Insurance Myths: What type of Insurance is actually needed in Florida?

Insurance Myths: What type of Insurance is actually needed in Florida?

By: Tampa Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez, Esq.

Many of you have heard all types of story both good and bad about car insurance. Hopefully this article will help lift some of the vial of confusion.

I don’t need motorcycle insurance

Full Auto Coverage in the State of Florida - Photo of a man with a clip board pointing to a piece of paper that says insuranceInsurance is not need to register your motorcycle, but if you are in an accident and do not have insurance be prepared to pay for everything yourself out of pocket.  If you are found to be at fault (or even partially at fault) for the accident you are responsible for covering the costs of property damage and the bodily injury suffered by the other party. The owner of the motorcycle needs to carry Liability insurance.  Motorcycle owners are unable to purchase personal injury protection for their motorcycle even if they have it for their other vehicle.  You can also have your driving privileges suspended along with your registration and tag. To get your privileges back will cost you a lot in fees.

“Full Coverage”

There is no such thing as full coverage insurance in Florida. What most people have when they think that they have full coverage is property damage and personal injury protection only.  Basically, the bare minimum in Florida to obtain a driver’s license. These are the only two types of insurance coverages which are required by the state of Florida.  Frankly, this is the bare bones minimum and it is never enough.  Other insurance that you may consider to protect you and your family:

 Bodily Injury Liability referred to as BI. BI is to protect your personal assets if you caused or contributing to an accident. Basically, it kicks in if you are at fault.  If you do not have BI and are found at fault in judgment you are the one on the hook the settlement (money). If you don’t have Bodily Injury Liability coverage, and you want to have an attorney defend you in a lawsuit brought against you by an injured party, the attorney’s fees alone could be more than $20,000.00.  This does not even include what you would owe to the victim.  Typically, this is what you collect from the at-fault party when you are not at fault and are injured by the at-fault party.

Uninsured or underinsured Motorist coverage is referred to as UM.

When you have UM your own insurance company will pay you for your damages if the at-fault driver either does not have Bodily Injury Liability coverage or does not have sufficient coverage to adequately pay all of your damages.  Underinsured motorist coverage is perhaps the most important coverage you can buy to protect you and your family.  It is also the cheapest coverage you can buy “dollar for dollar.”

The belongings in my car are covered by my car insurance.

Only the vehicle and its passengers may be insured by the car insurance policy. Personal items like cell phones, laptops, instruments, strollers, etc. are not covered even if they stored in the vehicle and damaged during an accident. These types of belongings are to be filed under personal property insurance under your homeowner’s or renter’s policy.

Car Color affects the price of your insurance

The color of your car does not affect the price of your policy. When shopping for car insurance. They will ask you the year, make, model, the size of the motor (number of cylinders), how old you are, and if you have had any accidents recently.  They never ask you the color of the car.

New cars are stolen most often

Not true, most often older cars are the ones that are stolen. Here is a list of the most stolen vehicles according to the Florida time’s union.

In Florida, the top 10 most stolen vehicles in the 2015:

  1. Ford Pick-Up (Full Size) 2006 (2,070)
  2. Honda Civic 2000 (1,127)
  3. Nissan Altima 2015 (1,098)
  4. Toyota Camry 2014 (1,089)
  5. Honda Accord 1997 (1,025)
  6. Toyota Corolla 2014 (914)
  7. Chevrolet Pick-Up (Full Size) 2015 (786)
  8. Chevrolet Impala 2015 (542)
  9. Dodge Pick-Up (Full Size) 2005 (534)
  10. Nissan Maxima 2014 (479)

If you file an insurance claim your insurance rate will go up.

The truth is if you get into an accident with another driver, that driver may file a claim for damages or injuries. If they do, it will only be a short time until the injured party’s insurance company files a claim against you and your insurance company. Once this happens, your premiums may increase.

Additionally, if you were issued a ticket as a result of the crash, it can appear on your driving record and trigger a premium increase.

However, if you are injured and you only file a Medical Claim (also known as a No-Fault claim or PIP claim) your car insurance will not go up.  It’s actually enumerated in Florida law.

