Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyer

Have you been injured in an accident in Clearwater, Florida? Were you hurt because someone else was negligent? The top-rated Clearwater personal injury lawyers at Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers are here to help you hold them accountable and maximize your financial recovery.

Since 1996, we’ve been an ally to accident victims in Clearwater, FL. Our founding attorney is Certified in Civil Trial Law by the Florida Bar– which means we’re experts when it comes to cases just like yours. We stand up to insurance companies and tough defendants every day – and help our clients achieve the best results.

Contact our law offices, conveniently located in downtown Clearwater, to learn more about your options and how we can help you during your time of need. We offer a free case evaluation and there’s no fee unless we win your case, so call to get started now.

How Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help You After an Accident

Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers Clearwater Law Firm

Nothing about getting into an accident is easy. Medical expenses can add up – fast. You might find that it’s complicated to make ends meet if you’re unable to work. Filing an insurance claim or lawsuit can help – but insurance companies will fight you every step of the way.

That’s why the Clearwater personal injury attorneys at Roman & Austin personal injury lawyers should be your first call after you or a loved one gets hurt.  Here’s why:

Don’t give insurance companies, hospitals, or other deep-pocketed defendants any advantage. Call Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers to not just level the playing field – but tip the scales in your favor. We offer a free consultation, so reach out to our compassionate team to schedule yours today.

Do I Have a Clearwater Personal Injury Case?

You might have a personal injury case if:

If you believe that you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, it’s important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer near you. Your lawyer will be able to review the facts of your case, consider the specific circumstances, and identify potential legal options. You only have a limited time to file a case under Florida law.

Contact Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers to get started discussing your situation with a free case evaluation today.

Our Clearwater Personal Injury Law Office

Visit our main office in Clearwater to meet with a member of our legal team at Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers.

2360 Congress Avenue
Clearwater, FL 33763

(727) 787-2500

What Compensation Can I Get in a Personal Injury Case in Clearwater, FL?

Economic Damages

Under Florida law, compensatory damages are typically available to plaintiffs in a personal injury case. Compensatory damages fall into one of two categories: economic and non-economic.

Economic damages are intended to compensate for verifiable financial costs and losses related to an accident or injury.

Examples include:

  • Medical bills (present and future)
  • Lost wages and income
  • Disability – both temporary and permanent
  • Rehabilitation and therapy
  • The cost of replacing or repairing property damage, and
  • Funeral expenses, if an accident is fatal.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages are intended to compensate for consequences of an accident that are more difficult to value in terms of dollars and cents.

Examples include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress, such as PTSD or anxiety
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of enjoyment or quality of life, and
  • Disfigurement.

In limited instances, punitive damages might also be available. These are awarded when a defendant’s conduct was intentionally harmful or grossly negligent. Punitive damages are awarded on top of any compensatory awards in order to punish the defendant.

What is The Duty Of Care In Florida?

Most personal injury cases are based on negligence, including the typical car accident case. Negligence requires proof of four distinct elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages.

First, you must prove the party that injured you owed you a duty of care. Duties arise from the law or a relationship between the parties. Typically, all people have a duty of care to act reasonably to avoid injuring others. 

An example of a duty includes the duty that drivers owe to others on the road. Drivers have a duty to obey traffic laws and drive safely. Doctors also have a duty to provide the proper standard of care to their patients. Property and business owners have a duty to keep their premises reasonably safe for guests.

Breach Of Duty

The second element you must prove is a breach of duty. You must show that the at-fault party fell short of their duty due to an act or omission. You will prove this by showing the defendant failed to act like a reasonable person in the circumstances leading up to the injury.

For example, a driver might breach their duty by running a stop sign. A reasonable person obeys traffic laws to avoid getting into a car accident.

Causation and Damages

You will also have to show the at-fault party caused your injuries. You will need to prove the accident would not have happened had it not been for the defendant’s breach of duty. You will also need to show that your injuries were a foreseeable consequence of the defendant’s negligence.

Once you’ve proved the defendant caused your injuries, you will have to show you suffered damages related to your accident. Damages typically come in the form of financial losses but may also include emotional and psychological losses.

Clearwater, FL Accident Statistics [January 2023 Update]

Clearwater Florida

Preliminary data shows that there were a staggering 388,215 motor vehicle accidents throughout Florida in 2022. These crashes caused 3,400 deaths and 247,303 injuries.

