Orlando Personal Injury Lawyer
Whether you’re visiting central Florida for vacation or you live in the Orlando area, you could quickly find yourself injured through no fault of your own, in many ways. A car accident on our crowded roads or slipping and falling at a theme park can leave you struggling with a serious injury, unable to work or to enjoy your favorite activities, and contending with a mounting pile of medical bills.
When you or a loved one experiences the trauma of an unexpected injury or loss, it helps to know you’re not alone. Working with a compassionate Orlando personal injury lawyer gives you the best chance to recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries from the parties who harmed you. Contact Michael T. Gibson, P.A., Auto Justice Attorney today to learn how we can help.
Overview of Orlando Personal Injury Causes and Types
There are countless ways you could find yourself injured. By far, the most likely cause of an unexpected injury (statistically speaking) is a car accident. Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles put together 2017 statistics showing over 40 percent of all car accidents in Florida resulted in injury.
Of course, car accidents aren’t the only incidents leading to injury and loss.
Other causes of personal injury include:
- Airplane accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Boat accidents
- Car accidents
- Dog bites
- Insurance Disputes
- Medical malpractice
- Motorcycle accidents
- Nursing home abuse
- Premises liability
- Product liability
- Slip and fall
- Truck accidents
- Insurance dispute
- Whistleblower claims
- Workers’ compensation
- Wrongful death
- Scooter accidents
Even airbags, which are supposed to keep you safe, can cause serious injuries if defective.
Depending on the cause of your injury, we see victims with injuries ranging from mild to severe. These include:
- Cuts and bruises
- Brain Injuries
- Broken bones
- Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
At The Law Office of Michael T. Gibson, P.A., Auto Justice Attorney, clients come to us after all sorts of incidents leave them injured or grieving the loss of a loved one. If you’ve been injured by any of these situations, you deserve to have an aggressive Orlando personal injury lawyer guiding you through the process of seeking compensation. There is never any guarantee that a claim will succeed, but our clients can rest assured they have a lawyer on their side who will leave no stone unturned in the pursuit of justice. Read more here about what our clients have to say about our services.
Determining Fault for Personal Injuries
When we meet with new clients, our first priority is to listen to their stories and give them our initial impression of what legal rights they may have to compensation. If we agree to work together, then we typically conduct a thorough investigation of their accident and injuries, then advise our client about what we think is the most legally-sound path to recovering damages from those who did them harm.
One of the critical components of choosing a legal strategy is figuring out who may have legal liability to our client; in other words, who is “at fault.” Determining fault isn’t always straightforward. Depending on the circumstances surrounding an accident or incident that injured our client, more than one person or entity may bear legal liability. Determining which of those at fault parties to pursue for compensation requires close legal and factual analysis.
What helps us reach a conclusion is you. We’ve been helping clients just like you for many years. We understand the legal complexities around personal injury claims and we know how to maximize your recovery. Our goal is to make sure you get the compensation you need to make a full complete recovery.
Long Term Impacts
Your injuries could have long-term impacts on your life. The Orlando personal injury attorney you choose can make the difference in your recovery. Working with us gives you peace of mind knowing that your personal injury claim is being handled by seasoned Orlando personal injury lawyer. You have many things to worry about:
- Your time off work and resulting loss of income
- Your inability to return to work because of your injuries
- Medical bills and recurring care costs
- Chronic pain
- Life enjoyment
Dealing with insurance companies, police reports, investigations, and filing legal documents should be the last thing on your mind. The only legal issue you should worry about is finding the best personal injury lawyer you can. After you do, let Michael T. Gibson, P.A., Auto Justice Attorney, take it from there. We work with your medical providers to lower your bills. We negotiate with insurance companies to get you reasonable compensation for your injuries. If needed, we represent you at trial. We are here for you all the way through.
Steps to Take After Your Personal Injury
The moments immediately following your personal injury are critical to making sure your recovery is a smooth process. After your accident, take these steps:
- Call 911. If your injuries are not severe, this may seem like an extreme step. In reality, it’s important regardless of your injuries. Calling the police helps to protect and preserve the accident record. The police will create a report that documents what happened in your accident. While the police report may not assign fault, it will allow the insurance company and your Orlando personal injury attorney to determine who was at fault.
- Get medical attention. Calling the police will also give you the opportunity to receive prompt medical attention. Have a medical professional document your injuries as soon as possible after your accident. A record of your injuries will give your Orlando personal injury lawyer a better chance to get you the full value of your claim to make sure you don’t have to pay out of pocket for any of your recovery.