If you have Full coverage your insurance will cover the cost of replacing your care.

Not true the insurance company will pay you fair market value for your car that may be less than what you owe on it. Leaving you on the line for the rest of the money. You can purchase Gap insurance that will cover the difference in what you owe and the amount the insurance company pays you. If your car was paid in full the same thing happens. You will not get a brand new car to replace the car that you lost. They will give you fair market value. Car insurance companies do not sentimental value into consideration when determining the price.

Moving will not affect my Insurance rate.

This is a false statement. Moving even in the same city may cause your premiums to go up. Insurance is based on statistic.  Things that can affect the policy are going from rural less populated are to and urban area that is more densely populated. Also the statistic such as number of car accidents and car theft.

Smaller cars cost less to insure.

This is not true. The amount of damage may be far worse in a smaller car, than what may have happened to a larger car in the same accident. It also depends on the type of coverage that one carries. Just like before it depends on the statistic of accident damage of that type of car.

Your Credit Rating does not affect your insurance rate.

This is a false statement. In fact, your credit has a huge effect on your insurance rate. Why is that? Your credit score reflects your financial affairs and insurance companies take this into consideration when you want to purchase your auto insurance plan.

Tampa Attorney Martin J. Hernandez

Attorney Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez, LLC in Tampa provides legal representation for families in auto accident injury and wrongful death cases. Our Tampa personal injury attorneys welcome the opportunity to interview with you and your loved ones. We invite you to review our recent results from settlements to trial verdicts. Our qualifications and background are available to you as well. Our Tampa Attorneys Martin Hernandez and Daniel Fernandez are bilingual as well.  Just call us at 813-229-5353 for your free consultation.

The Tampa personal injury lawyers of Fernandez & Hernandez, serve Florida communities including Tampa, Brandon, Carrollwood, Westchase, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Pasco, Pinellas, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Lakeland, Plant City, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, Dover, Valrico, Lutz, Lakeland and many other neighborhoods in Tampa Bay area. Contact an Experienced Tampa Auto Accident Attorney from Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

If you have been involved in an Auto Accident in the Tampa Bay area, call Tampa personal injury lawyer Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez for a free consultation now.  We recommend also reading his reviews on Google Reviews, Avvo and Yelp.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Full Auto Coverage in the State of Florida - Photo of a man with a clip board pointing to a piece of paper that says insurance of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: www.InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

#GetLawyeredUpNow #DUI #Tampa #Attorney #Lawyer #Accident #Injury #Truck

Distracted Driving Accident

Distracted Driving Accident

Our lives seem to be moving at a faster pace than in the past and we are constantly plugged into our cellphones and electronic devices.  Many people are doing multiple things at the same time and we are all distracted by these devices, especially while driving.

We have gotten use to do this and refer to it as multitasking. Thank about the last time you were being the wheel of your car (it might have been you or someone in another car).  How many people do you see doing something besides focused on driving?

Don't Let Texting Blind You. Accident by Distracted DriverThere are three types of distractions: Visual, Manual and Cognitive.

A Visual starvation is anything that requires the driver to take their eyes off the road. This could be looking back at to see what the kids are doing the rear seat, spilling a drink, reading billboards sign, looking at people outside the car, surfing the web, reading text, or many other things

A manual distraction is one that requires the driver to take their hand of the steering wheel. Examples of this could be eating while driving, changing the radio stations, texting, looking for something in the car, or many other things

A cognitive distraction is something that takes your mind of the task at hand. Examples of this could be argument with significant other, issues with family member, work problems, bills, upcoming vacation or some other thing.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration distracted driving claimed 3450 lives in 2016. These seats where preventable if not for the drivers reckless behavior. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that 391,000 were injured in car crashes involving distracted drivers in 2015. They also state that approximately 481,000 drivers are using cell phones while they are driving. Teens were the larges age group that National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported as distracted at the time of fatal crashes.

