It makes sense to wonder whether you can recover compensation in a St. Petersburg, FL, car accident without hiring a lawyer. The truth is, depending on the facts and circumstances surrounding the crash, you might not need to. However, hiring a lawyer can make all the difference in other instances.
Because the St. Petersburg car accident lawyers with Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Attorneys work on contingency, we’ll only be able to take on your case if it makes sense for us as well as you. In addition, we offer a free initial consultation to discuss your situation and to help determine what your best course of action is. Call us at (727) 933-0015 today.
Continuing reading this article to learn about when you may and may not need to hire a lawyer after an auto accident in the area.
What Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers Can Do To Help After a St. Petersburg Car Accident
At the onset, it can help to understand the ways in which an attorney can help you after you’ve been injured in a car accident in St. Petersburg, Florida. In the event that you’re eligible to file a claim for compensation against the at-fault driver (more on this in the section below), the process of obtaining full damages may become more complex.
The personal injury lawyers with Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Attorneys have more than 25 years of combined experience and have collected millions of dollars in compensation for our deserving clients. We can assist with your claim by:
- Help you understand and pursue your best legal course of action throughout the claims process
- Conduct an internal, comprehensive investigation into your accident
- Hire experts to strengthen your chances of success where possible and appropriate
- Negotiate a settlement that accurately reflects all of your losses
- If necessary, such as when the other side refuses to settle, file a lawsuit and take your case to court
You can get started today by calling our law office in St. Petersburg at (727) 353-5460. In the meantime, continue reading for insight into when it may be best to hire an attorney after a car crash in St. Pete.
Florida’s Car Insurance Rules
The State of Florida is one of the few in the country that has “no-fault” car insurance rules. These rules actually make it less likely that you’ll need to hire a lawyer after an accident, depending on its severity.
Each driver in the Sunshine State is required to purchase Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance coverage. This coverage provides certain, limited benefits after an accident – and you can receive them regardless of whether the accident was your fault or not.
PIP insurance will cover 80% of all “necessary and reasonable” medical expenses up to an amount of $10,000. You must receive medical care within 14 days of the accident in order to obtain this compensation. Further, if your injury is not considered an emergency, your benefits may be limited to $2,500 instead.
After especially serious car accidents, however, Florida allows you to file a claim against the at-fault driver for additional compensation above and beyond what PIP offers. In order to be eligible to do this, you must have sustained a “serious injury,” according to state law.
If you can file this type of claim, you can receive damages not only for things like your lost wages and medical bills but also for things like your pain and suffering.
When You May and May Not Need To Hire an Attorney
Generally speaking, the more serious your car accident is, the more likely that hiring a lawyer will benefit you. If your accident did not result in an injury and only caused minor property damage, it is unlikely that having an attorney to represent you will be worth it.
However, after any car accident that results in a serious injury and allows you to pursue compensation from the responsible party, it is likely in your best interest to hire a St. Petersburg car accident lawyer. You will, at that point, likely be up against the at-fault party or their insurance carrier.
As the victim of the car crash, you will have the burden of proof to prove your claim with evidence. This will usually entail proving that the at-fault driver was negligent. You’ll also likely need to fight for a settlement that makes you whole again rather than one that undervalues your losses. A lawyer can help you throughout this entire process and can take care of virtually every aspect of your claim while you rest and recover from your injuries.
Since Lopez Law Group Accident Injury Attorneys offers a free consultation to go over your case, it is, at the least, worth reaching out to talk about your options. We can provide you with legal help and advice during that meeting.
The Deadlines Involved in Filing a Claim After a Car Crash in Florida
In addition to the 14-day requirement to seek medical care under your PIP coverage, you must also comply with Florida’s statute of limitations in the event that you intend to file a claim against the at-fault driver.
You will have four years from the date of the accident to do so, in most instances. There are exceptions to this deadline that could apply in certain circumstances, so it is wise to reach out to a lawyer to make sure you are working in line with the appropriate deadlines.
Schedule a Free Case Assessment With a St. Petersburg Car Accident Lawyer
It’s most important after a St. Petersburg car accident that you receive compensation that helps make up for the losses you’ve incurred as best as possible. Sometimes, it is not necessary to hire a lawyer in order to do so. In other cases, hiring an attorney can be necessary to secure a sufficient monetary settlement or verdict.
Contact our experienced St. Petersburg car accident attorneys today to discuss your options and to come to the conclusion of whether it makes sense to hire a lawyer in your situation. Call us today for further information and to set up a free case review.