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Terrence O'Sullivan
Experienced Miami Car Accident Attorneys Can Help | Call at 305-379-8688
Experienced Miami Car Accident Attorneys Can Help | Call at 305-379-8688

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Facing a Difficult Personal Injury Case

In a perfect world, you would never get injured. However, we do not live in a perfect world. Some people cause accidents and, unfortunately, injuries happen. As a result, a #PersonalInjury case may not be cut and dry.

Sometimes, you have to consider the (very) bad facts.

We all know the cause of an accident isn’t always black and white. Sometimes, even though an individual caused you to suffer personal injuries, it may be difficult to bring a suit against him or her. Some examples of “bad facts” for you to consider prior to bringing suit can include:

-You did not suffer a very serious injury; therefore, it may not make sense to bring a claim.
-You may have been rear-ended, but you were coming home from the bar and had two drinks before the accident happened.
-The accident occurred at night and you have a history of having trouble driving in the dark.
-You were not wearing your glasses when the accident occurred.
-You were on medication that may have affected your impairment when the accident occurred.
-You have a history of filing personal injury lawsuits.
-You were injured at some point prior to the accident and have already been treated for injuries similar to the injuries sustained in the accident.

For example, you have had a bad back for years but you receive #MedicalTreatment for your back as a result of the accident. The defendant may say that he did not cause your back injuries but that you already had those injuries.

It is hard to prove that the defendant actually caused the accident.

There could be varying and/or conflicting stories as to what actually happened and the evidence does not indicate fault on the part of the defendant.

Also Read: 5 Factors that Help Determine if You Have a Personal Injury Case


When deciding whether or not to bring a personal injury lawsuit against a defendant or defendants, you should always have your case evaluated by a reputable personal injury attorney. He or she will review the strengths and weaknesses of your case and give you an opinion as to the likelihood of your success.

When deciding whether or not to bring a personal injury lawsuit against a defendant or defendants, you should always have your case evaluated by a reputable personal injury attorney. He or she will review the strengths and weaknesses of your case and give you an opinion as to the likelihood of your success.

The important thing is not to lie to your attorney

It is best to tell your attorney everything that could affect your case—even if you think it’s irrelevant, embarrassing, or illegal. It is better to be open and honest with your attorney from the very beginning rather than have the defendant’s attorney bring it up later down the road.

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4 Important Things to Consider with Mediation

You have been injured in a car accident and you have already filed a #PersonalInjuryLawsuit for those injuries. Or, perhaps you are considering filing a lawsuit and you just want to explore your options before going through the process.

Regardless of the situation, the thought of going to trial may be intimidating. After all, a full out trial comes with extensive costs and time.

Trials can significantly delay your personal injury claim and you just want to be compensated for your losses as soon as possible so you can get on with your life.

An alternative to going to court is going through mediation. This form of alternative dispute resolution can help determine a settlement that is fair for both parties.

Sometimes mediation is ordered by the courts, while other times you and the other party can opt for mediation to resolve the claim.

The Purpose of Mediation

Mediation involves a professionally trained mediator —such as a former judge or attorney—who helps you and the other party try to reach an agreeable settlement.

They are not there in the judge’s capacity, however, and they do not make decisions; instead, they help facilitate them. They may also make suggestions and recommendations, but they are not the final say in your negotiations.

Their goal is to bring both sides to the table to discuss and hopefully come to a settlement. You cannot force the other party to go to mediation nor can they force you. However, the courts can require it as part of your case.

Also Read : 10 Common Causes of Car Accidents

#Mediation is not the same as arbitration. In arbitration, the final decision is legally binding, while mediation is only binding if both parties sign a contract agreeing to the decisions.

What to Expect During Mediation

Mediation typically involves a preliminary discussion phase, which involves statements that will not be admissible in court.

This allows everyone to show evidence that would otherwise be excluded and even openly discuss factors of the case without any fear that something they say will be used against them later in the courts.

Both parties are typically required to sign a mediation agreement, stating that they agree to work out their settlement via mediation instead of taking the process to court.

After the preliminary discussion phase, you, the plaintiff, will be allowed to speak. This is where an attorney becomes handy. A car accident attorney can explain the view of the case and any proposed settlements you may have as well as their reasons for requesting such settlement.

The opposing party most likely will have attorneys or representatives present for mediation; therefore, having an attorney present who understands the process and can help protect your rights is important.

If you and the other party cannot be in the same room together, then the mediator may act as a go-between, discussing the case with you and then going back to the other side for discussions and further negotiations.