Individual who drive while sending or reading text messages are 23 times more likely to be involved in a car crash than other drivers. A crash typically happens within an average of three seconds after a driver is distracted.

Many cars that are being manufactured today have more distraction added to them. These fetchers included:

  • Satellite radio
  • Hands free phone
  • Large screens
  • Heads up text display
  • Cameras
  • GPS
  • Lane sensors

Florida law states that “A person may not operate a motor vehicle while manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters into a wireless communications device or while sending or reading data 1on such a device for the purpose of non-voice interpersonal communication, including, but not limited to, communication methods known as texting, e-mailing, and instant messaging. As used in this section, the term “wireless communications device” means any handheld device used or capable of being used in a handheld manner, that is designed or intended to receive or transmit text or character-based messages, access or store data, or connect to the Internet or any communications service as defined in s. 812.15 and that allows text communications. For the purposes of this paragraph, a motor vehicle that is stationary is not being operated and is not subject to the prohibition in this paragraph.

Things that one can do to reduce distracted driving:

  • Put way cell phone.
  • Don’t text and drive.
  • Do not eat while driving
  • Should not drive when you are upset
  • Do not multi task behind the wheel of a car.
  • Should no drive when you are sleepy
  • Know where you are going before you go (directions)
  • Set good examples for your children (future drivers)

Many phone manufactures not have added a function that you can turn on that disables your phone while your car is moving. Also many insurance companies have apps for your phone that also disable your phone while the car is in motion. When someone calls the phone they are given messages that while you are driving the phone is not receiving calls or messages. That the driver will be notified of your call or message when the car has stopped.

Distracted driver is something that is preventable.

In a recent accident in Clearwater a distracted driver hit a pedestrian and left the pedestrian critically injured. There driver stated that they looked at the phone to change the music selection and that is when they struck the pedestrian.

Distracted driving accounts for 25% of al motor vehicles crash fatalities. 58% of all teen creates are directly related to distracted driving. Distracted driving is commonly referred to as the “new drunk Driving”. Texting while driving is 6 times more likely to cause an accident than driving under the influence of alcohol is. While the number of drinking and driving fatalities has decreased in teens, the number of traffic fatalities in the age group has not, much attributed to distract driving.  The CDC reports that teens who reported frequent texting while driving also proved to be more likely to ride with a driver who’d been drinking, more likely to drink and drive, and less likely to wear a seatbelt. Over 80% of drivers admit to blatantly hazardous behavior while driving, such as changing clothes, steering with a foot, painting nails, or even shaving. Distracted driving is seen as a tricky problem as it’s a temporary one that is hard to proactively predict and catch. 80% of car crashes are attributed to a driver being distracted or not paying attention. Sending or reading a text causes drivers, on average, to take their eyes off the road for 5 seconds. When driving at 55 miles per hour, that means that drivers travel approximately the length of a football field with their eyes closed. 82% of American teens have a cell phone. 52% of these teens note that they talk on the phone while driving and 32% text on the road.

Contact Us for Your Free Consultation

Only an experienced attorney will be able to evaluate your situation and determine whether you have grounds for a lawsuit. To find out whether you can take legal action, contact us today by completing our free case evaluation form.

If you’ve been in an accident and want a free consultation with a highly rated attorney, contact us.

Tampa Attorney Martin J. Hernandez Can Help if you have been injured by a distracted driver

Attorney Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez, LLC in Tampa provides legal representation for families in auto accident injury and wrongful death cases. Our Tampa personal injury attorneys welcome the opportunity to interview with you and your loved ones. We invite you to review our recent results from settlements to trial verdicts. Our qualifications and background are available to you as well. Our Tampa Attorneys Martin Hernandez and Daniel Fernandez are bilingual as well.  Just call us at 813-229-5353 for your free consultation.

