Car Accident Compensation in Fort Lauderdale8151 Peters Road, Suite 4000
Plantation, FL 33324
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According to Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), Broward County saw more than 34,000 car crashes in 2020, with almost 19,000 injuries reported. Receiving fair car accident compensation can be essential if you suffer severe or life-changing injuries in a vehicle collision in Fort Lauderdale.
The amount of your settlement can depend on several factors, including the insurance companies involved, the severity of your injuries, and the facts of the accident. In some cases, receiving what you deserve can be challenging, especially if you have high damages, the accident is complicated, or you were involved in a multiple car pile-up.
However, you are not alone. If you or a loved one suffered an injury in a car accident and you are now struggling to get the compensation you deserve and need, Morgan & Morgan is here for you. Our experienced car accident attorneys want to help you get properly compensated for your injuries. Contact us today to determine for free if you have a case and could receive compensation.
Calculating the Value of an Accident Claim
How much money victims can receive in a car accident settlement will vary from one accident to another. Generally, someone with only minor injuries and car damage will receive less compensation than an individual who suffered life-altering injuries and other damages. Expenses that determine the value of your case include your medical bills, costs for car repair, wage losses, and other damages.
The amount of property damage could add significantly to your overall settlement amount, particularly if your vehicle was badly damaged or totaled in a Fort Lauderdale crash. During the repair or replacement of your car, you may need a rental vehicle. The at-fault driver or insurer should pay for your rental car or other transport costs.
If your car is a total loss, the at-fault driver may be responsible for reimbursing you for the value of the totaled car. They could also be liable for any personal property damaged or destroyed in the collision, such as a laptop, phone, eyeglasses, and other items.
Depending on the severity and permanence of your injury, medical costs can soar to tens of thousands of dollars or more. When calculating your settlement amount, an attorney will take into account all your medical expenses from the accident, including present, past, and future expected costs, such as:
- Emergency medical treatment
- Prescription and over-the-counter medication
- Medical devices
- Medical transportation
- Future estimated medical expenses
Depending on the extent of your injury, you could be off work for several weeks or longer. In some cases, car accident victims in Fort Lauderdale are permanently disabled and may never return to their careers. Compensation for lost income can include:
- Work missed due to doctor’s appointments
- Future lost wages
- Work missed during recovery
- Lost wages from working part-time due to the injury
If you can never work again after a serious car accident, your attorney will calculate the amount of lost earnings for the rest of your life. Typically, they will multiply your annual wages by the number of years until you reach retirement age. Any expected raises, bonuses, and inflation should be added to the amount.
If you were seriously hurt in a motor vehicle accident in Fort Lauderdale, your non-economic damages such as pain and suffering could make up a large proportion of your settlement. The accident injury may have a wide-reaching effect on your life quality, forcing you to give up hobbies or having a negative impact on your marriage. Non-economic damages can include awards for:
- Physical and emotional anguish
- Loss of life quality
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of a limb or a sense
Monetary damages can be relatively easy to calculate as they generally come with receipts and dollar amounts. However, determining an amount for non-economic damages can be challenging. It is generally best to let a car accident attorney assess and calculate your damages, so you do not risk leaving money on the table in negotiations with an insurance company.
The Multiplier Method for Pain and Suffering
The multiplier method is one of the most common ways to determine a dollar amount for non-economic damages such as pain and anguish. It works by adding all monetary damages such as medical bills and wage losses. The amount is then multiplied by a factor (the “multiplier”) between 1.5 and 5. The factor used to multiply your expenses will depend on your injuries. 1.5 is typically used for minor injuries, while the most serious or life-changing injuries are multiplied by 5.
The multiplier method assumes that those with higher medical expenses and other costs also suffer higher non-economic damages. Factors that could be considered in determining the correct multiplier for your non-economic damages include:
- The degree of fault of the other driver
- The severity of your injuries
- Evidence of your pain and suffering, such as medical documents, physician statements, statements from friends and family
- The length of your recovery period
No-Fault Auto Insurance Settlement
Florida Statute 627.7407 requires Fort Lauderdale residents to carry personal injury protection insurance (PIP) with a minimum of $10,000 coverage. PIP insurance coverage applies regardless of who is at fault for the accident. Therefore, when you are involved in a car crash, you should contact your insurer as soon as possible to file a claim. PIP coverage generally includes:
- Medical expenses
- Medical transportation costs
- An amount for lost wages
- Death benefit
The Limitations of PIP Insurance
If you suffered a severe or life-changing injury, your PIP insurance benefit limits could quickly become exhausted. Moreover, PIP does not cover non-economic damages such as pain and suffering or loss of life quality. To recover an adequate settlement for all your damages, you might have to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
It is also vital to seek medical treatment within 14 days of the accident. If you wait longer than two weeks to see a doctor, you may become ineligible for your PIP insurance policy benefits.
