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Every day, someone in St. Petersburg, FL gets hurt at the hands of another. Whether the injury occurs through willful action or neglect, victims should have a personal injury lawyer at their side. Personal injury attorneys encounter injuries stemming from various things including:
Nursing home abuse
Slip and fall
The injuries range from minor to severe. Sometimes victims are left facing several years of costly treatment. They may not even be able to work again. If you have been injuries because of someone else’s actions, you need a lawyer. Depending on the nature of the injury, you may be able to get compensation. A personal injury lawyer in St Petersburg, FL can help you seek damages for:
Pain and suffering
Naturally, the more severe your injuries, the higher your payout is likely to be. However, all personal injury cases center around negligence and it is no different in St. Petersburg, FL. You need to prove someone else was responsible for your injuries. Specifically, a negligence claim must establish:
The person allegedly responsible (defendant) owed a legal duty to the injured person (plaintiff) at the time
The defendant breached that duty by acting or failing to act in a certain way
The defendant’s actions or inaction caused the plaintiff’s injury
The plaintiff was harmed or injured because of the defendant’s actions
You will need to present evidence of each of these factors to support your claim. Personal injury lawyers know the law and how to do the necessary research. They also know how to fight a case out in court. When cases can be handled out of court, personal injury lawyers bring their negotiation skills to the fore. Reaching a settlement with an insurance company can be very difficult. Therefore, it often takes an experienced attorney to get compensation.
The Importance of Having an Experienced St Petersburg Personal Injury Lawyer on Your Side
Victims often think they can just submit a claim to an insurance company and get compensation. It is only when the claim is denied that they think of getting a personal injury lawyer. Regardless of the type of injury and its cause, it is beneficial to get an attorney as soon as possible. For example, if you’ve been in a car accident, you should call one of our attorneys from the scene. Based on our experience with cases in St. Petersburg, FL, we will advise you on how to proceed. We will tell you what you should and shouldn’t say and who you should or shouldn’t speak to. We will advise you to collect certain evidence from the scene if possible.
Similarly, if you suspect a loved one is being abused in a nursing home, we can help you. Instead of accusing workers of mistreating your elderly relative, bring your suspicions to us. We will do the necessary investigations and advise you on the next step. Situations such as these are delicate and emotions can run high. It is best to have an impartial third party intervene and look into the matter.
These are just two examples. However, it can be very difficult to handle any type of personal injury case on your own. If you have been injured, you should concentrate on your recovery. Let us handle the negotiations with insurance companies and the court cases, the appeals and the paperwork. There is a lot involved in proving negligence and the defendant will have a strong legal team of their side. They will want to get out of paying compensation. Whether the defendant is your employer, a property owner, or a driver, they will mount a strong defense. You don’t want to face their legal team alone.
What Warrants Legal Action for a Personal Injury Claim?
For a personal injury claim to be viable, it must result from someone being hurt after the negligent, reckless, or intentional conduct of another individual or entity. Not every personal injury claim is worthy of a legal proceeding seeking to recover damages. In many situations, a claim is filed with the insurance company for the liable party (which might be multiple insurance companies). More often than not, these claims are settled before going to court. Sometimes you have to let a jury hear your case and decide what happens. A settlement with the help of our personal injury attorneys might take place at any time during the claims process, up until when the jury hears the case.
Personal Injury Attorneys Near Me – Claims Legal Grounds
Negligence leads to most personal injury claims. Negligence implies that a person or an employer was obligated to act in a set way to another party but failed in that duty. The breach resulted in injuries to the other party. This is the most common St Petersburg personal injury action, which covers multiple classes of claims.
Learn How Our Personal Injury Attorneys can Get a Fair Settlement for Your Injury Claim
Personal injury claims could result from intentional misconduct by another person. This might happen when a person physically assaults another party or when someone is held against their will. If you suffer injuries because of these acts, most likely you have a viable personal injury case. Most other personal injury cases are filed as a result of liability only.
This is a legal theory that was enacted for activities of an ultra-hazardous nature, dog bite cases, and cases for product liability. In what is called a strict liability case, you don’t have to prove the defendant acted in a manner that was intentional or negligent, it is enough to show you were injured as a result of animal or dog that is in question.
Legal Elements Of A Negligence Claim
A St Petersburg negligence claim has four specific legal elements. To have success with your claim, you must establish all four elements based upon a set preponderance of the evidence. This determines that all the facts you are presenting for your case are accurate. This is a smaller burden, which makes it easier to prove that on those television criminal cases. On television, they use the legal standard of “beyond a reasonable doubt.” Using the “preponderance of evidence” benchmark, if it is 51% reasonable or likely that the facts presented in court are what accurately occurred, you have proven your case.
