Florida Car Accident Guide

Florida Car Accident Guide

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Melbourne Car Accident Lawyers

Melbourne is the second-largest municipality in both size and population in Brevard County. Its location along the Atlantic Coast along with its proximity to Kennedy Space Center and Port Canaveral make Melbourne a sought-after location to live as well as to vacation. Unfortunately, that also makes the likelihood of being involved in a car accident greater for residents and visitors alike.

As the victim of a car accident, you may suffer physical and emotional injuries as well as financial hardship. Trying to contact insurance companies, locate medical providers, and navigate an unfamiliar legal system right after a car accident can be stressful and confusing. If you were injured in a car accident, you do not need to add to your anxiety by trying to go it alone. Help is available. The experienced Melbourne car accident lawyers at Layman Law Firm, P.L. have the experience and resources necessary to successfully pursue the negligent party (or parties) and recover compensation for your physical and emotional injuries.

Melbourne Car Accident Facts and Figures

In Brevard County there were 8,395 collisions in 2020, according to figures published by the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FHSMV), resulting in 5,768 injuries and 81 deaths. In 2019, there were 9,207 collisions in Brevard County, causing 6,625 injuries and 84 fatalities. Although those figures reflect a decrease in both crashes and injuries year over year, the Covid-19 pandemic also caused fewer vehicles to be on the roadways in 2020. Figures reported for 2021 to date appear to show the number of crashes, injuries, and fatalities increasing once again in Brevard County.

Melbourne Car Accident Causes

Every car accident happens under a unique set of circumstances. As such, the cause (or causes) of a Melbourne car accident can be infinite and varied. Among the most common car accident causes are:

  • Speed. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) tells us that speed is a factor in about one out of three motor vehicle accidents every year. In 2019, speeding killed 9,478 people nationwide.
  • Impaired Driving. Impaired driving includes both drivers who are under the influence of alcohol and those under the influence of illicit, prescription, or over-the-counter medications. NHTSA figures tell us that someone is killed, on average, every 52 minutes by a drunk driver in the United States.
  • Distracted Driving. Distracted driving can be caused by a visual, manual, or cognitive distraction. While cell phones and other handheld electronic devices now cause many distracted driving accidents, things such as eating, talking to passengers, or simply daydreaming can also cause a distracted driving crash. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an average of eight people are killed every day in a distracted driving accident.
  • Drowsy Driving. A drowsy driver can be just as dangerous on the roadway as a drunk driver, according to a study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. That study found that fatigued driving is a factor in as many as one in five fatal crashes.
  • Hazardous Road Conditions. When a motorist fails to adjust for hazardous road conditions, including weather-related conditions such as rain, ice, fog as well as manmade conditions including road construction or congestion, a serious accident can occur.

Steps to Take Following a Car Accident

No one plans to be involved in a collision. That often means that the victim of a car accident is unsure what to do following a crash. The steps you take in the hours and days after a car accident, however, can significantly impact your chances of being fully and fairly compensated for your injuries. With that in mind, the following three steps are vital for any injured victim to take following a car accident:

  1. Seek a medical evaluation and treatment. Whether your injuries are obvious or not, always have a thorough medical evaluation done as soon after a car accident as possible. Symptoms of serious injuries, including traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries, often do not show up until hours – even days – after the injury occurred. An immediate medical evaluation can also be used to prove that your injuries were the result of the accident.
  2. Preserve evidence. If you are able, take photos using your cell phone of the vehicles involved and of the accident scene itself. Collect contact information (including insurance information if applicable) from parties involved in the collision and any witnesses. Compile medical bills, repair estimates, and other documentary evidence as you receive it.
  3. Consult with an experienced attorney before talking to an insurance company. If another party was partially or wholly responsible for the collision, their insurance company will likely try and contact you shortly after the accident. Do not speak to an insurance company representative without first consulting with an experienced car accident lawyer. Most importantly, never agree to give a taped statement to an insurance company without an attorney present. Remember, the insurance company for the at-fault party does not have your best interests in mind. Their job is to minimize the value of the claim they ultimately pay to an injured party.

Am I Entitled to Compensation for My Melbourne Car Accident Injuries?

If you were injured in a Melbourne car accident, you may be entitled to damages for both your physical and emotional injuries, including compensation for things such as:

  • Medical expenses
  • Rehabilitation and other care costs
  • Lost income
  • Loss of future earning capacity
  • Physical and emotional pain and suffering
  • Diminished qualify of life

If you lost a family member in a fatal car crash, you may also be entitled to compensation as the claimant in a wrongful death lawsuit. In a wrongful death lawsuit, compensation may be awarded to a claimant if the victim was a spouse or parent who can no longer provide the companionship, care, and support they provided prior to the accident.

How Does Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Law Impact My Car Accident Case?

Florida is a no-fault insurance state which means that your own Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance will cover medical bills up to $10,000 no matter who was at fault. PIP insurance does not cover non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, and may not fully compensate you for all your economic damages. If another party caused or contributed to the accident you will need to pursue a traditional claim based on negligence against them. Having an experienced car accident attorney on your side is the best way to ensure that you are fully compensated for all your injuries.

Contact the Experienced Melbourne Car Accident Lawyers at Layman Law Firm, P.L.

If you were injured in a car accident, or you lost a family member in a fatal crash, contact the experienced Melbourne car accident lawyers at Layman Law Firm, P.L. to discuss your legal options. We are committed to ensuring that car accident victims are fully and fairly compensated by the responsible party or parties. Contact the team today for your free initial consultation by calling 321-773-2111 or by filling out our convenient Intake Evaluation Form online.