Pompano Beach is a wonderful place to live, from our beautiful beach to the fishing pier, the golf courses, and the ocean. Yet unfortunately, folks in Pompano Beach can suffer unexpected injuries and harm any day of the year. Traffic accidents, injuries on a boat, a slip and fall at the mall. Any of these and more can lead to pain and suffering.
Contact the Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA Pompano Beach personal injury lawyers today for your free claim evaluation.
Table of Contents
- Legal Help If You Were Injured in Pompano Beach
- What is Personal Injury?
- How Are Victims of Personal Injury Compensated?
- What if Personal Injury Results in Death?
- How Can a Personal Injury Attorney Help Me?
- Contact a Pompano Beach Injury Attorney Today
- Pompano Beach Personal Injury FAQs
Dolman Law Group Can Help Injured People in Pompano Beach
What happens when you or a loved one suffer injuries due to the careless actions of another party? You could face pain-filled days, mounting medical bills, and uncertainty about the outcome. The experienced personal injury lawyers at Dolman Law Group in Pompano Beach stand ready to help. We will fight to do justice for you.
Entities who harm or injure someone through negligent actions owe injured people financial compensation. This may sound simple. But in practice, it can prove anything but simple.
Why? Negligent parties and insurance companies seldom own up to their responsibility. In fact, they, their insurance companies, and insurance company attorneys can fight very hard to keep you from receiving a fair claim—because they want to maximize their profits. The solution is to have a lawyer on your side.
Our results attest to our constant quest to obtain justice for injured people.
While no guarantee of success in all cases, some of our recent results for clients include:
- a $5 million settlement for a car accident that caused burn injuries
- a $3.5 million settlement for a semi-truck accident that caused brain injury
- a $7.5 million settlement for wrongful death
Our first consultation to discuss your Pompano Beach case is always free.
What is Personal Injury in Pompano Beach?
Personal injury is a major subdivision of law. It deals with exactly what it sounds like: injuries and harm.
You may hold entities who injured you liable, or financially responsible. To be found liable, they must first be found negligent. Negligence is a key concept in personal injury law.
Negligence means that the entity failed to act with the expected standard of care that a reasonable person would have shown.
In a car accident, all drivers owe a duty of care. They should possess qualifications to drive, such as a driver’s license. They must drive safely, prudently, and obey all traffic laws. They must maintain their vehicles with an appropriate degree of operating safety.
A violation of any one of these—driving too fast for traffic conditions or disobeying the law that mandates drivers to stop at a red light—breaches the standard of care. The law also counts an omission or failure to do something as potentially negligent. You can hold a driver who does not maintain a car negligent if the brakes fail.
To hold a party negligent, you must show that the negligent act caused the injuries and didn’t stem from some other source.
Dolman Law Group handles the following personal injury cases.
- Traffic accidents
- Uber or Lyft
- Boat accidents
- Maritime accidents
- Premises liability (slip and fall accidents)
- Injuries to children
- Construction accidents
- Protecting workers versus employees
- Workers’ compensation
- Product liability (products causing harm)
- Defective medications and bad drugs
- Medical malpractice
- Assisted living abuse
- Sex abuse
- HMO/managed care abuse
- Human trafficking
- Hurricane damage
- Nursing home abuse
- Property damage
- Wrongful death
How Are Victims of Personal Injury Compensated in Pompano Beach?
Regardless of the cause of personal injury, victims may seek compensation in the same categories.
- Medical bills, both current and expected in the future – For emergency transport and treatment, hospitalization, surgery, doctor’s office visits, diagnostic tests, imaging, prescription medication, physical therapy, home nursing aid, retrofitting a home, and more
- Income lost from work – For wages lost to an accident and recovery period
- Lifetime value of earnings – If an injury renders a victim unable to work at a previous occupation
- Pain and suffering – For physical, emotional, and psychological pain and suffering
- Property damage – For personal property damage, such as a car in a traffic accident
Victims of personal injury can either approach the negligent party’s insurance company, request that their insurance company submit bills to the negligent party’s insurance company, or file a personal injury lawsuit in civil court.
How Does the No-Fault System Work for Compensation in a Car Accident?
The most recent year saw 252,901 injuries in traffic accidents and 3,775 deaths throughout Florida, according to Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV). These deaths and injuries are a significant source of personal injury.
As most Broward County residents know, Florida has a no-fault car insurance system. No fault may seem contrary to the principles of personal injury since it means your personal injury protection (PIP) handles your claims. PIP is part of the insurance coverage Florida requires of any driver of a four-wheeled vehicle.
