In St. Petersburg, Florida, motor vehicle accidents caused by vehicles changing lanes unsafely are a common occurrence. Drivers who complete unsafe lane changes act recklessly and negligently. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FHSMV) has reported that unsafe lane changes cause over 13,000 car accidents every year in the State of Florida. These car accidents can leave accident victims suffering very serious injuries.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an unsafe lane change accident in St. Petersburg and you want to file a compensation claim, you should get in contact with a St. Petersburg car accident lawyer. At The Law Place, we have a team of personal injury lawyers who are highly knowledgeable about Florida law and have over 75 years of experience helping clients with their accident claims.
If you are looking for legal representation for your personal injury claim, our personal injury lawyers are here for you. We have practice areas all over Florida, so our legal team can help you. Call today to schedule a free consultation with one of our car accident lawyers. Call today at (941) 444-4444.
Why Do Drivers Make Unsafe Lane Changes in St. Petersburg?
A driver will perform an unsafe lane change and cause a St. Petersburg car accident for many reasons. From our experience, we have found that most of the time, these accidents are the fault of a driver’s negligence. Some of the most common cause of unsafe lane change accidents in St. Petersburg, FL., is as follows:
Driving Under the Influence
It is not legal to operate a vehicle in St. Petersburg if you are under the influence of drugs and/ or alcohol. Unfortunately, despite what the law states, many drivers choose to drive while intoxicated. Driving under the influence (DUI) is dangerous because intoxication can result in a driver’s reaction times slowing down, and it can impair their judgment skills. This intoxication can therefore cause a driver to change lanes unsafely and cause a motor vehicle accident.
Drivers across the United States are distracted driving today more than ever before. The advancement of technology in cars, such as complex navigation systems, means that many drivers are losing their focus and making dangerous judgment calls on the road. Drivers will also typically be distracted by food, passengers, cell phones, and much more. It comes as no surprise that a distracted driver will likely change lanes unsafely and cause an auto accident in St. Petersburg.
Car accidents caused by motor vehicles changing lanes unsafely can also be the fault of a driver’s recklessness. On the roads in St. Petersburg, Florida, many drivers operate their vehicles in an aggressive and frustrated manner. Emotional drivers can be very dangerous to not only themselves but all other road users. This is because an emotional driver in St. Petersburg, Florida, will likely be driving with very little consideration for other road users. This poor attitude can result in them changing lanes unsafely and causing major accidents.
How Do Drivers Make Unsafe Lane Changes in St. Petersburg?
There are many ways that drivers can make an unsafe lane change in St. Petersburg, FL. We would like to stress that no matter how your unsafe lane change accident occurred, our car accident lawyers can help you file a claim for some kind of compensation. An unsafe lane change can happen when:
- A driver changes lanes and fails to show their signals.
- A driver changes lanes or makes a turn before checking all of their blind spots.
- A driver will exit their car parking space or parking lot before checking for any oncoming traffic.
- A driver will merge onto a Florida highway in an unsafe manner and sideswipe another vehicle.
- Two vehicles decide to merge into the center lane of the highway at the same time and collide.
What Are the Common Injuries Sustained in a St. Petersburg Car Accident?
Unsafe lane change accidents can leave victims suffering serious injuries. No matter the extent of your car accident injuries, however, a personal injury lawyer at our law group will be able to help you retrieve the compensation that you deserve. Some of the most common injuries caused by unsafe lane change accidents are as follows:
- Spinal cord injuries.
- Back injuries.
- Neck injuries.
- Traumatic brain injuries.
- Traumatic head injuries.
- Internal bleeding.
- Internal organ injuries.
- Burns, cuts, sprains, lacerations, and bruises.
- Broken bones and fractures.
What Damages Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me Win?
The car accident attorneys at our law firm have helped countless accident victims file an accident claim for their accident case in St. Petersburg, FL. Some of the compensation that we have previously helped our clients receive from their insurance company include:
- Medical expenses.
- Past, present, and future medical bills.
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering.
- Property damage.
- Much more.
If you are curious to discover how much compensation your car accident case could be worth, tell us. Contact one of our accident attorneys today to schedule a free case evaluation. A Florida personal injury attorney at our law firm will be able to tell you what kind of compensation an accident case of your severity could achieve
How Can Car Accident Attorneys Help Me?
