Do I Have A Personal Injury Case Under Florida Law?
We can help you determine what type of personal injury case and what you can do about your injury. Hiring a personal injury attorney after you have been injured is an important step toward getting back on your feet both physically and financially.
When an injury occurs, the world does not stop. You need to know what to do next and how to make it happen. For answers to questions or concerns about the merits of your case, you should schedule a free consultation to meet with a Lakeland personal injury attorney.
Common Accident Injuries
Injuries that frequently occur in accidents include:
- spinal cord injuries
- bulging or herniated discs
- pinched nerves
- broken bones (arm, hip, knee, leg, ankle) or torn ligaments (knee and shoulder)
- blunt force trauma or crush injuries
- head injuries
- injuries to internal organs and bleeding
- soft tissue sprains and strains
- rotator cuff tears
- tissue inflammation
- muscle injury
Emergency Medical Care
If you have an injury from an accident, the first thing you should do is get the appropriate emergency medical care that you need. If you have a life threatening condition, a hospital with an emergency department is required by federal (EMTALA) and Florida law (section 395.1041, Fla. Stat.) to provide you with treatment regardless of the ability to pay for care or how difficult or expensive to treat. You may need emergency surgery or medication that could save your life.
Where Should I Get Medical Treatment For My Injury?
You should choose where to go based on the severity of your injury. If your injury is serious and life threatening, you should go to a certified trauma center such as Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center (Level II trauma) if possible. A hospital that is not a certified trauma center may not have the ability to adequately treat you for a serious condition and may cost valuable time in a transfer to a qualified hospital where you can be properly diagnosed and treated. The closest Level I trauma centers are located at Tampa General Hospital and Orlando Regional Medical Center. If your injury or illness is serious enough, you will be transferred from a Level II trauma center to Tampa or Orlando for specialized care.
If your injury is not life threatening but you are in severe pain, an urgent care clinic of your choice is probably the best choice for immediate relief with follow-up care with a specialist. Finally, if nothing is broken and your injury is a sprain or strain type injury, then you may want to just make an appointment to see an outpatient medical clinic or chiropractor during their business hours.
Getting Advanced Care From A Specialist
After your initial visit, you may be placed on an individualized treatment plan that may involve physical or occupational therapy as needed. More advanced options for treatment and visits with specialists include:
- mechanical spinal traction
- cortisone injections
- advanced imaging such as MRI or CT scans
- EEG or nerve conduction studies
- nerve blocks
- electrical muscle stimulation
- arthroscopy and ligament repair
- neck or back surgery, including discectomy, laminectomy, and fusion
Compensation For Your Medical Bills
After receiving medical care, you may be left with significant balances to pay even after car insurance, health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid have all paid their portions. Hiring a Lakeland personal injury attorney can help you recoup these expenses as well as obtain compensation for:
- pain and suffering
- missed time from work
- disability in the future
- loss of enjoyment of life
- damages to your marriage
Hire Legal Counsel To Get Your Case Moving And Take Care Of The Bills
Hiring legal counsel will get your case started. After you have received medical treatment, you know the bill is coming. A personal injury attorney can help you determine whether you can pay it and how you can pay it. This is also the time to begin the investigation into your case and preserve critical evidence if need be. The attorney that you hire will contact the responsible parties or insurance companies to place them on notice of your claim and request applicable policy information under Florida law. This information will be critical in putting together an appropriate strategy for your case.
As a Lakeland personal injury lawyer, I have handled a number of different cases that involve different subject areas including car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip and fall or trip and fall injuries on dangerous conditions, product liability, burn or scalding injuries, and dog bites. Each different type of case should be investigated appropriately to preserve evidence for your case. In some cases, the first thing your attorney will often do is visit the scene of the accident to look for crucial evidence even while you are still in the hospital. You may also need someone to get photographs while the condition that hurt you still exists or before the other vehicle involved in the collision has been disposed of.
Read more to learn more about specific terms used in Florida personal injury cases.
Contact a Lakeland Personal Injury Attorney for a Free Case Review Today
If you or a family member has suffered a personal injury, please contact Russo Law to discuss the merits of your case with a personal injury attorney. The facts and circumstances of every personal injury case are unique. A consultation with a Lakeland personal injury lawyer is free. Representing you is our privilege.
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Quick Answers to Common Personal Injury Questions☑ Should I go to the ER?
Yes-if you are hurting and think that something might be broken or something is causing serious pain, you should go to the ER for treatment. The ER cannot turn you away even if you don’t have any health insurance and can’t pay the bill.
The answer to this question depends on a number of factors including how the accident happened, how severe the injury is, and whether there is a “deep pocket” to collect from.
More information on the value of a personal injury case in Florida
For a personal injury case in Florida, you generally have 4 years from the date of your injury to file a lawsuit.
Traditional medicine typically recommends only medication or surgery (sometimes both). On the other hand, chiropractic is a “holistic” approach to healing. A chiropractor will attempt adjustments on your body and will try in-house physical therapy to help you regain your stride after an injury.
Insurance companies deny claims in hopes that people will just go away. Even if there was some degree of comparative fault to your case, your injury happened for a reason and may not have happened at all if proper precaution had been taken to prevent injuries from happening in the first place.
Yes. Florida recognizes a cause of action for making an existing injury worse.
Maybe. In general, a personal injury plaintiff cannot recover attorney fees, however, you may get your attorney fees and costs paid if you filed a proposal for settlement (or offer of judgment) and the jury verdict was at least 25% greater than what was proposed.