However, as injured folks often find out, PIP will pay only 80 percent of medical costs up to $10,000. Medical expenses for severely injured people often add up far beyond that level.
Seriously injured people may step outside the no-fault system if they have.
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- Permanent injury (assessed with medical probability)
What if Pompano Beach Personal Injury Results in Death?
Tragically, injuries sometimes cause death. When that happens, personal injury cases become wrongful death cases. The same standards of negligence and financial liability apply, on the whole, but family members and the deceased estate receive damage compensation.
In Florida, the representative of the deceased estate is the only entity that can bring a wrongful death suit. Family members and the estate, however, can both receive compensation.
Wrongful death compensation to family members may include:
- Medical expenses paid by a family member
- Funeral expenses paid by a surviving family member
- Loss of the support and services provided by the deceased
- Loss of parental companionship, instruction, and guidance provided by the deceased
- Loss of the deceased person’s companionship and protection
- Mental pain and suffering
The deceased’s estate may receive damage compensation for:
- Medical expenses paid by the estate
- Burial and funeral expenses paid by the estate
- Lost wages, benefits, and other earnings (starting with the date of the injury and ending with the death)
- The value of earnings and benefits the deceased person could reasonably have saved and left as part of the estate had they lived
How Long Do I Have to Bring a Case?
Most legal cases are subject to a statute of limitations. The statute of limitations refers to the deadline to bring a lawsuit. After that, the court will reject it.
For a personal injury, the Florida statute of limitations is four years from the date of the accident.
For wrongful death, the Florida statute of limitations is two years from the date of the death.
However, consult an attorney soon after the personal injury (or death). Successful settlement of insurance claims and/or lawsuits depends on evidence of what happened and what resulted. Unfortunately, people can lose or destroy evidence.
Medical records, for example, can be lost, damaged, or sent to storage that becomes unavailable. Surveillance systems erase and overwrite footage. Eyewitnesses can move away. Doctors who treated the injury may become ill, move away, or even die. Your memory of what occurred may fade, or a jury may consider it unreliable.
Pompano Beach Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me 833-552-7274
What Injuries Result From Negligence?
Negligent acts of all types result in personal injury.
Some of the most common personal injuries are:
- Broken bones
- Lacerations (cuts)
- Contusions (bruises)
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Spinal cord injury
- Loss of limb
- Nerve damage
- Head and neck injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
Some types of personal injury result in psychological damage or abuse.
- Sexual abuse and trauma
- Elder abuse
- Financial abuse
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
Finally, in some cases, such as medical malpractice, the victims may not have been diagnosed or treated properly for their ailment. In that case, the injury includes failure to recover from their condition and may include ill effects of omission of treatment or the wrong treatment.
How Can a Pompano Beach Personal Injury Attorney Help Me?
Sometimes, injury victims feel reluctant to consult a personal injury attorney. It seems like a big step, perhaps. They may feel concerned about what a lawyer costs.
You can ease many of these concerns by making an initial appointment. The first consultation is always free. We will discuss what happened to you and the effects on your life. If you have any evidence, bring it. (Examples of evidence include a police report and accident pictures of traffic accidents or workers’ comp reports in construction accidents, as well as records of medical appointments, pictures of your injuries, your notes and statements, and eyewitness testimony, if available.)
The first consultation is a chance for the attorney to give you an opinion on whether you have a personal injury case that is potentially winnable (that is, one that should receive a claim or legal settlement).
Personal injury lawyers receive their eventual payment as a percentage of a successful insurance settlement or a successful settlement in court. Injured people do not pay them out of pocket (except for incidental expenses, such as photocopying). You do not owe a legal fee if the claim or case does not succeed.
So given that, what kinds of help can a lawyer give you? Here’s a brief overview.
Sometimes, injured people and their loved ones aren’t sure who or what caused their injury. This can happen with all types of accidents and with medical cases. Perhaps you woke up in a hospital bed having little idea what caused the accident that left you with a TBI.
Personal injury lawyers work with investigative teams to ascertain what happened and who or what was involved. The investigation may include gathering evidence, talking to eyewitnesses, consulting expert opinion, conducting forensic analysis of a crash or other accident site, and more.
The ultimate goal of an investigation is to pinpoint negligence.
Receiving an injury can lead to challenging times. You may have few records or other evidence at your fingertips—you’re too busy surviving! If that’s the case, we can help you gather information from law enforcement, other authorities, hospitals, care institutions, and medical personnel.