The mediator is there to help both parties see the other side of the case. They may discuss weaknesses they have found in your claim and may give you an idea of what you can expect in court if you took your case to trial.

Tips for a Successful Mediation

Mediation can be suggested before you file your case with the courts. If both sides agree, this may be an indication the other side is willing to settle.

To ensure more successful mediation experience, here are a few tips to consider:

1. Make sure there is a decision-maker present for the other side during mediation. There is no point in discussing a settlement with people that need to speak to a higher authority before making their decision.

2. Select a mediator that is specifically experienced in car accident settlements.

3. Remember the mediator cannot enforce an agreement or force you to sign an agreement. Agreements are mutual.

4. Mediation will cost money, but may be factored into the costs you have already worked out with your attorney.

We can review your case and help determine which dispute resolution method is best. Call now for a free consultation.

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Do Not Do These Things after a Car Accident
If you have experienced a #CarAccident  recently, it may be in your human nature to try to check things off a list and resolve your problems quickly. When you plan on filling a claim for a personal injury case, you can hurt your chances of getting a claim fulfilled by making minor mistakes along the way.

Do not do the following after a car accident, as it may alter your ability to make a claim and get it paid for by your insurance company:

-Do not say the accident is your fault. It is human nature to want to apologize for a vehicle accident but you should not do so, especially at the scene. Also, never admit your fault to your car insurance agent. No matter how nice the person is to you, he or she is not on your side and has their own interests relating to your case.
-Do not include your emotions in the report you make to the police or your insurance company. Although a car accident will stir up emotions and leave you shaken up, make your report as factual as possible. Accidentally indicating emotion in an official report can affect your chances of getting a claim fulfilled.
-Do not settle on the claim until you have gotten all of the medical treatment you need. Sometimes the cost of your injuries may be significantly higher than you ever thought because of an underlying condition you did not know about at the time. Settling too early means you have no chance of getting more money for the incident.
-Do not avoid filing a police report. It is common for other drivers to want to avoid a police report because no one wants their insurance rates to go up. Although you want to be a nice person, filing a police report is the only way you can protect yourself in case of an injury you may not immediately detect. If there is no record, you cannot get a claim.
-Do not sign release forms from your insurance company. A lot of these release forms have fine print which also releases the insurance company from any responsibility in the accident.

The insurance company has a lawyer on their side, so why don’t you get one on yours? You deserve complete coverage for pain and suffering you have experienced as a result of a traumatic car accident. All too often, people forget just how dangerous cars can be when they collide with one another.

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Tips for Staying Safe While #Driving at Night

There have been numerous studies that show a correlation between the time of the day and accident numbers. One of the highest risk times is that of night. This is because there is a lack of natural light and headlights can make it difficult to see oncoming traffic.

Also, light is not the only reason there are more accidents once the sun goes down; sometimes it is how people act in the middle of the night.

If you are going to drive at night, you cannot prevent other drivers from acting negligently, but there are things you can do to ensure you do not cause a nighttime accident.

How to Stay Safe While Driving at Night
1. Headlights – While you need your headlights to see, be cautious of other drivers. Position your headlights so that they illuminate the road ahead, and are not in the eyes of oncoming drivers.

You should also make sure that your headlights are not too bright and never use high beams when there is oncoming traffic.

2. Keep Your Windshield Clean – Your windshield should always be clean so that you can see where you are going. A dirty windshield causes blind spots and even distractions.

Also Read :

3. Mirrors – Mirrors can make the light from behind seem brighter or even get into your eyes while you are driving. Make sure to place your side mirrors so that they are adjusted properly and keep light out of your eyes.

You should also clean your rear view and side mirrors frequently to ensure you can see clearly at night.

4. Turn Off Lights – You need your headlights, but you don’t need any dim lights running inside your vehicle.

You can even dim your dashboard lights so that they do not distract you from the road ahead. There is no need to have dashboard lights up bright.

5. Look for Animals – One of the leading causes of nighttime accidents are animals. Be on the lookout for animals on the road.

They commonly dart out into traffic, especially when least expect them to, and try to cross the road. You can tell if there are animals present by also keeping your eyes on the side of the road.

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6 Steps to Resolving Your Miami Car Accident

1. Get Medical Attention
Many people skip the medical follow-up after an accident because they feel fine. Keep in mind that some issues might not be a problem for a few hours or days after the accident, but then you could suddenly develop chronic pain. Do not write off pain that is persistent and keeps you from being able to work or enjoy life. Make sure you attend any and all follow-up appointments too.