The Tampa personal injury lawyers of Fernandez & Hernandez, serve Florida communities including Tampa, Brandon, Carrollwood, Westchase, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Pasco, Pinellas, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Lakeland, Plant City, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, Dover, Valrico, Lutz, Lakeland and many other neighborhoods in Tampa Bay area. Contact an Experienced Tampa Auto Accident Attorney from Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

If you have been involved in an Auto Accident in the Tampa Bay area, call Tampa personal injury lawyer Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez for a free consultation now.  We recommend also reading his reviews on Google Reviews, Avvo and Yelp.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: www.InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

#GetLawyeredUpNow #DUI #Tampa #Attorney #Lawyer #Accident #Injury #Truck

What to Do After a Multi-Car Wreck or Multiple Car Accident?

What to Do After a Multi-Car Wreck or Multiple Car Accident?

So 3 more cars were involved in an accident.  What you do soon after a multiple car accident will determine how successful you will be in your outcome. Determining liability can be difficult enough when there are two cars involved; however, when multiple vehicles are involved the situation can become even more complex. A vehicle may only hit another vehicle because they themselves were impacted from behind, which commonly occurs in multi-car pile-ups.

What to do in a multiple car accident. Photo of a car accidentUltimately, who is liable for a crash will be determined on a case-by-case basis, either by the insurance companies or by a court. However, there are some general principles that can help you determine your legal rights in multiple vehicle accident situations. To determine fault, the accident investigator will review the police report and take with the police office that investigated the accident.

The driver of the car that rear-ends a leading vehicle will almost always be considered at least partially negligent. Every driver has a duty to follow other vehicles at a safe distance. The reason for this is because car drivers sometimes suddenly, and unexpectedly, slow down or come to a stop — to avoid a hazard in the road, for example, or simply because of traffic congestion. You are expected to have enough distance between you and the car in front of you to prevent a collision if such an unanticipated stop becomes necessary

Common Causes of Multi-Car Accidents

Driver error is almost always at play in car accidents, but these contributing factors are especially common in multi-vehicle crashes:

Weather: Bad weather conditions often result in low visibility and slippery roads. Snow, ice, rain, and fog are just some of the conditions that can quickly turn an otherwise safe road into a hazardous one.

Speeding: Driving fast is the leading cause of motor vehicle accidents in the United States. At high speed, one wrong turn of the wheel can set off a chain reaction of bent steel, broken glass, and serious injuries.

Falling Asleep: When a driver falls asleep, even for a split second, there’s no one driving the car. It only takes a second for a driverless car to drift into another lane, careen off the road, or plow into the car in front.

Intoxication: Drivers under the influence aren’t just the stereotypical drunk driver. DUI can include the use of prescription medications and illicit drugs, as well as alcohol.

Cell Phones: No list of causes for multi-vehicle accidents is complete without including cell phones. Talking, texting, taking photos, and checking email are some of the leading causes of collisions. Distracted drivers are dangerous drivers.

Police Chases: High-speed police chases often cause collisions. Although many cities now restrict police chases to crimes involving serious felonies, there are still instances of officers or suspects losing control of their vehicles during a chase.

Other Distractions: Loud music, conversations with passengers, reading maps, eating, putting on makeup, and general boredom or inattention can also lead to accidents.

What to do if you are in a Multi-Vehicle Car Wreck

Anytime you are in a multi-vehicle car wreck, you should:

  • Assess injuries and call an ambulance if needed,
  • Call the police and request the come make a police report,
  • Take a PICTURE! Photograph the vehicles and scene so that the order or impacts may be determined later by an accident, expert if necessary,
  • Move to a safe area if possible so you do not get hit again,
  • Do not give any recorded statements to adjusters,
  • Call your own insurance and report the collision,
  • Call a car accident lawyer for advice.

The best thing you can do to protect yourself is to purchase coverage to protect you and the people in your vehicle.  As previously stated, obtaining Underinsured Motorist coverage may be your only saving grace is multiple parties are fighting for the small pot of money.  Your own passenger can sue you for damages if you cause the collision in addition to other drivers. So, you need higher liability insurance limits to protect you from this. Second, raising your PIP and underinsured motorist coverage limits can afford you more protection for when someone else causes a multi-car accident and does not carry enough coverage.  Talk to your insurance agent before you get in a wreck to get these protections. Afterwards is too late.

