Were you recently involved in a car accident in Clearwater, FL? The experienced Clearwater car accident lawyers at Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers can help you fight to maximize your recovery. Contact our law office at (727) 787-2500 for a free consultation.
You may have the right to take legal action against those responsible for your injuries and suffering. By filing an insurance claim and/or lawsuit, you could potentially obtain a sizable financial award.
How Can Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers Help Me After a Car Accident in Clearwater, FL?
Having a Clearwater personal injury lawyer from Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers on your side can make all the difference in the world. Insurance companies – yours or a third-party provider – will fight tooth and nail to deny or minimize your claim.
At Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers, we’re known for being tough and passionate advocates for motor vehicle accident victims like you. To date, we’ve successfully recovered more than $100 million in settlements and jury verdicts.
When you enlist our law firm in Clearwater, FL for help after a crash near you, expect us to:
- Provide transparent legal service throughout the process
- Coordinate with accident experts and specialists to ensure that your crash is subject to a detailed and exhaustive investigation
- Handle the administrative aspects of your claim from start to finish – including making sure that all procedural deadlines are met on time
- Minimize the impact of any claims that you are responsible for or share fault for your auto accident and resulting injuries
- Negotiate on your behalf, working to secure a settlement with terms that are favorable to you
Contact our law office in Clearwater to discuss your rights and options. Your first consultation is completely free of charge.
Why Should I Hire a Clearwater Car Accident Lawyer?
Hiring a car accident lawyer can benefit you for many reasons. These include, but are not limited to, the following:
- You’ll level the playing field. Just about any car accident case will put you up against an insurance company. These corporations exist to make a profit, not to pay the full value of your claim. Attorneys are well aware of the tactics insurance adjusters use to deny or reduce their liability and can fight back on your behalf.
- Access to resources. Car accident lawyers can conduct legal research, engage in internal investigations, and hire experts – all in service of strengthening your claim. Without these assets on your side, you might end up with less compensation than what you are owed.
- Protect you from allegations of blame. Due to a recent change in state law, you will be barred from recovering compensation from the other driver if it is found that the accident was mostly your fault. Your compensation can also be reduced even if you are only partially to blame. An attorney can protect your interests and minimize the level of fault assigned to you.
- Take the time you need to rest. A car accident can take a toll on you mentally, physically, and emotionally. If you hire an attorney, they can take care of every component of your claim for compensation while you focus on your well-being.
Contact our Clearwater legal team today to learn more about why hiring a car accident lawyer may be the best course of action in your case.
How Much Money Can I Get For My Clearwater Car Accident?
According to the National Safety Council, the average out-of-pocket costs and financial losses of a car accident range, on average, between $12,200 (no injury observed) to $1,659,000 (death of victim). Those are just the economic costs.
When you factor in the intangibles, like pain and suffering, the value of a claim can be significantly higher.
Generally speaking, crash victims are entitled to seek both economic and non-economic damages.
There are many different factors that will affect the valuation of an injury claim after a car accident. Among other things, these factors include:
- The extent and severity of the injury
- Whether you are forced to miss time at work and generate an income – temporarily or permanently
- If you require assistance to complete everyday tasks, like bathing or driving
- How the accident and resulting harm have affected you emotionally and psychologically
- The cost of replacing and repairing property damaged in the crash.
Contact us today to find out about the value of your car accident case.
How Long Do I Have To File a Car Accident Lawsuit in Clearwater, FL (Statute of Limitations)?
Your right to file a civil action after an accident in Clearwater is not without limitation. Florida state law imposes a strict two-year clock on most personal injury lawsuits. This means that your right to seek compensation from at-fault parties expires two years from the date of your car crash.
The Florida statute of limitations used to give car accident victims four years to file a lawsuit. However, the law was revised on March 24, 2023 – meaning crashes occurring after that date must follow the two-year deadline.
There are some exceptions to the rule – but they’re few and far between. While two years might seem like a lot of time, there’s considerable value in getting started on your legal case right away. By contacting an attorney promptly after a crash, you’ll not only effectively guarantee that you meet applicable deadlines, but you’ll also give your car accident lawyer the opportunity to investigate and gather relevant evidence not long after the crash.