Pinellas County experienced nearly 15,646 crashes that same year. These crashes caused 121 fatalities and 9,210 injuries. The statistics tell us that Clearwater and Pinellas have a high accident rate, especially among pedestrians and bicyclists. The region had 474 pedestrian accidents and 578 bicycle crashes. These accidents caused 50 deaths. 

The statistics also tell us that Clearwater and Pinellas have a high rate of hit and run crashes. There were over 4,450 crashes in 2022. The area also has a high prevalence of drunk and drugged driving. There were over 360 crashes involving alcohol or drugs.

Preliminary crash data indicates that crashes are on the rise again in 2023. As of beginning-January, there have been 56 collisions (as of 01/16/2023).

Representing All Personal Injury Cases in Clearwater

Car Accidents

Car Accident Lawyer Clearwater, FL

The costs and consequences of a car accident in Clearwater can be devastating. If you want to recover compensation, Florida’s no-fault rules direct that you’ll have to turn to your own insurance provider for assistance first. However, don’t expect your insurer to just write you a check for the full cost of your injuries. They’ll put up a fight and work to minimize your payout. Our Clearwater car accident lawyers can help you navigate the claims process, work to secure a full payout, and then pursue additional damages from negligent parties, if necessary.

Brain Injuries

Brain injury lawyer in Clearwater

A brain injury can be terrifying and life-changing. Even though many types of brain injuries can heal over time, others will not. Brain trauma victims struggle with the consequences of their injury for life. That can get to be emotionally, physically, and financially draining. If someone else is responsible for the accident that caused your traumatic injury, you might be entitled to financial compensation. Contact our brain injury lawyers in Clearwater, FL for help today.

Bicycle Accidents

Bicycle Accident Lawyer

Even when wearing a helmet, a bicyclist is still susceptible to severe, catastrophic injuries in the event of an auto accident in Clearwater. Many times, bike accidents are caused by distracted or impaired motorists. However, those same motorists who cause these crashes blame the riders for getting hurt. Our bicycle accident lawyers in Clearwater, FL will defend you if and when you are blamed for a bicycle accident. We’ll work to gather evidence to show that the negligent motorist – and not you – is at fault and financially responsible for your injuries.

Wrongful Death

Wrongful Death Accident Lawyer

It’s painful to lose a family member. It can be even more difficult when that loss is sudden and avoidable. If someone you care about has died in an accident in Clearwater, FL our compassionate lawyers will help you navigate this difficult time.

We’ll aggressively pursue monetary damages through a wrongful death claim to help you get back on your feet and to provide financial support for your family for years to come. Our wrongful death attorneys in Clearwater, FL understand that money will never make up for your loss. However, it can provide some much-needed relief and a little bit of justice, too.

Slip & Fall Accidents

Slip and Fall Injury Lawyers

 If you’ve suffered a slip and fall on someone else’s property in Clearwater, FL, you may have a right to pursue compensation from the owner. If a dangerous condition or hazard on the property led to your all, the owner can be on the hook for the costs of your medical bills, lost wages, and more. However, the owner will likely try to fix whatever caused you to get hurt before you have a chance to take action. So, it’s important to reach out to an experienced Clearwater, FL slip & fall lawyer for help as soon as you can after you get hurt. Our team will launch a prompt investigation into your fall and work to preserve the evidence that we’ll need to support our premises liability claim.

Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycle Accident Personal Injury Law Firm

When a motorcyclist is involved in a motor vehicle accident, the outcome can be tragic. Even if a rider survives their injuries, they may struggle with long-term disabilities and suffer from severe PTSD. In turn, the costs of a motorcycle crash can be quite burdensome.

An injured rider shouldn’t bear the costs of an accident that someone else caused. Our motorcycle accident lawyers in Clearwater, FL can help you determine why your accident happened and, by extension, who is to blame. When we know who’s at fault, we can then aggressively pursue a full monetary award for all present and future damages on your behalf.

Truck Accidents

Truck Accident Injury Lawyers

Truck accidents aren’t all that uncommon in and around Hillsborough County. Many times, these catastrophic accidents occur because a driver and/or trucking companies violate federal and state safety regulations. This might involve driving for longer that is permitted by law or failing to regularly inspect and maintain a fleet of vehicles. These violations can be used as support for an injury claim as you pursue damages for your medical expenses, lost income, disability, and pain and suffering.

Uber & Lyft Accidents

uber and lyft accident injury law firm

Rideshare services like Uber and Lyft have transformed the way we travel. Unfortunately, that transformation hasn’t necessarily involved a safer way to travel. Uber and Lyft drivers aren’t professionals. And, they’re among the most distracted drivers on the road. So, Uber and Lyft accidents happen quite frequently. Unfortunately, getting compensation after an Uber accident can be a challenge. Our lawyers know how to cut through the confusion, identify liable parties, and construct a persuasive claim that helps injury victims recover the money they rightfully deserve.