If you or a loved one has been the unfortunate victim of a car accident in St. Petersburg, we would strongly recommend that you contact a car accident attorney from our legal team as soon as possible. Aside from being your legal representation, our car accident attorneys can help you in several ways. Our attorneys will be able to help you in the following ways:
- Offer you important legal advice.
- Help you navigate through Florida’s complicated accident and injury laws.
- Answer all of your questions.
- Investigate your case in great detail by gathering all of the necessary evidence. This can include medical bills, police reports, witness statements, and much more.
- Determine the value of your accident claim so that you receive the maximum amount of compensation from insurance companies possible.
- Negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf, so you don’t have to.
- Handle all of the necessary paperwork required by insurance companies.
- Fight for your case in a courtroom if your insurance company does not agree to a fair settlement.
Is It Worth Getting a Car Accident Lawyer for Minor Car Accident?
Regardless of the severity of your car accident in St. Petersburg, our law firm recommends that you at least get in contact with a reputable car accident and personal injury attorney. This is because if you have been injured and it wasn’t your fault, the chances are that you will be eligible for some kind of financial compensation. If you are curious whether you have an accident claim worthy of compensation, please don’t hesitate to contact us. In a free case evaluation, a car accident lawyer at our law firm will examine your unsafe lane change accident to determine whether they think you have a case worthy of compensation.
You will lose nothing by giving us a call. No matter the severity of your accident, it is always worth checking whether you could claim for your accident. Our personal injury lawyers in Florida will be able to offer you some completely honest and unbiased legal advice concerning your best course of legal actions.
Do I Need to Act Quickly?
If you or a loved one has been injured in an unsafe lane change accident in St. Petersburg, you must act quickly. Florida’s statutes of limitations are very harsh when it comes to accident claims for injuries. Florida Statute 95.11 outlines exactly what the law states concerning accident claims.
Essentially, Florida law allows injury victims four years following the date of their accident to file a compensation claim. After these four years have passed, if a victim has not filed their claim, they will not be able to recover any compensation to cover their lost wages, medical expenses, or anything else. The case will be barred.
Unfortunately, these statutes are even tougher on cases where someone has lost their life. Families who have tragically lost loved ones in accidents caused by motor vehicles changing lanes unsafely only have two years to file for wrongful death following your tragic loss. This may feel like plenty of time, but you will be surprised at just how quickly these years can pass. This is why our legal team recommends that people get in contact with a personal injury lawyer as soon as they can do so following their accident in St. Petersburg.
When Should You Contact a Lawyer After an Accident?
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident in St. Petersburg caused by a vehicle changing lanes in an unsafe manner, you need to contact an accident attorney as soon as possible. This is because the sooner you contact a lawyer, the greater the chance that your accident claim will come to the best possible outcome.
One of the reasons for this is because evidence can degrade over time. For example, witness statements become less credible the longer they are recorded after an accident. The sooner you contact a lawyer, the sooner they can begin their investigation to build you a more complete and accurate claim.
Another reason why our law firm strongly recommends that you contact a lawyer quickly after your accident is because you will be protecting yourself from being caught saying or doing something that could jeopardize your right to claim in Florida.
Do I Need to Report My Accident to My Insurance Company?
It is very important that you report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. If another person caused the accident by changing lanes unsafely, their insurance company will also likely get in contact with you to record a statement.
You must seek the legal guidance and help of one of our attorneys at our law firm before you make such statements. This is because these statements can be used by companies to deny claims. You need to ensure that you don’t reveal or state anything in your statement that could jeopardize your right to file your claim.
How Do I Protect My Rights After a Car Accident?
A lot of people in Florida feel uncomfortable filing an insurance claim immediately after they have been injured in an accident because they feel like it presents them as self-interested. However, you must assert your rights early. Your actions immediately after your accident will greatly impact the amount of compensation you will receive in a final settlement. For more information on how you can protect your legal rights after a car wreck, contact one of our lawyers for a free consultation to ask all of your questions. To protect your rights, you should do the following:
One of the most important things to do to protect your rights after a car accident is to call the emergency services. The law in Florida requires all accidents to be reported in situations where there have been injuries, death, or property damage. This is outlined under Florida Statute 316.066.
Even if your accident doesn’t exactly fall under these categories, we would strongly recommend that you still contact law enforcement. Having an officer document an official report can greatly help your case later. This can prevent people from denying that your accident ever happened.
