Experienced Attorneys For Personal Injury Cases
You or a loved one may have a claim for a personal injury caused in any of the following ways:
- Auto accidents
- Construction accidents
- Slip and fall
- Medical malpractice
- Motorcycle accidents
- Product liability
- Workplace accidents
Personal Injury Lawsuits
In order to win a personal injury lawsuit, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant breached a duty owed to him and that the defendant’s breach caused the plaintiff’s damages. The key question in most personal injury suits is whether the defendant was negligent.
The law requires everyone to be reasonably prudent and careful in their actions. For example, when driving, this means exercising caution and noticing the drivers, cyclists and pedestrians around you on the street. Using a negligence theory means asserting that the defendant was not exercising adequate care in his or her actions, and this lack of care caused damage to the plaintiff.
Negligence can be either an act or an omission. In the case of an auto accident, negligence can mean acting by driving in a reckless manner, or by failing to act, such as not stopping at a stop sign. In a negligence case, you and your attorney will need to prove that the defendant was negligent, and that negligence caused your injuries.
If the defendant is found liable, he or she may owe compensation for the damage caused to the plaintiff. These awards are usually one of two types, compensatory damages and punitive damages.
Compensatory damages for the injured party may include compensation for physical and emotional pain and suffering, mental anguish and loss of consortium, as well as compensation for lost wages and to pay medical bills, both in the past and in the future.
In some cases, punitive damages may also be awarded. Punitive damages punish the defendant and discourage him or her, and others, from engaging in that type of behavior in the future.
Who May Sue
The plaintiff in a personal injury suit is usually the person who sustained the injuries and, potentially, his or her spouse. In some cases, another party can be designated to represent the injured person, for example, if the victim is a child or has a mental impairment. If the victim has died as a result of the injury, a wrongful death action is brought by the personal representative of the deceased who sues on behalf of the decedent’s survivors who have suffered damages caused by the death. Immediate family members, such as parents, spouses, children and dependents, may receive compensation as a result of the damages they suffer.
When You May Sue
There are legal limitations on the amount of time that can pass between the victim suffering injury and initiating a lawsuit.
- For personal injury lawsuits that are caused by negligence in the State of Florida, that time limit is four years.
- For medical malpractice, the statute of limitations requires victims to sue within two years of the date on which they discover, or reasonably should have discovered, the injury.
- For wrongful death, the statute of limitations requires that a wrongful death suit be filed within two years of the death.
There are few exceptions, so it is best to consult with a lawyer before your case gets near the deadline.
Why Choose Eastmoore Crauwels & DuBose?
We have years of experience litigating all types of personal injury cases. You may be litigating against a hospital or an insurance company, in which case you will need experienced attorneys on your side. Call us at 941-757-3327 or contact us through our website.