Personal Injury Cases
Determining who is at fault is a critical component in any Personal injury case. However, because there are always unique variables in every accident situation, it can be one of the most challenging aspects in determining how injured parties are compensated. In many case there are multiple negligent parties whose actions may have directly or indirectly caused the accident. In which case, the standards applied to apportioning fault and damage recovery are governed by state laws. That means, each state adopts and apply certain standards that determine how damages are recovered.
In the state of Florida, the law operates under the “Pure Comparative Fault” rule when two or more people are found to be at fault in a personal injury case. Under this application, the Florida law requires that negligence is established through the determination of to what degree each party’s negligent action or actions contributed to the accident and any damages or injuries sustained. Based on this standard, negligence is apportioned to each “at fault” party.
The amount of recovery awarded under the pure comparative rule in a multiple liability case, will be based on the degree of negligence attributed to each negligent party. For instance, if you were injured in an accident for which you were found to be 40% responsible, the damages awarded will be reduced by 40%. That means, whatever amount you were negligent, your recovery will be limited by that amount. As such, you may still be able to recover 60% for your injuries.
The rationale behind Florida’s adoption of the Pure Comparative Negligence rule is for fair allocation of liability on each responsible party. Proving who is at fault however, is often complex. In order to ease the process of establishing negligence, Florida require that the following conditions are met by showing proof that…
- The negligent party failed to meet a duty to avoid causing injury.
- The injury received was directly related to the other person’s negligence.
- The person’s failure to meet his or her duty caused the plaintiff’s injuries or damages.
It is therefore important in the aftermath of an accident to secure as much proof of what caused the accident as is reasonable or possible at the scene of the accident. Although the account of drivers and witnesses typically hold the most sway, photographs, video footage and other forms of corroboration can also provide valuable answers and evidence to that effect. If the case is not settled outside of the courtroom, this can also help to expedite the personal injury litigation process.
In a multiple party personal injury case; there are usually more than one insurance company involved. Injured parties should be aware that a defendant’s agent may try to assign fault to the plaintiff if they participate in any direct communication with the other person’s insurance company. For this and other reasons it is beneficial to consult with a qualified and experienced personal injury attorney before opening dialogue with insurance companies involved in the accident resolution procedure.
No matter what the facts of your case are, it is your right to expect to be fairly compensated for injuries sustained in an accident. Even if you believe you share negligence with the other party, it is important to act quickly to discuss the specifics of your case in order to understand what your rights are and the best approach to seeking damages for your injuries.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a personal injury case, you may be entitled to compensation for damages. Call for a free consultation today at (561) 655-1990 or visit our website.
About Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath
Conveniently located in West Palm Beach for 27 years, Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, LLP concentrates in Personal Injury, Wrongful death, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability and Auto accidents. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, we specialize in helping victims and their families get fair compensation for injuries caused by the negligence or recklessness of others. Our main areas of practice include personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, product liability, medical malpractice, and premise liability. We provide each client with the highest quality representation from a top Florida accident and injury lawyer.
Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath
515 N Flagler Dr, 10th Floor
West Palm Beach
Florida, FL 33401
© Copyright 2018. All Rights Reserved.