Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury FAQ
Florida personal injury law can be complicated, especially in areas such as Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance and medical malpractice. Below are answers to common questions regarding car accidents and other injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured due to the negligence or misconduct of another, contact Scott Newmark at the office of Carner, Newmark & Cohen, LLP in Fort Lauderdale (954-850-4977) for a free consultation.
How does PIP insurance work, and am I allowed to sue the other driver for my damages?
When you are injured in a car accident, your no-fault Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance can cover 80% of your medical bills and 60% of lost income up to a total of $10,000. However, you must seek treatment for an emergency medical condition within fourteen days of the accident, or your recovery could be barred.
In certain serious injury situations, you can also make a claim against the other driver for your pain and suffering and other legal damages, now and in the future. You would have to prove an injury involving one of the following:
- Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
- Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability
Time is of the essence following a car or truck accident in Florida to make sure you receive the proper amount of compensation. In Fort Lauderdale and surrounding areas, contact Scott Newmark for immediate assistance.
I was on another person’s property when their dog attacked me. Can I make the owner pay for my injuries?
Quite possibly. Dog owners are held strictly liable for damages when their animal bites or attacks another person. It does not matter whether the owner had any previous knowledge of a vicious propensity in the dog to attack. This strict liability includes attacks which occur on the owner’s property as well as on public property, assuming you were lawfully on the person’s property at the time and not trespassing.
Be aware that the dog’s owners may not be liable if they had a “Bad Dog” sign displayed prominently in the yard and were not otherwise negligent, although this exception does not apply when the victim was under six years old. Also, if your own negligence or wrongful conduct contributed to the attack, the amount of your compensation could be reduced proportionately.
How long do I have to file a claim of medical malpractice?
This is a simple question with a complicated answer. Florida law imposes a two-year statute of limitations on medical malpractice lawsuits, meaning if you wait more than two years to file a lawsuit, you can be prohibited from recovering any compensation. Now, this two-year clock doesn’t start ticking until the time when you knew (or should have known) that you were injured by medical negligence. This is helpful since it may not always be obvious you were injured by medical neglect at the time it occurs. The determination of time limits applicable to your claim is arrived at by a complex legal analysis, which takes into account the facts and circumstances of each case. Therefore, if you intend to pursue your claim(s) you must take immediate steps and consult with counsel to obtain advice as to the time limits for filing your claim(s).
If you believe you were injured by medical malpractice or another type of negligence but are unsure whether you have a claim, contact Scott Newmark for a free case evaluation.
I heard that Workers’ Compensation is my only source for compensation if I was injured on the job. Is that true?
Not necessarily. You can receive an on-the-job injury in a workplace accident which was caused by a third party, whom you could sue for damages. For instance, you may be involved in a car accident while making deliveries or running errands for work. You could also be injured in a slip and fall on another’s unsafe premises when making deliveries or working off-site. Also, your injury could be caused by a dangerous product that was defective when it left the manufacturer. In all of these situations, you may be able to recover compensation from the negligent third party in addition to receiving workers’ compensation benefits.