Blanchard, Merriam, Adel
& Kirkland P.A.
Attorneys at Law 4 SE Broadway Street
Ocala, FL 32271
Phone: 1-352-351-4LAW (4529)
Fax: 1 -352 -732-0017
From the Desk of Trip Green;
As an auto accident attorney in Ocala, Marion County, Florida, I have represented numerous auto accident victims both in Ocala and other jurisdictions who have sustained serious personal injury in automobile accidents.
Over the years as an auto accident attorney, I have learned that there are several important steps that drivers can take that will both minimize serious personal injury during an auto accident and maximize recovery in subsequent litigation.
First, every automobile driver and passenger should always wear a safety restraint. Recently, the Florida legislature passed a law making it unlawful for any person to operate a motor vehicle unless they and all passengers are restrained by an appropriate safety belt or child restraint device. Further, statistics show that auto accident victims who wear their seatbelts are significantly less likely to suffer serious personal injury or be killed in automobile accidents regardless of who is at fault.
Florida law also provides that auto accident victims who are not wearing their seatbelt at the time of injury may be comparatively negligent and can have their total monetary damages reduced at trial by the percentage of their own negligence for failing to wear a safety restraint. As a result, auto accident victims who suffer serious personal injury who are otherwise not at fault can have their damages reduced if they do not wear a safety belt during the operation of a motor vehicle in Florida.
The legislature's message is clear. Please buckle up. You will be safer in the long run and will have a better legal claim in the unfortunate event that you suffer personal injury in an automobile accident by taking this simple preventative measure.
Unfortunately, some automobile accident victims are injured even though they were wearing their seatbelt at the time of an auto accident. If you find yourself in this situation, you should seek medical attention immediately.
Many times persons who are injured in automobile accidents do not realize how badly they have been injured until several days later. By seeking medical attention immediately or shortly after an automobile accident, auto accident victims can minimize pain and suffering, identify serious injuries before they become debilitating and better document the fact that they were injured as a result of a specific auto accident and not some other unrelated incident.
In addition to seeking immediate medical attention, auto accident victims should preserve evidence by taking photographs of their automobile and the other automobiles involved in the accident as soon as possible after an auto accident occurs.
The simple act of taking pictures will enable you to better document your damages in order to support your legal claim later on. Some people carry disposable cameras in their glove compartment for this reason. A cellular telephone with a camera is also a very effective tool for documenting damages to your automobile and others following an accident.
You should also have someone take photographs of parts of your body that suffer personal injury following an automobile accident. Over time, evidence of serious personal injury can fade. Therefore, it is important to document injuries you sustain in automobile accident as soon as possible after the accident occurs.
Lastly, accident victims should cooperate with law enforcement officials investigating automobile accidents. In Ocala, Marion County, Florida, we are lucky to have excellent highway patrol officers, police officers, and sheriff's deputies who perform a valuable community service by investigating automobile accidents. Sometimes, investigating officers render accident reports following their investigation. If you are able, you should request a copy of any accident report that is created by law enforcement with respect to your accident.
Accident reports document important information such as the names and addresses of witnesses, other drivers and owners of vehicles involved in automobile accidents. Often, accident reports also document insurance information for drivers and automobile owners who are involved in accidents and may also provide a description of how the accident took place. The sooner you are able to obtain a copy of an accident report for your accident the quicker the claim evaluation process can begin should you decide to hire an attorney.
Hopefully, these helpful tips will assist you in avoiding personal injury as a result of an auto accident and will enable you to maximize any recovery to which you may be entitled should you become an auto accident victim. If you have been injured in an accident, let me help. The initial consultation is always free. Let's seek justice together.