Bradenton is that one rare city where family life, recreation, safety, and incredible beauty come together harmoniously. Peace, togetherness, and prosperity dominate Bradenton, a beautiful city in Manatee County that sits on the Manatee River just south of Tampa.
As with many Florida cities, when beauty abounds, that harmony can quickly turn disastrous when personal injuries, such as horrible auto accidents, take over local news headlines.
Persons injured caused by another’s negligence may feel hopeless, especially if an intimidating major corporation or trucking company is involved. With Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, and Sibley Dolman Accident Injury Lawyers, LLP, fighting personal injury claims for residents of Bradenton, intimidating multimillion-dollar companies are less inclined to insult injured persons who feel they are rightfully owed compensation.
We take personal injury and motor vehicle accident cases for people of Bradenton each day. If you or someone you love need competent, caring and experienced legal representation in auto accidents or personal injury matters.
Let’s discuss your incident and how we can make things right by calling 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH) today.
What Is a Personal Injury?
By definition, personal injury encompasses injuries to the body, emotions, or mind. It’s an area of tort law for which an individual can bring a civil action against an individual or entity that inflicted damage to one’s physical health and well-being. In certain jurisdictions, the term is most commonly used to refer to a type of tort lawsuit in which the person bringing the suit, or plaintiff, has suffered harm to his or her body or mind.
At our firm, we have taken numerous personal injury claims where an individual experienced damage to property, body, and emotions simultaneously.
Florida laws make filing civil action for personal injuries a complex process that requires proving the individual or company who hurt you was responsible for your care during the time you were hurt. This is proven by offering evidence of:
- Duty of care. The individual that caused this injury must have been in a position where your presence invoked their right to care for you;
- Breach of duty. In having a responsibility to care, the at-fault party must have breached their duty by either provoking action, failing to act, creating an environment where actions against you were possible, or directly causing an action against you;
- Causation. Their breach caused harm to you. This means physical, mental or emotional.
- Damages. Your injury, a direct cause of their breach, resulted in measurable damages.
Dolman Law Group and Sibley Dolman are devoted Bradenton personal injury lawyers with the resources to help find necessary evidence while also holding parties accountable for causing undue hardship and unnecessary financial losses.
How Do Personal Injuries Happen?
Both unpredictable and highly dangerous, personal injuries are the end result of an unexpected act of carelessness or negligence. Injured parties file personal injury lawsuits against the person or entity that caused the harm through some form of negligence, intentional misconduct, or in some cases on the basis of strict liability.
Different jurisdictions describe the damages for which the injured person may recover compensation, although damages typically include reimbursement of medical bills, pain and suffering, and diminished quality of life that the injured person suffered.
Here are common types of personal injuries that further disclose how personal injuries happen.
Auto accidents are the most common form of personal injury. Whether the cause is reckless driving, inexperienced drivers, inclement weather, or distracted driving, you’ve probably read about or witnessed auto accidents this week. Know in advance that regardless of how severe the accident, nobody wins after the wreckage is cleared and medical bills start piling up.
The most common question an auto accident attorney often hears, in some form, is how the injured person must prove fault in these accidents. Since Florida is a no-fault state, we generally help victims file claims with their insurer to get PIP benefits. If we pursue additional monies outside of the PIP law, we might:
- Look over the accident to determine if additional faults were committed;
- Subpoena the accident report, which is often comprehensively prepared by law enforcement;
- Revisit the accident scene where skid marks, debris, and other hints often tell us what happened;
- Use photographs taken by witnesses, law enforcement, or the victim themselves; and
- Look over video footage from traffic cams or nearby buildings and businesses.
Auto accidents in Florida may include:
- Single car accidents
- Multi-car pileups
- Farming implement accidents
- Commercial vehicle accidents
- Food delivery vehicle accidents
- Uber accidents
- Lyft accidents
- Autonomous vehicle accidents
Dolman Law Group and Sibley Dolman have litigated truck accidents successfully over the years, and know what victims expect when looking to retain our truck accident lawyers. Holding negligent truck drivers accountable for their actions takes knowledge of Florida accident law, and we work hard to put facts in front of those who must see them to treat your claim fairly. Distracted or reckless driving accidents account for many injuries and casualties in Florida, which many truck drivers and the trucking companies that employ them could avoid if they followed the law.
Our firm will gather evidence, recreate the accident scene if necessary, discuss the incident with the insurers involved, and attempt to negotiate fair and equitable settlements for injured persons. No truck accident is too large for our dynamic firm, and we’ll fight to earn your trust when injured.
