Car accident lawsuits help those injured obtain compensation without paying costs up front says Boca Raton car accident attorney Joe Osborne.
There are hundreds of car accidents in Florida every day. They often result in serious injuries or deaths of drivers, passengers and pedestrians. Boca Raton car accident attorney Joe Osborne represents those injured in vehicle accidents caused by the negligence of others. He talks about how a lawsuit resulting from an accident should be handled in a podcast available on YouTube.
Osborne says some of the most important steps occur at the start of the process. “It’s absolutely critical that an investigation is done properly and it's done early,” he says. That can involve a number of different factors,
- How the accident is caused. While that may be clear in some situations at other times it’s not, so accident experts can be hired. They can reconstruct accidents and make determinations about who was the real party at fault.
- Victims need to be treated by hospitals or doctors. The initial evaluation may be done in an emergency room but later specialists take over the care of accident victims.
- That care and treatment can involve a number of things: physical therapy, occupational therapy, MRI’s, CT-scans and surgery.
- Osborne works very closely with the physicians to make sure that he has a good understanding of the injuries. These physicians may testify in the case. He makes sure they are prepared to help his clients in court.
Osborne says car accident victims may be reluctant to file a lawsuit or even talk to a car accident lawyer because they fear they won’t be able to afford it. “Florida has a contingency fee system meaning that as a lawyer I only get paid a fee if I make a recovery in your case. The benefit to the client is that if I'm willing to take on that case then I also advance the cost of the case so what I mentioned, hiring the expert, getting medical records, meeting your doctor, we will front those costs so that you have the opportunity to bring the case without having to pay car accident attorney’s fees.”
Osborne says the contingency system allows people who don't have the resources to hire a car accident lawyer to get legal representation. It levels the legal playing field and allows accident victims to hire the best car accident lawyers to prosecute their case.
What could a person obtain in a personal injury case? Two types of damages, economic and non-economic.
“If you're in a car accident that’s caused by somebody else's negligence then typically you're going to have repair bills for your vehicle. From a property standpoint we make sure that you are made whole if your car is declared a total loss; we will get the other the other driver’s insurance company to pay the replacement cost for the vehicle. If you've lost wages because you can't work because of your injury or incurred medical bills that you have to pay for, these are all economic damages.”
“Non-economic damages are compensation for pain and suffering that you have endured due to your injuries, medical treatment and recovery. We make sure that all of your pain and suffering damages both in the past and in the future are part of the case,” Osborne says.
He says depending on the complexity of the case, the extent of the injuries and if the insurance company is denying their policy holder is liable for the accident a car accident lawsuit may generally take from three months to two years to resolve. Osborne says his office can get a case to trial in 18 to 24 months in South Florida.
He says insurance companies try to draw out the process and pay as little as possible. “Our insurance companies fight vigorously in these kinds of cases. They are incredible. They're very quick to collect your premium when you buy insurance but when it comes time to pay out money and they're contractually obligated to pay for somebody's medical bills or pain and suffering if one of their insureds hurt somebody, they become very, very stingy with the money.”
“The insurance companies will do everything they can to save every dollar in their pocket and not pay it to you, which is exactly why you need help from someone who's experienced in this area of law who deals with these insurance carriers all the time. It's important to remember that insurance companies in these situations aren't your friend,” Osborne says.
If you or a family member have any questions about car accident law or have been injured in an auto accident in the South Florida area, contact Boca Raton car accident attorney Joe Osborne at (561) 293-2600 or fill out this online contact form. You can discuss your case, how the law may apply and your best legal options to protect your rights and obtain compensation for your injuries.