When To Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer
Personal injuries can occur unexpectedly, affecting the lives of individuals and their loved ones. When faced with such circumstances, knowing when to hire a personal injury lawyer in Miami, Florida, becomes essential. Whether you have sustained an injury in a car crash accident, slip-and-fall incident, dog bite, or medical malpractice, the expertise of a personal injury lawyer can guide you through the complicated legal process involved in pursuing compensation for your losses.
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Request a free consultation with our Miami personal injury lawyers today.
How long do I have to file a personal injury claim in Florida?
The time limit to file a personal injury claim in Florida is governed by the state’s statute of limitations. In most personal injury cases, including car accidents and slip-and-fall incidents, you have two years from the date of the accident or incident to file a claim.
However, it’s important to note that certain exceptions and factors can affect this timeline. For example, different statutes of limitations may apply if your claim involves medical malpractice or wrongful death. Additionally, waiting too long to pursue legal action can result in your case being barred entirely.
Consequently, seeking advice from an experienced personal injury lawyer promptly after sustaining any injury is crucial to ensure your rights are protected within the specified timeframe mandated by Florida law.
Is it better to consult an attorney sooner than later?
It is better to consult a Miami personal injury attorney sooner rather than later after sustaining an injury. Consulting an attorney early on allows you to receive guidance and free legal advice on proceeding with your injury claim.
In addition, speaking with an attorney ensures you do not miss any critical deadlines or fall outside Florida’s statute of limitations for filing a claim. By seeking legal advice early on, you give yourself the best chance at protecting your rights and maximizing your chances of obtaining fair compensation for damages for your injuries.
How can an attorney help you?
An attorney can provide valuable assistance in several ways when it comes to personal injury cases:
- Legal expertise: Personal injury attorneys have extensive knowledge and experience in personal injury and tort laws. They understand the intricacies and complexities involved, including relevant regulations, statutes, and case precedents. This expertise allows them to analyze your situation objectively, determine liability or fault, and assess the potential value of your claim.
- Investigation: Attorneys thoroughly investigate your case to gather evidence supporting your claim. This may involve reviewing accident reports, gathering witness statements, obtaining expert opinions or testimonies, collecting medical records and bills related to your injuries, examining surveillance footage, and any other pertinent information that strengthens your case.
- Negotiations with insurance companies: Insurance companies frequently attempt to minimize payouts in personal injury claims or deny claims so they do not have to pay. During settlement negotiations with insurers, an attorney will advocate on your behalf to ensure you receive fair compensation for all applicable damages.
- Litigation representation: If settlement negotiations are unsuccessful or a reasonable resolution cannot be reached, an attorney can take legal action on your behalf by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible negligent party
- Advocacy and support: A personal injury attorney is a dedicated advocate who will prioritize your best interests throughout the legal process. They will provide guidance, answer your questions, and keep you informed about the progress of your case. This support can be invaluable during what can often be a challenging and stressful time.
- Access to resources: Attorneys have access to a network of professionals, including medical experts, accident reconstruction specialists, vocational experts, and economists, who can provide additional insights or expert opinions to support your claim
Is hiring a personal injury attorney in Florida necessary?
Hiring a personal injury attorney in Florida is highly recommended in many situations for these reasons:
- Legal knowledge and expertise: Personal injury attorneys know how to navigate complex laws relevant to your case, calculate damages accurately, and build a strong case on your behalf
- Settlement negotiation skills: Insurance companies are equipped with teams of adjusters and lawyers whose goal is to minimize their payout or deny claims altogether. Having an experienced personal injury attorney levels the playing field as they understand the tactics used by insurers. They are skilled at settlement negotiations and advocate aggressively for fair compensation amounts.
- Legal protection: The legal system can be overwhelming for individuals without legal representation, especially when dealing with complex procedures required to obtain a fair settlement from insurance companies
- Evaluation of claim value: Attorneys possess the knowledge to provide a more accurate estimation of the amount of compensation you are entitled to receive
Reduces stress: Going through a personal injury claim can be emotionally and physically taxing. Hiring an attorney allows you to focus on your recovery while they handle the legal aspects of your case, alleviating stress.
What are some situations where a personal injury attorney in Miami is most needed?
Several situations where hiring a personal injury attorney in Miami is particularly crucial include:
- Severe injuries: If you have suffered severe injuries that require extensive medical treatment, rehabilitation or result in long-term disability, an attorney can help ensure your damages accurately reflect the full extent of your losses
- Long-term or permanent injuries: In cases involving long-term or permanent injuries that impact your ability to work, earn income, or carry out daily activities independently, an attorney can assess the future financial and emotional impact these injuries will have on your life to seek compensation proportionate to those circumstances
- Your injuries are worse than previously thought: Some types of internal and latent injuries may not be immediately apparent after an accident but can manifest later on. If this occurs, having legal representation allows for a reevaluation of your injuries for potential additional recovery entitled by law before settling.
- Insurance company refusal to pay or lowball offers: Insurance companies employ disputed liability tactics such as denial of liability, resulting in outright rejection of claims, even valid ones. They also offer substantially lower settlements than one truly deserves, ensuring profitability. An attorney knows these tactics to help you get a fair settlement.
- Lost wages and medical bills: Personal injuries can create considerable economic hardship through lost wages and accumulating medical bills, surgeries, and therapies. A personal injury attorney helps protect your right to compensation for these damages.
What tricks do insurance companies use?
Insurance companies employ various tricks and strategies to minimize payouts and deny claims to protect their profits, including:
- Pushing for a quick settlement: Insurance adjusters often try to settle claims quickly by acting like their offer is the best one you will receive, even though the true value of your case can be significantly higher. If you accept the initial settlement, you forfeit all rights to future compensation.
- Attempting to shift the blame: Insurers also try to shift blame using leading questions where they attempt to get you to admit partial or complete fault for your injuries to lower their payout or deny your claim
- Delay tactics: Insurance companies may intentionally prolong the claims process by requesting unnecessary documentation, conducting repeated investigations, or simply stalling in hopes that you will become frustrated and accept a lower settlement out of desperation
- Downplaying injury severity: Adjusters might downplay your injuries’ seriousness or dispute medical evidence provided by healthcare professionals in an attempt to reduce compensation amounts significantly
- Monitoring social media activity: Insurers sometimes monitor claimants’ social media accounts, looking for postings, photos, or videos that contradict reported injuries. Then, they use this information against you during negotiations or litigation proceedings to reduce or deny your claim.
Using statements against you: Be cautious when communicating with insurance representatives and adjusters without legal representation. Anything you say can be used against you later to deny or reduce your settlement amount.
Personal injury victims get more when they work with Bernstein & Maryanoff
If you have been a victim of a personal injury, do not attempt to navigate the legal process of obtaining a settlement alone. You will not get the compensation you deserve. Obtaining assistance from Bernstein & Maryanoff is essential to ensure you receive a fair settlement.
Our experienced personal injury attorneys will fight for your rights and advocate on your behalf to secure a fair settlement, which is often substantially more than you would receive if you attempt to settle on your own. Choose Bernstein & Maryanoff to get maximum compensation for your personal injury claim.
NO FEES UNLESS WE WIN
Protecting Your Rights Since 1983
Contact our Miami personal injury attorneys for a free consultation today.
FLA. STAT. § 95.11(4). (2023).