Florida's year-round sunny weather and sandy beaches make it a very popular year-round tourist destination. In fact, thousands of tourists visit Florida every year,1 vacationing from Orlando to the Florida Keys. However, the influx of tourists in Florida is not without its downside, as more people results in busier roadways and waterways, which in turn results in more motor vehicle and boating accidents.
Unfortunately, these accidents can occur anywhere and at any time – even while on vacation. Sometimes, when serious accidents happen while on vacation, the vacation ends up being cut short and the injured person (and the injured person's family) are forced to return home quickly. In other cases, especially when emergency care is involved, the injured person can begin seeking medical treatment while still in Florida.
It is important that you seek medical care and treatment as soon as possible after sustaining your injuries. Insurance companies love to see gaps and inconsistencies in medical treatment because, in their eyes, these gaps and inconsistencies mean that you were not as seriously injured as you claim.
You should always remember that while insurance companies advertise that they are on your side when tragedy strikes, that is not entirely true. More than anything, insurance companies are businesses that are interested in making money. Insurance companies cannot make money when they are settling high-value personal injury claims. Rather, in those instances, they are losing money. The insurance company's goal, therefore, is to settle your personal injury claim as quickly and as cheaply as possible.
In keeping with that goal, the insurance company will try to poke as many holes as possible in your personal injury case and will readily point out any delays or gaps in treatment, failures to follow through with treatment protocols, and/or preexisting medical conditions and injuries.
If you or someone you love has sustained personal injuries as a result of someone else's carelessness or negligence while vacationing in Florida, our experienced Florida personal injury attorneys are here to help. Personal injuries sustained out-of-state can be difficult to cope with, especially if your home if far away. Our experienced personal injury lawyers can help to streamline the legal process for you and can assist you with favorably resolving your personal injury case via settlement2 or litigation. This will allow you to time to get home, obtain medical treatment, and recover from your injuries.
Common Injuries Sustained on Vacation
Accidents and injuries sustained while on vacation can be minor or serious, and they can occur in almost any setting. Some of the more common types of accidents experienced while vacationing in Florida include the following:
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Boating accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Trucking accidents
First Steps to Take After Being Involved in an Accident While on Vacation
Immediately after being involved in an accident while on vacation, you should take the following initial steps:
- Call 9-1-1 (or have someone else call 9-1-1) in order to summon the police and the paramedics to the accident scene.
- Be specific about your pain and symptoms at the scene when asked by EMT's or other emergency personnel.
- Immediately follow up at a hospital or urgent care facility for emergency medical treatment – even if you are not initially experiencing a great deal of pain.
- Follow the emergency room physician's treatment instructions and recommendations, including following up with a specialist or primary care physician upon your return home.
- Return home as soon as possible and begin your treatment regimen.
- Complete all treatment through to a conclusion.
- Avoid lengthy gaps in treatment and attend all medical appointments and physical therapy sessions on time – and remain there for the entire appointment.
Basis for Recovery
In order to obtain a recovery in a personal injury case, whether it be a motor vehicle accident case or boating accident case, the injured plaintiff must ordinarily prove that he or she was injured as a direct and proximate result of someone else's negligence. This means that the injured plaintiff bears the burden of proving the following elements of negligence:
Duty – The defendant must have owed a duty of care to the injured plaintiff. In the context of a motor vehicle accident, drivers owe a duty care to all other drivers on the roadway to drive in a reasonable, careful, and prudent manner under the circumstances. In the context of a boating accident, boat operators owe a duty of care to act as a reasonable boat operator would act under the same or similar circumstances.
Breach – The defendant must have breached the duty of care owed to the injured plaintiff, such as by exceeding the designated speed limit or failing to follow applicable Florida boating regulations.
Causation – The defendant's breach of the applicable duty of care must be the factual and proximate (i.e. foreseeable) cause of the injured plaintiff's injuries and damages.
Damages – The injured plaintiff must have sustained injuries and damages as a direct and proximate result of the defendant's negligence. Damages sustained by an injured plaintiff may include economic damages (e.g., payment of medical and physical therapy bills and compensation for lost wages), non-economic damages (e.g., pain and suffering, loss of future earnings, emotional distress, and mental anguish), or punitive damages (i.e. damages meant to punish a defendant's grossly negligent or egregious conduct).
An injured plaintiff may have a cause of action against several potential defendants, and a skilled personal injury lawyer will be able to investigate your claim and ascertain all potentially liable parties.
Contact a Clearwater Personal Injury Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case
Nothing ruins a vacation more than a motor vehicle or boating accident. Our experienced Clearwater personal injury attorneys will be able to evaluate your case and negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf, allowing you time to recover from your injuries. If a favorable settlement is not reached with the insurance company, our attorneys are not afraid to litigate your case up through arbitration or jury trial.
You can contact us at Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA by calling 727-451-6900 or by contacting us online.
Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA 800 North Belcher Road Clearwater, FL 33765 (727) 451-6900