Duty of Care in St Petersburg, Florida
You must establish the defendant had a duty of care that was obligated to you in order to have a successful claim. This duty is based on the relationships between the two parties. As an example: (1) employers have an obligation to employees, (2) business owners or operators have obligations to clients and customers, (3) higher learning institutions and education directors are obligated to students and staff, and (4) caregivers are obligated to those they are providing care for.
By Florida law, everyone has their own specific duties that must be met; for example, we do are obligated to drive safely when operating a vehicle. Everyone is obligated to everyone else to act in a fair manner and not cause injuries to others, whenever possible.
Breach of Duty
After showing the defendant owed an obligation, you must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the other party failed to meet those obligations. Breach examples involve evidence, which depends on the specific circumstances. As an example, employers owe their employees an obligation of safe working conditions while doing their job. If a worker is hurt because a saw they must use didn’t get properly maintained, the employer has failed this duty.
Another example is that caregivers owe the elderly and disabled they care for the duty of care while providing their services. If you have an elderly or disabled relative in a rehab center who gets bedsores because the caregivers didn’t properly turn them enough, the duty of care has been broken.
After showing the other party owed an obligation for care and that duty was broken, you prove the negligent actions of the other party resulted in your injuries. You must be ready to show you wouldn’t have suffered the injuries if the other party didn’t act in a negligent manner.
The last element of a personal injury claim is showing you suffered damages. You must have actual injuries and losses to legally recover damages after all the three primary parts of the case have been proven. This means you must establish either bodily injury or property damage resulted so you can be compensated for the negligent acts of the other party.
Personal Injury Lawsuits & Strict Liability
There are some people who are expected to be more careful and attentive to public safety needs. This plays a role in liability for many St Petersburg personal injury cases. Someone or some company subjected to stricter liability might have much tougher legal standards to fight. You must prove the person or company did act in a negligent or careless manner in order to succeed with your claim. A prime example of the strict liability customary in St Petersburg is Florida’s dog bite laws. If a resident’s dog bites someone, the dog owner is responsible for the dog’s actions, so he or she is responsible for any damages suffered by the victim.
Type of Cases Our St Petersburg Personal Injury Attorneys Handle
At Burnetti, P.A., we take on a wide range of personal injury cases. If you believe someone else is at fault for your injuries, contact us to schedule a consultation. Our skilled attorneys have dealt with accidents of several types in St Petersburg, FL. We can work on your case as well. Our personal injury lawyers can negotiate with insurance companies in search of a settlement. When that doesn’t work, we are willing to fight them in court. If you would benefit from suing the defendant personally, we can lead the charge with that. Whatever, your legal needs following an injury, we can assist. Some of the cases we handle are outlined below but we are by no means limited to these.
The number of car accidents on Florida’s roads continues to be of concern. In 2017, 388, 032 crashes occurred. Injuries were recorded in 161, 218 of these crashes. However, 246, 285 total injuries were recorded. In that same year, 11,107 injuries occurred in Pinellas County, of which St. Petersburg is the largest city.
Car accidents are caused by a range of factors. However, common causes include:
These usually result in:
Car accidents are a leading cause of injury and the damage they cause is significant. Injuries vary from crash to crash but some injuries are more common than others. Head and back injuries are among the most serious. In high-speed collisions, both drivers and passengers can hit their heads against the window, steering wheel or dashboard. This can lead to a range of traumatic brain injuries.
Spinal cord injuries are the more serious back injuries. Victims may lose sensation in or control of their limbs or other body parts. More serious cases may result in paralysis. Herniated disk injuries are also common. While they are less severe than spinal cord or head injuries, they can still cause significant problems.
Neck and chest injuries, injuries to the limbs and extremities and cuts or bruises also occur frequently
Many elderly people are abused in the very facilities designed to care for them. More than 40 percent of elderly people in homes have reported abuse. About half of caregivers admit to abusing or neglecting their patients. Of course, not every patient or nursing home worker speaks up. This means the situation could be even worse than what is reported.
Nursing home abuse takes different forms. One common occurrence is neglect – when the staff doesn’t give patients proper care. This may be due to understaffing, overwork or poor training. Whatever the cause, caregivers can isolate patients or fail to give them adequate medication and meals. They may not have time to turn those who are bedridden or treat their wounds. Patients may suffer from malnutrition or dehydration.
Abuse can also be:
Sexual – This is unwanted physical or sexual contact, including that with a patient who is disoriented or medicated. It includes sexual assault, rape and taking photos of a sexual nature.
Physical – This refers to when a patient receives injuries, impairment or pain at someone else’s hands. It may be due to intentional actions or neglect. Physical abuse includes hitting, kicking and improper use of restraints.
Emotional – This type of abuse results in emotional pain and suffering. It can be both verbal and non-verbal and includes yelling, cursing, making threats or degrading the patient. Withholding personal belongings or ignoring the patient may also be emotional abuse.
