If you or a loved one has suffered injuries from a car accident in Miami, Florida, contact attorney Brian L. Elstein. As a former insurance defense lawyer, Brian L. Elstein knows how to fight the insurance companies to get the maximum value for your claim. We will help build your case and claim financial compensation for your injuries.
All drivers are responsible for obeying the rules of the road and vigilantly paying attention to their surroundings. Unfortunately, some drivers neglect this responsibility. This can result in injury to you or a loved one.
Recovering from any injury is frustrating. Recovering from an injury you sustained because another driver was negligent is even worse. That’s why, when you or a loved one has been injured in a Miami auto accident, you should start looking for the best Miami car accident attorney you can find.
Elstein Legal, personal injury lawyer Brian L. Elstein has helped recover millions of dollars on behalf of his clients, and we understand the importance of aggressively advocating on their behalf.
Why Hire a Lawyer after a Car Accident?
A car accident attorney can help you investigate your case, preserve evidence, and pursue the total amount of available compensation. In addition, they know how to value your damages, maximize compensation, and avoid potentially costly mistakes that may reduce the value of your settlement.
Unfortunately, the legal system in Florida is complex, and the insurance companies are not working in your best interest to provide the compensation you deserve. Having an experienced attorney represent your case can help you recover the maximum compensation for damages caused by the accident.
How does a Car Accident Attorney Help with your case?
An experienced Miami car accident lawyer can provide expert legal representation to make the most of your claim and minimize the burden of the legal process.
When you work with Elstein Legal, we will handle all aspects of your legal claim during every stage of your case, including:
- Negotiating with the insurance company so that you don’t have to
- Establishing legal liability and your entitlement to compensation
- Preserving evidence, coaxing reluctant witnesses to cooperate
- Offering expert advice on the best time to settle
- Calculating damages including medical bills, lost wages, mental health injuries, and pain and suffering
- Protecting yourself from allegations of wrongdoing
- Speaking in court and trial advocacy
- Appeals and collection of a judgment
Focus on Recovery
A car accident can have a substantial impact on your life. Depending on the severity of your injuries, the recovery period might last a long time. During this time, you may struggle with pain, you’ll likely need to undergo medical treatments, your quality of life might have diminished, and much more. This is the time to focus on overcoming what has happened to you. You don’t want to waste any of your limited energy negotiating with an insurance company when you can hire a Miami, Florida car accident lawyer to handle that for you.
Getting Proper Compensation
The liable party’s insurance company is not going to prioritize your needs during negotiations. Their goal is to pay out as little as possible. Therefore, insurance companies regularly employ a range of defense tactics most victims are unprepared to respond to. A leading car accident attorney in Miami, however, is thoroughly familiar with these tactics, and knows how to prevent insurance companies from using them to disadvantage a victim.
You need to prove someone else was at fault when pursuing compensation after a Miami car accident. You can’t merely assume that others will believe you when you insist they are liable. However, the process of establishing liability can involve numerous steps, including interviewing witnesses, securing expert testimony, presenting evidence, and much more. An auto accident attorney in Miami, FL is crucial to building the strongest case. Additionally, you have to prove that any injuries for which you’re seeking compensation resulted from the auto accident, and not other circumstances.
Determining Fault in a Car Accident
The party at fault in a car accident is the party that acted negligently. Negligence is considered a failure to take the care that a reasonable person would take in the same situation or a lack of standard care or attention. That means the negligent party was not cautious and contributed to the accident through carelessness or a lack of attention.
Examples of negligence in a car accident include:
- Ignoring traffic signals and disobeying stop signs
- Following too closely
- Failing to signal, improper lane use
- Distracted driving such as texting and driving
- Drunk driving, DUI, DWI
- Reckless driving, including impatient driving
- Unsafe driving when weather conditions are poor
- A lack of vehicle maintenance
- Drowsy driving or driving with inadequate sleep
You naturally want to secure the full amount of compensation to which you’re entitled. This is yet another reason it’s smart to work with a Miami car crash attorney. Along with obvious financial losses, such as those resulting from medical bills and lost wages, you may also face other challenges after an auto accident. Perhaps you now struggle with anxiety whenever you even consider the prospect of getting back behind the wheel. No longer feeling comfortable operating a car can have a major impact on your lifestyle, affecting everything from employment prospects to relationships. You may be able to account for these types of losses when calculating the total damages you’re owed.
It’s not always the case that one party is liable and one party is the victim in a Miami auto accident. In some instances, parties may share liability. For example, maybe a distracted driver rear-ended your vehicle at an intersection. In a case such as this, it might seem obvious they’re fully liable, but if your brake lights aren’t functioning properly, an insurance company could make the argument that you’re also responsible to at least some degree. Luckily, cases of shared liability don’t prevent you from seeking compensation, but they do require the help of an attorney to reduce your liability and maximize your settlement amount.
Common Causes of Auto Accidents in Miami
- Speeding: According to surveys and studies, far too many people are comfortable exceeding the posted speed limits, despite speeding being a main cause in nearly one-third of all fatal auto accidents. Make sure you obey the speed limit, and be aware of others on the road who may be driving too fast.
- Distracted driving: While distracted driving has been a problem for a long time, in the age of smartphones, it’s becoming even more significant. Many drivers these days mistakenly assume they can safely check their devices behind the wheel. Of course, doing so involves taking their eyes off the road, potentially leading to accidents.
- Driving under the influence: Everyone should understand that driving under the influence is extremely dangerous. Sadly, statistics indicate many don’t care, as driving under the influence is the most common cause of fatal auto accidents in the Miami area.
