Driver distraction is on the rise in Florida—and showing no signs of slowing. According to certain studies, over 50,000 distracted driving accidents in Florida in 2017, making our state the second worst one for distracted driving incidents.
Distracted driving accidents can result in serious injuries. If you were hit by a distracted driver, whether it was someone texting while driving or someone who was simply not paying attention, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries. Contact the distracted driving accident attorneys at The Fran Haasch Law Group to learn more about your legal rights.
Types of Distracted Driving
When most people think of distracted driving, they think of a driver looking down, reading or sending a text, or reaching for something in the backseat. While all of these are considered distracted driving, not all distracted driving is quite so blatant.
There are three main types of distracted driving:
This tends to be the most commonly thought of as distracted driving. Visual distraction occurs any time a driver looks away from the road. This can include turning around to help a child in the backseat, looking down at a cell phone, or reading a GPS device.
Manual distraction occurs when a driver removes one or both hands from the steering wheel while driving. This includes turning the radio station, holding a cell phone, applying makeup, or eating while driving.
This is typically one of the more difficult types of distracted driving to prove, as the driver does not always show physical signs of distraction, yet they are mentally distracted from driving. Cognitive distraction can include things like daydreaming or simply not paying attention.
When distracted drivers cause an auto accident, they are acting negligently. If a negligent driver injures you, you can take legal action to hold them accountable and recover compensation for your medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Proving Liability in Distracted Driving Car Accidents
To prove that a distracted driver was at fault for your injuries, you will need to show that the driver was engaged in some activity that took their attention away from the road. This can be difficult to do if you were not in the car with the driver at the time of the accident.
However, there may be witnesses who saw the driver using their cell phone or engaging in distracted behavior before the accident. In addition, the police report from the accident may also mention whether or not the driver was distracted at the time of the collision.
Florida Distracted Driving Laws That May Influence Your Personal Injury Lawsuit
Statute of Limitations in Florida Distracted Driving Accident Cases
If you plan on filing a personal injury claim for your injuries, you need to be aware of the statute of limitations. In Florida, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years from the accident date. This means that you have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver.
Texting While Driving Law
There are many forms of distracted driving, but texting/cell phone use while driving ranks high on the list. Florida has the 2nd highest-ranking for careless cellphone use, resulting in automobile accidents in the country. In 2019, texting-and-driving became a primary offense, allowing law enforcement officers to issue tickets to people caught texting while driving. Drivers are also not allowed to use a handheld device in school and work zones.
Florida’s Modified Comparative Fault Doctrine for Distracted Driving Accidents
Under Florida’s comparative fault doctrine, you can still recover damages even if you are partially at fault for the accident, as long as you aren’t more than 50% at fault.. However, your damages will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if you are found to be 20% at fault for the accident, you will recover 80% of the damages. If you are found to be 50.1% at fault for your injuries, you will not receive any compensation.
Should I Contact a Lawyer for a Distracted Driving Accident?
Yes, you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible if you have been injured in a distracted driving accident. An experienced lawyer can help you investigate the accident and gather evidence to support your claim. In addition, a lawyer can also negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf and help you recover the full amount of compensation that you are entitled to.
What Compensation Will a Distracted Driving Claim Cover?
If you can prove that a distracted driver was at fault for your accident, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries. This can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. An experienced attorney will be able to help you determine what types of compensation you may be eligible to receive.
What The Fran Haasch Law Group Can Do For You
At The Fran Haasch Law Group, we focus on helping you and your family recover. We pursue personal injury lawsuits, and wrongful death claims to obtain full compensation for damages such as pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost earnings, property damage, and more.
With over 21 years of experience, we draw on constant medical research to help clients recover after being injured in motor vehicle accidents in Tampa Bay and the surrounding areas. Founding personal injury attorney, Fran Haasch, is a lifetime member of the Multimillion Dollar Advocates Forum and a member of the American Association for Justice, the Florida Justice Association, and the Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association.
Our attorneys are skilled and experienced litigators. We are not afraid to take your lawsuit to trial if necessary. No matter how complicated your case, our firm is here to help you navigate the legal process from start to finish.
We Get You the Compensation You Deserve
At The Fran Haasch Law Group, we understand that no amount of financial recovery can undo what you have been through. However, a fair settlement or jury verdict can ease the financial burden of unexpected medical bills, lost income, and other economic and non-economic damages associated with your accident.
We have obtained multi-million-dollar jury verdicts and settlements in cases involving auto accidents, as well as claims concerning wrongful death and catastrophic injuries.
Here are a few of our auto accident case results:
- $1.8 million for our client in Pinellas County who was injured in an auto accident
- $1.8 million for a 33-year-old female client in Hillsborough County who was lawfully stopped for a left-turning vehicle ahead when she was rear-ended by the defendant vehicle, which was then rear-ended by the vehicle behind it, causing the client to feel two impacts. This resulted in multiple back surgeries and an infection which caused the client to be hospitalized several times.
- $1.6 million for a 25-year-old female passenger on a motorcycle when the defendant cut across the client’s path. The client was thrown over 200 feet from the motorcycle. The accident resulted in a fractured leg, broken finger, back surgery, and many other injuries.
- $1.55 million for a 46-year old male in Pasco County who was stopped at a red light on U.S. Highway 19 in Pasco County and was rear-ended by the defendant at a high rate of speed.
- $1.35 million for a client in Pasco County. The defendant turned left in front of our client, causing the client’s vehicle to flip and resulting in many injuries.
- $1.34 million for a 69-year-old male client in Orange County who was in the left turn lane when the defendant came across his pathway while attempting to turn and collided with the client. The accident resulted in multiple severe injuries, including a fractured pelvis, broken ribs, punctured lung, a broken arm that required surgery, and several lacerations.
- $1.3 million for a 33-year-old female client in Pinellas County who was rear-ended while stopped at a traffic light with her three children in the car with her. The accident resulted in multiple surgeries and complications.
- $1.025 for our client injured in a car accident in Hillsborough County.
- $1.0 million for a client in Hillsborough County rear-ended in stop-and-go traffic on the interstate.
Contact a Distracted Driving Accidents Lawyer
At The Fran Haasch Law Group, we are committed to fighting for your fair recovery. We strive to help injured individuals and the loved ones of those wrongfully killed, secure the full, fair recovery they are owed. We offer dedicated legal representation for car accident victims and victims of bicycle, rideshare, and semi-truck accidents.
If you feel you have been the victim of a car accident through no fault of your own. Our attorneys are prepared to help you navigate the legal process and work toward securing the maximum compensation you are owed. Call (727) 637-0100 or contact us online to get started on receiving maximum compensation for your personal injury case.