Maritime Accidents

Maritime Accidents

Maritime accidents include a wide range of incidents, from injuries to workers offshore to accidents on cruise ships. These accidents often involve federal law, which can make it complicated to get the money you need after your injury. Our lawyers have extensive experience with maritime accident cases. We can help you get fair compensation for your injuries.

Nursing Home Abuse

nursing home abuse

It is an extremely difficult decision to put a loved one in a nursing home. Your worst fear may come to life when you learn your family member suffered abuse by a retirement home employee. Your loved one could be entitled to substantial damages from the nursing home. Our law firm can help you get justice.

Spinal Cord Injuries

spinal cord injuries

Spinal cord injuries are one of the worst injuries one can suffer. They can affect every aspect of a person’s life, especially mobility. If someone else is responsible for your spinal cord injury, they should also be responsible for your medical bills and other damages. Our law office can handle all aspects of your spinal cord injury claim. 

Airplane Accidents

Airplane Accidents

Statistically, airplane accidents aren’t very common. However, when they occur, they tend to result in serious injuries and fatalities. These accidents are typically the result of pilot error but can also be caused by a defective plane part. We can help you prove your airplane accident claim and recover the money you need to move forward after your injuries.

Hurricane Insurance

Hurricanes are just a part of life in Florida. That’s why we all buy property damage and hurricane insurance for our homes and properties. However, insurance companies aren’t always willing to pay for damage to your home or business after a major storm. Our legal team can make them play fair and force them to honor the terms of your insurance policy.

And More

Personal Injury Lawyers in  Clearwater, FL

At Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers, our personal injury lawyers in Clearwater and New Port Richey, FL have more than 50 years of experience handling the most complex and challenging legal matters. Personal injury law is all we do. We usually use our expertise to represent clients in cases involving medical malpractice, product liability, workplace accidents, bad faith insurance practices, and more. Contact our law office in Tampa Bay if you need assistance seeking compensation for your losses and injuries.

Steps To Take After a Personal Injury Accident in Clearwater

You should take many steps after a personal injury claim to protect your injury claim — and your health. 

At a minimum, you should:

  • Call 911 to report the accident and request EMS if necessary
  • Cooperate with police officers when they arrive on the scene
  • Answer questions law enforcement needs for their accident report
  • Exchange contact and insurance information with the other party
  • Obtain contact information from witnesses to the accident
  • Seek immediate medical attention after the accident – even if you feel “fine”

You should also contact an experienced injury attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can help you understand your rights after your accident and guide you through the personal injury claims process. They can protect your rights and help you avoid mistakes that will hurt your injury claim.

Personal Injury FAQ

How Long Do I Have to File a Lawsuit?

Most personal injury cases in Florida are subject to a four-year statute of limitations. This means that you’ll probably have four years to file a lawsuit after an accident in Tampa. There are exceptions to this rule. Wrongful death lawsuits and medical malpractice claims are subject to a two-year time limit.

Do not wait too long to take action and file a claim after you get hurt. You’ll lose the ability to recover compensation if you miss the deadline that applies to your case. Our accident attorneys in Clearwater are here to help you after your accident from start to finish. We’ll handle all of the procedural aspects of your case – including preparing and submitting all necessary paperwork to move your claim forward.

How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyer?

It costs nothing to hire an injury attorney upfront. Instead, the lawyer recovers anywhere between 33% and 40% of your financial award. But, your lawyer only gets paid if they win your case. This is called a contingency fee arrangement.

That’s a huge incentive for them to work incredibly hard on your behalf and fight to maximize your recovery.

Always ask how the fee is calculated: using your gross award (total amount won/awarded) or your net award (total reduced by case-related costs). It’s important to know when things like filing fees, court costs, and expert witness fees are deducted from your settlement or verdict. It will affect how much money you ultimately walk away with when your case is over.

Will My Case Go to Trial?

Statistically speaking, no. Only about 4-5% of personal injury lawsuits end up going to trial. The vast majority of cases settle before ever getting that far.

But, just because most cases don’t go to trial doesn’t necessarily mean that yours won’t. It’ll depend on a lot of different factors specific to your case. How clear is liability? Is the insurance company willing to negotiate? Is there a big dispute over what your case is worth?

