Jelly MDHV

Experiencing a car accident in Melbourne can profoundly impact your life. If another driver’s negligence led to your crash, you can seek compensation through their insurance.

Our Melbourne personal injury lawyers at Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath are dedicated to helping you successfully navigate your car accident claim and secure the resources needed for your recovery journey.

melbourne car accident lawyer

How much does it cost to hire a car accident lawyer in Melbourne?

At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, our commitment to justice is evident in our contingency fee structure. You incur no fees unless we successfully resolve your accident claim. We offer free consultations, allowing you to embark on your legal journey without risk – contact us today to schedule your complimentary consultation and take the first step towards obtaining legal support.

What should I do after a car accident in Melbourne?

Experiencing a car accident can be overwhelming, but knowing the proper steps to take immediately afterward is crucial. Maintain composure and follow these steps:

  1. Move your vehicle to a safe location, if possible, to prevent further issues.
  2. Call 911 for emergency assistance, regardless of the accident’s severity. The police report is vital for your insurance claim.
  3. Allow emergency medical responders to evaluate you at the scene; adrenaline may mask injuries.
  4. Provide your account to the police, focusing on the events leading up to the crash, and request a copy of the report.
  5. If safe, gather evidence at the scene, exchange information with the other driver, and collect witness contact details.
  6. Notify your insurance company about the crash, but limit the details shared. Direct further inquiries to your attorney to avoid self-incrimination.
  7. Visit Urgent Care or your regular physician to document your injuries and maintain records of all medical expenses.
  8. Schedule a free consultation with a Melbourne car accident lawyer to explore your legal options.

How long do I have to file a claim?

In Florida, you generally have four years from the date of your injury to file a lawsuit. There is an exception for cases involving fatalities – in these cases, you have two years from the date of the deceased person’s death to file.

Compensation in car accident cases: What can you expect?

“Damages” encompass the physical and economic setbacks you’ve endured due to the accident. Typically, compensation in these scenarios falls under economic and non-economic damages.

Economic damages

Economic damages are intended to reimburse you for the financial burdens directly stemming from the accident. This category covers the costs of repairing or replacing your vehicle damaged in the crash. It also includes compensation for lost income and potential future earnings if your injuries hinder your capacity to work. Moreover, these damages encompass all healthcare-related expenses, from immediate medical care to ongoing treatments and future medical needs.

Non-economic damages

Non-economic damages, also referred to as general damages, are designed to offer compensation for the intangible losses you’ve suffered due to the crash. These include emotional stress, physical discomfort, diminished enjoyment of life, disfigurement, and either temporary or permanent physical disabilities.

Should the insurance provider fail to propose a settlement that accurately reflects the extent of your losses, pursuing a lawsuit against the at-fault party may be necessary to secure comprehensive recovery.

Who may be liable for a car accident?

While the other driver often bears responsibility, this is not always the case. Should a defective car component contribute to the accident, the manufacturer or retailer of the vehicle may be at fault. Moreover, if a commercial vehicle or semi-truck driver is involved in the crash, the company that owns the vehicle could be deemed liable.

Understanding Florida’s no-fault insurance law

Florida’s no-fault insurance system can be complex. Essentially, it means that your insurance company will cover your medical bills and lost wages after a car accident, regardless of who was at fault. However, this system has its limitations, especially regarding severe injuries.

When to step outside the no-fault system

You can step outside the no-fault system and file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver if your injuries meet certain severity thresholds. This is where a skilled Melbourne car accident attorney can provide invaluable advice.

melbourne car accident attorney

How do you prove negligence in a car accident case?

Securing compensation in a car accident lawsuit critically depends on your attorney’s skill in demonstrating that the other party’s negligence caused your injuries. This requires articulating four essential components: duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages.

Duty of care

The duty of care refers to an individual’s obligation to exercise reasonable caution under specific circumstances. For drivers, this means obeying traffic laws and avoiding behaviors that could endanger others, such as distracted driving or not following road signals, which are fundamental to ensuring everyone’s safety on the road.

Breach of duty

Once the duty of care is established, it must be shown that the other party failed to uphold this duty. A breach occurs when an individual’s actions fall short of what a reasonably prudent person would do in the same situation. Common breaches include texting while driving or operating a vehicle under the influence, both of which significantly compromise road safety.

Causation

The next step involves linking the breach of duty directly to your injuries. For instance, if your injury resulted from an accident caused by another driver who was texting and ignored a red light, this establishes causation. It’s noteworthy, however, that liability is not always straightforward. In scenarios where an accident starts with a semi-truck running a red light and subsequently involves another vehicle colliding with you, the primary responsibility rests with the semi-truck driver.

Damages

The concluding phase in proving negligence is to demonstrate that the accident resulted in verifiable losses for you. This means presenting evidence of tangible damages, including property damage, physical injuries, and any other losses incurred. A successful claim hinges on showing these quantifiable damages, which may encompass financial, physical, or emotional impacts.

By meticulously proving these four elements, your lawyer can effectively establish the other party’s negligence, paving the way for you to receive the rightful compensation for the losses suffered in the car accident.

What are some common causes of car accidents in Melbourne?

These include distracted driving, speeding, driving under the influence, and adverse weather conditions. Identifying the cause is a key step in establishing fault in an accident.

What are some common car accident injuries?

Common diagnoses post-accident include whiplash, burns, back and spine injuries, broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, cuts, head trauma, internal bleeding, and neck injuries. It’s crucial to seek medical attention immediately, as some injuries may not be immediately apparent.

What’s the legal process for car accident claims?

The legal process in car accident claims can be daunting. It starts with a consultation with an attorney, followed by an investigation into the accident. If a settlement isn’t reached with the insurance company, the case may proceed to trial.

Settlement vs. trial: What to expect

Your Melbourne car accident attorney will guide you through deciding whether to settle or go to trial. Settlements are more common and involve negotiating an agreeable compensation amount without going to court. Trials are longer processes but might be necessary for fair compensation.

Dos and don’ts of dealing with insurance after a crash

To safeguard your claim, exchange insurance information with all involved, promptly inform your insurance company, avoid recorded statements, and refrain from admitting fault. Consulting with a Melbourne car accident lawyer can provide further legal guidance.

Choosing the right Melbourne car accident attorney

Choosing the right attorney is critical. Look for someone with experience in car accident cases in Melbourne, a track record of successful settlements or verdicts, and someone who communicates clearly and empathetically.

Questions to ask your potential attorney

When meeting a potential attorney, ask about their experience with similar cases, their approach to handling your case, and the expected timeline. Also, inquire about how they communicate case progress and legal fees.

Why is it so important that I go to the doctor?

Delaying medical treatment can jeopardize your claim, as injuries like soft-tissue damage may not show symptoms immediately. An early medical evaluation creates a record linking your condition directly to the accident, which is crucial for your claim.

Hurt in a car crash? Our Melbourne car accident attorneys are ready to help.

Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath is committed to achieving successful outcomes for our clients through diligent work and dedication. If you’ve been injured due to someone else’s negligence and seek compensation, our team can help. Call us to schedule your free consultation, and let us advocate for your recovery.

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