A personal injury can change your health and your financial well-being in an instant. Injuries lead to many expenses such as doctor visits, hospital stays, and rehabilitation. In addition, you may not be able to return to work.
However, you may be eligible for compensation for your injuries. A personal injury lawyer in Fort Myers, FL, can help you do this. But first, you need to find a lawyer with experience with your kind of injury.
Common Types of Personal Injury Cases
Personal injury cases come in many types, each with their own case histories and laws. Some possible types include:
- Automobile accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Boating accidents
- Slips, trips, and falls
- Dog bites
These aren’t the only kinds of cases that we take at our firm. Check out our complete practice areas page for more information. What’s important for you is to find a lawyer who knows how to build a case for your injury.
Under Florida’s statute of limitations for personal injury, you have four years after an accident to file a personal injury suit. You should not wait until the time is about to expire to hire an attorney. The attorney needs time to investigate your case before filing a suit.
What You Must Prove in a Personal Injury Suit
In most personal injury cases, you must prove that the other party was negligent. To prove negligence, you must show four things:
- A party owed you a duty.
- The party did not fulfill that duty.
- The party’s action was the cause of your injuries.
- Your injuries arose from the accident.
In some cases, you are not required to prove negligence. For instance, if a dog attacks you then you don’t have to prove that the dog has a history of aggression or that they bit someone in the past.
Also, if someone deliberately attacks you then you don’t need to prove negligence. This is called an intentional tort. One example of this is if you are assaulted. You can immediately sue to get compensation.
Vehicle Crash Cases
How can you prove a party was at fault for your injuries in a vehicle crash? As with negligence, there are many ways to prove another driver contributed to your accident.
One way is distracted driving. Another is reckless driving or violating the traffic laws. For instance, the driver ran a stop sign, did not activate a turn signal, followed your vehicle too closely, or crossed into your lane.
Finally, a driver with an unmaintained car, or a faulty repair, can be grounds for negligence. For example, if defective brakes caused your accident, you may be able to file a product liability suit against the manufacturer of the car or the brakes. Another example would be a tire defect.
Slip and Fall Cases
In a slip and fall, you must prove the owner, operator, or employee knew or should have known of a hazard and failed to take action. You can take steps that may help your case:
- Let someone know about your injury.
- Get the attention of the nearest employee. Make sure the person in charge knows about your accident.
- Look to see what caused your fall. If you see something on the floor, a hole in the parking lot, or water in the area, take photos.
- Get the names and contact information of any witnesses.
- Get any needed medical attention you need.
- Do not sign anything without talking to a lawyer.
- Contact a lawyer.
An owner might repair a fault quickly after an accident, so it’s important to get witness testimony, photos, and other forms of evidence to prove that there was a problem. By calling a Fort Myers attorney with personal injury experience, you can act fast to get that information.
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Compensation You May Recover for Injuries in a Personal Injury Suit
To get compensation in a case, you have to show evidence of the ways you were damaged. This goes beyond just your medical bills. Recoverable compensation from a personal injury claim may include the following:
- Medical expenses, including costs of rehabilitation
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Punitive damages
You could also file a wrongful death action If your spouse, child, or other relative dies as the result of an accident. You can also get compensation for the loss of your companionship with the deceased person. Our personal injury attorneys will judge which claims are possible.
Chalik & Chalik Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me (239) 360-3029
Comparative Fault in a Florida Personal Injury Claim
Sometimes you may be partially at fault for the accident, or the other side might think it was all your fault. You may have been driving over the speed limit, or you may not have been watching where you were walking.
In Florida, you can still recover compensation if you were partly at fault (known as comparative fault), but the amount of your recovery goes down by the percentage of your fault. It does not matter if your fault exceeds the percentage of fault of the other party.
An example would be if in a car accident it was determined you were 20 percent at fault, and the other driver was considered to be 80 percent at fault. If your expenses totaled $15,000, you would be unable to cover 20 percent, or $3,000. But you could still recover 80 percent from the other driver, or $12,000.
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How Long Will My Case Take?
There are many factors that change the speed of a case. Settlement offers take time to negotiate, especially if it is not a clear case. Strong evidence will usually speed up a settlement, but not always.
If your case must go to trial, then it may take months or even years to fully work through the legal system. However, in these cases we can work with your creditors to keep them off your back while your case is in progress.
For a free legal consultation with a Chalik & Chalik lawyer serving Fort Myers, call (239) 360-3029
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer in Fort Myers, FL for Help
Our lawyers will work with the insurance company to negotiate a reasonable settlement based on the evidence. If litigation is necessary, we will represent you in court. Our goal is to get you a fair settlement based on the evidence and the law.
If you suffered an injury in a vehicle accident, a slip and fall, or other accident, contact Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyer for a free consultation. We have offices in Fort Myers and across Florida. Click the contact button on your screen to reach out to us.
Call or text Chalik & Chalik (239) 360-3029