In St. Petersburg and elsewhere in Florida, most employers are required to provide workers’ compensation insurance. It helps you get some form of income if you are injured at work and unable to perform your duties. How much you are entitled to depend on the extent of your injury. You do not need to prove that your employer was at fault for the injury. You just need to show you were injured at work.
Under workers’ comp, you can receive benefits for:
Temporary total disability
Temporary partial disability
The system may seem straightforward. However, there are several deadlines which must be met and restrictions which you should be aware of. You may also not agree with the doctor’s diagnosis of your condition. In addition, as with all insurance claims, sometimes workers’ comp claims get denied. If negotiation doesn’t work, you may have to file a lawsuit against the insurance company. Our personal injury attorneys in St. Petersburg, FL can help in any of these common instances. We can also assist with ensuring you provide all the relevant documentation at the outset.
Flying is one of the safest modes of transportation but accidents still occur, especially on private aircraft. Pilot error, faulty equipment, and inadequate maintenance can all lead to injury. In the event of a crash, there are not usually any survivors. Airplane accidents fall under aviation law. Therefore, to receive compensation for injury or the death of a loved one, you need to take specific steps. A personal injury attorney in St Petersburg, FL is well-placed to assist you.
When bicycles and other vehicles collide, the cyclist often suffers serious injuries. This is because there is little besides a helmet to protect them from the impact. They may receive head trauma, spinal injuries, bone fractures, and facial injuries. You will need to prove the driver’s negligence caused the accident. One of our bicycle accident attorneys in St Petersburg, FL can help with this.
Birth injuries refer to any type of impairment which is caused by a harmful event around the time of birth. It can be a small bruise or an injury so severe it leads to permanent disability. Some birth injuries are unavoidable during labor and delivery. However, others are due to mistakes by medical professionals.
Boats, cruise ships, and jet skis bring pleasure for many in St Petersburg, FL. Unfortunately, serious injuries can occur. These are due to collisions between watercraft, slips and falls, reckless operation of vessels and marine accidents, among others. Swimmers and divers may also be struck by boats. Don’t hesitate to contact our skilled boating accident lawyers – We can help you!
Brain injuries are one of the more serious outcomes of vehicle accidents or workplace injuries. They range from mild concussions to tissue damage. Many brain injuries result in the victim needing long-term care. Victims may experience memory loss, confusion, headaches, and personality changes. Since treatment can be very expensive, you should explore all avenues for compensation.
Burns are among the most expensive injuries to treat. They are also very traumatic for victims. They can occur following car accidents, chemical spills or workplace accidents. Depending on the severity of the injury, the victim may need years of treatment. They may not be able to work again and their quality of life could diminish. That is why is very crucial to contact an aggressive burn injury lawyer to fight for your rights.
Bus accidents can result in a wide range of injuries including whiplash, soft tissue injury, head trauma, and broken bones. Most buses don’t have passenger seatbelts or airbags so the chances of serious injury are higher. Buses are also more likely to be involved in tip or rollover accidents because of their size.
Construction sites are naturally dangerous places to work. When proper precautions aren’t taken, catastrophic accidents can occur. Falls, electric shocks, burns, chemical spills, and explosions are most common. Some victims even suffer brain injuries. Construction accidents can present legal challenges because multiple parties can often be held liable.
Sometimes medications which are supposed to help you turn out to be harmful. They may cause physical, psychological or emotional injury. The drug itself may be defective or it may have incomplete labels or insufficient warnings. Drug manufacturers, doctors, pharmacists, and distributors can all be held responsible. The lawyers at Burnetti, P.A. have vast experience dealing with defective drug cases.
Drunk Driving Accidents
Despite the many warnings about the dangers of drunk driving, it still occurs. The practice puts the lives of passengers, motorists and pedestrians at risk. Drunk drivers have poor judgment and impaired reflexes. They often speed and can’t slow down in time to avoid accidents. Sometimes they don’t even see pedestrians or other motorists until it is too late.
Emergency Room Error
Emergency rooms can get chaotic and sometimes mistakes happen. These mistakes by doctors, nurses and other staff members can have life-altering consequences. Personnel may miss signs of distress or fail to notice signs of heart attack or stroke. They may also administer the wrong medication or fail to diagnose a condition.
As everyone in Florida knows, hurricanes can flatten structures in mere minutes. It is precisely for this reason that homeowners purchase insurance. However, when the time comes for them to make a claim, the insurer denies it for one reason or another. This can make it very hard for families to get their lives back on track. Let us fight on your behalf against the hurricane insurance companies in Florida.
Insurance companies try really hard to avoid paying claims. Even when they agree to make a payment, it may be a lot less than you think you deserve. They can also delay payment for excessively long periods. The average person doesn’t have the time, energy or skills to fight an insurance company. That’s where our insurance dispute lawyers come in.
