Okeechobee Personal Injury Lawyer
Full & Fair Compensation For Your Injuries
Okeechobee is an underrated gem in Florida. In fact, US News ranked this town among the best places to live in the US and the second safest town in the nation (next only to Naples, FL). Located halfway between the major cities of Miami and Orlando, Okeechobee keeps its small-town atmosphere as well as its first-rate schools, picturesque parks, and world-class facilities.
But while it’s a peaceful community, accidents and injuries still occur in Okeechobee. Be it car accidents or a fall on someone’s property, these incidents can be a great burdens for the victims, and insurance claims for full compensation often prove very difficult.
Fortunately, Okeechobee claimants can rely on Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney to provide legal assistance in their claims. Mr. DeBerard was recently honored as the Treasure Coast’s Top Personal Injury Lawyer by TCPalm because of his genuine service and excellent track record. Together with his team, he has won impressive settlements for South Florida clients for over 30 years.
If you have been seriously hurt in Okeechobee because of someone else’s fault, reach out to Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney. We provide your initial consultation for free, and you won’t pay any fees until we get a recovery for you.
Compensation You May Claim For Your Personal Injury
An accident injury isn’t just about the physical hurt you’ve suffered. It also entails piling medical expenses, skipped days at work, mental distress, and an unexpected disruption in your life. Florida law acknowledges these types of losses and affords injury victims the right to claim compensation (legally called “damages”).
Sadly, many of those who are injured don’t obtain the compensation they should have, and some don’t even realize the real value of their losses. When attempting to claim from their insurer, they often encounter insurance adjuster tactics that minimize their injuries, hamper their payout, or completely deny their claim.
It’s important to consult a personal injury lawyer to understand what you’re really entitled to. The following are common types of damages you may claim:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Therapy or rehabilitation expenses
- Lost income
- Reduced capacity to work
- Pain and suffering, such as mental anguish
- Accessibility devices such as walkers and home remodeling for disability.
Receiving maximum compensation is vital for the injured as their expenditure quickly accumulates. If you’re in a situation like this, speak with Attorney DeBerard about getting your deserved financial recovery.
The DeBerard legal team can carefully evaluate the full impact of your injury, including the medical, financial, or emotional aspects. We help you determine your best legal strategy to secure compensation, such as in pursuing a bodily injury settlement claim against the at-fault party. We then use our decades-long experience to advocate for the settlement you should rightfully get, or take your claim to litigation if needed.
Okeechobee, FL Personal Injury Statistics
Okeechobee County sees thousands of accident injuries every year. In 2020 alone, the county saw a total of 435 unintentional non-fatal injuries, according to the Florida Department of Health. Some of the leading injury types that led to hospitalizations in Okeechobee County in 2020 were:
- Falls – 205 injuries
- Motor vehicle traffic accidents – 70 injuries
- Motor vehicle, non traffic – 9 injuries
- Motor vehicle traffic – motorcyclist – 10 injuries
- Motor vehicle traffic – pedalcyclist – <5 injuries
- Motor vehicle pedestrian – <5 injuries
- Pedalcyclist, other – <5 injuries
- Pedestrian, other – <5 injuries
- Poisoning or Drug overdose – 50 injuries
- Struck by or against an object – 13 injuries
- Fires – <5 – injuries
- Machinery accidents – 7 injuries
- Drownings / Submersions – <5 injuries
- Hot object / substance <5 injuries
This all represents a large cost for the victims and their families. For instance, the National Safety Council reveals that a non-fatal traffic crash injury can incur anywhere from $29,200 to upwards of $100,000 on average per person. Yet the minimum personal injury protection coverage required in Florida is only $10,000. Those who have serious injuries need to explore other legal remedies to get compensated.
Florida Laws That Affect Your Okeechobee Injury Claim
Florida law entitles persons to compensation if their accident resulted from someone else’s negligence. However, your compensation claim is subject to certain laws that can influence the results of your case.
Florida Has a “Serious Injury Threshold”
In terms of accidents, Florida follows the “no fault” rule, which means you’ll seek payment from your own PIP or personal injury protection first, no matter who caused your injuries. If your losses are higher than what your PIP can cover and you decide to be repaid by the at-fault party, you’ll need to prove that you have a serious injury to be eligible for a third party injury claim.
