Residents of Manatee County are aware of hazards on our roadways. During the early half of 2021, there have been more than 2,500 crashes on our roadways, resulting in nearly two dozen deaths more than 2,200 injuries. What is not always so clear, especially since we are considered a “no fault” state, is whether or not you should contact an auto accident lawyer following a car collision. The simple answer to your question is yes, you will probably need an auto accident lawyer from Gallagher & Hagopian to help you through the claims process, especially if your injuries are serious.
Understanding Florida’s No-Fault System
Florida requires motor vehicle operators to carry a minimum of $10,000 personal injury protection (PIP) as well as an additional $10,000 in Property Damage Liability (PDL) coverage before they can legally travel Florida’s roadways. No-fault coverage means, regardless of who is at fault for the accident, your claim will be filed with your own insurance company.
No-fault coverage is to resolve medical bills following an auto accident. Insurance companies will pay “reasonable and customary” medical charges for your injury as well as lost wages. Keep in mind, each company determines what they consider reasonable and customary.
When your coverage exceeds your losses, however, you may need to file a lawsuit which will require the assistance of an auto accident attorney from Gallagher & Hagopian. These claims may be filed under certain conditions which include:
- Your injury is considered permanent in nature
- Your injury resulted in permanent scarring or disfigurement which is considered permanent
- You suffered the loss of a bodily function which is permanent
These categories are fairly broad and open to interpretation, which is why contacting an auto accident lawyer as soon as you know the extent of your injuries is important.
Insurance Claim Versus Lawsuit
While you can file a claim with your insurance company, if your financial losses exceed the amount of your coverage, you will not have the ability to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. Once you have filed for coverage under your policy, your options are limited. Should you find your expenses exceed the amount you received from your insurer, you have no further options. This is why, before you file an insurance claim, you should contact an auto accident lawyer at Gallagher & Hagopian to find out all your legal options.
While you can never be certain about the outcome of a specific case, it is always helpful to work with an auto accident lawyer in Florida, like Gallagher & Hagopian, who has a proven track record of success. No attorney can guarantee you their past results mean they will be successful in the future, but the past successes of Gallagher & Hagopian means we have a history of reaching agreements with insurers or success with litigation should negotiations fail.
Serious Injuries Often Mean Ongoing Expenses
It is always important to keep in mind the more serious the injury, the more likely you are to suffer financial losses. Someone who has a broken leg may heal in weeks, but victims who suffer traumatic brain injuries or other internal injuries may need months to complete the healing process. In some cases, victims may not recover fully enough to return to work, may need ongoing medical care, and may even need assistance at home.
Victims of auto accidents in Florida should not have to deal with uncertainty while they are recovering from their injuries, nor should they have to focus on how to deal with the financial burden their injuries are placing on their families. When you work with an auto accident lawyer from Gallagher & Hagopian, we will help fight to preserve your rights and, thanks to the fact we work on a contingency basis, unless we are successful in obtaining a settlement on your behalf, we do not collect a penny in legal fees. Contact us today at Gallagher & Hagopian to schedule a no-cost consultation.