Attorney Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez, LLC in Tampa provides legal representation for families in auto accident injury and wrongful death cases. Our Tampa personal injury attorneys welcome the opportunity to interview with you and your loved ones. We invite you to review our recent results from settlements to trial verdicts. Our qualifications and background are available to you as well. Our Tampa Attorneys Martin Hernandez and Daniel Fernandez are bilingual as well.  Just call us at 813-229-5353 for your free consultation.

The Tampa personal injury lawyers of Fernandez & Hernandez, serve Florida communities including Tampa, Brandon, Carrollwood, Westchase, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Pasco, Pinellas, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Lakeland, Plant City, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, Dover, Valrico, Lutz, Lakeland and many other neighborhoods in Tampa Bay area. Contact an Experienced Tampa Auto Accident Attorney from Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

If you have been involved in an Auto Accident in the Tampa Bay area, call Tampa personal injury lawyer Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez for a free consultation now.  We recommend also reading his reviews on Google Reviews, Avvo and Yelp.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: www.InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

#GetLawyeredUpNow #DUI #Tampa #Attorney #Lawyer #Accident #Injury #Truck #Motorcycle

Por qué necesitas un abogado después de un accidente de coche de Tampa?

Por qué necesitas un abogado después de un accidente de coche de Tampa?

Muy simple. Los abogados conocen las reglas y leyes con el fin de proteger a nuestros clientes de ser víctimas o invadidos por otros que conocen las reglas. Contratar a un abogado no sólo es proactivo, sino que también es protector. Simplemente pon, no lo hagas tú mismo. Contrata a un abogado.

El tiempo es todo. Después de un accidente de auto, cuándo es el mejor momento para conseguir un abogado?

Ahora es el mejor momento para conseguir un abogado del accidente de Tampa. Siempre recomendamos tan poco después del accidente como se puede conseguir un abogado. Las compañías de seguros ya están trabajando duro para protegerse a sí mismas y a sus asegurados. No deberías?

Los accidentes de auto son un gran dolor. Tanto literal como figuradamente. Todo al respecto. De ser herido o de perder el uso de su coche. Llegar a tampa bay sin un coche es realmente un dolor.

Una de las cosas más lejanas de tu mente podría ser la compra de un abogado, pero un abogado puede ayudarte a recuperar dinero por tu propiedad dañada o destruida, tus gastos médicos, y tal vez incluso los honorarios legales de tu abogado. Cuanto antes hable con un abogado cualificado, más probable es que proteja sus derechos y obtenga la ayuda que necesita.

Tienes una vida y tienes que vivirla. Es muy probable que tengas un trabajo, facturas para pagar, o una familia para tomar la comida. Todo el mundo tiene responsabilidades, así que cuando estás herido por la conducción de otra persona, no deberías tener que asumir la responsabilidad de manejar ese caso por tu cuenta. No te cuesta nada tener a un abogado entrenado y calificado para manejar todos los aspectos de tu caso de accidente de coche. Todo lo que deberías preocuparte es tratar tus heridas y manejar tus responsabilidades. Deja que un abogado del accidente de coche maneje todo lo demás.

Técnicamente, usted puede presentar una reclamación de lesiones personales contra una compañía de seguros por usted mismo. Algunas personas eligen esta ruta cuando sólo han sufrido lesiones leves y tienen tiempo para investigar el proceso de las reclamaciones legales. Además, saltarse a un abogado te salvará algo de dinero en honorarios legales.

Sin embargo, un abogado de accidentes, especialmente un abogado de lesiones personales, puede ayudarte a ir contra las grandes compañías de seguros de auto y su equipo de abogados y tasadores. Su abogado ya conoce las leyes de lesiones personales y las reglas de procedimiento y puede manejar con eficacia todo el trabajo de campo para usted. Él o ella actuará como su abogado a lo largo de todo el caso.

Debido a que los abogados y tasadores de una compañía de seguros tienen el conocimiento de reducir la compensación e incluso negar la reclamación por completo, contratar a un abogado de accidentes para usted es la mejor opción para las personas que:

  • Lesiones sufridas.
  • Facturas Médicas.
  • Pérdida experimentada de salarios debido a sus lesiones.

