Insurance companies can play a central role in the process of obtaining compensation after a car accident. Different insurance companies deploy different tactics when their client is responsible for an accident, and it may help to rely on a lawyer who is familiar with these differing approaches.
If you or a loved one has been in an accident where the liable party is represented by USAA Insurance, then a USAA car accident claims injury lawyer in Florida can advise you on approaches to pursuing damages. Call our team at Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers today at (855) 529-0269 for a free consultation.
The Causes of Motor Vehicle Accidents
Regardless of the company that represents the liable party in your case, you should be familiar with the circumstances that could entitle you to compensation, especially if you have sustained injuries in the accident. Dangerous driving behaviors often cause accidents, and those behaviors are often viewed as negligence in the eyes of the law.
Distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents today. Motorists today have more available forms of distraction than ever before, and some of the most common forms of distracted driving include:
- Making a phone call
- Engaging with social media or other mobile applications
- Adjusting the vehicle’s entertainment system
- Eating food or drinking a beverage
- Tending to pets that are in the vehicle
A new Florida law allows law enforcement officers to issue citations to those who are engaged in distracted driving, namely texting and driving. According to the basis of this law, distracted driving includes any behavior that requires:
- Taking your eyes off the road
- Taking one or more hands off of the steering wheel
- Thinking about anything other than driving safely
This presents a high bar for drivers, and if you are in an accident, there is a chance that the person responsible for your accident engaged in distracted driving.
Additional Forms Of Dangerous Driving
While distracted driving is the number one cause of car accidents today, it is not the only cause. Other forms of dangerous driving that may qualify as negligence include:
- Driving too closely to the car in front (tailgating)
- Changing lanes abruptly or without signaling
- Failing to stop at red lights, stop signs, or yield signs
- Driving without adequate headlights or brake lights
Any number of behaviors can qualify as negligence if they contributed to an accident. Whether you are certain or unsure of the other motorist’s liability in your accident, a lawyer can help you gain clarity and, if you choose, pursue compensation for your injuries.
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A Lawyer Can Help You Pursue Compensation
Insurance companies, whether it is USAA or another insurer, will likely encourage you to settle quickly and accept a payout. If you sustained injuries in your accident or a loved one died as the result of an accident, a USAA car insurance claims injury lawyer in Florida can help you pursue compensation beyond what USAA or another insurer is offering.
They can assist you by:
- Speaking with you in person or over the phone to document an official account of the accident, including how you believe that the other driver acted negligently
- Filing legal action immediately to ensure that your case falls within Florida’s personal injury claim statute of limitations, which is generally two years from the date of the accident
- Handling correspondence with the liable party’s insurance, USAA in your case, to inform them of your intent to pursue compensation
- Collect all evidence of the crash and any documented wrongdoing by the liable party, whether it is in the form of video, photographs, eyewitness testimony, or police reports
- Collecting documentation of your injuries for when it is time to request financial awards for your losses from the court
- Handling all legal responsibilities necessary to bring your case to a conclusion, whether it is a judgment or settlement
- Protecting your rights throughout the legal process
Proving Fault in A Car Accident Negligence Claim
One critical responsibility of any lawyer in a negligence case is proving that the defendant in your case is liable for your losses. They will aim to do this through a four-step process:
- Establishing a duty of care, which essentially states that no driver shall put others at an unreasonable risk of harm
- This is an implied, binding responsibility of all motorists who take control of a motor vehicle.Showing that the defendant in your case breached their duty of care
This may have happened when they engaged in distracted driving or any other form of dangerous driving.
3. Proving a link between the breach of duty of care and your injuries
Usually, if a defendant is responsible for your injuries and your injuries arose from the accident, then there is an evident link between the breach and your injuries.
4. Calculating your losses and appealing to the court for financial awards
This is where a record of your medical expenses, lost wages, and other fallout from the accident come in handy.
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Possible Awards In A Car Accident Negligence Claim
Each case is unique, and awards vary on a case-by-case basis. With that said, possible awards you could be eligible for may cover:
- The cost of emergency transportation from the accident
- Any tests, scans, or other procedures required in the aftermath of the accident
- Any hospital stay required because of your injuries
- Long-term rehabilitation and cost of transportation to appointments
- Lost wages or diminished earning capacity imposed on you by your injuries
- Any psychological treatment required because of the accident
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages against the defendant
The circumstances of your case may entitle you to additional damages, especially if yours is a wrongful death claim. A USAA car accident claims injury lawyer in Florida may be able to assist you.
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Our team at Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers provides each of our clients honest, personal representation. Our partners work with clients directly and are invested in the outcome of your case. Call us today at (855) 529-0269 for a free consultation.
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