Ultimately, whether or not your case goes before a judge and jury is up to you. You can decide to settle, or you can push forward and go to trial. The best thing you can do is hire an attorney with extensive trial experience. This will show insurance companies that you’re serious about your case and won’t be pressured into taking a lowball offer. It’ll also mean that your attorney will be ready if and when your case gets to court.

How Much is My Personal Injury Case Worth?

There’s no one right answer. The value of every case is different – because accidents, injuries, and victims are all unique.

Ultimately, what your case is worth will depend on things like:

  • The type and extent of injuries
  • Whether your ability to work and earn a living has been affected
  • Your out of pocket expenses
  • Liability and available insurance coverage
  • How your quality of life has been affected

The more serious your injuries, the more your case is likely worth.

Keep in mind that while your case might be worth much, you run the risk of leaving money on the table if you don’t have the right legal team by your side. Our law firm benefits from the experience of a Board Certified trial attorney. We care about you and we will not rest until all damages have been identified and you’re compensated to the fullest extent of the law.

Why Should I File a Personal Injury Claim?

It’s simple: you shouldn’t have to struggle with the costs and stress of an accident. This is certainly true if someone else is responsible for your injuries.

Filing a personal injury claim gives you the opportunity to secure compensation to make you financially whole and give you some room to breathe as you get back on your feet. It also ensures that negligent parties are held accountable for their actions.

Who Pays My Medical Bills after an Accident?

It depends on what type of accident you’re in and how you’re injured.

If you’re in a car accident in Clearwater, Florida’s no-fault auto insurance rules will apply. This means that you’ll be required to seek PIP benefits from your own insurance provider. Personal Injury Protection coverage (PIP) covers 80% of your medical expenses. If your injuries are severe or catastrophic, or if your claim is denied in bad faith, then you can seek additional compensation through a personal injury lawsuit or third-party insurance claim.

If you’re injured at work, there’s a good chance that you’ll be covered by your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance policy. Benefits include compensation for medical bills – but there are often strict rules and harsh limitations.

Typically, if you’re injured in an accident, you’ll be on the hook for medical bills until you can establish that someone else is legally responsible. That’s why it is important to seek legal advice from a qualified Clearwater personal injury attorney after you get hurt.

Filing a timely insurance claim or a lawsuit is the best way to ensure that the negligent party – and not you – is ultimately responsible for covering your medical bills.

How Long Will My Personal Injury Case Take?

It depends – and it depends largely on you.

Your case can be resolved in a matter of days if you want to accept an early settlement offer. But, know that early offers tend to be for way less than a case is really worth.

Settlement negotiations – especially when led by an experienced attorney – can get you much better results. Depending on how clearcut liability is, the extent and seriousness of your injuries, and the willingness of an insurer to cooperate, you could reach a settlement in just a few weeks. Alternatively, negotiations could take months if any aspects of the case are contested.

Your case could take a year or longer – from start to finish – if it goes to trial.

At Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers, our personal injury lawyers in Clearwater fight to get every client the best possible result in the shortest amount of time possible. But, we’ll never sacrifice the quality of our representation and settle if it means leaving money on the table. Our goal is to maximize your financial recovery and set you up for success moving forward.

Can I Seek Compensation if I Was Injured by a Driver Who Was Texting?

Yes. Texting and driving is a form of distracted driving. It’s also against the law. If a driver causes a crash due to texting and driving, they could be held liable for negligence. They may be responsible for your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages.

What Types of Driver Errors Can Support Claims For Compensation?

Any negligence-based driving mistake that causes an accident can support a claim for compensation. Such mistakes might include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Drowsy driving
  • Using a phone or texting while driving
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Speeding
  • Ignoring traffic signals
  • Tailgating
  • Improper lane changes
  • Any other reckless mistake

Can Non-Driver Issues Trigger Claims for Compensation?

Yes. Driver error is the most common reason for car accidents in Clearwater. However, other issues may contribute to a crash, including passenger negligence, road defects, auto part defects, faulty maintenance, and other issues. If someone else is responsible for the dangerous condition that caused your trash, you may be able to pursue compensation.

What if The Driver Who Hit me Was Uninsured?

You have options if you were in a car accident with an uninsured driver. They include:

  • Filing with your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurer. This no-fault coverage provides medical and wage replacement benefits regardless of who caused your crash.
  • Filing a claim with your Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM) Coverage. Some drivers choose to add UM coverage to their policy. These policies cover losses from accidents with uninsured/underinsured drivers.
  • Initiating a lawsuit against the at-fault driver to secure a personal judgment that covers your damages. Unfortunately, if a driver is uninsured, it may mean they don’t have sufficient assets to cover your losses.
  • Locating another party who shares liability for your crash. For example, the driver’s employer might bear some responsibility for your damages if they were on duty at the time of the crash.