Es importante señalar que no todas las empresas de derecho de lesiones personales son las mismas. De hecho, muchas de las empresas de publicidad más grandes son poco más que un molino. Una fábrica de asentamientos es una empresa que se basa en la publicidad pesada como el alma de su negocio y apenas litigar sus casos. Estas empresas no dependen de los clientes actuales o antiguos para remitir los casos a través de la boca de boca y, por lo tanto, pueden permitirse correr todos los accidentes de auto a través de la ” Fábrica de asentamientos.” no lo hacemos.

Nuestra firma sólo quiere que seas nuestro cliente una vez. Sin embargo, queremos que todos ustedes sepan que vienen a nuestra firma si necesitan un abogado.

El abogado de Tampa, Martin J. Hernandez El Abogado Martin J. Hernández de Fernandez & Hernandez, llc en tampa proporciona representación legal para las familias en lesiones por accidente de auto y casos de muerte ilícitos. Nuestros abogados de lesiones personales de tampa dan la bienvenida a la oportunidad de entrevistar a usted y a sus seres queridos. Le invitamos a revisar nuestros resultados recientes de los asentamientos a los veredictos de juicio. Nuestras calificaciones y antecedentes también están disponibles para usted. Nuestros abogados de Tampa Martin Hernandez y Daniel Fernandez son bilingües también. Sólo llama a las 813-229-5353 para tu consulta gratuita.

Los Abogados de la lesión personal de Tampa de Fernández & Hernández, sirven a las comunidades de florida incluyendo tampa, Brandon, carolwood, westchase, riverview, terraza del templo, Pasco, pinellas, ST. San Petersburgo, Clearwater, lakeland, ciudad de las plantas, ruskin, playa Apolo, Dover, Valencia, lutz, lakeland y muchos otros barrios en la zona de tampa bay. Contacte con un experimentado abogado de tampa auto accidente de la ley Fernández & Hernández.

Si usted ha estado involucrado en un accidente de auto en el área de tampa bay, llame al abogado de lesiones personales de Tampa Martin J. Hernandez de Fernandez & Hernandez para una consulta gratis ahora. También recomendamos leer sus comentarios sobre las críticas de Google, avvo y yelp.

Llama al abogado de lesiones personales de Tampa, Martin J. Hernandez de Fernandez & Hernandez al 813-229-5353 o leer más en: www.InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com #GetLawyeredUpNow #DUI #Tampa #Attorney #Lawyer #Accident #Injury #Truck #Hispano

How to Deal with Car Insurance After an Accident

How to Deal with Car Insurance After an Accident

When you are in a car accident are you putting your faith with the insurance company? The insurance company is betting against you each and every month. Their goal is to make money and that is the bottom line. No matter what their slogan is. The priority for them is to make a profit and keep the losses to a minimum.  Remember, insurance companies are in the risk business and they don’t lose.

Florida is a no fault state as it relates to car liability insurance. The insurance most people carry is Personal Injury protection (PIP) for $10,000 is the minimum under Florida Statute § 627.736. This covers injuries that where caused by the accident no matter who is at fault, but does not cover any damage. In an accident where someone has been hurt you will be dealing with an insurance company.

What to Expect from an insurance company after an accident. Photo of Winnie the Pooh reading a piece of paper.

Here are some helpful things to keep in mind when dealing with your insurance company:

The first estimate that the insurance company gives you. You should turn it down. They will try to have you accept the estimate from their adjuster which tends to be slightly lower. An example if this was a client was offered $30 to replace a radio. When questioned the insurance company said it was used and upon further questioning they admitted that the radio that the got the quote for did not work. Make sure that you stand up for your rights and if needed consult an attorney to seek assistance in defending your rights.

