Serious bodily injury can turn your world upside down, and you may have to live with the effects of your injury for the rest of your life. A serious bodily injury is when someone experiences an injury that causes severe damage to the person in question. This could be anything from losing mobility to disfigurement or an incident that resulted in a risk of death. Although a personal injury lawyer will not be able to make you physically well, they can help you financially by holding a person or company liable for your injury.
If you or anyone you know and love has suffered from a serious bodily injury that was not their fault, then contact an injury lawyer today at The Law Place. Our Tampa legal team fights to get victims the compensation they deserve. Boasting over 75 years of experience in injury cases, we are versed in Florida law and ready to help you.
We believe that your pain and suffering from serious injuries should not affect your finances too. The result of our legal representation could see you receiving the compensation you deserve, depending on your situation and injuries. For a free consultation, contact The Law Place. Call today at (941) 444-4444. Phone lines are open 24/7.
What Injuries Class as Serious Bodily Injury?
It can be difficult to determine when you have been injured or harmed by someone if the results are classed as serious bodily injury. The State of Florida has laws in place to help you define this. According to Florida Statute 316.027, serious bodily injuries consists of injuries that result in:
- Substantial risk of death.
- A protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.
- A serious personal disfigurement.
Serious bodily harm or serious bodily injury are legal terms that are often used in criminal cases in Florida. The term serious bodily harm is used to distinguish this type of harm from other forms of injury such as emotional or psychological harm. Serious bodily harm can be both intentional and accidental. Regardless of if your injuries were sustained accidentally or on purpose, if the result ended in you being subjected to serious bodily harm, you are owed compensation.
If you end up in the unfortunate position where you have been seriously injured, the person liable for your injures will face much more severe penalties than if you were only mildly injured. This is due to the fact that the day-to-day life of the victim will be severely impacted. Serious bodily injuries in Tampa include those that have long-lasting effects on the victim, such as:
- Internal injuries that have long-term effects.
- Seriously broken or fractured bones.
- Injuries to the spinal cord.
- Loss of muscle or motor function, including paralysis.
- Injuries to the head or brain.
- Loss of limbs.
- Serious scarring.
This list is only an example, as there are many more injuries that qualify in Florida as ‘serious injury.’ Personal injury claims can be complicated because a particular injury may impact the life of the victim more than it would impact someone else, depending on factors such as their lifestyle, job, hobbies, etc. If you think that an injury you or someone you love has sustained could be classed as a serious bodily injury, then you should seek legal advice straight away.
Who Could Be Liable for Serious Bodily Injuries?
If you do choose to go forward in making a personal injury claim in Tampa, FL., to receive compensation, then there has to be a party held reliable for your injuries. To help establish fault, our injury lawyers will delve into your personal injury case to find the following:
- Duty of care – To hold another party liable for your injury, it must be proved that they owed you a duty of care. For example, if your injury was sustained from a car accident, the driver involved will have had a duty of care to you, meaning that the driver would be liable for your injuries.
- A breach in their duty of care – Personal injury lawyers have to prove that the party liable for your injury broke this aforementioned duty of care that resulted in your injuries. For example, the person responsible broke safety measures or rules of the road, such as drink driving or ignoring a stop sign, which resulted in your bodily injury.
- Causation – It may seem obvious, but in order for injury victims to receive compensation, a personal injury attorney must prove that the injuries you sustained were the direct result of the other party’s behavior.
- Damage – Your personal injury lawyer will have to prove that you suffered damages as a result of an accident and a breached duty of care in order for you to receive compensation. This could be anything from the actual injury itself to loss of wages.
Whatever the circumstances of your accident, whether it be a road accident, a slip and fall accident, or something more complex, a Tampa injury attorney can aid you in building a strong case. At The Law Place, our aim is to get you compensation so you can focus on recovery without worrying about money.
Common Causes of Serious Bodily Injury
Every incident is different, and no two personal injury cases are the same. There are many situations in modern-day life that could result in serious bodily harm to you or a loved one. Although in Tampa, FL., most injuries are sustained as a result of road accidents, there are many other causes of serious bodily injury.
Injury Lawyers in Tampa have dealt with many cases resulting from the following causes:
- Car accidents involving someone driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Battery, a criminal offense involving unlawful physical contact, usually involving reckless behavior. Although they may have intended the act of violence towards you, they may not have considered the outcome.
- Robbery or theft.
- Construction or building accidents.
- An accident involving machinery and tools.
- Accidents caused by faulty products.
It is important to remember that not all incidents that result in serious bodily injury are intentional. Most of the time, injuries occur from unintentional circumstances, and although a person may not have intended to hurt you, you still have to live with the consequences of their actions. Therefore, regardless of intent, our law firm will be able to help you in getting what you are owed.
