Car accidents are among the leading causes of injury in the state of Florida. While some victims of negligent car accidents will be fortunate enough to walk away from the scene virtually unscathed, others will face life-changing injuries that they may never fully recover from. For countless others over the years, negligence on Florida roadways cost them their lives.
Car Accidents Are a Leading Cause of Death and Injury in the United States.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 36,000 people were killed in vehicle accidents on U.S. roadways in 2018. There are also an estimated six million vehicle accidents of all types–both fatal as well as non-fatal–in the United States every year. These accidents lead to significant losses and damages that run in the tens of billions of dollars.
Lakeland Car Accident Caused By Driver Negligence
Many car accidents are caused by driver negligence, distraction, intoxication, recklessness, or wanton disregard for others. If you were involved in a car accident, a car accident lawyer may be able to help. Our car accident attorney can help you gather evidence, estimate your losses, and file a claim with the relevant courts.
403,626 crashes in Florida in 2018
In 2018 alone, there were 403,626 crashes in Florida, according to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles organization. Out of these, there were 255,353 reported injuries. Sadly, these accidents also resulted in over 3,000 people passing away. The grim reality is that car accident in Lakeland tears, numerous families, apart each year.
Our Car Accident Attorneys in Lakeland Understand your Lakeland Car Accident Pain
Here at Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato, we understand the seriousness of these accidents all too well. After years of working with car accident victims, we have seen firsthand what car accidents can do to members of our community. When people are injured on a Lakeland roadway, we want them to depend on the services of a Lakeland car accident attorney in their time of need. Above all else, we hope our services can bring a sense of calm in the midst of such a turbulent and uncertain time.
Our Car Accident Lawyers in Lakeland Help In Your Claim
No matter how big or small you may think your case may be, our team of lawyers will be happy to look into your claim and help you better understand your legal options. For more information about what our lawyers can do as your legal counsel, contact the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato today at (954) 633-8270 to speak with a member of our team. We offer all our clients a free consultation so they can ask any legal questions that may be on their minds.
Causes of Car Accidents that Maybe Actionable in Court
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more than 2 million people are injured in motor vehicle accidents around the United States each year. Many of these cases will result in personal injury claims and lawsuits as they were the direct result of another party’s wrongdoing on the roadway. No matter how many safety campaigns related to car accidents have been launched over the years, common acts of negligence still frequently include driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol and driving while distracted from the road ahead.
Other common causes of injuries in car accidents that may result in legal action can include, but are not limited to:
- Falling asleep at the wheel or otherwise driving while fatigued
- Speeding or other forms of reckless driving, such as making illegal turns and passes
- Following too closely, including tailgating, which may be intentional during acts of “road rage”
- Driving inappropriately fast for the conditions on the road, whether the conditions are hampered by weather, construction zones, or other outside influences
- Vehicular failures, such as broken headlights or faulty brakes that the driver was previously made aware of
- Running red lights
- Failing to yield
- Texting and driving, or other forms of distracted driving which include just not paying attention to the changing road conditions
- And more
Potentially Recoverable Damages in Car Accident Cases
When a person is injured in a Lakeland car accident, they may be within their rights to take legal action against the other parties involved in an attempt to recover any damages they have lost throughout the course of their pain and suffering. If the offender in question is found to be liable for causing the accident, recoverable damages will typically be divided into three general categories: economic hardships, non-economic suffering, and punitive damages. As car accidents cause far more than just physical pain, the aim of these different areas is to address all aspects of the victim’s potential suffering.
These different types of recoverable damages may entail:
- Economic hardships: These will be any financial problems you have faced as a result of your injuries and mental anguish. Examples would include bills associated with any stays in the hospital or rehabilitation costs, including medications. Further, these damages can be used to make up for damaged property or any employment issues you have faced, including a loss of your income
- Non-economic suffering: This will encompass mental suffering, as many victims of serious accidents have a hard time adjusting to life after the accident. Additionally, the victim’s personal relationships with loved ones may suffer and they can lose interest in things they previously enjoyed
- Punitive damages: These damages are not awarded in every case where compensation is found to be suitable. Instead, punitive damages are only awarded in the most egregious of accidents where the court feels like the offender needs to be held accountable for their serious mistakes in the hopes that others will not follow in their path
To better understand the types of damages you may be eligible for in your case, a Lakeland car accident lawyer can be of service. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato want to make the entire legal process as easy as possible for you; that includes performing any necessary negotiations throughout the legal proceedings.
