Kissimmee Personal Injury Lawyer
Traffic accidents are a common occurrence in this country. In the Central Florida area of Kissimmee, they are all too prevalent. You can hardly ever get through a morning or evening rush hour without hearing about or seeing first-hand an accident in the Kissimmee area.
What happens if you were injured in a traffic accident? One of the unfortunate but necessary issues that arise from such an ordeal is having to deal with the insurance companies. Do you know that it is not in their best interest to provide you, the injured party, with appropriate compensation?
That is why you must hire an experienced Kissimmee personal injury attorney such as The Ward Law Group, PL. This lawyer will work on your behalf in any type of personal injury case to help make sure that the insurance companies do not take advantage of you.
An experienced personal injury lawyer in Kissimmee will help you fight for the maximum compensation possible so that you can focus on your recovery rather than having to worry about financial issues. Whether you suffered from serious injuries or minor injuries, you should contact an experienced personal injury law firm to receive the legal help you may need regarding your claim.
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The Most Common Accidents In Kissimmee
Car accidents are certainly common in Kissimmee, but that’s not the only type of accident life can throw at you. Kissimmee is a tropical city with plenty of opportunities to get out on the water and enjoy a day out on the boat. However, with many boats on the water, boating accidents are more common.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Boating Accident Statistical Report, there were 836 reported boating accidents in 2020 in Florida.
Motorcycles are also quite common in the Kissimmee area. Along with them, there are also plenty of motorcycle accidents. In fact, in one recent year, there were 8,895 motorcycle accidents in Florida, according to Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ 2019 Report of Traffic Crash Facts. And it continues today – there was just a news report about a motorcyclist killed when his motorcycle struck a pickup truck and caught fire.
Some of the worst accidents involve pedestrians. It is no question that the Kissimmee area has some rather dangerous sections of road for pedestrian crossings. In one recent year, Florida as a whole saw 9,736 pedestrian accidents (2019 Report of Traffic Crash Facts). For example, a recent news report told of a 24-year-old pedestrian killed when struck by a car in Orlando. For the pedestrians who survive these accidents, they may be faced with long and costly recoveries.
A March 2011 accident killed a driver after a car collided with a SunRail train on East Vine Street in Kissimmee. The fatality rate per 100,000 people for Osceola County, Florida is slightly higher than both the Florida and United States averages.
Kissimmee attracts tourists from across the world to visit Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, Fun Spot and Sea World. In addition to theme parks, Kissimmee offers local attractions and dining options through its main thoroughfares of US-192 and John Young Parkway. Tourists may not be aware of local Kissimmee and Florida traffic regulations while driving on local roads, which can lead to dangerous accidents causing serious bodily injury.
What is a serious bodily injury?
Florida law defines “serious bodily injury” as “an injury to a person, including the driver, which consists of a physical condition that creates a substantial risk of death, serious personal disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member or organ.” Some examples of injuries that would qualify as “serious bodily injury” are as follows: paralysis, loss of a limb, and any life-threatening injury.
No matter what type of serious bodily injury you experienced, you have the right to pursue legal action to help pay for the costs associated with your injuries.
What should I do after an accident in Kissimmee?
Having an accident is a very jarring and traumatic event. Therefore, it is vital to take care of yourself after one has occurred. The best way to do that is to:
- Stay at the scene of the accident. If you leave the scene of an accident, it may cause you legal trouble and raise questions that will not be helpful to your case.
- You want to be sure to seek medical attention. Even if you feel fine, it is not uncommon for injuries to manifest themselves long after an accident. However, a physician will know what to look for and could spot those latent injuries. Having those findings documented as part of your medical reports can play a critical role in supporting any claims filed.
- It is essential that you contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. The insurance companies have lawyers working for them. How often does a person fight the insurance companies in their lifetime? Isn’t it important to have someone on your side with years of experiencing doing just that? An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to adequately prepare for and take on the insurance company’s tactics and walk you through every step of your personal injury claim.
- Finally, make sure you do not accept the insurance company’s first offer. They are not looking out for your best interests but rather for their own best interests. Therefore, the offers they initially make are win-lose, where they win, and you lose. Do not be intimidated into accepting an offer from the insurance company.
How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me After an Accident in Kissimmee?
If you have had an accident in Kissimmee, a personal injury lawyer will be able to provide a long list of advantageous services to you. Not least among those advantages is the firm understanding of the rights that you have as an injured person. A lawyer will be able to explain your rights so that you are not easily taken advantage of.
In addition, a personal injury lawyer will walk you through every step of the claims process. This is a great benefit because the process itself is, unfortunately, quite daunting and convoluted. Another benefit of hiring an attorney is that they will be able to assist with gathering evidence. An experienced personal injury lawyer will know just what pieces of information will be critical to help further your case in a way that provides the most benefit possible.
The years of experience that such a lawyer brings will also be invaluable when it comes to evaluating your case. Their experience will allow them to help estimate what your case may be worth based on property damage, medical expenses, and the extent of your injuries. Furthermore, an injury lawyer will also take over the burden of handling all communications with the insurance companies and the negligent party. This is a huge plus as the nature and tenor of these communications can often be adversarial and stressful. It is energy that would certainly be better spent focusing on your recovery.
Another area where experience is a great advantage is in negotiations. An injury lawyer will have valuable experience in these types of discussions. Again, this type of experience is a valuable asset when it comes to protecting yourself against people and companies that are looking to give you as little compensation as possible.