Don’t sign any releases or waivers of any kind until you obtain legal advice. A bad financial situation after a major loss may make it seem necessary for you to accept a premature, inadequate settlement from your insurer. But you may remember something that was lost in the accident after you have signed a release as to payment for your personal property inventory or other claims. For these reasons, it is advisable to consult an attorney before signing a release or waiver. Be sure to read the fine print on any payment from the insurance company.

It is not advisable to give any recorded or written statements to your insurer until you are sure you understand your coverage. Remember you are not required to allow the insurance company to record your telephone conversation. If you have doubts, do consult an attorney.

Understand the difference between replacement coverage and depreciated or actual cash value. If your policy provides replacement coverage, don’t settle a personal property loss for “actual cash value.” You may be required to replace the lost items before getting your full reimbursement if you have replacement cost coverage.

Be careful when accept any check that says “final payment” unless you are ready to do so. By accepting and cashing this check you are accepting that this is your final payment. You will not be entitled to further claims for this accident.

Be mindful of time limit set forth by your policy. May policies have a set time frame of when you are allowed to claim losses? Be sure you comply with this requirement unless you obtain a written waiver from your insurance company. Most insurance companies have policies that have you being limited to one calendar year from the date of the accident in which to bring a legal action if your claim has not been adjusted fairly. If your case is getting closet the time limits of policy you should consult an attorney.  A failure to do so could result in the loss of your right to sue.

Take pictures, if possible, of damage to your vehicle, the accident scene, and your injuries. Make sure to do this at the scene right after the accident if you are able to do so. If you are unable to take pictures have a family member or a friend take them for you.

Take and keep detailed notes of all conversations with insurance company representatives, and get names, phone numbers, and job titles of people you speak with, including their supervisor’s name. The dated and time of these conversations should also be noted. The more accurate your recoded keeping the smother the prices will go for you.

Things to remember if the cost to repair your vehicle exceeds 80% of its cash value, it is declared a total loss. If the cost of repair is less than 80% of the cash value of the vehicle, you are entitled to the cost of repair, plus downtime. Downtime on a drivable vehicle is reasonable rental value for the time it reasonably takes to make repairs. Downtime on a non-drivable vehicle is reasonable rental value from the date of accident until repairs are completed. Also, you can only get downtime from your own insurance company if you purchased coverage for a rental vehicle. In downtime claims against your own insurance company, you are reimbursed, up to your policy limits, for the cost of a vehicle you have rented.

Your insurance company will not select a doctor for you. You have the right to go to any licensed doctor in your state. Does not delay in seeking medical assistance for any injury that you have sustained do to a car accident? The state law states that you have fourteen day to seek medical treatment after your accident. Injuries do not always shows at the first moments after the accident.

Don’t forget that you have a contract with your insurer. Your insurer has a legal obligation to provide the coverage it promised to you. Be insistent about enforcing that obligation.

In some cases, you might consider bringing in the counsel of an attorney who specializes in accident claims. They may be able to expedite the process.  Frankly, the best way to handle an insurance company is to hire a qualified attorney.

Tampa Attorney Martin J. Hernandez

Attorney Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez, LLC in Tampa provides legal representation for families in auto accident injury and wrongful death cases. Our Tampa personal injury attorneys welcome the opportunity to interview with you and your loved ones. We invite you to review our recent results from settlements to trial verdicts. Our qualifications and background are available to you as well. Our Tampa Attorneys Martin Hernandez and Daniel Fernandez are bilingual as well.  Just call us at 813-229-5353 for your free consultation.

The Tampa personal injury lawyers of Fernandez & Hernandez, serve Florida communities including Tampa, Brandon, Carrollwood, Westchase, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Pasco, Pinellas, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Lakeland, Plant City, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, Dover, Valrico, Lutz, Lakeland and many other neighborhoods in Tampa Bay area. Contact an Experienced Tampa Auto Accident Attorney from Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

If you have been involved in an Auto Accident in the Tampa Bay area, call Tampa personal injury lawyer Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez for a free consultation now.  We recommend also reading his reviews on Google Reviews, Avvo and Yelp.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353 or read more at: www.InjuryLawyersOfTampa.com

#GetLawyeredUpNow #DUI #Tampa #Attorney #Lawyer #Accident #Injury #Truck

Impaired Driver

Impaired Driver

“The common denominator in these wrong-way crashes is an impaired driver. Every time.” – Larry Coggins of MADD West Central Florida

Our recent spate of high profile, wrong-way crashes is reminiscent of the series of head-on collisions in 2014 that killed 11 people. Those accidents also all involved impaired drivers.