- Take pictures. Documenting the accident scene is key to your financial recovery. That includes taking pictures of the accident scene and your injuries. This will help keep a record of the severity of your injuries and how they improve or potentially get worse.
- Don’t speak with the insurance company. After your accident, the insurance company will then call you. Don’t give them a statement until you’ve spoken with a trusted Orlando personal injury attorney. The insurance company will try to make you seem at fault for the accident so they don’t have to pay out your claim. Even saying something innocent like “I wasn’t watching where I was walking” could lead the insurance company to fight your claim tooth and nail making it more challenging for you to make a complete recovery.
- Call Michael T. Gibson, P.A., Auto Justice Attorney For many years, we’ve been helping clients just like you. We know the tactics insurance companies play. We know what you’re going through and we know you need financial help to get better. Our goal is to get you the compensation you deserve so you can make a full recovery and get back to the life you love.
Making sure you have trusted legal representation can go a long way to lifting the burden off your shoulders. You deserve peace of mind knowing your attorney has your best interests at heart.
Protecting You Against Insurance Company Tactics
The insurance company of the driver or property owner where you were injured will reach out to you shortly after your accident. They will offer you a settlement knowing that you are out of work and facing many medical bills piling up on your kitchen table. This is a low ball offer and you should not take it until you’ve spoken with a skilled and seasoned personal injury lawyer.
Your accident is potentially severe and it will cost lots of money in recovery bills. The insurance company knows you need quick cash and will offer you a settlement that won’t cover your future costs. It may cover those bills sitting on your kitchen table, but that is all.
When you have severe injuries, you need to be prepared to pay a lifetime of medical costs. But you shouldn’t be the one to pay for them. You didn’t cause the accident so you should play no part in paying the bills associated with your care and recovery.
We will help you create an accurate estimate of your future costs so you aren’t shortchanged. While your future medical costs may be hard to calculate, we’ve helped many clients just like you determine what they’ll need to continue living their life as best they can.
We will also work with the insurance company to get you a fair settlement offer. But we’ll never settle unless it’s right for you. While it’s true most personal injury cases settle out of court, if your case needs to go to trial, we are fully prepared and experienced to guide you through that process.
Damages You Can Recover
When you’re injured through no fault of your own, it can be extremely frustrating. Your sole focus should be on your recovery and not worrying about how your bills get paid. That’s where an experienced personal injury lawyer in Orlando can step in to help you. We are an aggressive firm who will work tirelessly to help you recover compensation for your injuries.
We’ll fight to get you compensation for:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Loss of companionship
- Lost earning potential
- Medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
Many clients don’t take into account their future needs. All they see are the bills piling up and are grateful when they get a settlement offer that covers those bills. Traffic accidents cost over $240 billion per year. The injuries people like you suffer from these and other types of accidents are tragic.
You will need an accurate estimate of your future needs. This will help you see how much you must get to cover all of your costs. If you didn’t cause your injuries, you should not have any responsibility for the costs to get better.
Your Claim Value May Vary
The value of your personal injury claim will depend on many factors. The more severe your injuries, generally, the more your claim is worth. However, that isn’t always true. No two accidents are ever the same. But certain factors can impact the value of your claim, including:
- The total cost of your medical bills
- Your future medical costs
- Your lost wages
- If your injuries prohibit you from living a full life
Our goal is to keep you informed and working together toward the best possible outcome for your accident claim. You’ve already suffered enough. This is why it’s important to speak with a trusted personal injury lawyer. We want to make sure your claim is given the attention it deserves.
Don’t Fear a Trial
While we will do everything we can to settle your case without going to trial, if an insurance company isn’t being reasonable with their settlement offers, we are fully prepared to take your case to trial.
A trial isn’t something to be afraid of and, in fact, can be what’s needed to maximize your recovery. When an insurance company only gives unreasonably low settlement offers, we won’t take them. We will only recommend the right offer for you. Because of that, it sometimes means we have to go to court to show the judge the full value of your claim and have the court tell the insurance company what they need to pay. Cases very rarely need to go to trial but, when they do, we have shown results.
Orlando Personal Injury FAQ
Serious injuries can cause substantial changes across every area of your life, from the activities you can enjoy to your finances. Many people find themselves with substantial questions related to those changes in their lives, especially when it comes to their legal rights and how much compensation they should seek following a serious accident.
Do you have questions related to your specific accident? Whether you suffered a traumatic brain injury in a severe auto accident or face injuries from a slip and fall or construction accident, contact our experienced Orlando personal injury attorneys to learn more about the details of your claim.