One aspect of personal injury claims that is not widely understood is the statute of limitations. This is the time period after the injury in which you must file a lawsuit. The law of statutes of limitations can be complicated. That’s another reason why it’s important to hire a personal injury lawyer. They will stay on top of your case and keep track of all deadlines and statutes of limitations so as not to forfeit any of your legal rights.
Further, a personal injury lawyer will also be able to file a wrongful death claim if you lost a family member or loved one. It would be a difficult task to handle yourself, given the emotional turmoil involved. It is always in your best interests to have an experienced legal team guide you through the complex legal processes and help make sure the filing is submitted properly.
Finally, if the insurance company decides they want to be especially greedy and contentious, it is certainly a possibility that the case may go to trial. That is a situation where you want to have an experienced personal injury lawyer fighting for you. There is too much at stake in these courtroom showdowns to go it alone. Protect yourself and hire an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately after seeking medical attention.
What kind of cases do the Kissimmee personal injury lawyers at Ward Law handle?
At the root of all personal injury claims is the issue of negligence. If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may have the ability to file a personal injury claim. The following is a list of the types of cases that Ward Law handles:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Drunk driving accidents
- Distracted driver accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Road rage incidents
- Boating accidents
- Uninsured motorist accidents
- Hit-and-run accidents
- Pedestrian struck by a motor vehicle
- Defective car parts
- Slip and fall injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Product liability
- Medical malpractice
- Wrongful death cases.
There are many different types of personal injury issues and types of damages that can arise after a personal injury accident. The legal professionals at Ward Law can provide you with the legal services you need to seek justice after any type of accident.
How Do No-Fault or PIP Benefits Affect My Florida Accident?
Florida is a no-fault state. That means that both parties make claims in the event of an accident, no matter who was at fault. It is required that all Florida drivers have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance as part of their car insurance policy.
PIP only covers up to a certain amount. If injuries are significant enough to be considered “serious” by law or exceed your PIP coverage, it is possible to file a lawsuit against the other driver (2020 Florida Statutes; Florida Physical Medicine). The amount of PIP insurance coverage required for Florida drivers is $10,000. However, it will only cover 80% of your medical costs. Furthermore, it will only pay 60% of your lost wages. Both medical and lost wage costs are only covered up to $10,000 total.
This is why it is crucial to hire a personal injury attorney who will help you recover your costs that go beyond the $10,000 maximum. It does not take long for medical bills and lost wages to climb well above $10,000. If injured in an accident, your chances of recovering these exceeding costs are likely much greater with an attorney.
Senate Bill 54 has recently passed in Florida. If signed into law, this bill would end Florida’s status as a no-fault state and do away with the PIP insurance requirement. Instead, drivers would be required to carry coverage of $25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person and $50,000 for multiple people. In addition, the insurance company of the person at fault would be required to pay (Senate Bill 54).
How Can I Prove That the Other Party Is Responsible For My Damages?
After the $10,000 PIP insurance coverage limit is surpassed, Florida looks a lot like a comparative negligence state. That means that each person’s culpability is considered when determining the degree of fault for each party. That is why it is important that you have evidence to support your claim. Evidence might include photos of the accident scene, photos of your vehicle, the police report, medical bills, previous pay stubs, and witness statements. An experienced Kissimmee personal injury attorney will be able to assist and guide you in obtaining these important pieces of evidence.
What type of compensation can I receive after an accident in Kissimmee?
It is not possible to predict what amount of compensation you may receive. That will depend on several factors, such as the extent of your injuries, the medical costs associated with your recovery, the length of time you are unable to work, your usual pay rate, and the degree of negligence of the other party.
There are different categories of compensation that can be divided into economic damages, non-economic damages, and punitive damages. Economic damages account for things that can objectively be quantified, such as medical bills and time away from work. Non-economic damages are things like emotional distress and trauma. Punitive damages are awarded as a way of punishing the negligent party for egregious conduct.
How Do I Choose an Experienced Kissimmee Personal Injury Law Firm?
When deciding who to hire as your personal injury attorney, it’s important to consider certain key qualities. Chief among those qualities is experience. Experience will be of utmost importance when it comes to evaluating your claim and being successful in negotiations on your behalf. Ask how long their attorneys have been practicing personal injury law. Another important quality is availability.
Dealing with the aftermath of an accident is stressful. Even more stressful is not being able to get in touch with the firm responsible for handling that aftermath. Ensure the firm you hire has the resources to give you the attention you deserve. Ask about the size of the firm and how many legal assistants and paralegals they employ. Finally, a firm’s track record should speak for itself. What kind of success has the law firm had? Ask them to quantify their success rate. Check out their website to see if they provide client testimonials.
When Do I Have to File a Claim by in Florida?
In Florida, the statute of limitations for filing a claim based on negligence is four years (section 95.11(3)(a)). However, if the person with a claim has been incapacitated, or if the person to be sued has fled the state or attempted to hide their identity, these types of circumstances would create an exception.
Why should I file a personal injury claim after an accident in Kissimmee?
One of the most practical reasons to file a personal injury claim is the recovery of lost wages and the recouping of expensive medical costs. Another reason to file is to hold the other party accountable. When people are more aware that they may have to pay up if they cause another person harm by their negligent actions, it goes a long way in increasing vigilance and care, which keeps our world safer. Finally, of course, nobody plans on being in an accident. Unfortunately, though, accidents are often part of life. If you are in an accident, contact Ward Law for a free case evaluation.
The Ward Law Group, PL
1007 W Emmett St
Kissimmee, FL 34741