Remember, bikes have two wheels and no airbags, doors, or thick glass windshields. Motorcycle riders don’t have much in the way of protection other than what little PPE they have available in motorcycle shops, such as helmets, pads, and front shields. They rely solely on skill and the careful driving of others to keep both wheels rolling down the road. Drivers are responsible for watching blind spots before changing lanes. Motorcycles don’t weigh much, either, making accidents involving motorcycles catastrophic. Once a vehicle slams into a motorcycle, injuries are all but guaranteed.
Motorcycles and their operators are afforded the same protections as vehicles. Improper lane use, riding too close, claiming riders were in blind spots, and intoxicated driving cause vehicle operators to make poor decisions and costing the lives of motorcyclists.
Depending on impact speed, accidents can damage motorcycles beyond repair. More importantly, riders and their passengers may not walk away from an avoidable accident. The Bradenton motorcycle accident attorneys at our firm understand the devastating nature of these wrecks.
Permanent paralysis, traumatic brain injury, broken bones, and internal bleeding are possible. Victims could face months, if not years, of medical treatment and physical therapy, too. Income generated from the injured person’s job will cease to come in. All this because one person was too careless to take a second look before passing or otherwise exercising proper caution behind the wheel.
Dolman Law Group and Sibley Dolman work tirelessly to ensure that we litigate motorcycle accident claim in accordance with Florida law and our clients’ best interests.
Texting and driving, which is now banned in Florida, causes more accidents today than when cellphones were first introduced, and few knew how to operate them. But it doesn’t stop with texting.
People reaching behind their seats to hand their infant bottles, shuffling though messy floorboards to find notes, playing with radios, eating, and trying to put on makeup are other distractions causing vehicles to plow into innocent victims.
Even with laws passed to protect innocent drivers from those who still feel they must text and drive or drive distracted, these accidents are increasing in frequency each year.
Other Forms of Personal Injury
Throughout history, tort laws have expanded the definition of personal injury to include many forms of legal wrongdoing. Some common forms include:
- Premises liabilities. These injuries happen on another’s premises, and include slips and falls, workplace injuries, dog bites, and swimming pool accidents.
- Vehicles accidents. Commercial truck accidents, bicycle wrecks, scooter accidents, accidents with city dump trucks, ridesharing companies, taxis, and all other accidents where a vehicle you operate was battered by another vehicle fall into this category.
- Pedestrian injuries. Pedestrians are afforded certain rights in accordance with Florida and Bradenton city laws. If someone plows into pedestrians while they’re legally in crosswalks, for example, the injured parties may bring a civil action against the driver.
- Medical malpractice. Any medical professional who fails in their duty to properly treat patients under their care may face liability for medical malpractice.
- Workplace accidents. If you sustain an injury while performing the duties of your job, you may qualify for workers’ compensation or to file third-party liability claims.
- Spinal cord injuries. If your spine was injured due to someone else’s negligence then you may be eligible for compensation.
Understanding Pain and Suffering in Personal Injury Claims
In legal terminology, pain and suffering is the physical and emotional distress that often follows an incident where someone sustained an injury. Regardless of severity, there is some level of pain and (or) suffering in many personal injury cases.
Some damages that might come under this category may include continuous aches, temporary or permanent limitations on physical activity, the potential for a shortened life, mild to severe depression, or physical scarring. When filing a lawsuit as a result of an injury, plaintiffs commonly seek compensation for actual money they lost and for the pain and stress associated with virtually any injury.
Do I Really Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Victims of horrific personal injury accidents may feel that they’ll have little, if any, recourse available to hold people accountable. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Thousands of people each day across America are injured in personal injury incidents, from car crashes to construction accidents. The common denominator across all accidents is that you are injured, and the party who caused your injury should have to pay.
Some folks are afraid to approach an attorney because they believe they need outrageous financial resources to retain an experienced lawyer. Other folks simply believe their chances are slim when going against major corporations or large insurance companies. Your case cannot prevail if you don’t at least try to fight it, and with Dolman Law Group and Sibley Dolman on your side, you will not need to pay one penny upfront.
Other reasons to hire our personal injury firm include:
- Access to experienced lawyers who understand how Florida laws apply to your unique situation;
- The ability to have professional representation in negotiations and, if necessary, a court of law;
- An increased chance of favorably settling your claim—and you may actually see an increase in how much your claim is worth by virtue of facts your attorney uncovered; and
- Peace of mind that you have a voice in negotiations that has your best interests at heart – even when you are unsure of what to do.
What Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Do?
Finding an attorney willing to look over your personal injury case doesn’t have to be difficult. As your Bradenton personal injury attorneys, we strive to:
- Assess your situation and what possible civil action can be taken;
- Help you understand complex tort laws of Florida;
- Never charge for consultations related to personal injury accidents;
- Provide you with exceptional representation start to finish; and
- Resolve your case favorably, or you’ll pay us nothing.