Most maritime accidents in Florida are due to the inexperience or inattention of boat operators. Dangerous practices like overcrowding, operating a boat while under the influence and operating at unsafe speeds lead to accidents. Less than 10 percent of maritime accidents result in death. More than half of the fatalities are due to capsizing or falls overboard.
Patients go to medical facilities to get healed but sometimes, they are harmed. When malpractice occurs, the patient may be left in an even worse condition. Medical malpractice can take the form of misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, surgical errors and foreign objects left in the body. Surgeons may also operate on the wrong body part.
Mesothelioma is a form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. It affects the lungs, heart, and abdomen. Treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation which can all be costly. The victim may not be able to continue working. exposure to Asbestos typically occurs at work but it can happen at home or in a public building.
Pedestrians are vulnerable to accidents and they often suffer serious injuries. They tend to be crossing the street legally when they are hit by motorists. This is because drivers often ignore traffic signs and the pedestrians’ right of way. Pedestrians have nothing to shield them from the impact of a car or a truck. Having the right pedestrian accident attorney on your side can benefit you for the rest of your life.
Property owners owe a duty of care to people who visit their premises. When they don’t take proper precautions, wet floors, defective electrical wiring, and poor construction can lead to injuries. Premises liability cases often stem from broken bones, burns, electric shock, head injuries, and neck injuries.
Product manufacturers and retailers can be held liable when a defective product harms a customer. Products can have design defects, manufacturing defects, or marketing defects. Everyone in the distribution chain can bear liability if a user gets injured. It can be difficult to know who exactly to pursue damages so the help of an attorney is invaluable.
Retirement Home Abuse
Abuse of the elderly in care facilities is usually the result of poor training, inadequate staff numbers or poor management. It can take the form of physical, emotional, financial or sexual abuse. It often manifests in unexplained injuries, bed sores, excessive use of restraints and dehydration.
This is one of the more devastating types of personal injury. Sexual abuse is usually defined as unwanted sexual contact including touching either under or through clothing. It includes forced oral sex and penetration. Sexual abuse has both physical and psychological effects on victims and recovery takes time.
Slip and Fall
Slips and falls are quite common and they can lead to serious injuries. In fact, falls are a leading cause of traumatic brain injury. While they can happen anywhere, slips and falls frequently occur in hotels, restaurants, and grocery stores. Many people also slip and fall on the job.
Social Security Disability
It is always a good idea to consult an attorney before filing for social security disability benefits. One of our social security lawyers in St Petersburg, FL can evaluate your case and assist with your application. Research shows that people who have a lawyer are more likely to get approved than those who don’t. Our attorneys can assist with the hearing and any appeals, if necessary.
Spinal Cord Injuries
These result from falls, vehicular accidents, assault, and blunt force trauma. Spinal cord injuries usually cause significant pain and reduced mobility. Sometimes the full effects of the injury aren’t felt until years later. The medical expenses can be overwhelming. If someone caused such an injury, they should have to pay.
Collisions with other trains, derailments, and collisions with pedestrians at railroad crossings can all occur. They can be due to conductor error, mechanical failure, negligent operators or even an object on the tracks. Inadequate maintenance or inspection can also lead to train accidents.
Delivery trucks and big rigs are especially dangerous for smaller vehicles. Truck accidents often result in severe injuries or fatalities. Even minor errors like failing to signal can have deadly results if an 18-wheeler is involved. Truck accidents are often due to driver fatigue, improper loading, improper maintenance, road conditions, or drunk driving.
Uber accidents can pose some legal challenges since drivers are independent contractors. The driver’s personal insurance provider will have to pay compensation if the driver was not active on the app. If they were available to pick up passengers, Uber offers supplemental liability insurance. If a passenger was in the vehicle, the company provide coverage of up to $1 million.
When an individual dies due to someone else’s negligence or reckless conduct, relatives can sue. Wrongful death lawsuits often follow a criminal trial. They can stem from a car accident, medical malpractice or workplace death. Families can seek compensation for medical and funeral expenses, loss of support and loss of services.
Contact a St. Petersburg Personal Injury Attorney Today for a Free Consultation
Don’t think you can’t get a lawyer because you can’t pay upfront. Call Burnetti, P.A. today and schedule your consultation. We will give you our professional advice on your case for free. If you choose to hire us, you will only pay when you receive a settlement. This means you can get preliminary advice at no cost.
Bring all the documentation and evidence relating to your case to the initial consultation. We will tell you whether we think you should pursue the issue further. We may suggest you enter into negotiations with an insurance company or take the matter the court. A resolution may be even simpler than you think but you won’t know until you consult us.
Whether you were the victim of a car accident, a slip & fall, or medical malpractice we can help you. In fact, we are ready to defend anyone who has suffered a personal injury through no fault of their own.
Contact Burnetti, P.A. now to discuss your case with a personal injury lawyer in St Petersburg, FL.