You Have the Right to an Attorney
You shouldn’t feel bad about exercising your rights following your accident. Seek help from an attorney straight away. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for other parties to take advantage of victims who are unaware of their own legal rights.
Do Not Admit Fault
You have the “right to remain silent.” If it is not clear who is evidently at fault in your unsafe lane change accident, we would strongly recommend that you avoid confessing to anything. Some people mistakenly believe that they are to blame for the accident and confess fault at the scene of the accident. This can be hugely damaging to their case for compensation, and that is why you should keep quiet.
If you wish to answer questions, make sure you answer everything honestly and directly. Never speculate about your own actions, and remember that you can always decline to answer a question. Don’t forget you have a fourth amendment right, so make sure you protect your rights by saying as little as you possibly can.
Receive Medical Treatment
A common way for people to waive their rights in Florida following an accident is to refuse medical treatment. If you decline medical care from first responders or refuse to seek medical care at a hospital, it can be deemed that your injury was not as severe as you claimed it to be.
If you do seek medical care, make sure you follow all of your doctor’s orders closely. It is also important that you avoid making your injuries worse. If you are seriously injured, you should remain as still as possible until medical professionals arrive on the scene. We would also advise that you avoid sharing and posting about your accident on social media.
Document the Evidence at the Accident Scene
Another way to protect your rights is to gather necessary evidence immediately after the accident has occurred. If you can do so, we would advise that you take photos and videos of the scene. You should make sure that you document the wreck from several different angles.
You should also take photos of key documents. These can include drivers’ licenses and insurance cards. You should also record or write down witness statements.
How Do Attorneys Prove the At-Fault Driver’s Liability?
If your accident has been caused by another driver changing lanes unsafely, your attorney will try and prove the driver’s liability. Your attorney will want to prove that the other driver is to blame for your injuries, and in order to do this, your attorney will be able to demonstrate the four elements of negligence. These are:
- Duty of care – All road users in Florida have a duty of care to every pedestrian and fellow road user that they encounter. This involves obeying all speed limits, not driving while intoxicated, and much more. A driver who breaches this duty of care will be in a lot of trouble with the law.
- Breach of duty – If another driver is reckless, they violate their duty of care. This can involve them driving aggressively, driving while distracted, and much more.
- Causation – If the driver-at-fault breached their duty of care and this led to an accident, and that accident caused you to suffer an injury, their breach means that they are then legally liable to cover your damages.
- Actual damages – Once one of our attorneys can prove the negligence of the driver-at-fault, they must prove that you sustained actual damages. They can do this quite simply by investigating your case and providing copies of your medical bills, evidence that you have lost wages, and much more.
How Much Do Car Accident Lawyers Cost in St. Petersburg, FL?
A lot of people in Florida are hesitant to hire personal injury attorneys and car accident lawyers. We understand that seeking professional legal guidance and help can feel very daunting, but we would like to reassure you that the process is much simpler than you may believe.
All of the attorneys at our law firm work on a contingency basis. This means that you do not have to pay an attorney anything upfront. It also means that you will never experience a surprise bill for legal fees. An attorney will deduct their legal fees from the final settlement that they can achieve for their client. This means that if your attorney is unsuccessful in winning you compensation for your unsafe lane change auto accident, you will not have to pay a cent.
The Florida State Bar Association monitors the contingency work of all law firms in Florida, so you can feel rest assured that you will not be cheated out of money. You can trust us. We abide by all of the rules and guidelines established by the Florida State Bar Association very closely.
Contact The Law Place Today!
Unsafe lane changes are, unfortunately, a common occurrence in St. Petersburg, and they cause many accidents every year. If you or a loved one has been injured because of an unsafe lane change accident, you may be entitled to compensation.
An attorney-client relationship at The Law Place is built upon a great deal of trust and loyalty. We will do absolutely everything that we can to ensure that you and your family win the justice that you deserve. Our firm differs from other Florida law firms because we like to work as a team. Our attorneys will seek advice from their colleagues to ensure that the case that they build for their client is as strong as it can be. We want our clients to have the best chance of receiving the maximum amount of compensation that they deserve.
To schedule your free consultation, call us today. Our main office is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to listen to your call. We can help you in St. Petersburg today. Call us now at (941) 444-4444.