Proving personal injuries, in general, is a multistep process. For starters, we must prove there was a duty to care for you. Then, we must provide substantial evidence that someone breached their duty through negligent means. Next, we must prove causation, a technical way of saying someone did something that caused something else. Finally, we must prove someone’s negligent activity caused measurable damages that deserve compensation.
Bradenton Personal Injury FAQs
Questions about personal injury law in general? We have answers to some common client questions.
What is the timeframe to file personal injury claims in court?
Injured Floridians have four years to file their claims in the court of their respective counties, starting from the time they sustained an injury. If filing against city, county or government agencies, the time period decreases. There are exceptions to the four-year rule, namely if the injured person does not discover the injuries until later on.
Can you sue cars with no drivers?
You may have seen Google and similar vehicles with no drivers in their cars. And you’ve probably heard about several vehicle models with autonomous driving features. We know how to hold the companies that operate these vehicles accountable in this emerging field of law. Contact our firm immediately to discuss your options if your injury involves an autonomous car.
Does filing my claim guarantee compensation?
No claim comes promises any particular outcome. Any firm or individual who claims they promise compensation for your claim is probably one you should avoid altogether—no ethical lawyer would do that. Compensation is based on the type of injury you sustained, whether you were partially at fault, if you have a PIP insurance component to your claim, the available evidence, and so much more.
What can I do if I’m injured at work in Bradenton?
Workers’ compensation and civil action will depend on the circumstances of your injury. If you cannot work and need help filing your claim, or have additional claims against your employer, speak with a Bradenton personal injury attorney.
Do you handle swimming pool accidents?
Accidents that happened at hotel swimming or theme park pools by no fault of your own fall under premises liability law. Since we handle these cases, we would love to discuss your swimming pool case with you. You will face time limits to your premises liability claim, so speak with our attorneys immediately.
Do pedestrians have the right to file civil actions if a vehicle hits them?
If you were struck while having the right of way, were injured when a vehicle drove onto the sidewalk, or have any other pedestrian-related accident injuries, you have options. Our firm has handled many suits where cars, trucks and commercial vehicles knocked down innocent bystanders.
Am I able to sue a party in court myself?
Multiple parties may bear liability in any car accident claim—your insurer, the negligent party’s insurer, attorneys for everyone, and in some cases third parties. With so much on the line, you really cannot afford to leave money at the negotiation table, which many victims do without knowing. For that reason alone, we urge anyone injured to retain competent counsel to fight for compensation. However, if you intend on going to court without counsel, we cannot stress enough that you will need a firm grasp of Florida tort laws, PIP insurance laws, and proper filing procedures for the court in which you intend to file your claim—knowledge and experience that few non-lawyers possess.
What exactly does “wrongful death” mean?
Wrongful death means someone died either during the commission of another’s criminal behavior or by someone’s negligence. These cases have potentially large settlements, so our firm treats them seriously.
How long do personal injury cases take to settle?
All injury cases are unique. Each person’s specific claim will take different paths, some of which settle well before court and others that juries decide. With evidence, investigation, court hearings, discussions, and mounds of paperwork that your case requires, it’s difficult to put an exact time frame on your settlement. Our firm will maintain contact with you as your case progresses.
Do I have a case if I do not feel hurt?
Many times accidents cause injuries that do not immediately present themselves— and some injuries involve more than physical damage. In these situations, the symptoms may take weeks or longer to manifest. Even if you do not feel hurt, get checked out by a medical professional, then contact our firm to schedule a consultation.
Should I speak with an insurance adjuster?
Speaking with an insurance adjuster could end badly for an unrepresented victim. The adjuster may seem welcoming and understanding of your situation, but do not be fooled—they are almost certainly attempting to coax statements from you that would decrease or eradicate the liability of the at-fault party whom they insure. If you are telephoned, let the insurance adjuster know they should contact your attorney if you have retained an attorney, or contact your insurance company if you do not have an attorney. You should apply the same principles if the at-fault party has their attorney call you.
If I win my claim, what monetary damages are available?
Florida accident victims may receive compensation based on two types of damages that one settlement would encompass: economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages are based on noticeable, calculable financial costs and losses, such as loss of income, medical expenses, and the victim’s future wages based on earning capacity. Future treatments, including physical and mental health, are calculable losses for which you could also recover compensation. Non-economic damages are considered subjective, and have no preset monetary value. They cover costs such as pain and suffering, mental distress, loss of consortium, and the inability to return to the same quality of life you enjoyed before your accident.
What is my personal injury case worth?