- Night driving: Driving at night can be hazardous for a few reasons. Along with the fact that some drivers find it much more difficult to safely navigate roads in dark conditions, night is when more drivers are likely to be fatigued. Thus, when you must drive at night, you should be particularly vigilant about the way others around you are driving.
What You Need to Do After an Auto Accident
All that said, even if you do exercise caution and follow the rules of the road, it’s still possible to be involved in a Miami car accident resulting from someone else’s negligence. You need to take the right steps after this happens. They are:
- Get to safety: Depending on the nature of a car accident, you may still be exposed to danger in the immediate aftermath. Make sure you and all other occupants of the vehicle are okay, and move away from oncoming traffic.
- Address medical needs: Your number one priority after a car accident should be tending to your health. This is true even if you don’t think you’re severely injured. A seemingly minor injury can develop into something more significant if you don’t see a doctor fast. Additionally, records of your visit will likely serve as evidence in any future legal proceedings.
- Report the incident: Report the incident to the authorities as soon as possible. You want an officer to document the scene right away, as their report may also become evidence later. It also helps to have an objective authority figure nearby to mediate any disputes between you and anyone else involved in the accident.
- Get more evidence: Along with getting medical attention and reporting the incident, you can collect additional evidence by taking pictures and/or video of the scene, focusing particularly on your injuries, damage to the vehicles involved, and any other conditions you think might have contributed to the incident. You should also try to collect the contact information of any potential witnesses, although a police officer may handle that for you. Quickly write down your own narrative of what happened, that way no one can accuse you of misremembering details in the future.
- Get legal help: Don’t make the mistake of accepting a low settlement offer. Meet with a personal injury lawyer in Miami, Florida to determine if you’re better off taking legal action.
Car Accident Case Timeline
Being injured in an accident that you didn’t cause can leave you saddled with damages like medical bills, lost wages, and so on. You should not have to shoulder this burden alone, and even in a no-fault state like Florida, there are laws in place to protect you and allow you to seek compensation for the damages and losses you have suffered.
Keeping in mind that all cases will vary to some degree, there is some regularity to expect with the progression of things immediately following a car accident. In a very general sense, your case may progress in a similar fashion to this:
- The First 72 Hours – This is an important period when it comes to personal injury claims. By now you should have received initial medical care following the accident, as well as reached out to a personal injury attorney. If you have not seen a doctor, do it now. It is quite possible that during this time you may be contacted by an insurance company to “see how you’re doing.” They are often fishing for answers that can be used to minimize your claim later on.
- Days 3 to 14 – Since your accident occurred in the Miami area, Florida law gives you two calendar weeks, or fourteen days, following an accident, to take advantage of Personal Injury Protection benefits. If you do not see a medical professional during this period you will still be able to seek compensation but you will miss out on up to $10,000 of medical expense payment.
- 30 Days and Beyond – If you haven’t seen a doctor by now, proving your injury may be difficult. Florida statutes give you up to 4 years to file your personal injury claim from the date of the accident. While that length of time makes it possible for those who were unaware of the law to seek compensation if you were recently in an accident near Miami where you were injured, the best thing to do is reach out for legal help as soon as possible.
Miami Car Accident FAQs
Yes, you can sue someone for a car accident in Miami if you sustain serious or permanent injury. Otherwise, your no-fault insurance should cover the claim.
However, even with no-fault insurance, it may be necessary to take legal action to receive the fair payment of no-fault benefits and exercise claim rights to your own insurance. At Elstein Legal, we have experience taking on insurance companies and can help you understand your rights depending on your specific situation.
Yes, Miami and all of Florida uses a system of comparative fault for car accidents. That means you may receive financial compensation even if the accident was partially your fault. Miami’s pure comparative fault system under Florida law 768.81 may still allow you to receive compensation even if you were partially at fault for the accident.
In a Florida car accident case, you may be able to claim medical bills, lost wages, treatment for mental health injuries, and other financial losses. Plus, pain and suffering compensation may be available based on the severity of your injuries.
Damages are based on actual losses that are unique to the victim. We recommend consulting with an accident attorney to learn more about the specific damages that may be available in your case.
Florida law 316.065 requires every driver to call the police after an accident if there is injury, death, or apparent property damage of $500 or more. Otherwise, the driver may complete and self-submit a Driver Report of Traffic Crash.
The statute of limitations for a car accident in Florida is (4) four years from the date of the accident, based on Florida law 95.11(3)(a). For wrongful death claims, the statute of limitations is (2) two years from the date of death, based on Florida law 95.11(4)(d).
Why Choose Elstein Legal to Represent your Case?
Since opening Elstein Legal in 2018, Miami personal injury attorney Brian L. Elstein has recovered millions on behalf of his deserving clients. A cum laude graduate of Nova Southeastern University, Brian Elstein honed his skills early as a member of the Nova Trial Association.
Today, he is recognized by The National Trial Lawyers as a Top 40 Under 40 Lawyer in Florida and has been selected to the 2022-2023 Florida Rising Stars list by Super Lawyers Magazine – a distinction given to only 2.5% of attorneys in Florida, and named 2022 Best Litigation Attorney by Expertise.com.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
If you have been injured in a car accident, contact Elstein Legal for a free consultation with experienced Miami car accident lawyer Brian L. Elstein. You will gain an advocate for every stage in the claims process until you have the compensation you deserve.
Elstein Legal is available to help you handle your car accident claim in the Miami metropolitan area and beyond. Brian L. Elstein and his team can offer you the personalized service and legal representation you deserve after a car accident.
Call us at (305) 299-2835 or contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case.