Personal Injury Law in Florida

Were you hurt due to another’s negligence in Florida? If so, it may have far-reaching consequences such as a loss of wages or extensive medical treatment. Personal injury law allows an injured person to get damages if the responsible person acted recklessly. A personal injury attorney in Florida can help navigate the lawsuit to make sure you receive all of the compensation you deserve.

What Is Personal Injury Law?

Personal injury law in Florida relates to the legal process of getting compensation for an injury caused by someone else’s negligent behavior. These cases involve one party, the plaintiff, trying to seek financial compensation for expenses incurred and money lost as a result of the defendant’s reckless behavior. These cases involve both parties’ insurance companies and may even settle before proceeding to litigation.

Examples of Personal Injury Claims in  Florida

Some personal injury claims are more common than others. However, almost any incident that ends with a physical or mental injury could qualify, depending on the circumstances.

A few of the most common personal injury claims are:

  • Car Accidents
  • Slip and Fall
  • Dog Bites
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Workplace Accidents
  • Burn Injuries

Most Common Injuries in Florida 

8.3 million patients were seen in Florida emergency rooms in 2016 according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. In fact, Lakeland Regional Medical Center in Polk County had the highest number of emergency visits in Florida in 2016 with 217,208 visits. Florida ranks higher that most states when it comes to ER visits, especially ER visits that result from unintended injuries. Car accidents and workplace injuries make up the bulk of unintended emergency room visits in Florida.

Steps in a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Florida

Once you determine that you wish to proceed forward with a personal injury action in Florida

A lawsuit begins when a complaint is filed with the court and served on the defendant. The complaint alleges your assertion as the plaintiff that the defendant’s negligent behavior resulted in damage to your body or mental state. As the process proceeds forward, you may have to go through depositions, independent medical evaluations and document production. This discovery process is lengthy and ends in either settlement or a court appearance.

In Florida after you have gathered your evidence, listed your demands, and served the party at fault with a demand letter, you can then enter into settlement negotiations. If those negotiations fall though you can then file a suit with Florida Civil Courts.

Florida Personal Injury Settlement

With most personal injury cases, insurance companies and injured parties prefer settlement negotiations rather than going to court for a trial. You may wonder how much you should seek in your settlement and factors that impact the final amount.

According to Consumer Health Ratings the average cost of an emergency room visit in Florida was $6,609. Depending on the medical facility you visit and your insurance, you could be left on the hook paying for most if not all of that. After you factor in the time it takes to file or win a suit, associated costs, and future bills, your injury could go from manageable, to destructive. This also means your perception of a settlement can also go from wary, to warranted.

If the other party has insurance, the insurance company likely wants to settle out of court to avoid leaving the final settlement decision to a jury. Settlements benefit injured parties as much as they do insurance companies. This is because accepting a settlement means you receive compensation sooner rather than later. Also, by going to court in , that means you risk not receiving any compensation at all.

Damage Awards in Florida

If your Florida personal injury lawsuit goes before a judge or jury, your legal team will be ready with a request for damages. In personal injury cases, there are three types of damage awards a court may order the defendant to pay to compensate you for the damage they inflicted.

Special compensatory damages reimburse you for things such as lost income, medical bills and insurance deductibles. You submit receipts proving these losses.

General compensatory damages are subjective. If you receive special compensatory damages, you may also collect general damages. If your injury was particularly painful, you might request that the judge order the defendant compensate you for the pain and anguish.

Punitive damages are the most rarely awarded and are up to the court. The judge or jury may determine that the defendant’s negligence was particularly heinous and the resulting injury to you was equally horrific. 

In Florida, there is no damage cap for personal injury cases on both economic and non-economic damages. However, the state does have a limit for punitive damages. Either three times the amount of compensatory damages or $500,000. Whichever is greater. Note that punitive damages are rare in personal injury cases.

Statute of Limitations in Florida Personal Injury Law?

The injured party may have a set amount of time to file suit for a personal injury case. State law establishes statutes of limitation. Commonly, the plaintiff’s injury or discovery of the injury begins the statute of limitations. However, the latter factor is trickier, as the plaintiff will have to prove when the injury was first realized.

When filling a personal injury suit in Florida, you must file your claim within four years of the date of the injury. However, there are some instances where this timeline can be longer, or shorter.

We recommend you speak with a personal injury lawyer for this matter. Don’t wait too long and miss out on receiving the compensation you deserve for your injury. 

Work With an Experienced Florida Lawyer

Pursue a personal injury claim in Florida against the responsible person if you are dealing with an injury caused by someone else. One of our experienced lawyers can help you navigate your personal injury claim.  We can even help you connect with an attorney across Florida state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!

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