Too many factors determine the value of your claim for any lawyer to accurately predict. Measurable losses, such as vehicle repair costs and medical care, will be calculated based on bills or potential bills. Emotional distress and other noneconomic losses are generally negotiated with the other party or decided in court.
Do preexisting conditions qualify for compensation?
You can receive compensation for your accident if you have a preexisting condition, especially if your condition was further aggravated by the accident, or the accident took the life of a loved one. When your attorney reaches a settlement with the opposing party, they will break down how compensation was calculated.
If I was somewhat at fault, can I still receive compensation?
You can still recover damages in your personal injury even if you were somewhat involved with the creation of the accident.
How long will it take to settle my claim?
There is really no preset time when your claim will settle. Your attorney has a great deal of work to put into your claim, and will work diligently to settle your claim out of court, although some cases do require court appearances and litigation before a jury. When your attorney reaches a settlement, he or she will reach out and give you details, including when to expect a check.
Why do I need to sign a settlement release?
Before settlement, you have a valid claim against the party who harmed you. This means you can litigate, negotiate, and add more filings to your claim if the evidence supports it. When your claim settles, you exchange payment for the other party’s release of liability. This means you cannot bring the same claim up later on after you are paid. These releases are standard in personal injury claims—and they show the importance of making certain that your settlement covers all of your costs.
Will I get my check immediately after I sign the release?
Parties who owe you money want to end the case as quickly as you do. Once it arrives at your attorney’s office, they will subtract their fees and send the remaining proceeds to you.
How should I pay medical bills while I am waiting for a settlement check?
In motor vehicle accidents, you would have personal injury protection (PIP) to help pay those expenses. If injured at work, you could use workers’ compensation benefits. You or your lawyer could discuss your situation with the healthcare provider or other creditors and perhaps come up with a payment plan. Some medical facilities may treat you in anticipation of your settlement.
Am I required to go to a particular doctor for treatment?
You are free to visit your preferred doctor or clinic to receive treatment after most accidents, although in a workers’ comp claim you may also need to see a doctor approved by the workers’ comp insurance company. If another insurance adjuster or any other party coaxes you to use their doctor, contact us and continue to see to your own doctor.
I want to file a wrongful death action, but another member of the estate does not. How can I proceed?
The law in the state of Florida says that all potential wrongful death claimants must join in one case. However, survivors who do not want to pursue a case may opt out. If you are unsure of what steps to take in your wrongful death action, contact us for a consultation.
What compensation is available in personal injury claims that take my loved one’s life?
You, your shared children, and those named in the estate of the decedent can claim lost support and services to survivors, which includes their relationship to the deceased, probable future income of the deceased, and replacement value of lost support and services. The surviving spouse can claim lost support and companionship as well, otherwise known as loss of consortium.
What are contingency fees?
Contingency fees are based on an outcome. In personal injury law, your attorney will front all costs associated with litigation, including travel, paying staff, filing court costs, and so forth. If your claim succeeds, they will get paid a percentage of those proceeds; if not, the injured person owes nothing to the law firm that agreed to represent them.
If my car needs repairs, am I required to use a particular auto shop?
When you get estimates, you are free to use whatever body or auto shop you choose. If an insurance company persuades you to use a particular company, it is more than likely for litigation reasons. Contact an attorney if you feel bullied into using a specific repair shop.
In bicycle accidents, can I get a new bike?
Some bicycles and motorcycles can cost as much as small cars. Regardless of how much your bike is worth, your attorney may get the costs associated with bike repair or replacement in your settlement claim. If you need a bicycle immediately, and you can afford the costs, you can buy a new one and give the attorney your receipt; he may negotiate with the at-fault party to reimburse those costs.
Will my claim go to trial?
Trial is reserved for claims that have contested issues or disagreements regarding facts. A good portion of cases settles before trial, which is good for all parties involved. For one, victims do not want to relive their accidents at trial; for another, insurance companies do not want to dump any more resources into legal fees than necessary.
Have additional questions that these FAQs did not cover? Contact Dolman Law Group and Sibley Dolman for your free initial consultation. Remember, there are no fees for your initial case review, and we charge no fees unless we recover compensation for you.
Contact a Bradenton Personal Injury Lawyer Today
From time to time, an accident of some sort may cause undue hardship in someone’s life. When those accidents occur, count on Dolman Law Group and Sibley Dolman to hold the negligent party accountable.
With offices across both Florida coasts, you can easily reach Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, and Sibley Dolman Accident Injury Lawyers, LLP, at 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH), or you can write to us using our online contact page. Consultations are always free.
6703 14th Street West
Bradenton, FL 34207
Phone: (941) 961-8841