1. How do I know whom to file a personal injury claim against?
You suffered a serious accident. Now what? To determine whom to file a personal injury claim against, you should start by contacting an attorney. An experienced Orlando personal injury attorney can examine your accident, collect evidence, and help identify all parties that may have contributed to your accident.
Your attorney may evaluate:
- Who owed you a duty of care at the time of your accident? Every driver on the road, for example, owes every other driver a duty of care to drive safely. If you suffered a slip and fall, the premises owner or the company that manages the premises may have owed you a duty of care.
- Did the at-fault party breach the duty of care? To qualify for a personal injury claim, some entity must have violated that duty of care. Distracted drivers, for example, violate their duty of care to others on the road. A business that leaves spills and fall hazards on its property violates its duty of care to visitors to that property.
- How did that breach lead to your injuries? Simply noting that distracted driver on the road or seeing a puddle on the floor of a business does not qualify you for a personal injury claim. Rather, you must suffer some injury due to the negligence of the other party.
In many personal injury claims, multiple parties share liability for the accident. An auto accident may include the owner of the vehicle, the employer of the driver, and/or the manufacturer of the vehicle, as well as the driver. In a slip and fall accident, you may need to look to the premises owner as well as the party that operates that premises. Consulting an experienced personal injury attorney can help identify all of the parties who contributed to your accident and, therefore, all of the parties that you should file a personal injury claim against.
2. What types of injuries qualify for a personal injury claim?
When you suffer a serious injury due to someone else’s negligence, you have grounds for a personal injury claim. Any type of injury that requires medical attention or limits your quality of life, even temporarily, could qualify.
Severe injuries might include:
- Spinal cord damage
- Limb amputation
- Traumatic brain injury
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue damage, including sprains and strains
Injuries can occur in a variety of places, through many types of accidents. You may have grounds for a personal injury claim if you suffered injuries in an auto accident, a construction site accident, a slip and fall accident, or through medical malpractice. Talk with an attorney to discover whether you have grounds for a personal injury claim.
3. I had an accident at work, while on the clock. Do I have grounds for a personal injury claim?
Victims who suffer injuries at work typically file workers’ compensation claims. A worker’s compensation claim varies significantly from a typical personal injury claim. Workers’ compensation claims usually offer provision for all of a victim’s medical bills and a percentage of the victim’s income throughout the recovery process, but may not provide an allowance for pain and suffering.
You may have grounds for a personal injury claim even if you suffered injuries in a work accident, however. If factors outside your employer’s control contributed to your injuries, you may have grounds for a personal injury claim against the party that caused your injuries. Consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to get a better idea of who shares liability for your injuries and whether you need to file a personal injury claim.
4. Does the party that caused my accident have to pay my medical bills?
You can seek compensation for your medical bills from the party that caused your accident. That does not mean, however, that the liable party will pay your medical bills directly. Typically, the liable party will pay compensation for your medical bills through your personal injury claim. In the meantime, you may still need to pay your medical bills.
Fortunately, you have resources that can help protect you, such as:
- Your personal injury protection insurance. Florida drivers must carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance that helps provide the first level of financial protection following an auto accident with severe injuries. If you suffered injuries in an auto accident, you can use your personal injury protection insurance to provide vitally needed coverage for your injuries and the first percentage of your lost wages at work.
- Your health insurance. If you carry health insurance, it will help cover many of the costs associated with your injuries. Your health insurance will also help cover bills that exceed the coverage offered by your personal injury claim.
Depending on the severity of your injuries, a personal injury claim may not provide full coverage for all of your medical bills. You bear responsibility for paying those bills even if your personal injury claim does not provide adequate compensation. Working with an Orlando attorney can help you maximize your compensation so that you can get as much coverage as possible for those bills.
5. How much compensation should I expect to receive from a personal injury claim?
The amount of compensation that you can expect from a personal injury claim will depend on several factors related to your accident as well as the extent of your injuries.
Consider the following four questions:
- How much does your medical treatment cost? Some types of injuries can leave the victim bearing substantial, long-term costs. The cost of traumatic brain injury, for example, many continue to increase throughout a victim’s life, especially if the victim suffers lasting consequences from those injuries. Burns, on the other hand, have a high potential for complication, which can significantly increase your overall medical costs.
- What other financial losses do you face as a result of your injuries? Your injuries might, for example, prevent you from returning to work immediately after your accident. You may need to include compensation for your lost wages as part of your personal injury claim.