Negotiating With Insurance Carriers
One of the most valuable services attorneys offer is their expertise in negotiating with insurance carriers. Unfortunately, insurance companies will try to pay the lowest claim possible—or not pay at all. An attorney levels the playing field, giving you someone in your corner.
Insurance companies are not above minimizing your injuries, denying their insured’s involvement in your accident, or claiming that your injuries have nothing to do with the incident you say caused them. They may try to buy you off with a quickly settled claim—one the industry calls a lowball offer because it’s certainly unfair to you.
Lawyers know all these tricks and can counter them. They can also determine a just claim amount and counter insurance company tactics to minimize them.
Bringing a Lawsuit
Finally, attorneys can bring a lawsuit in civil court. They can prepare and try a case and negotiate legal offers.
Let a Pompano Beach Personal Injury Lawyer Help With Your Personal Injury Case
Dolman Law Group has years of experience performing all these tasks for our personal injury clients. We focus on fighting for justice on behalf of victims and their families. With offices across both Florida coasts, you can easily reach Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, at 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH), or you can contact us online for your free consultation.
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What Exactly Does “Personal Injury” Refer To?
Personal injury is the branch of law that handles negligent actions that cause injury or harm to other people. Negligent actions are those in which an entity, either a person or an organization, either did something a reasonably prudent person would not have done in the same circumstances or omitted to do something.
Examples can clarify this more. Let’s say you’re a tenant in a rental building and the lights burn out over the staircase. You fall down the stairs as a result and sprain your ankle. In this case, the landlord is arguably negligent because landlords must keep their properties safe—and an unlit staircase isn’t safe.
The landlord may try to argue that they (or property managers) didn’t know the light was out. But landlords are generally responsible for regularly inspecting their property and fixing unsafe conditions. A court can hold that a reasonably prudent landlord should have known the light was out.
A negligent party is financially responsible for compensating victims of negligence for injuries. This financial responsibility is known legally as “liability.”
What Compensation Can I Seek if an Accident Injured Me?
Folks who suffer personal injury and other harm can seek the following in damage compensation.
- Medical bills, both current and expected in the future
- Wages lost from work
- The lifetime value of earnings, if the injuries are sufficient to prevent working in the future
- Pain and suffering (physical, emotional, psychological)
How Are Future Medical Costs Paid If I Don’t Know How Much the Bill Will Total?
Many conditions require medical care in the future. Injured people may not know today what the cost of that medical care will total in the future. How then can an insurer pay for future medical costs?
Generally, a medical expert must confirm the diagnoses, probability of future medical care, and the nature of that care. Then, health economists experts provide a forecast monetary value for the cost of care. These two experts provide an estimate that allows injured folks and their attorneys to seek just compensation.
What Do I Need to Prove Fault in a Personal Injury Case?
Several factors can prove fault or negligence in a personal injury case.
First, you need evidence that an entity exhibited negligence. The entity can either be a person (or persons) or an organization, such as a corporation.
Second, you need evidence that the negligent actions directly injured you. Insurance companies often argue that another event caused your injuries rather than their insured.
Third, you will likely need evidence of your injuries and the extent of harm they caused.
Evidence can include, but is not limited to:
- Police reports or other reports of an accident or other event
- Medical treatment after an event
- Medical diagnoses
- Recommended medical courses of treatment
- Pictures or videos of an accident or other injury-causing scene or event
- Pictures or videos of your injuries
- Eyewitness accounts
- Surveillance footage
- Your notes and testimony
The Driver Who Hit My Car Was Drunk. Can I Sue?
Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, controlled substances, or chemical substances is a severe offense in Florida and everywhere else in the country.
If a DUI driver injures you, you can bring a claim for damage compensation, just as you can for any other personal injury. These claims can go either to the driver’s insurance company or to civil court as a personal injury lawsuit.
Prosecutors bring charges for a DUI in criminal court, not civil court. The police and state attorneys are responsible for the process (issuing a summons, filing charges, and bringing the driver to court), not individual victims.
Drivers convicted of a DUI in the Sunshine State face steep fines, possible prison sentences, and vehicle impounds.
Suppose a DUI-related accident causes personal injury or property damage. In that case, the first offense is a first-degree misdemeanor, with a maximum fine of $1,000 and a maximum prison time of one year. If it causes serious bodily injury, the charge rises to a third-degree felony, with a $5,000 fine and up to five years in prison.
My PIP Doesn’t Cover All My Medical Bills From a Crash. What Do I Do?
