Tampa Car Accident Attorney
Have you recently been injured in an auto accident in the state of Florida? Are you searching for a Tampa personal injury attorney? This article will help you determine whether you should hire a lawyer to represent you, what you should look for when considering an attorney, and what your expectations for your representation should be.
At The Scene Of The Accident
If you’ve just been in a collision, take a deep breath and do the following before anything else:
- Move To Safety – If the incident is of minor damage and your vehicle is near traffic, move the vehicle out of harm’s way and turn on your flashers.
- Call For Help – Dial 911 and wait for help.
- Gather Information – Take down the other driver’s information, including license plate and telephone numbers, registration, and insurance documentation. Take lots of photos, both of damage to the vehicle and to the surrounding scene.
- Do Not Admit Fault – Be mindful of what you say immediately after an accident, and do not apologize. An apology can be taken as an admission of fault and will be used against you during litigation.
Do You Need Representation?
If the extent of the damages are minimal and you’re able to settle the dispute on your own, the answer is usually no. If, however, there is serious personal injury and you fear the insurance claim from the other driver may not cover the extent of the damages, you should consider hiring an attorney. When in doubt, it’s always wise to consult with an attorney and begin inquiring about the details of your insurance claim. In any case, be sure to keep detailed records of hospital visits, bills and any other conditions that are a direct result of your accident.
Services A Lawyer Will Provide
During the challenging time that follows being involved in an accident, the last thing you may want to do is arrange documents and investigate the details of your accident. By hiring an attorney, you can expect that they will handle keeping your information organized while you recover. Consider that a lawyer will investigate your case, attaining the following documents to build a successful personal injury case on your behalf. Police reports, traffic video or photo, the 911 call recording, witness statements, physical injuries, medical records and driver history, both yours and the other party’s records, will all be collected and organized. Once the comprehensive information from your case is compiled your attorney will use the information to draft a demand letter addressed to the defendant, which will claim the financial total of the damages owed. Your lawyer will then negotiate on your behalf in order to get you the largest settlement possible.
Types Of Damages
The types of damages you will claim typically fall into two categories:
- Special – These types of damages are usually economical ones. For example, medical bills, lost wages and property damage are all special damage claims.
- General – These damages are referred to as non- economic suffering. Mental anguish, physical pain, emotional damage, and loss of companion are all considered general damages.
In the case of a special damage claim, documents can be assembled to substantiate your claim. A general damages claim, however, can be more difficult to prove so it is important to have a conversation about this with your attorney at the beginning stages of working together.
What To Consider
When looking for a personal injury attorney, the following qualities are of utmost importance:
- Licensed to practice in your state
- Specializes in personal injury law
- Has experience negotiating
- Has trial experience
Personal injuries suffered in an auto accident can have permanent effects that are costly and, in some cases, debilitating. Insurance companies by nature will want to pay as little as possible. Hiring an attorney to defend you and get you the compensation you deserve will have a lasting effect, allowing you to move on and put a terrible incident behind you.