Filing a Car Accident Compensation Claim
If you have significant losses and injuries after a car accident in Fort Lauderdale, you may struggle to secure the compensation you need to pay your bills and move on with your life. In this instance, your only path to receiving what you deserve can be filing a lawsuit against the responsible party, such as an at-fault driver. Having an experienced car accident lawyer on your side can be critical for the successful outcome of your case.
Timely Action Can Be Essential for Recovering Car Accident Compensation
According to Florida’s Statute of Limitations § 95.11, you must generally file a personal injury lawsuit within four years of your accident or risk losing the right to compensation.
However, filing a lawsuit too soon after getting injured can also be a mistake, as knowing your future potential medical costs can be tricky if you are still recovering. A car accident attorney at Morgan & Morgan can advise you and determine the best timing for legal action in your specific case.
Morgan & Morgan Can Help
In the most difficult times in your life, Morgan & Morgan can be your shoulder to lean on. We understand how confusing and stressful navigating the legal system can be for injured car accident victims and their families. However, you do not have to navigate the legal process alone. Our determined car accident lawyers can:
- Offer legal advice and guidance
- Negotiate with the at-fault party’s insurer
- File a lawsuit on your behalf
- Collect the evidence required to prove your case and your losses
- Take your case to trial if necessary
We have been helping people like you for many years and can leave no stone unturned in fighting for the maximum settlement amount on your behalf. You pay nothing unless we win and you recover compensation.
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Which Documents Do I Need to Prove My Losses?
Knowing which paperwork you will need to prove your bills and expenses can be crucial. Without receipts and proof of your damages, fighting for compensation can be tricky, if not impossible. Some of the paperwork required for your car accident claim includes:
- Your car insurance policy.
- Records of medical treatments received for your accident injuries.
- Bills and statements of medical expenses.
- Receipts for vehicle repair or replacement costs.
- Proof of wage loss such as pay stubs and bank account statements.
- Receipts for out-of-pocket costs such as medications, car rental, and others.
An attorney from Morgan & Morgan can assist you with gathering the documents required to prove your losses.
What Is the Average Settlement Amount in a Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Claim?
There is no such thing as an average settlement amount for a car accident. Settlements can vary greatly depending on:
- The size of the impact
- The amount of property damage
- The extent of injuries suffered
- The scope of current and future medical treatments
Car accident settlement values can also differ based on the experience and tenacity of the victim’s legal representation. An experienced and determined attorney working with a large and powerful firm may be able to secure a higher settlement than a newly qualified attorney without support staff and financial resources.
Morgan & Morgan’s Recent Florida Car Accident Settlements
Morgan & Morgan never settles for less. We know that our injured clients rely on us to fight for the true value of their case so they can avert financial hardship and rebuild their lives. Some of our recent car accident settlements in Florida include:
- $2.5 million settlement after a pre-trial offer of $500,000 (2021, Orlando, Fl)
- $2.25 million settlement (2021, Jacksonville, FL)
- $450,000 settlement (2021, Tampa, FL)
For over three decades, Morgan & Morgan’s attorneys have represented countless car accident victims in Fort Lauderdale. We know how to build a solid car accident claim and fight for the settlement you need and deserve.
Can I Receive a Settlement if My Loved One Died in a Crash?
You might be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit if your loved one died in a car accident. Damages in a wrongful death lawsuit can include awards for:
- Loss of companionship
- Emotional trauma
- Medical expenses
- Loss of income and benefits from the decedent
- Loss of services
- Loss of parental guidance
There are certain requirements for filing a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida. For example, the personal representative of the decedent’s estate must normally file the suit on behalf of the family members affected. Also, consider that the time limit to file for wrongful death is only two years rather than the usual four-year deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit.
The Insurance Denied My Claim; Can You Help?
Unfortunately, having a car accident claim minimized, delayed, or denied is a common problem. This can be extremely frustrating and upsetting for car accident victims who depend on a fair settlement for their damages and injuries. However, insurance companies look out for their own best interests rather than the interests of their clients. They will try to preserve profits and may try to get away with paying out as little as possible or nothing at all despite being responsible for compensating you.
Morgan & Morgan could help you receive what you deserve from a car insurer. If your insurance claim was denied due to bad faith or an insurance mistake, we could fight the denial and take the insurer to court, if necessary. If an insurance company denies your claim, get in touch with us as soon as possible.
Morgan & Morgan Is on Your Side
Getting what you deserve after suffering a car accident injury should not have to be a fight and struggle. Help is available. Our motivated lawyers can work tirelessly to help you receive the car accident compensation you need to heal and move forward. Contact Morgan & Morgan today for a free, no-obligation consultation to determine your next best steps.