After someone is injured in a Florida car accident, they may pursue a claim for damages against the at-fault party by filing a personal injury lawsuit. Although, these cases may seem straightforward, defendants (and their insurance companies) will go to great lengths to avoid liability. Often, defendants who are uninsured or underinsured will try to avoid liability because they can be on the hook for substantial damages if they are found to be responsible. Florida car accident victims should consult with a personal injury attorney to help them through the various stages of collecting compensation.
The first part of a car accident claims involves investigating the accident. A Florida accident attorney will conduct a detailed, in-depth investigation to determine whether the facts support a claim for recovery. To determine whether a claim is viable, the attorney will determine who was at-fault, what injuries the victim sustained, and whether the parties involved have insurance. The central part of this step requires attorneys to review evidence such as police reports, physical evidence, eyewitness testimony, and expert witness affidavits. In some cases, defendants will encumber the plaintiff’s ability to engage in an investigation.
For example, a recent Florida news report described a situation where a driver refused to allow investigators access to her car. Police reports indicate that the driver is accused of striking and killing a 16-year-old biker. The driver was previously cited for violating the conditions of her learner’s permit and failure to use a signal. The plaintiffs, who are the deceased accident victim’s surviving loved ones, are requesting that the defendant provide access to the car so that they can retrieve information from the vehicle’s “black box.” This event data recovery device may hold significant evidence regarding the circumstances of the accident. However, the allegedly at-fault driver is failing to respond to communication requesting access. It is unclear why the traffic homicide investigators failed to download the data when they were initially investigating the accident. In these cases, it is critical to retain an attorney to ensure that the other party follows all relevant evidentiary laws and abides by their duty to preserve evidence.