But does Tampa Bay have the most drunk drivers?

Interestingly, the answer maybe yes. Pinellas and Hillsborough counties are the worst in Florida when it comes to impaired driving. Statistically, while Florida’s 3 year average of alcohol confirmed average is 5,468 per year, there has been a downward trend of 5.41% per year.  Hillsborough had an average of 528 crashes every year from 2014-2016. Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties averaged far fewer. Pinellas County had 355 (3rd place behind Miami-Dade). If you added Hillsborough and Pinellas together, we have had more alcohol related crashes than all of South Florida.

Drunk Driving Accident - Photo of a car accident with a bottle of alcohol.

But is lack of enforcement the problem? Short answer, no.

Hillsborough and Pinellas County together arrested more impaired drivers than the heavily populated counties of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach combined!  The only other answer is the mind set of those in Tampa and Hillsborough County.

“Drinking and driving in the Tampa Bay area is a public health epidemic.” – Larry Coggins.

Florida, a driver is presumed legally intoxicated if they have a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or higher. However, even a small amount of drugs or alcohol can impair a person’s ability to drive safely. For example, under Florida law it is up to a jury to determine if you are impaired (factual question) if your blood alcohol content is between a .05 and .08, but above a .08 you are presumed impaired.

Even if the drunk driver avoids criminal prosecution, introducing evidence of the other driver’s alcohol use can have an effect on a civil personal injury case. Juries don’t like it when people drink and drive, and that can be a factor in determining how much compensation they award to the victim. Our firm predominantly hires former prosecutors and public defenders because they know how to try cases and pursue drunk drivers.

The Effect of Alcohol on Drivers

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, even a small amount of alcohol can affect a driver’s vigilance, perception, visual function and judgment. To prove that alcohol was a factor in causing the accident, our attorneys will need to establish that the driver’s intoxication had an effect on his or her ability to operate a motor vehicle safely.

If you have been injured in an alcohol-related accident, contact our auto accident lawyers for a free initial consultation about your rights and options. Ask us what type of compensation you could receive.  At Fernandez and Hernandez, our DUI accident attorneys represent victims of impaired drivers in Tampa and other communities in Florida.  Our lawyers can interview the police officer to introduce his or her observations as evidence in your case, even if the driver’s BAC was lower than .08 percent.  If the officer testifies that the driver weaved in traffic or showed other signs of intoxication, that evidence can be compelling even if the driver was not convicted of drunk driving.

Tampa Attorney Martin J. Hernandez

Attorney Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez, LLC in Tampa provides legal representation for families in auto accident injury and wrongful death cases. Our Tampa personal injury attorneys welcome the opportunity to interview with you and your loved ones. We invite you to review our recent results from settlements to trial verdicts. Our qualifications and background are available to you as well. Our Tampa Attorneys Martin Hernandez and Daniel Fernandez are bilingual as well.  Just call us at 813-229-5353 for your free consultation.

The Tampa personal injury lawyers of Fernandez & Hernandez, serve Florida communities including Tampa, Brandon, Carrollwood, Westchase, Riverview, Temple Terrace, Pasco, Pinellas, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Lakeland, Plant City, Ruskin, Apollo Beach, Dover, Valrico, Lutz, Lakeland and many other neighborhoods in Tampa Bay area. Contact an Experienced Tampa Auto Accident Attorney from Fernandez & Hernandez Law.

If you have been involved in an Auto Accident in the Tampa Bay area, call Tampa personal injury lawyer Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez for a free consultation now.  We recommend also reading his reviews on Google Reviews, Avvo and Yelp.

Call Tampa Personal Injury Attorney, Martin J. Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez at 813-229-5353

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