What is considered a “serious injury” under the law? According to Florida Statutes section 627.737, these are the kinds of injuries that satisfy the threshold:
- The person has permanently and significantly lost an important bodily function
- Permanent and significant scarring or disfigurement
- The person has a permanent injury other than scarring or disfigurement
- Death (in accident claims pursued by survivors).
If you can’t prove that your injuries are “serious” under this definition, you may have less chance to recover your losses. An experienced attorney will be vital in establishing your injury severity.
Showing the Other Party was Negligent
To hold the person accountable for your losses, you must also prove that they acted negligently and that their negligence led to your injuries. In legal parlance, “negligence” means that the person should have exercised “ordinary care” but didn’t. The following are some kinds of negligence that could be the basis of an injury claim:
- Vehicle accident liability – When unsafe driving behavior causes a vehicle accident (such as drinking and driving, speeding, or failing to stop at an intersection)
- Premises liability – When a private property owner or manager fails to neglects the safety of their premises for guests, or neglects to warn guests about dangerous conditions at the site, causing a slip-and-fall mishap
- Product liability – When the manufacturer or distributor of a product sells defective items or neglects to warn about their product’s risks, resulting in consumer injuries
- Watercraft accident liability – When a water accident occurs involving unqualified operators, badly maintained vessels, or unsafe driving.
In some situations, negligence can be clearly seen, such as if an intoxicated driver crashed into you. But commonly, it can be challenging to establish fault, and parties involved in the incident may dispute their liability. You will likely encounter this once you face an insurance company that’s experienced and well-resourced in denying liability. You should have a personal injury attorney who will build a solid case for you and sufficiently demonstrate the other side’s fault.
Comparative Negligence in Florida
In accident compensation claims, “comparative negligence” means that if several persons were negligent in the accident, every one of them will have a portion of fault. If the individual who got injured was also negligent in their own accident, the compensation they’d receive would be lowered according to their percentage of fault.
For example, if the claimant won $100,000 for their losses but was shown to be 10 percent responsible for the accident, $10,000 (10 percent) would be taken out of the $100,000 compensation.
In several other states, you wouldn’t be able to receive compensation at all if you had a share of fault that was more than 50 percent. However, Florida’s version of this rule is called “pure comparative negligence” so no matter how much you contributed to your own accident, you may still get some due amount. Even if, for instance, you had 90 percent fault, you may still obtain the last 10 percent.
Insurance companies and defense lawyers will assert the comparative negligence principle if they can find a way to blame you. In some cases, even saying “I’m sorry” was taken as an admission of fault in the incident. Because of this, it’s critical to have an attorney advise you as early as possible in the case. A knowledgeable injury attorney should guide you on how to deal with insurance adjusters and help you avoid costly mistakes.
How Our Firm Can Help You
As you can see, it’s complicated to pursue a productive injury compensation claim in Florida, including in Okeechobee. While hiring an attorney isn’t legally required for such a claim, many individuals find that they truly need an advocate. From navigating the law to negotiating with insurers, a trusted personal injury attorney creates an important difference in the direction of the case.
The Philip DeBerard law firm are highly experienced in this area of law. Our legal counsel and representation have resulted in favorable outcomes on behalf of South Florida residents. Among our triumphs are:
- A $4.6 million recovery in a motorcycle accident case
- $2.6 million compensation after a medical malpractice injury
- A $2 million recovery in a truck accident case
- Recent client settlement reaching $850% the insurance limit.
For us at the DeBerard law firm, it’s more than just obtaining substantial amounts. Each of our clients becomes like family for us, so we do our very best to help them recover. Our service is more extensive than just dealing with insurers. It also includes:
- Enlisting our network of doctors and specialists to prove your injuries
- Collecting evidence to prove fault in your accident
- Formulating a case-specific strategy with you that can produce the best possible outcome in your case
- Building solid arguments against the at-fault party’s possible defenses
- Completing the paperwork and process requirements
- Making sure you’re getting proper medical care
- Communicating regularly with you so you don’t worry about how your claim is doing.
This is why the DeBerard firm is known in the Treasure Coast for genuine client care. When you delegate your case to us, you can breathe and focus on healing, knowing your claim is in capable hands.
Call Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney in Okeechobee Today
For over three decades now, the Okeechobee community trusts Attorney Philip DeBerard for personal injury cases. They’ve seen our team’s successful track record and true dedication to Floridians. Learn how we can serve you, too. Get a free consultation with us. We don’t charge any fees until we win compensation you deserve. Contact us today at 1-800-299-8878.
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