If you or a family member were injured in a car accident due to another party’s negligence, you might be wondering who will pay for your medical treatment and other damages. A Pensacola car accident lawyer can review your case and help you determine what your legal options are.
At Emmanuel Sheppard & Condon, we have helped countless clients recover the compensation they are owed after an injury accident in Florida. To learn more about how we can help with your case, contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Do You Need to Hire a Pensacola Accident Attorney?
You are under no legal obligation to hire an attorney after a Florida car accident. You can try to handle your accident claim independently. However, working with an experienced Pensacola car accident lawyer can help maximize your potential compensation.
Please don’t assume your case is too minor for an attorney to represent you until you speak with our office first. Even cases that appear simple at first glance could be much more complex than you think, especially if you are unfamiliar with how the legal process works.
When you retain Emmanuel Sheppard & Condon, our Pensacola accident attorneys will handle all the complicated and tedious legal aspects of your claim, so you can concentrate on your physical and mental recovery. Some of the ways our legal team will assist include:
- Gathering all evidence, including the police report and medical records;
- Speaking with the other party’s insurance company;
- Contacting all relevant witnesses;
- Calculating all your damages, such as medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, etc.;
- Negotiating with the responsible parties and their insurance companies or defense attorneys; and
- Preparing your case for litigation and representing you at trial if required.
Our top priority is to recover the maximum compensation on your behalf. Before you decide you don’t need an attorney to represent you, allow us to review your case. We offer a free initial consultation, so you have nothing to lose by meeting with our firm.
Proving Negligence in a Florida Car Accident
Before you can collect any compensation for your injuries, you must prove negligence against the other party. To prove negligence, you must show the other party owed you some type of duty. Motorists have a duty to follow all traffic laws and regulations. The second element of negligence is a breach of duty. If a motorist runs a red light, that would be a breach of duty.
The third element of negligence requires you to prove the other party’s breach of duty was what caused the accident. Finally, you must show damages. Damages are your financial losses, such as medical expenses and lost wages.
Types of Recoverable Damages in a Florida Car Accident
When you retain a Pensacola accident lawyer, they will calculate your damages. This process can be complicated depending on the type and severity of your injuries. Your damages are more than just adding totals of how much your bills are. Recoverable damages are broken down into two main categories—economic and noneconomic damages.
Economic damages are relatively easy to quantify because they can be calculated. These damages include losses such as:
- Ambulance transport,
- Emergency room treatment,
- Physical therapy,
- Prescription medication,
- Diagnostic tests,
- Lost wages,
- Lost earning capacity, and
- Vehicle damage.
Noneconomic damages are more challenging to calculate, as they are subjective. There is no set dollar amount attached to noneconomic damages, and they can make up a large part of your overall settlement. Noneconomic damages may include:
- Physical pain and suffering,
- Mental anguish or emotional distress,
- Loss of consortium, and
- Loss of quality of life.
Insurance companies often use one of two ways to reach a value for your noneconomic damages. The first is to multiple your economic damages by a specific number, typically one through five. The more severe your injuries are, the higher the multiplier. The second method is to use the per diem method. This option assigns a dollar rate to each day until you recover.
When you try to calculate damages on your own, you may not include everything that should be in a settlement demand. Insurance companies will try to offer you the least amount possible and typically undervalue car accident claims. When you hire our Pensacola accident lawyers, we will pursue the maximum compensation you are owed.
Statute of Limitations in a Florida Car Accident
It’s important to understand there’s a time limit on how long you have to bring a claim for a car accident. Every state has its own personal injury deadline.
In Florida, you have four years to file a bodily injury lawsuit in the proper civil court from the date of the accident. This deadline is known as the statute of limitations. Failing to meet the deadline means the court will most likely dismiss your case entirely. That means even if you were in negotiations with the at-fault party’s insurance company, they are under no obligation to continue settlement talks.
Four years might seem like a long time, but in complicated liability cases or those involving severe injuries, time can fly. Some cases may have different deadlines, so do not assume the four years apply in every situation.
When you have our Pensacola accident lawyers representing you, there is no chance of missing the statute of limitations. We will ensure a lawsuit is filed timely, and your case will proceed.
Contact Emmanuel Sheppard & Condon Today
We understand how stressful and frustrating a car accident can be. Don’t try to deal with the insurance companies yourself; our experienced team is here to help.
With over 100 years of combined experience, we have probably handled every type of accident imaginable. Every case we take is important to us. We work tirelessly to provide you with the best possible representation. We have a tradition of excellence and integrity in the legal profession.
Let us put our expertise to work for you. Contact Emmanuel Sheppard & Condon today to schedule a free consultation.