What You Can Claim
If you have been a victim of serious bodily harm, then book a free consultation with The Law Place and find out what damages you could be owed. Florida personal injury claims can be long and complex. Furthermore, due to the nature of serious bodily injury claims, the amount of money that could be owed to you can be very high. You can claim a number of damages, such as:
- Medical bills – The cost of medical treatment could be very high if you have suffered a catastrophic injury, you can claim for medical expenditures such as hospital bills, appointments, future or ongoing medical expenses due to your injury, and transport to and from any appointments, should this be airfare, taxies or public transport.
- Lost wages – Something that might not occur to someone straight away if they have been in an accident is the time they may have to take off work, or maybe even never working again. You can make claims for any loss of wages and any future potential loss of wages with our law firm.
- Wrongful death – If you lose a family member or loved one in an accident, no amount of compensation will help heal the pain. However, one of our Tampa personal injury lawyers will be able to take care of the financial aspect of your worries by filing a wrongful death claim on your behalf. This can help your family in terms of funeral expenses and loss of household income.
- Pain and suffering – You are able to claim compensation for the emotional or physical distress you have had to endure due to your injuries. This could even be something as simple as not being able to participate in particular hobbies or interests you had before your injury.
We understand that no amount of compensation will take away the trauma that may follow you as a result of serious bodily injury, and the last thing on your mind may be money. However, our law firm is here to make your life just that little bit less stressful by handling your case on your behalf.
What Will Happen When You Make a Claim in Tampa, Florida?
Making a claim with no legal representation can be difficult. It is recommended that you seek a Tampa personal injury lawyer to help you with what to do. It could be that the insurance company of the other party covers your medical expenses. However, if this is not the case, you will have to file a ‘third party claim.’ This can be done at our law firm. An injury lawyer will require the following information to do this:
- All records or documentation of the incident that caused your injuries.
- Photographs of your injuries.
- Receipts of all costs linked with the accident and medical treatment.
- Bills from hospital appointments and records of any doctors appointments or medical tests.
When you contact an attorney and provide them with all the above information, you will then start the case proceedings, which will usually follow this rough guide:
- You will be contacted by your Tampa attorney as soon as they hear anything back. This will always be within a reasonable time frame, and you can ask your lawyer to specify predicted timeframes.
- You will need to be open and honest about your accident and be prepared to discuss it several times in as much detail as possible, as your lawyers will require a lot of information on what happened during your accident. Understandably this could be traumatic for some people. However, our excellent attorney-client relationship means that we promise to do this in the most sensitive ways.
- Depending on your particular accident, there may be a time limit in place in which you can make a claim. If you claim too long after your accident, you may not be able to make a claim.
- Once we are successful in your claim, you will then agree on a compensation amount. You should do this only when our legal team has advised you to do so and when you feel content with the compensation specified. A lawyer from The Law Place will review the amount offered to ensure that you are receiving the right amount of compensation for the injuries and damages you have endured.
If your serious bodily harm is the outcome of a criminal act, Florida law states that it could increase the severity of the charges. For example, if someone was charged with battery, it is usually regarded as a misdemeanor. However, if the victim faced serious bodily injuries or was at risk of dying, then this misdemeanor would turn into a felony. A felony comes with more severe consequences than a misdemeanor, and you could therefore be entitled to more money.
A common cause of a criminal, personal injury case in Florida is a DUI (driving under the influence of alcohol). Driving under the influence of alcohol is usually only counted as a misdemeanor. However, if your drunk driving causes an accident that results in serious bodily harm to someone, then you could face a felony.
A felony could result in a criminal record, with hefty fines and even a prison sentence according to Florida Statute 775.083. If you think that you have suffered catastrophic injuries due to the illegal action of someone else, call The Law Place today for your free consultation.
Contact The Law Place Today!
The fines for someone who has caused a serious bodily injury are usually very high. These fines are designed to be high to compensate the victim for any medical bills, lost wages, and emotional distress, including any past, present, and future trauma the victim may face. Florida takes these fines very seriously so that the victim and their family can receive the necessary compensation to live their life as normally as possible after the accident.
Insurance companies may not always pay out the amount you deserve, and sometimes parties liable for your accident may not even have insurance. Therefore, you should seek out help from an established law firm.
At The Law Place, we have well-renowned attorneys to support you through what could be a very sensitive time in order to get you the compensation you deserve. Serious bodily injury can have tragic effects on the victim and their families. There is almost always someone that could be held accountable, so you should speak to a law professional right away.
For a free case evaluation with us at The Law Place, call today on (941) 444-4444. Our lines are open 24/7 so that we can always help you if you are in need of a personal injury lawyer!