To learn more about how compensation in car accident cases is calculated, contact a team member at the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato today at (954) 633-8270 for your free consultation. The sooner you contact our team, the sooner we can begin looking into your potential case.
Statistics Surrounding Car Accidents
- Police reported 6.3 million crashes in 2015 alone around the United States, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Of these motor vehicle crashes, there were approximately 1.7 million accidents that that resulted in injury
- In 2015, Florida had 797 alcohol-related driving fatalities, an increase of 694 from 2014
- Polk County, home to Lakeland and the surrounding areas, had 11,635 crashes in 2018. This resulted in 123 fatalities and 7,819 injuries, as reported by the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles organization
What Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato Can do For Victims of Lakeland Car Accident Cases
The Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato proudly serves victims in cities all over South Florida, from Lakeland to Fort Myers to West Palm Beach and beyond. Our clients tell us that they appreciate our honesty when it comes to their cases, while our caring and attentive staff makes them feel right at home anytime they reach out to us. To us, every client is like a family. We go out of our way to make sure clients know their full legal options and where they stand with their case before they make any potentially important decisions.
Our Auto Accident Lawyer in Lakeland Help Car Accident Victims To Gather Evidence
More than once, we have heard that our firm “gives attorneys a good name” in some of our more glowing reviews. As such, we make it a point to let our clients know we are always here for them by providing quick response times whenever they may have a question about their case. Ultimately, our firm works with car accident victims to gather evidence in their case so we can take this information to the parties responsible for their pain and suffering. If we are not able to reach a settlement with them or if they refuse to cooperate, we will take our in-depth research to a civil court where we will present our finds before a judge.
As Lakeland car accident lawyers, our goal is to reveal the truth behind car accidents so the true victims can get what they deserve out of our justice system. Some of the ways we will investigate your case may include:
- Using video surveillance of the accident or digital evidence taken after the fact
- Utilizing any eyewitnesses who were there at the time of the crash
- Reviewing police records of the accident scene
- Calling upon expert witnesses to reconstruct the accident scene to give scientific proof behind who was responsible, this includes analyzing skid marks and debris left at the scene
- Analyzing medical records in an attempt to prove the extent of the victim’s injuries, these records may also shed further light on the circumstances surrounding how the accident occurred
- Economic specialists may also be called upon to testify to the extent that this accident has affected your life based off your physical, financial, and mental injuries – in the hopes of having the settlement reflect your complete losses
- Gathering cell phone records and analytics from the moments leading up to the accident. If the other driver was texting or talking on the phone behind the wheel, this may show the court that they were distracted at the time of the impact
Injuries Commonly Resulting from Negligent Car Accidents
The most common injuries a Lakeland auto accident lawyer sees in car accidents include whiplash, broken bones, and head injuries. In more severe accidents, it is not uncommon to see traumatic brain injuries (TBI) or paralysis from the extreme impact of the crash. The injuries will all depend on the circumstances surrounding the moments leading up to impact. For example, if the liable driver was not even looking at the road before colliding with the victim, they may have been traveling at a much higher rate of speed than a driver who had time to slow down – thereby exposing the victim to more serious injuries.
Further, common injuries occurring from car accidents can include, but may not be limited to:
- Internal injuries, specifically to organs near the rib cage
- Burns stemming from the car or accident site catching fire
- Back injuries, which can affect a victim’s mobility
- Broken bones in the upper body, such as the face and clavicles, as a result of the airbags being deployed
- Injuries to the midsection and chest from the victim being thrown against their buckled seatbelt
- Psychological injuries, such as newfound anxiety after the accident due to the overwhelming and traumatic nature of the accident. Due to its mental impact, some victims develop symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Further strains on the victim’s personal life may lead to bouts of depression or insomnia in some cases
- Injuries to the eyes, often coming as a result of flying glass or head injuries which affect specific parts of the brain dealing with the senses and more
Lakeland Car Accident Lawyers Putting Victims’ Needs First
Here at Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato, we want every client who retains the services of a Lakeland car accident lawyer to feel like they are in good hands. If we find that we cannot help you pursue legal action in your case, we will gladly point you in the direction of a source that may be able to give you a brighter future.