This can make a huge difference in the success of your claim and in how much money you’re ultimately awarded for your injuries.
Can I Recover Compensation If I’m Partly to Blame for My Car Accident?
Yes – as long as your level of fault doesn’t exceed 50%. Florida operates under a modified comparative negligence system. Simply, this means that fault is allocated to everyone who plays a role in causing an accident – directly or indirectly.
Your damages will be reduced to the degree to which you are at fault. However, if you share 51% or more responsibility for the collision, you’re prevented from recovering any compensation.
Example: You suffer $100,000 in damages as a result of a car accident. You’re allocated 30% of the blame because you were speeding at the time of the wreck. Your financial settlement or award will be capped at $70,000 – your total damages less 30%. However, if you were allocated 51% of the blame, you’d receive nothing.
Insurance companies love to use this law to their advantage. In fact, they love to use it as a way to scare accident victims into accepting way less money than they deserve or walking away with nothing. If you don’t stand up for yourself – or have an experienced Clearwater car accident lawyer stand up for you – you might end up leaving money on the table.
Our attorneys are known for being fierce advocates for injury victims like you. We’ll stand up to insurance companies and work to neutralize their manipulative strategies and tactics. Our team will gather evidence to disprove the claims that you share fault or work to minimize your role. Call us for legal advice and assistance today.
What Types of Compensation Can Be Recovered in a Clearwater Auto Accident Claim?
Compensation that’s commonly awarded in accident claims includes money for:
- Present medical expenses
- Future medical bills
- Therapy and rehabilitation
- Lost income and wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Funeral and burial costs, if an accident is fatal
- Loss of enjoyment or quality of life
- Loss of consortium
- Disfigurement and scarring
- Emotional distress, including PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder)
There are times when punitive, or exemplary, damages might be applicable. While these are awarded in a very limited number of cases, our team will carefully consider the details of your case and determine if they might also be an option for you.
How Much Does It Cost To Hire a Clearwater Car Accident Lawyer?
Most car accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. Under this structure, you can hire a lawyer without paying a cent upfront. From there, you only pay legal fees if your attorney obtains compensation for you.
At that time, the attorney will receive a previously agreed-upon percentage of that compensation as payment. Most often, this percentage is around 33%, but it can vary depending on the case.
This payment method aligns your attorney’s interests with yours; the more money that they get for you, the more they are paid as well. In addition, you can hire a lawyer on a contingency fee basis even if the accident has left you in a vulnerable financial position.
We Handle All Types of Car Accident Claims
When you’re injured in a motor vehicle collision, you deserve to be represented by an experienced car accident attorney with extensive experience handling cases like yours. At Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers, we have 50+ years of combined experience representing clients in car accident injury matters.
This includes clients who were injured as a result of:
Distractions come in many forms – texting and driving, checking your email while stopped at a red light, engaging in an in-depth conversation with a passenger, and even daydreaming.
When a driver is distracted, vehicle collisions and accidents involving bicyclists and pedestrians are much more likely to occur. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, there were at least 55,261 distracted driving car accidents in the state in 2019.
Contact our Clearwater distracted driving accident lawyers for more info.
Drivers under the influence of drugs and alcohol are significantly more likely to get distracted, fall asleep behind the wheel, and simply experience difficulty concentrating and navigating a vehicle. Unfortunately, drunk driving is all too common and across the state. In 2017, there were at least 5,125 alcohol-related crashes in Florida.
Contact one of our Clearwater drunk driving accident lawyers to get help with your case today.
Did you know that driving while you’re tired can be just as dangerous as driving drunk?
It’s true, at least according to some studies.
There’s no doubt that Clearwater has its fair share of traffic. In fact, it ranks 62nd in the nation when it comes to congestion. When a driver finally emerges from a traffic jam or bumper-to-bumper congestion, they might feel to urge to speed to make up for lost time. Unfortunately, that tends to lead to collisions – many of which are deadly. In 2018, speed was a factor in more than a quarter of all fatal accidents in the United States. Our Clearwater speeding accident lawyers can help if you were hurt in a speeding accident.
