New Port Richey Whiplash Lawyer
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Experienced New Port Richey Whiplash Lawyer
Whiplash is a lower neck and upper back injury resulting from repeated jerking motions to the soft tissue of the neck. Also identified as a neck sprain, whiplash is one of the most common injuries incurred as a result of car accidents, especially ones where the victim is not in motion and is hit. The sudden extension of the neck can cause strain that may not necessarily be identifiable immediately and can take days to show up after the accident.
If you have been in a car accident due to another’s negligent driving or actions, you are owed compensation for your whiplash injury. Nobody should have to suffer physically and financially because of someone else’s blatant recklessness. McPherson & Thomas, P.A., has been representing injured New Port Richey clients for many years now and helping them to get the compensation they need to move forward.
Common Mistakes Victims of Whiplash Accidents Make
Victims of whiplash injuries are owed financial justice and compensation for their damages, but many do not know how to achieve that. The Florida legal system can be overwhelming and confusing, especially when you are currently navigating an auto collision injury and all that comes with it, including a damaged car and piles of medical bills. To help you avoid the most common mistakes made by victims of whiplash accidents, we’ve listed them here:
Not Collecting Evidence
To file a claim, there must be an at-fault party to hold liable for your damages. This is determined by the four components of negligence, which include:
- The standard of care: For auto collisions, this is the standard you follow to keep other drivers safe, including not speeding, not driving while intoxicated, and generally following the rules of the road.
- Breach of care: When a driver fails to comply with the expected duty of care, they are said to have breached it.
- Causation: While speeding is illegal, it does not immediately make someone liable for your accident. Their breach must directly cause or be linked to your accident.
- Damages: The resulting damages to your property and your injuries leave the at-fault party eligible to be held liable.
Negligence is demonstrated to the court through evidence. Common examples of evidence used in a whiplash injury claim can be traffic camera footage, police reports, detailed medical records, eyewitness accounts, and professional testimony.
Not Filing on Time
The statute of limitations in Florida for auto collision accidents is currently two years. This means you have two years from the date of the accident to have filed a claim with all of the correct documentation. While this seems like a long time, it’s easy to miss the deadline due to injury and unawareness of the state-imposed requirements.
Similar to not filing on time, many victims will manage to file on time but not include all necessary documentation and end up with a small settlement offer from the insurance company. This can be for various reasons, most commonly including inadequate proof of the extent of injury, the insurance company identifying something as a preexisting condition, and the inability to detail the full cost of an ongoing injury or treatment.
Not Hiring a Dedicated Attorney
At the end of the day, the biggest mistake a whiplash accident victim can make is not hiring a knowledgeable and dedicated car accident attorney to help them through the claims process. When you partner with an attorney like one from McPherson & Thomas, P.A., you are giving yourself the best possible chance at the results you need to start fresh after your accident.
We are here to help file your claim, collect time-sensitive evidence, establish liability, manage your schedule, and even take your case to court, if need be.
What Types of Compensation Are You Eligible for After Your Whiplash Accident?
Florida law leaves victims of a whiplash accident eligible for compensation for their injuries. This can be broken down into subsections, including the following:
For losses that are tangible and easily measurable, economic damages will be rewarded. This can include, but is not limited to, past, present, and future medical bills, lost wages due to the inability to work, rehabilitative therapy, and the cost of prescription medications.
Being in an auto collision due to someone else’s reckless behavior can take a toll on your emotional state, especially when you are injured. Non-economic damages are here to adequately cover the cost of your pain and suffering, including the loss of enjoyment of life, anxiety, and depression.
For cases where the negligence is identified as blatant or gross, the victim may also qualify for punitive damages. For more information on if your specific circumstances meet this requirement, your attorney can help discuss this with you today.
Consult a New Port Richey Whiplash Lawyer About Your Accident Today
McPherson & Thomas, P.A., understands the stress filing a claim can cause and is here to help alleviate some of that for you. We operate on a people-first approach, meaning our attorneys are there for you every step of the process, from the initial consultation to the final settlement.
Emily's True Story
After Getting Terrible Advice from Her First Attorney, Emily Hired Us to Takeover
Emily is a young woman in her 20s who hired a "mass marketing" firm. Like many people, Emily thought the person on the billboard must be a great attorney with so many billboards in town. She did not understand that law firms who use "mass marketing" also adopt an assembly line approach to cases. Emily's case was moving too quickly. When I met with her, she had $20,000 in unpaid medical bills and an attorney telling her that she should accept a $25,000 offer because that was "all she was legally entitled to receive." When Emily raised questions and refused to accept the offer, her attorney quit on her, sending her a letter telling her to get a new lawyer!
The first thing that jumped out at me was that the former attorney had offered to settle Emily's case for $30,000. This was going to be a big problem because there was a total of $100,000.00 to pursue ($50,000 in Bodily Injury coverage and $50,000 in Underinsured Motorist Coverage). By making such a low offer to settle, I knew the former attorney had greatly compromised the negotiating position. Secondly, and perhaps most startling, is that the accident was very bad and Emily had signs of post-concussion syndrome. She had not seen a neurologist, so any settlement discussions were premature. Once Emily saw a specialist, I made a demand for the first $50,000, which, of course, was rejected because the first attorney had already demanded less than the policy limits. I filed a lawsuit and within a few weeks Emily's case settled for the $50,000 policy limits. I then made a claim for the $50,000 in Uninsured Motorist Benefits and that was paid as well. With all said and done, Emily received the entire $100,000 available in coverages. Had she followed the advice of her first attorney, she would have owed money. Instead, even after paying her medical providers and a 1/3 attorney's fee, she received nearly $40,000 in her pocket!
Emily's case is a prime example of why it is so important to hire an attorney who will not run your case with an "assembly line" approach, but will instead fight for you!