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Hurt in a car crash that wasn’t your fault? You have the right to pursue compensation from the party who caused the collision. In some cases, more than one person may be responsible, which makes it imperative to work with a skilled Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney.

Call Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath for an expert Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer today at (561) 655-1990. We’ll put your well-being first and work hard to help you move forward.

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Steps to take after being in a crash

Follow these steps to protect your rights and best interests following a car crash.

1. Get to a safe place

Car-on-car collisions typically occur in busy areas like highways or intersections. After impact, remain in the vehicle and turn on your hazards.

If the crash occurs at night, be careful exiting your vehicle. Use a flashlight to help drivers see your position outside of the car. Avoid walking close to the road.

2. Call 911 and seek medical attention

Involving the police can be stressful, but it’s necessary to seek damages. The police are required for any accident in Florida with over $500 of damages or injuries. Not only can they ensure that the scene is protected and keep traffic moving smoothly around you, but they can also file a police report. This report is required by most insurance companies to process any claims for car accidents.

Of course, when you call 911 to the scene of a crash they’ll also send an ambulance. If you or your passenger(s) are injured, go in the ambulance to the hospital. Don’t try to stick around and gather evidence; your health and safety are the priority and you can always gather evidence later.

3. Speak with the responding officer, but keep communication with the other driver to a minimum

To create a police report, officers need to get statements from all parties and witnesses involved. Share the incidents of the accident to the best of your ability. If there are gaps in your memory, be honest.

For example, don’t try to guess or speculate when asked about how the accident occurred. If you are unsure if you’re injured, say so.

You should also try to speak only with the police officer, not with the other driver(s). Some drivers who know they’re at fault will try and get someone else to accept the blame for their wrongdoing. Don’t fall for this; speak with the police officer and only the police officer.

4. Gather evidence

The police will gather evidence for their report, but it’s important to have your own record as well. Take notes, including writing down your recollection of the events, and take photos of the accident scene, including stop signs, skid marks on the road, and weather conditions. Make sure you gather the names of anyone present for future reference.

5. Exchange information

This is the step most people think to do first at the scene of a car accident thanks to television. However, it shouldn’t be a priority over calling the police. Get the full name, identification, telephone number, address, and license plate number of the other party involved in the accident.

Try to get witness information as well. This will help your Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer later when they build your case.

6. Call your insurance company

Report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. Many policies require specific information that you’ll need to gather. Your insurance may also have suggestions for covered treatment or follow-up processes that you’ll need to be aware of.

7. Contact a Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer

Don’t try to do everything yourself. Get someone who knows the laws and can protect your rights to be on your side. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, lvey & Fronrath, we make sure you only have to focus on your recovery while we get your compensation for you.

Make sure you file a claim on time

In Florida, you have two years from the date of the crash to file a personal injury claim for damages. This deadline is known as a “statute of limitations,” and you must follow it in order to have a valid claim.

Possible damages you can claim

Economic damages

Economic damages are the things that were physically damaged and required financial investment to repair. In a car accident, economic damages include property damage to vehicles, physical injury to either party, medical bills (including trips to the ER and follow-up doctor’s appointments), lost wages, and car replacement costs.

Ensure you retain receipts of all of these damages to assist in your claims.

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Non-economic damages

Non-economic damages aren’t physical with a receipt attached. They are emotional harm done to the victim of an accident. These are just as significant and life-changing as economic damages.

Injured drivers often experience distressing conditions like PTSD, shock, emotional anguish, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and more as a result of the experience.

If you are unsure what type of damages you’re entitled to, call a Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Liability in car crashes

Unfortunately, many car crashes are caused by the reckless, careless, or negligent actions of another driver. If you were injured in an accident that was caused by someone else, you have the right to pursue compensation against their insurance company.

Here are a few situations where liability (responsibility) comes into play:

  • Driver runs a red light or fails to give the right of way and causes a crash at an intersection
  • Driver fails to check their blind spot and merges into the side of another vehicle
  • Driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and enters the wrong side of the highway

No matter the type of car accident you were involved in, if you were injured as the result of someone else’s negligence or reckless behavior, you have the right to pursue compensation. Contact a Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer today at (561) 655-1990.

We fight the insurance company to get you full compensation

When the other party’s insurance company calls you, remember this: you are under no obligation to speak with them. If they call you and start asking questions about the wreck and your injuries, tell them that you’ll call them back once you have a lawyer.

No matter what they may say, you do not have to speak with them, and you really shouldn’t. If you feel obligated, you can tell them your name, phone number, and address, but don’t give away any more information. You definitely shouldn’t talk about your injuries and vehicle damage — tell them that your lawyer will discuss those matters with them.

No matter what they may say, and no matter how nice they may sound on the phone, the insurance company is not your friend. They will try to find any opportunity to pay you less than what you are asking for, so don’t give them that opportunity.