Florida mandates that all drivers obtain insurance coverage. Part of your insurance coverage pays for personal injury protection (PIP) in case of an accident. Florida is a no-fault state, meaning motorists in a crash should turn to their insurance PIP in case of injury. No-fault lifts any burden of proving which driver bore responsibility for an accident.
PIP coverage covers just 80 percent of medical costs up to $10,000. This may cover medical needs in many cases, but it may fall woefully short in others.
Fortunately, Florida allows seriously injured people to pursue insurance claims or personal injury cases in court by stepping outside the no-fault system.
Serious injury is:
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- High medical probability of permanent injury
My Loved One Died. Can I Bring a Personal Injury Suit?
What happens when someone dies due to another entity’s negligent behavior? In those tragic cases, the law provides for a wrongful death lawsuit. In a wrongful death suit, the surviving family members and the deceased person’s estate may seek compensation.
Individual family members cannot bring a wrongful death suit in Florida. The law specifies the estate’s representative (also known as an executor) must file such suits on behalf of family members.
What Compensation Does a Wrongful Death Suit Allow?
Wrongful death suits may recover compensation for medical expenses related to final injuries. The family and the estate can seek lost income and benefits the deceased would have earned.
Of course, some wrongful death damage compensation pertains to the tragic loss of life.
Family members can also seek:
- Funeral and burial expenses, if a family member paid them
- Loss of the services and support provided by the deceased
- Loss of the deceased person’s protection and companionship
- Loss of parental instruction, companionship, and guidance
- Mental pain and suffering
The estate can also seek:
- Burial and funeral expenses paid by the estate
- The value of earnings and benefits the deceased person might have left as part of the estate had they lived
What’s the Statute of Limitations?
Injured folks need to bring a legal suit within the statute of limitations. If they don’t, the court will reject their case.
Florida’s personal injury statute of limitations is four years from the accident.
If the injured person died due to the injuries, the statute of limitations is much shorter. A wrongful death suit statute of limitations is two years from the date of death.
The Insurance Company Questioned Why I Didn’t Go to the Doctor. Is This a Red Flag?
If you approach the at-fault party’s insurance company with a claim, rest assured that they will do their best to bring down your claim. If they can find a reason to deny or minimize a claim, they are very likely to take it.
They are likely to scrutinize your actions. One of the chief methods they use is looking at medical records. If you are in an accident and submit claims for medical treatment, they will examine the dates to ensure the treatment relates to the accident, not some other cause.
They may question if you don’t seek medical treatment soon after the accident. They may use it to try one of their favorite strategies: using the omission as proof the accident didn’t injure you.
Now, this isn’t fair, of course. Many types of injuries don’t present symptoms immediately. A gap of several days doesn’t indicate that the accident didn’t cause your injury.
But insurance companies don’t think that way. They think of ways to deny or minimize your claim.
If you are in any accident, go to an emergency room or see your physician as soon as possible. A visit to medical personnel preserves your health and safety. Many injuries are “silent”—not feeling pain, or any other symptoms, doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t sustain injuries. Only a doctor can give you a clean bill of health.
In addition, a “soon as possible” visit eliminates any chance that an insurance carrier will try this technique.
Can Lawyers Negotiate With an Insurer Who Won’t Settle Fairly?
Yes! Personal injury lawyers negotiate with insurance companies all the time.
Lawyers know the techniques insurance companies use to minimize or deny claims. We also know the financial parameters of a fair claim. Insurance companies cannot persuade us that an inadequate claim is just.
Most of all, insurance company adjusters and lawyers may find it easy to ignore an individual. You may find it challenging to get through via email, chat, or phone.
But they can’t ignore lawyers. Why? Because if we don’t receive a reasonable and fair settlement on behalf of our clients, we can take the insurance company to court. Let a judge and jury decide what justice is in this case.
Insurance companies dread going to court because they know judges and juries are often more sympathetic to the insured than the insurance company.
Let a lawyer fight for justice in your case.
What Should I Bring to a First Meeting With an Attorney?
The lawyer needs to hear what happened, the causes, and how the accident affected you before discussing whether to pursue a case.
Write a brief outline to discuss your case. Think who, what, how, where, and why. How were you injured? Who or what caused the injury? How are the injuries affecting you, personally, emotionally, and financially?
It’s also a good idea to bring any evidence you have. Evidence, again, can include police reports, medical records, pictures of accident scenes, pictures of your injuries, eyewitness statements and contacts, and reports of similar incidents—whatever you have. The attorney will need to know what evidence is available.
If you have further questions, the Pompano Beach personal injury lawyers at Dolman Law Group are happy to answer. Our first consultation is always free.