Head-On Car Crashes
Head-on crashes can often result in some of the worst injuries, including head trauma, broken bones, and internal bleeding. A head-on car crash lawyer can help you get compensation for these injuries.
Intersection crashes are among the most common wrecks in Florida. Our Clearwater intersection crash lawyers can help you take on the insurance companies and get the compensation you’re entitled to.
Highway crashes take place at higher speeds and so tend to result in more drastic injuries. If you’ve been involved in one of these accidents, you need a Clearwater highway crash attorney on your side.
Hit and Run Accidents
Hit-and-run accidents can be especially difficult to get compensated for since you may not even know who hit you. A Clearwater hit-and-run car accident lawyer will help you fight for fair compensation in your case.
Multi-Vehicle Car Crashes
Multi-vehicle crashes can be difficult to litigate since determining who’s at fault for what can be incredibly complex. Our experienced Clearwater multi-vehicle car crash attorneys know what it takes to get you the money you deserve.
Rear-End Car Accidents
Rear-end accidents often result in whiplash, concussions, soft tissue injuries, and more. A Clearwater rear-end car accident lawyer can help you pursue full and fair compensation for your injuries.
Rollover Car Accidents
Rollover accidents can cause some of the most devastating injuries. A rollover accident attorney will help you take on the insurance companies and get the money you’re entitled to.
The state of Florida, Pinellas County, and the city of Clearwater all have a responsibility to design safe roads and maintain them so that they’re in a reasonably safe condition. Drivers shouldn’t have to be overly concerned about road conditions or being on the lookout for obstructions or hazards while they’re traveling around the city. Unfortunately, potholes go untended and trees are allowed to grow in front of and obstruct road signs. These road conditions can lead to crashes.
Road defects, together with speeding, can cause fatal accidents. In 2018, driving “too fast for conditions”, caused many fatal accidents across the country. These were the conditions that caused them:
- 16% – dry roads
- 19% – wet roads
- 37% – roads with snow or slush
- 37% – roads with moving or standing water
- 41% – roads with ice or frost
- 45% – roads with mud, dirt, or gravel
Other common claims we handle include:
- Side-impact collisions
- Single vehicle accidents in Clearwater
- Red and yellow light accidents in Clearwater
- Truck accidents in Clearwater
- Accidents involving bicyclists and pedestrians
- Accidents involving uninsured or underinsured motorists
- Lane change accidents
- And more
We work on contingency, which means there’s no fee unless we win your case. Contact our law office to discuss your situation today.
What Does Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Rule Mean For Me After a Crash in Clearwater?
Florida has no-fault insurance laws. This means that you are required to file a claim with your own insurance provider after you are injured in an accident in the state – regardless of who is at fault. State law requires that all vehicles are covered by a car insurance policy, including mandatory minimum amounts of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage.
This PIP coverage serves as the primary source of compensation when you get hurt in a crash.
Common Car Accident Injuries
Car accidents can cause a wide range of injuries to drivers, passengers, and bystanders. Our legal team appreciates the importance of a financial recovery for all injuries – mild and catastrophic. Call our law office in Clearwater if, as a result of a crash, you or a loved one have suffered:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord damage
- Back and neck injury, including whiplash
- Concussion or head trauma
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue damage, including strains and sprains
- Chest injury
- Lost limbs
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
- Injuries to the eyes or face
- Wrongful death
If you lost a loved one in an accident, our wrongful death lawyers can guide you through the legal process during this difficult time.
We understand that you might not be able to take the time to come to our law office to discuss your case. If your injuries are severe, our team can arrange a time ot visit you at home or at the hospital. Just give us a call to discuss your options today.
What Should I Do After a Car Accident in Clearwater, FL?
A car crash can be overwhelming. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you or a loved one are involved in a car accident. These easy steps can help to keep you safe and support any future actions for damages you decide to pursue.
