What to Do if You Are In a Miami Car Accident While Pregnant
Call (800) 863-5312 for a FREE CONSULTATION WITH A Miami car accident lawyer if you have been in a car accident while pregnant.
Pregnancy undoubtably changes your life: it adds another person for whom you are solely responsible. This can be an exciting and somewhat stressful time as you prepare for this new person to enter the world. No one wants to be in a car accident, especially not someone who is pregnant.
Unfortunately, pregnancy does not decrease the likelihood that you could find yourself in a car wreck. Miami-Dade County has been reported as having the most traffic crashes in the state, with more than twice the number of annual accidents compared to the next county on the list.
What should I do if I was in a car accident while pregnant?
The first thing you should do after a car accident is ensure the safety of both you and your unborn child. Seek professional medical assistance as soon as possible. No matter how minimal the damage is to you or your car, there could be injuries to the baby that you cannot detect unless you visit your doctor.
At the Time of the Accident
Tell the Responders
Let the first responders to the scene of the accident know immediately that you are pregnant. This way, they can anticipate the reaction to any distress that you or the unborn child may experience at the accident site by monitoring both of you closely.
Tell Your Doctor
Depending on the seriousness of the accident, you should either proceed from the location of the accident to the hospital or schedule the soonest possible appointment with a doctor. The first responders should be able to detect any immediate injuries that you or your baby face, and they should be able to help you know where to go from there.
After the Accident
Keep in Touch
Stay in contact with a doctor who knows that you were pregnant while in a car accident. Continue to attend every appointment that your doctor recommends. This will not only help to ensure that you and your unborn child stay safe and healthy, but it also strengthens the case your Miami car accident lawyer can make against the other drivers involved, helping you recover for both economic and non-economic damages as warranted.
After the child is born, keep going to your doctor appointments. Your baby may have underlying conditions as a result of the car accident that might not be immediately apparent; these could worsen over time.
Consider Hiring a Traffic Accident Lawyer in Miami
You may want to consider hiring a car accident lawyer in Miami. The legal process can be intimidating, but when you add the stress of pregnancy and the concerns for the safety of your child, it becomes even more painful. You will want to direct your attention to your own and your baby’s recovery, and it could be extremely difficult to do this while handling your claim by yourself, even if you happen to be a lawyer.
Should I contact a Miami Law Firm Near me?
You know the pain and suffering that you and your baby are going through more than anyone else, but that is not always sufficient to make a strong legal case for yourself. It is crucial to have someone with experience to ensure that your rights stay protected. If you choose to file a claim, you could be setting yourself up for negotiations with insurance companies and maybe even a court trial.
You may decide that it is best for you to contact a nearby Miami law firm, especially when you consider the following:
Miami Car accident lawyers can seek compensation for you
The goal of filing a claim is to receive compensation. An attorney from a Florida personal injury firm can use his or her expertise to find out whether you are likely to be compensated, what kind of compensation you could get, and how to negotiate to reach a settlement for you.
First, whether you are likely to be compensated for injuries will depend on the legal matter of fault. Next, the kind of compensation that you could receive will depend on the kind of damages you sustained. Finally, the manner of negotiation will depend on the strength of your claim, which can be affected by communication with the insurance companies.
Luckily, Florida is a no-fault insurance state, which means that your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance covers up to 80% of the medical expenses that you incur and up to 60% of your lost wages. It is a requirement in Florida that all drivers carry PIP insurance. You will need to file a claim against your own insurance company before you can file a claim against the at-fault driver.
In Florida, you can still file a claim against the other parties involved in an accident if you are partially at fault. Florida uses a pure comparative fault system, which means that a jury can reduce the amount of compensation that you are entitled to based on the percentage of fault that is yours. For example, if your total compensation should be $10,000 but you were 30 percent at fault, then you will receive $7,000. A Florida personal injury firm can work with you to determine a ballpark estimate for your percentage of the fault.
Kinds of Compensation
Two of the most commonly awarded categories of compensation in personal injury cases are economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages describe the compensation for the kinds of injuries that are easy to quantify financially. It is relatively easy to determine how much money goes into medical bills, lost wages from missed work, and physical damage to your vehicle. It is more difficult to calculate non-economic damages, but a qualified car accident lawyer in Miami can help you with this.
Non-economic damages describe the pain and suffering that you experience as a result of the car crash, including emotional distress. The fact that you are pregnant at the time of the wreck should make it more likely for you to recover non-economic damages. Your fear and worry as a parent continue from the time of the accident to long after the birth of the child. Insurance companies must take that into consideration as they evaluate your claim. A lawyer from a nearby Miami law firm can decide how to best characterize your pain and suffering and strengthen your claim.
When to File Your Claim
With the added complications of the pregnancy, it can be difficult to know when to file your claim. Sometimes it is best to wait for the child to be born and grow a bit so that you have a better grasp of what the medical expenses will really be. The wait-and-see approach will allow you to determine if there are any immediate or permanent adverse effects to the child, especially for babies born prematurely. The child’s medical bills could be the largest financial harm you suffer.
Once you have filed against your insurance company, it is possible for you to proceed against at-fault drivers who took part in the accident. This allows you to pursue damages that you incurred past your PIP insurance cap. You can hire an accident lawyer in Miami to ensure that you file in a timely manner within Florida’s four-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims.
This relatively long statute of limitations means that you have four years starting on the day of the accident to file a claim, which can be beneficial to you if you use the wait-and-see approach to file your claim. It will also be helpful for you to use a Florida personal injury firm to continue to meet court-appointed deadlines and to have a lawyer for the evidence-gathering element of your case.
Communicating with Insurance Companies
Since most cases can be settled without going to trial, negotiation might be the most important stage of your claim. However, you may also need someone to advocate for you in front of a jury if your case is hotly contested. You will want the strongest case possible if this happens.
Since Florida is a no-fault insurance state, the communication with the insurance companies will probably be relatively easy at first. That being said, your lawyer will have a good chance at building a strong case for you if you or your baby experience permanent injuries due to a premature birth, for example. An attorney can help make sure that the insurance companies involved do not use your own words against you to weaken your claim.
Our Florida Personal Injury Firm is here for you
The Zinda Law Group attorneys have the experience, skill, and compassion to help you through this experience that is not only physically difficult but also emotionally challenging. We know that being the victim of a car crash is difficult enough, and that pregnancy makes it infinitely more stressful. Our Miami car accident lawyers have helped pregnant women like you, and we can advocate for you and your child to try to get you the result you deserve.
If you or a loved one was pregnant while in a car accident, you can contact the experienced attorneys at our Miami law firm near you. Call (800) 863-5312 for a free case evaluation to find out how we can help you move forward. No need to worry if we do not win your case; this is because we offer all of our clients a No Win, No Fee Guarantee. If we do not win, you do not pay.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.