11 May

Florida Personal Injury FAQs

Personal Injury

florida personal injury lawyer

Here are some of the common questions that Florida accident victims may have regarding their personal injury case!

If you were injured in an accident due to someone else’s negligence (whether or not you were partially at fault), an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you hold the other party accountable and receive the financial compensation you need to heal. Insurance companies will usually try to minimize your claim or settlement, so it’s important to work with an experienced Florida accident attorney who can make a strong case for maximum compensation on your behalf. 

The Florida Law Group has successfully obtained multi-million dollar settlements for our clients. Here are some questions we are often asked by Florida car accident victims:

How do I pay my personal injury lawyer?

Many people are afraid that hiring a lawyer will be too expensive for them, but most Florida personal injury lawyers (including The Florida Law Group!) work on a contingency fee basis. This means that you do not have to pay them anything until they resolve your case and win you a settlement. If they are not able to recover damages, you don’t owe them anything; if they do, their payment will come out of your settlement amount. So you are not risking any of your own money, and clients who hire a personal injury lawyer almost always get more than they would have without one. 

How do I pay for lost wages/medical bills until I get my settlement?

Winning a settlement can take time – every case is different, and it is nearly impossible to give a general estimate without knowing the specifics of your case. If you have more serious injuries and are requesting a larger settlement, the insurance company will generally fight harder to avoid paying the full amount, but they may settle faster when you have a lawyer because they know that you won’t accept a low offer. Regardless, many Florida car accident victims find themselves unable to work for a long period of time or facing high medical costs that they are unable to pay. The goal of a settlement is to cover those costs, but until one can be reached, you may be wondering what your options are. One option is to file for short-term disability benefits through your employer. Another is to take advantage of your PIP benefits, at least as far as they will go; in Florida and other no-fault states, this is insurance that pays 80% up to $10,000 for injuries you sustain in an accident regardless of who was at fault, so long as you get a medical examination within 14 days of the accident. PIP benefits also pay for a portion of lost wages and funeral-related costs. 

How long do I have to file a personal injury claim?

In Florida, you have four years from the date the accident occured to file a personal injury claim. After four years, unless your case has an exception to the statute of limitations (which is rare), your claim will no longer be valid and you cannot sue for compensation. 

How can I get compensation in a personal injury suit if Florida is a no-fault state? 

Florida’s no-fault law confuses many people. This does not mean that no one is actually responsible for your accident and cannot be held accountable in court, and it does not mean that you cannot hire a personal injury lawyer, make a claim, and receive a settlement for your injuries. No-fault states simply require every driver to carry PIP (personal injury protection) insurance. This policy covers drivers through their own insurers. It covers a certain percentage of injury-related costs (only up to $10,000), and can help you get money immediately, but it does not cover enough and is not a long-term solution if you have sustained significant injuries in a motor-vehicle accident. It does not cover passenger injuries or intangible costs like pain and suffering, and while $10,000 may seem like a lot, that amount can be spent very quickly on imaging tests, emergency room visits, surgeries, and other medical bills. Your best bet for full compensation is to work with a local Florida personal injury attorney and make a personal injury claim. 

Do I have to go to court if I get a lawyer?

No. Most Florida personal injury cases settle out of court; very few become a suit and make it all the way to trial. Your lawyer can tell you what the likelihood is of reaching an agreement with the insurance company without having to go to court. 

Do I have a case if my injuries seem minor?

Even if you don’t feel your injuries right away, it doesn’t mean that you did not sustain them – sometimes adrenaline prevents you from noticing them all, and sometimes the most severe injuries present themselves over time. Getting a medical examination right away is extremely important! You should also consult a Florida personal injury lawyer immediately; they can help you determine whether or not you have a case for compensation. 

What should I do if my insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company contacts me and wants to settle the claim?

Do not sign anything or verbally agree to any amount until you have consulted a lawyer. Insurance companies are very polite and compassionate over the phone – they pretend to be your friends, and may make what sounds like a great offer to pay for your medical bills – but this is often a low offer compared to what you truly deserve, and they know this. A lawyer will be able to help you understand what you could receive in a settlement and negotiate with your insurance company. 

Got more questions? The Florida Law Group is here to help! Call us today if you were injured in a car accident.