The Different Types of Injuries Resulting from Car Accidents in Florida
Car accidents occur in varying degrees of severity. This is one of the reasons why there are many types of injuries that can stem from a wreck. Understanding the types of injuries that can occur, as well as how a victim’s compensation is calculated, can be crucial to knowing what to expect as your case moves through the process. This article, therefore, will discuss the different types of injuries that stem from Florida car accidents as well as how damages are calculated in such matters. If you or a family member require assistance, contact our office today to speak with a lawyer.
The Types Of Injuries Stemming From Car Accidents
The types of injuries that can flow from a wreck include but are not limited to, the following.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries are some of the more minor injuries that flow from a car accident. These often include bruising, soreness, and aches. They tend to not result in permanent damage. Most soft tissue injuries are the result of minor car accidents and not those involving high-speed collisions or a vehicle rolling over.
The head injuries that flow from a wreck can range from a minor concussion to a traumatic brain injury (TBI). The results of such injuries can range from minor short-term headaches to permanent disability. The symptoms of a head injury may not manifest themselves until several days after an accident. It is, therefore, crucial that you seek immediate medical care even if you believe that you are not seriously injured.
Neck and Spine Injuries
Injuries to the neck or spine can often result in varying types of permanent disability– including having a range of motion that is permanently limited to paralysis. In serious cases, the victim can expect to have multiple surgeries and a lengthy rehabilitation period. Also, the extent to which one will make a recovery may not be known for some time.
The most extreme situations involve those in which a car accident victim loses their life. The matter will be considered a wrongful death case regardless of whether the victims passed away at the time of the accident or later due to the injuries they suffered.
Calculating Damages For a Florida Car Accident
A car accident victim will be entitled to compensation for their injuries. There are several components that are factored into an award of damages. These components include the following:
Past and Future Medical Expenses
A victim will be entitled for medical expenses that have been incurred to date as well as their projected future medical costs. Future costs will include any necessary amounts for surgeries, medications, rehabilitative therapy, and travel expenses that are necessitated by care. It may be some time before the future medical costs can be ascertained as a victim’s long-term prognosis is often not immediately known. It is strongly suggested that one wait until their chances of recovery are reasonably known. Accepting a “quick” settlement can potentially leave you without the money needed for future care.
Past and Future Lost Wages
One will also be able to receive wages that have been lost to date due to the accident as well as wages that are expected to be lost in the future. If you have suffered serious injuries, and will not be able to return to your former job, then you may be entitled to the difference between what you could have expected to earn over the remainder of your life and what you can now be expected to earn.
Pain and Suffering
Another component of a personal injury award is compensation for pain and suffering. This includes the pain that you suffer at the time of the accident. It also includes physical pain that occurs as the result of treatments, surgeries, ongoing soreness, etc. If you are not expected to make a full recovery and you will have ongoing issues of pain and discomfort, then compensation for these ongoing problems will be a factor. Finally, the inconvenience, anguish, and distress that you have suffered due to the accident will be factored into an award.
Loss of Companionship, Earnings, & Medical Expenses
If the case involves a wrongful death, the surviving family members will be entitled to compensation for the loss of companionship as well as their own pain and suffering. Furthermore, they will be entitled to the deceased’s earnings, medical expenses, burial costs, and more. The determination of future lost earnings is often a hotly contested issue and will typically involve the use of expert witnesses. Retaining an attorney who is experienced in handling such matters is crucial.
Florida’s Comparative Fault Law
Regardless of the nature of your injuries, it is important to understand that Florida’s comparative fault laws will apply to any award that you receive. Under this law, a victim’s damages are reduced by any extent to which they were responsible for the accident. If the victim is found to have been more than fifty percent responsible for the accident, however, then they will be barred from recovery. This means, for example, that if a Plaintiff suffers $100,000 and is found to be thirty percent responsible for the accident, then they will receive $70,000 ($100k – 30%). If, however, the Plaintiff is found to be fifty-one percent or more responsible for the accident then they will recover nothing. The determination of comparative fault is made by the jury.
Contact Our Office To Speak With a Florida Car Accident Attorney
It is important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible if you have been in an auto wreck. It is strongly suggested that you do so before speaking to the defendant’s insurance adjusters. Counsel will ensure that your rights are protected throughout the process. Our firm is dedicated to protecting the rights of the injured, and we look forward to being of assistance. Contact us online or by telephone at 800-780-8607 to speak with a Florida car accident attorney.