. However, most personal injury attorneys in Florida accept cases on a contingency fee basis.
A contingency fee means that you do not owe any money unless the attorney recovers money for your claim. When you recover money for your claim, you pay the attorney an agreed-upon percentage of the amount. If the attorney does not recover any money, you do not owe any attorneys’ fees.
How Much is My Personal Injury Case Worth?
This question is one of the most common questions in personal injury. Unfortunately, we cannot answer it during your first appointment. The value of your personal injury claim depends on your damages and other factors in your case. We want to learn as much as possible to ensure we calculate the maximum value for your injury claim.
We understand that you want to know who pays your medical bills or replaces your lost income. However, we want to ensure that we put your best interests first. Therefore, we do not calculate the value of your injury claim until we have all the evidence related to your case and your complete medical treatment. Until then, it is impossible to know the maximum value of your injury claim.
What Kind of Damages Can I Receive After My Accident?
While we can’t tell you the value of your case right away, we can explain the types of damages you might receive and the factors that impact the value of injury claims.
Examples of damages included in a personal injury claim are:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Ongoing costs of personal care
- Costs of physical and rehabilitation therapies
- Past and future losses of income and benefits
- A decrease in your future earning potential
- Permanent disabilities, impairments, and disfigurement
- Pain and suffering damages, including mental anguish, emotional distress, and physical discomfort
- Loss of enjoyment of life and decrease in the quality of life
A good rule of thumb is that cases involving catastrophic or permanent impairments are worth more than cases involving minor injuries and minimum financial damages.
Many factors impact the value of an injury claim. Some factors that could impact the amount of money you receive include:
- The total value of economic losses
- The severity and type of injuries
- Whether you contributed to the cause of the accident
- The impact the injuries will have on your career and quality of life
- The availability of insurance coverage
- The amount of time you missed from work
- The parties involved in the case
A personal injury case and a property damage claim are two different cases. In most situations, a property damage claim is settled before the personal injury claim. We need to wait until you complete medical treatment to understand the extent of your damages and losses.
Our legal team carefully documents all damages and calculates the maximum value for each type of damage. We may retain medical experts and economists to assist in calculating past and future damages.
Is There a Deadline for Filing Personal Injury Lawsuits in Florida?
Yes, there is a deadline for filing personal injury lawsuits in Florida. The deadline, known as the statute of limitations, is four years from the injury date for most personal injury lawsuits. However, there are exceptions.
Wrongful death claims must be filed within two years of the date of death. Notice of claims involving government entities generally need to be filed within a few months of the date of injury. It is best to talk to a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to avoid missing a deadline and losing your right to file a claim.
Contact Our Tampa Personal Injury Attorney for a Free Consultation
If you have questions about a personal injury case, we encourage you to reach out to our office. Our legal team has years of experience handling injury cases. Schedule your free consultation to speak with a personal injury attorney in Tampa.