Contact The Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato For Help:
The Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato and our team of compassionate and understanding car accident attorneys are just a call away. Call (954) 633-8270 for assistance with your car accident claim and to learn more about how claims are handled, the kinds of evidence you need to support your claim, how to obtain this evidence, and common mistakes and pitfalls you should avoid. Do not hesitate to reach out to us today.
A Closer Look at Lakeland
Sitting just east of Tampa and accented by a gorgeous historic district and multiple pristine lakes, Lakeland is a welcoming community that boasts a rich history. Home to Florida Southern College, this city is a great place to spend an afternoon in the sun or a night visiting one of its many acclaimed restaurants. It is no wonder more than 110,000 people call this little slice of heaven home.
Read Our FAQs Related To Car Accident:
What Should I Do if I Got in a Car Accident?
If you got in a car accident, ensure that emergency personnel was notified of the accident. Do not attempt to help or move anyone unless it is safe to do so. If you can, take photos or video of the crash and note the contact information of any witnesses or bystanders. Wait for emergency personnel to arrive, and undergo a physical checkup. Some injuries such as whiplash do not manifest right after an accident, so a physical checkup will help identify or rule out such injuries.
Once you have been checked and are safe, contact a car accident attorney to review your case. An attorney can guide you regarding the next steps you should take.
How Much Money Can You Get in a Car Accident Claim?
Car accident claim payouts are usually calculated based on the vehicle damage, personal injuries, and pain and suffering you sustained in the accident. Vehicle damage and medical treatment costs are easy to quantify, and all you typically need to prove these losses and file for compensation is payment invoices or hospital bills.
For pain and suffering, you need to calculate the pain and suffering multiplier, which is based on the extent of your injuries and your treatment costs. To get your total expected payout, you add your direct losses and damages with the projected pain and suffering damages, as well as any other noneconomic losses such as the loss of consortium of a loved one in case of a fatality.
What Are the Most Common Injuries from a Car Accident?
Car accidents can lead to a wide range of injuries, ranging from minor scratches and bruising to total physical incapacitation, paralysis, and death. Common car accident injuries include:
- Lacerations and burns
- Broken and fractured bones
- Internal organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Nerve and sensory injuries
- Back, neck, and spinal cord injuries
- Head, face, and brain injuries
- Eye injuries or a total loss of vision
- Hearing injuries
- Facial injuries or facial disfigurement
- Amputations or the loss of function in a body part
Some of these injuries–such as the loss of a limb or permanent eye injuries that lead to blindness–may be classified as catastrophic and may entitle you to punitive damages against the at-fault party.
What Is the Importance of Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer in Lakeland?
Car accident claims must be filed within a specific filing window. This window is called the statutes of limitations. Missing your filing window may lead to a complete forfeit of any claims for damages that you can file.
Furthermore, all claims must follow a predefined format and must be accompanied by relevant paperwork and proof, such as vehicle repair invoices, medical treatment expenses, pay stubs or salary slips to prove lost income, and evidence of long-term disabilities if you want to seek long-term disability damages from the defendant.
Various laws, bylaws, and standards must also be met when filing a claim, such as issuing a letter of intent to sue to the defendant’s insurer before suing. You must be aware of these rules before pursuing a claim for damages, and a car accident lawyer can help you satisfy these rules.
What Compensation Should I Get After Being Injured in a Car Crash in Lakeland?
As outlined above, your compensation payout will depend on your injuries and the extent of damage that your car accident caused. You can file a claim for lost wages, vehicle repairs, medical treatment, pain and suffering, the loss of a loved one, funeral and/or burial/cremation costs, and other incidental outlays such as service fees, rental fees, and other accident-related expenses you had to make.
You may or may not receive a settlement offer from the at-fault party’s insurer, but settlements and court awards will usually take the losses and damages listed above into consideration when determining a fair compensation figure to give you after your car accident.