2. Record Details
Keep track of all the information about your medical appointments. If your doctor is prescribing medications or physical therapy, keep a notebook or log and be sure to record these details. Ask yourself:

How many times per week are you attending physical therapy?
Are you being referred to specialists?
Have you had to have the dosage of your medicine increased because the pain is too intense?
This information might be important down the road, and it’s also a good way for you to chart your progress with your recovery. Staying organized is key in the event that you need to file a lawsuit related to your car accident.

3. Work With Your Insurance Company
Make sure you contact your insurance company as soon as possible after the accident. This is why having legal representation early in the process can be helpful. You might be under the impression that your insurance company is there to help you, but that is not always the case. Having an attorney review your case can help you figure out how to work with the insurance company regarding PIP or other coverage.

4. Work With the Other Party
The other party in the accident might want you to discuss the specifics of the accident, but avoid this if possible. This is because you don’t want to make any statements or sign any paperwork, especially if it relates to fault in the accident, until you have had a chance to consult with your attorney.

Share the necessary contact information with the other driver, but suggest communicating between your attorneys from that point forward.

5. Gather Evidence
Even though car accidents happen every day, a car accident case can become complex very quickly. Again, being organized is the best way to stay ahead of the game. Gather any evidence that relates to the accident and present it to your attorney. He or she might end up preparing your case based on some (or all) of the following potential evidence sources:

Recreating the accident scene
Witness statements
Photos of the accident
Medical records
This is why you need an attorney who is experienced handling a Miami car accident case. With multiple players potentially involved, all trying to limit their liability, you need someone who is going to fight for you in court and ensure that your rights are protected. If you are the victim of a car accident in Miami, then you need the expertise of an experienced and committed car accident attorney.

6. Contact a Miami Car Accident Attorney
If you plan to file a claim regarding the injuries you sustained, then you will need to speak with an attorney sooner rather than later at 305-379-8688. You have limitations regarding the time period in which you must file a claim for it to be considered valid. Do not hesitate to schedule an appointment to discuss your case.

This does not obligate you to file a claim, but it can give you a better perspective on what to expect if you decide to move forward. Making the mistake of waiting too long might bar you from being able to file a claim in the future, so set up a meeting right away.

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Miami Car Accidents Caused by Drunk Drivers

According to the most recent Florida Traffic Crash Facts Report, the second most common cause of car accidents in Florida is alcohol-related accidents. Such crashes can result in terrible injuries that permanently alter the lives of victims and their loved ones.

Facts and Figures
The facts and figures are alarming for the State of Florida.

Florida Alcohol Related/Suspected Crash Figures
-In one year, there were over 17,000 alcohol related/suspected crashes
-In that time, there were more than 12,000 injuries
-There were 877 deaths
-76% of those in such crashes are either killed or injured

Many times injuries caused by drunk driving accidents are severe and ongoing, resulting in a lifetime of physical challenges, extreme emotional distress, and chronic pain and suffering.

If you have been injured by a drunk driver or if you have lost a loved one due to the negligence of someone who was DUI, you have certain rights regarding a settlement for your expenses, lost wages or wrongful death.

Penalties for Physical Injury and Property Damage
If someone is convicted of drunk driving in Florida, the penalties can be severe. At minimum, one’s license will be suspended along with hefty fines. For those who cause property damage, physical injury, or the death of another, the penalties are far worse.

In car accidents caused by drunk drivers, someone who is convicted of DUI whose negligent actions have resulted in injury to others will be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor. Upon conviction, the punishment can include:
-Jail time of up to one year
-Fines up to $1,000

If a person causes serious bodily harm to a victim, they will be charged with a third degree felony, which includes:
-A maximum of five years incarceration
-Fines up to $5,000

A second-degree felony charge of manslaughter may be levied against an individual if they are DUI, and they cause an accident that results in the death of another. Penalties can include:
-Up to thirty years in prison
-Fines up to $10,000

In addition, in car accidents caused by drunk drivers, the responsible party may also face a civil suit, which is filed by the injured parties and/or their families.

Civil Suits Against DUI Offenders
In such accidents, the responsible driver may be sued for:
-Medical expenses
-Lost wages
-Physical and emotional pain and suffering
-Future medical costs
-Loss of future wages
-Punitive damages

NOTE: If your injuries are the result of a DUI, then it is one of the rare times that you may sue for punitive damages in the state of Florida. If the defendant in a civil suit involving a car accident has been proven to be DUI, then the court may grant punitive damages to the plaintiff after being requested to do so.

Furthermore, Miami personal injury attorneys from experience that many insurance companies will not pay for punitive damages in such cases. They have also found that if approved by the court, such cases can result in a larger settlement than a victim might have received otherwise.

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