- How much compensation does your personal injury protection insurance offer? If you suffer injuries in an auto accident, your personal injury protection insurance pays the first portion of your medical bills. You generally cannot file a personal injury claim until your expenses exceed the protection offered by your personal injury coverage.
- How much coverage does the insurance policy that covers the liable entity offer? In the case of many personal injury claims, the entity that caused your accident will not pay directly for your injuries. Instead, the insurance policy that covers that entity will offer protection. Most doctors, for example, carry medical malpractice insurance that will cover patients injured due to that doctor’s negligence. Drivers typically carry bodily injury liability insurance, which helps cover medical bills and other expenses for other drivers who suffer severe injuries due to those drivers’ negligence on the road. That insurance policy usually has limits that will determine how much you receive from a personal injury claim, even if the cost of your injuries exceeds those limits.
6. The insurance company that covers the entity responsible for my accident contacted me shortly after the accident and offered a settlement. Should I take it?
Do not take a settlement offer provided by the insurance company without consulting our experienced personal injury attorneys. Many insurance companies will attempt to limit their financial liability following a serious accident by providing the victim with a low settlement offer. This offer looks tempting on the surface, especially immediately after an accident, when you may have no idea what the full extent of your injuries will look like or how they will impact you long-term.
Often, however, this offer does not reflect the full cost of your injuries. If you accept the offer, it will relieve the insurance company of future financial liability and limit the compensation you receive, which could prove catastrophic if your medical bills and other expenses continue to mount. Contact an Orlando attorney to better understand the total value of your claim and when to accept an offer.
7. When should I file my personal injury claim?
While you should consult an attorney as soon after your accident as possible, when exactly you should file your claim will vary. Some victims can file personal injury claims within days of the accident. Others may need to wait due to a variety of reasons.
Consider the following:
- Do you know exactly what your prognosis looks like? The insurance company or liable entity will base the compensation that they offer on the extent of your medical bills, as well as the complications your injuries cause in your life. Early in your recovery, you may not have any idea what those limitations will look like long-term. Complications along your road to recovery can also increase your medical bills or decrease your anticipated ability to recover. In many cases, you may want to wait until you progress further down that road to recovery before filing your personal injury claim.
- Has your lawyer had time to investigate your accident and identify all parties that may share liability? To maximize the compensation you ultimately receive for your injuries, you should consult with an experienced Orlando personal injury attorney to identify all entities who share liability for your accident. If your attorney has not had time to fully investigate the accident, you may want to wait before having your attorney file that personal injury claim.
8. How can I protect myself after an accident?
You need to take steps to protect yourself any time you suffer an accident due to the negligence of another party. The steps you take immediately after that accident can serve to protect your finances and help you receive the compensation that you deserve for your injuries.
Make sure you take these four steps:
- Report the accident. If you suffer a slip and fall in a store, you need to report your injuries to the store directly. If you suffer injuries in an auto accident, you need to report the accident to the police. Failure to report the accident to the right people can make it difficult for you to file a personal injury claim and, in some cases, reduce the compensation you receive in the end.
- Collect evidence, if you can. Evidence can disappear quickly as the accident scene disperses. Witnesses may disappear. If security footage does not exist, you may have trouble recreating the scene of the accident, even in your own mind. If you can safely collect evidence at the scene of the accident, take pictures or gather witness contact information. Do not endanger yourself or worsen your injuries to get that information.
- Get medical care for your injuries immediately. If you believe that you suffered any type of injury in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, seek medical attention as soon as possible. Not only will that medical attention clearly identify all your injuries and prevent you from accidentally making those injuries worse, but it will also create a chain of evidence that will display exactly when your injuries occurred, which can help you as you file your personal injury claim.
- Contact an attorney as soon after the accident as you can. An attorney can provide valuable advice throughout your personal injury claim. Not only that, but an attorney will also take on many of the tasks associated with your personal injury claim for you, reducing your stress and protecting you and your finances after the accident. Do not wait to contact an attorney, even if you think that you may need to wait to file your claim. Rather, contact one right away!
Contact Our Orlando Personal Injury Attorneys Today
Working with our law firm is easy. We meet with you and chart a course to maximize your recovery. Let us focus on the legal complexities of your personal injury case while you focus on what really matters—getting better.
Working with us gives you access to invaluable experience in negotiating with insurance companies and litigating against big firms. We can also help to make sure your medical providers know the money is coming and help you avoid collections.
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“My attorney Amit was absolutely amazing. Once the case got to him he called me on a regular basis and kept me posted on every action they were taking. Not that I want to be another accident but if I do I know who’s taking care of me.” -Heather B.