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Orlando Personal Injury Attorneys / Blog / Car Accidents / What Not To Do After An Auto Accident

What Not To Do After An Auto Accident


Most people who are involved in a Florida auto accident are experiencing this scenario for the first time, and the legal process of seeking damages or filing suit against a person who allegedly caused that accident can feel very overwhelming. It is all too easy for a well-meaning plaintiff to torpedo their own case by making what they may not even realize is a mistake – without an attorney on their side, the average person may make it all but impossible to recover for another person’s negligence.

Say Nothing At The Scene

First and foremost, an injured person should not speak to anyone at the scene of an accident unless law enforcement is immediately present. An unfortunate truth about Florida law is that even what are referred to as excited utterances can be used against a person in court – for example, a person who says “I’m sorry” after a crash simply out of good manners or a wish to ease the other person’s mind may find themselves unable to recover damages – or even sued themselves – because they allegedly admitted fault.

While auto accident cases that make it to court are judged on a host of different factors and evidence, any alleged admission of fault will be taken seriously and factored in by a judge or jury. This is especially relevant when one takes into account that Florida recently modified its comparative negligence law. Formerly, if a plaintiff was responsible for any percentage of their own injuries, their recovery would simply be reduced; now, if a plaintiff is ruled to be more than 50 percent responsible for their own injuries, they cannot recover at all.

Do Not Drag Your Feet

The other type of mistake that can sabotage a Florida auto accident claim is in taking too long to act. For example, it is not uncommon for some people to wait before seeking medical attention, particularly if their injuries do not seem immediately dangerous. However, waiting too long may signify to an insurance company either that your injuries have some other cause, or that they were not serious enough to warrant damages – never mind the fact that many physical injuries, such as whiplash, do not immediately manifest, and can cause long-term harm if not treated quickly.

One can also wait too long to file their lawsuit in general. Florida law allows two years in which one can file suit against a negligent driver, but that period of time can pass very quickly, and a person can find themselves with no legal recourse before they know it. In addition, if anyone’s insurer is involved, they will have started to investigate the issue almost immediately. If you fail to file with similar speed, the insurer may infer that your injuries are superficial.

Contact An Orlando Car Accident Attorney

If you have been injured in an auto accident, and you suspect that the negligence of another person was the direct cause of your injuries, you have the right to seek damages. An Orlando car accident attorney from the Hornsby Law Group can help to guide you through the legal process so that your case has the best chance of success. Call our office today for a free consultation.



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