- Remain at the scene, but move to a safe location away from the wreckage
- Call the police and report the accident
- Answer basic questions and exchange insurance information, but do not admit fault or apologize
- Seek medical treatment for your injuries as soon as you can
- Obtain a copy of the accident report when it is available
- Resist the urge to accept an insurance company’s early settlement offer – it’s probably for way less money than your case is really worth
- Direct all conversations to your personal injury attorney
Don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and call Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers after you are involved in a car accident. Our car accident lawyers are always available – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Who Could Be Liable for My Injuries Resulting From a Car Accident?
Under Florida law, almost any person or entity could be liable for your injuries after a car accident – so long as they were negligent (careless). Potentially liable parties include the following:
- Other individual drivers and/or their insurance companies
- Government agencies
- Public transit companies
- Rideshare services such as Lyft and Uber (specifically, their insurers)
- Manufacturers of defective parts
Sometimes, more than one party may share liability for your car accident. If you hire an experienced car accident lawyer, they can conduct a thorough review of your crash to determine who’s liable and your next best steps.
Will My Car Accident Case Go to Trial?
In terms of statistics, it’s very unlikely that your car accident case will go to trial. Most cases don’t even make it to court and instead are resolved via settlement negotiations.
However, it can be in your best interest to file a lawsuit in some circumstances. Oftentimes, the at-fault party will not want to put forth the time and effort it takes to defend a lawsuit in court. As a result, they may be willing to offer a more favorable settlement agreement.
Keep in mind, too, that cases can still be settled even once a lawsuit is filed. The pretrial discovery process can reveal crucial evidence in favor of your claim, persuading the opposing party to increase their offer to you.
At Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers, our goal is to maximize the value of your claim and represent you effectively at every stage of the process. If that means filing a lawsuit, we won’t hesitate to do so on your behalf.
Car Accident Statistics in Clearwater, FL
Clearwater may not be as big as Tampa or St. Petersburg in terms of population, but it still has a significant number of car accidents each year.
In 2022, Pinellas County experienced over 15,600 motor vehicle accidents. This number is much lower than Hillsborough County‘s 28,352 accidents but around twice the number of accidents as Pasco County’s 7,726 collisions.
Pinellas County accidents in 2022 resulted in 122 deaths and over 9,200 injuries. Of the 15,000+ accidents in the county, 578 involved bicycle crashes, and 474 involved pedestrians. These collisions caused 50 deaths.
Pinellas experienced over 435 motorcycle crashes, 31 of which were fatal. The county also had over 4,400 hit-and-runs, which caused 9 fatalities and 970 injuries.
The county had a high rate of drunk driving accidents in 2022. There were 353 alcohol-involved crashes that year. These collisions resulted in 21 fatal injuries and 167 additional non-fatal injuries. Another 42 accidents involved drivers under the influence of drugs.
Local police departments responded to 65% of the crashes in 2022, while the Florida Highway Patrol and The Sheriff Department responded to the remaining 35%. Visit our statistics page to learn more.
How Severe Are Clearwater Auto Accidents?
Between 2012 and 2022, 110,310 people suffered injuries and another 1,272 were killed in Pinellas County car crashes. So, on an average day in Clearwater and surrounding beach towns, between 28 and 29 people get hurt in auto accidents. There’s a fatal crash in the area about once every three days.
Car Accidents in Pinellas County [September 2023 Update]
As of September 23rd, 2023, Pinellas County, FL has seen that crashes are on the rise. According to the latest information provided by the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles:
- All crashes: 10,653
- Injuries from all crashes: 6,563
- Fatalities from crashes: 70
- Hit-and-run crashes: 2,973
- Drunk driving crashes: 220
Schedule a Free Consultation With an Experienced Clearwater Car Accident Lawyer At (727) 787-2500
At Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers, we get results for our clients. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, make our law firm your first call. Our car accident lawyers will fight to hold at-fault parties fully accountable for your injuries, pain, and suffering. Your first consultation with our team is free, so give us a call to arrange a time to discuss your case today.
Visit Our Law Office in Clearwater, FL
Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers
1811 N Belcher Rd. suite i-1, Clearwater, FL 33765