Costs of a Personal Injury Accident in Clearwater

There are many costs and losses associated with a personal injury accident. Medical costs are the most common — and usually the most expensive. These costs include your past medical expenses as well as any medical expenses you are projected to face in the future.

Lost income is another major cost of a personal injury accident. Lost income can include wages you lose from missed work while you recover from your injuries. If your injury results in a permanent disability, your earning capacity might even be diminished.

Medical expenses and lost income represent financial (or economic) losses after an accident. However, not all costs are monetary. You will likely experience many non-economic losses related to your injury, including pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of consortium.

 

Should I Talk to the Insurance Company?

Not without a lawyer. Insurance companies are not on your side (even if they are your insurance company). They are businesses. Therefore, they are concerned with their profits. They lose money when they have to pay out your claim.

The insurance adjuster will ask you questions that are meant to elicit answers they can use against you during your claim. If you don’t have a lawyer, they will also be more prone to ask you probing questions they don’t need for your claim, such as questions about pre-existing conditions.

That’s why you should let your lawyer handle all communications and negotiations with the insurance company.

 

What if I Have Preexisting Conditions?

You can still recover compensation after an accident if you have pre-existing conditions. If the accident caused an injury unrelated to your preexisting injuries, you can recover full compensation for any damages arising from the accident.

Suppose the accident merely made your preexisting injuries worse. You can recover compensation for the aggravation or worsening of those injuries. An experienced attorney can help you identify avenues for recovering damages for preexisting injuries.

Should I Take the First Injury Settlement Offer?

You should probably not take the first settlement offer from the insurance company. Often, insurance companies will make quick offers that don’t fully account for your damages. They do this hoping you’ll accept the money and go away.

If you reject the initial settlement offer, we can try to negotiate a higher settlement that reflects the full value of your damages.

Will I Have to Testify in Court?

Not without us by your side. Many clients are nervous to get on the stand and testify to a room full of jurors. However, we’ll be with you every step of the way.

If your case reaches trial, your testimony will likely play a big part in the case. You are the injury victim, and jurors want to hear your story. If you do have to testify, we’ll make sure you’re adequately prepared and understand what to expect from the process.

Are My Lost Wages Covered?

Yes. Personal injury laws allow you to recover lost wages related to your accident or injury. Lost wages are an economic damage, and they may be one of your biggest financial losses after medical bills.

To prove your lost wages, we would gather pay stubs from your place of employment. From this we can show your current wage and the amount of time you missed work. If you suffered a permanent disability, we may also be able to recover compensation for any diminished earning capacity you’ve experienced.

What is Strict Liability in Personal Injury Lawsuits?

Not all personal injury cases are based on negligence. Some involve strict liability. Florida imposes strict liability for certain types of dangerous conduct that cause injury. In strict liability cases, you don’t have to prove the defendant was negligent. You just have to prove they engaged in unlawful conduct.

Dog bite cases and product defect claims offer two common examples of strict liability. A personal injury lawyer can help you determine whether your case qualifies for strict liability.

What Neighborhoods In Clearwater Does Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers Serve?

We serve all neighborhoods in and around Clearwater, including:

  • Sand Key (33767)
  • Downtown (33756)
  • Island Estates (33767)
  • Imperial Cove (33764)
  • Misty Springs (33761)
  • Clearwater Point (33767)
  • Viewpoint On The Bay (33756)
  • Old Clearwater Bay (33755)
  • Sand Key Club (33767)
  • Del Oro Groves (33759)
  • Normandy Park Oaks (33756)
  • Countryside Woods (33761)
  • Pierce 100 (33756)
  • Westchester Lake (33761)
  • Village On Island Estates (33767)

We have three locations in Tampa Bay to serve you including Clearwater, Tampa, and New Port Richey, Florida.

Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyers You Can Trust

Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyers You Can Trust

An unexpected accident in Clearwater can turn your world upside down. If you’ve been injured because someone else was negligent, Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers can help. We’ve been fighting for accident and injury victims since 1996. Our Clearwater personal injury attorneys have successfully won tens of millions of dollars for clients just like you. We’ll be there for you in your time of need.

Let us stand up to insurance companies and tough defendants on your behalf. Give our law office in Clearwater a call to discuss your case, learn about your rights, and discover how we can help you maximize your financial recovery. Your first consultation is free, so contact us to discuss your situation today.