Common car accident injuries

Vehicle damage is obvious after a car accident, but physical injuries don’t always manifest as quickly. You might not even know you were injured until days or weeks after the crash (these are known as ‘latent injuries’), especially if you suffered an injury to the head or certain internal organs.

However, some injuries will be immediately apparent. Whichever type you have (visible or latent), it’s imperative that you contact a Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer from Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey and Fronrath. Keep reading to learn some of the most common car accident injuries, then contact our office to schedule your case consultation.


One of the most common car accident injuries, whiplash is considered a soft tissue injury because it affects the muscles and ligaments in the neck.

Whiplash occurs due to forceful, rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck and is most commonly seen in rear-end accidents. That rapid movement causes the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the neck to bend, stretch, or tear beyond their normal range.

These injuries can be extremely painful and usually feature neck stiffness, loss of range of motion in the neck, and tenderness or pain in the shoulder, arms, or upper back.

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Neck & back injuries

The forceful, rapid motion that your body undergoes in a car accident can cause other neck injuries besides whiplash. You may suffer an injury at any point along your spine, including the cervical spine located in your neck, the thoracic spine of your middle back, and the lumbar spine of your lower back.

Common car accident-related back injuries include lumbar sprains, spinal stenosis (a progressive disease that adds pressure on the vertebrae and pinches the nerves inside the spinal cord), and herniated disks, which occur when a large amount of force compresses or knocks the disks out of alignment.

These conditions can cause a range of symptoms, including the inability to move your fingers and toes and the inability to walk or balance. Keep in mind that this is not a full list of symptoms; if you were in a car crash, you should speak with your doctor to ensure that you are healthy.

Head and brain injuries

These are perhaps the most serious injuries one can suffer in a car accident. The brain is an extremely delicate organ, and the enormous amount of force generated in a car crash can cause devastating lifelong damage. Fortunately, some head injuries are mild and can be successfully treated. However, others are life-threatening and may even cause death.

Traumatic brain injury (TBI)

Concussions (mTBIs) are grouped separately from traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) because TBIs are often more serious. These injuries can cause bruising, bleeding, and other types of damage to the brain, all of which can be deadly.

TBIs feature a wide range of symptoms and complications, some of which include memory or concentration problems, mood swings, depression or anxiety, sensory problems, headache, fatigue or drowsiness, problems with speech, and dizziness or loss of balance.

If you believe you suffered a head injury in your car accident, it’s crucial that you visit a doctor as soon as possible. These injuries can have serious consequences if they are not treated immediately.

Internal injuries

Unlike other types of car accident injuries, internal injuries are not always easy to spot and diagnose. The trauma of a car accident can cause devastating damage to your abdomen and certain organs such as the liver and spleen, which can cause blood to seep into your bodily cavities.

Broken bones

The impact of a car crash can cause your body to hit parts of the vehicle, putting force upon your skeleton that it cannot stand. Maybe your arm is pinned between your body and the car door, causing a fracture. Or maybe your seatbelt restrains you with such force that a few of your ribs break.

Broken bones are common in car accidents and usually aren’t serious, although infection may occur. Infection is dangerous in broken bones because of the risk of sepsis, which is when the infection spreads to the bloodstream.

Cost of hiring a car accident attorney

At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, you won’t owe us a dime unless and until we win your case. This is known as being paid “on contingency,” and it means you can rest assured we’ll do everything in our power to win your case.

Why you should visit a doctor as soon as possible

Even if you don’t feel injured, you should absolutely seek medical attention after being in a car accident. As mentioned above, many injuries are latent, meaning symptoms appear weeks or even months after the accident occurs.

But just because the symptoms occur later doesn’t mean the injury hasn’t already appeared. Your doctor can do a thorough exam to ensure you did not suffer internal or brain injuries in the accident.

You should not accept a settlement from the other party’s insurance company until your injuries are completely healed. (Your lawyer will not file a lawsuit or claim until your injuries are healed, either.) This will help ensure that you do not receive an amount less than what you need.

It’s always a good idea to visit the doctor after being in an accident. At the very least, you’ll at least have a checkup and will have peace of mind that you are healthy.

Why work with Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath

Some insurance representatives will personally get paid more if you receive less, and they’ll succeed if you are not represented by an effective lawyer.

That’s only one of the reasons why you should hire a Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer — another reason is that an effective attorney will preserve the evidence that could be integral in your case.

Call us at (561) 655-1990 to learn how we can take care of your case while you take care of yourself. We put our trial-tested lawyers to gathering evidence, liaising with the defendants, and getting you the compensation you’re owed.

Get a free, no-obligation consultation today to see how we can assist you. We don’t charge you unless we win your case. There’s nothing to lose except the stress of fighting for your rights alone.

Discover your legal options today.

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