Preventable accidents and injuries are an unfortunate part of life here in St. Petersburg. When your injuries are caused by someone else’s negligence, you have the legal right to obtain compensation for all the losses they caused. Injury victims need to work with an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury lawyer to protect their legal rights.
The skilled injury attorneys at Nicoletti Walker Accident Injury Lawyers are committed to helping Florida injury victims get the compensation to which they are entitled under the law. We fight hard to protect your legal rights so you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
The more people and activities there are in a city, the more likely it is that accidents will occur. As you’re probably aware, St. Petersburg is a popular destination for both area residents and tourists. This means more traffic, which in turn leads to more motor vehicle accidents. Our thriving recreation scene also leads to slip and fall accidents, sports accidents, boating accidents, and other incidents that can result in serious injuries.
This is not to say that St. Petersburg is an injury hotspot. There is a reason it is popular for vacations and long-term residency—it is, after all, the fifth most populous city in the highly populated state of Florida. Southern Florida’s sunny weather facilitates a tourist season that can last all year long. A thriving downtown corridor draws workers to its high rise office buildings and art enthusiasts to our active art scene.
The St. Petersburg-Clearwater-Tampa area has also built up several professional sports franchises, including the Tampa Bay Rays, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the Tampa Bay Lightning. In addition, the area has many high-profile college sports programs at the University of South Florida, the University of Tampa, St. Leo University, and Eckerd College. These schools also bring many students, faculty, visiting professors, support staff, and visiting parents to St. Petersburg.
Many different accidents can result in serious injuries. It is important to understand what type of accident you have been involved in so you can hire an attorney who has experience with that type of case. It is also important to be aware of who is at fault for the accident, as this is the person or party who has a legal obligation to compensate you for your injuries.
Motor vehicle accidents are one of the most common causes of accident injuries in the St. Petersburg area. These accidents could involve trucks, cars, motorcycles, bicycles, electric scooters, or even pedestrians. An Uber, Lyft, or other rideshare vehicles could be involved in the accident. Motor vehicle accidents often cause serious injuries and significant property damage. This is why drivers are required to carry auto insurance with liability coverage.
To determine who must pay for an auto accident, the insurance companies determine who was at fault for causing it. Often, negligent drivers cause accidents, but there are circumstances where an auto manufacturer could be liable for selling a defective vehicle, or some other third party might be liable for the accident. It is important to work with an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury lawyer to determine what person or company has a legal obligation to compensate you for your car accident injuries.
Water recreation is an important part of life here in Southern Florida. Jet skiing, water skiing, wakeboarding, boating, and other water sports are a fun pastime, but serious accidents can occur when you are on the water. Victims who sustain injuries in boating accidents often have the right to sue the person or party responsible for their injuries. Examples of parties who may be liable for a boating accident include boat operators, marinas, boat owners, and boat manufacturers.
Cruise ship accidents can also cause a wide variety of injuries. You could be injured onboard in a slip and fall, or by food poisoning, or through medical malpractice caused by the ship’s doctor. You could also be injured through the captain’s negligence if he or she allows a collision to occur. Cruise lines are legally responsible for many of the injuries that occur on their vessels.
Landowners have a legal obligation to take reasonable steps to prevent injuries on their property, known as a duty of care. When the landowner is a retail owner that gets a financial benefit from inviting customers onto its property, this duty of care is at its highest. Many slip and fall accidents occur because of dangerous conditions that the owner negligently failed to correct.
A common example occurs in the produce section of a grocery store. If the store manager does not ensure that employees clean the area regularly, food can accumulate on the floor. Many customers have slipped on dropped produce and sustained serious injuries from the fall.
Private homeowners can also be held liable for dangerous conditions on their property. While they do not have to inspect their land and make it safe the way that commercial property owners do, they are still required to warn guests about any known dangers on the property. If a guest trips on an uneven stair or falls through a bad floorboard, the homeowner could be liable for the injuries under certain circumstances.
Older adults are one of the most vulnerable populations in society. This is why many states have enacted elder protection laws that impose stricter penalties for those who neglect older adults or who commit financial, physical, or sexual abuse upon them. Elder abuse is a particular problem here in Southern Florida. Because we are a popular retirement destination, we have a large population of older adults. We must be especially vigilant about protecting our older loved ones and those in our communities.
One of the most important things we can do to protect older adults is to hold abusers accountable for their conduct. Nursing facilities are often liable for neglect or abuse that is suffered by their residents at the hands of their employees. This is because an employer is liable for negligence committed by workers while on the job. Even if the actions are not within the scope of employment, the employer can still be held liable for allowing a thief to remain employed at the facility and exposing vulnerable residents to this risk.
Nursing facilities include hospitals, long term care centers, assisted living facilities, and any other facility that provides care to older adults. By holding these facilities accountable for abuse and neglect, other facilities must be more careful. This prevents other innocent victims from suffering the same types of harm.
Workplace accidents are consistently among the most common causes of accidental injury in the St. Petersburg area. Some jobs, such as those in construction and manufacturing, are known to carry risks of injury. But even jobs that you assume to be safe or low-risk can still expose workers to a significant risk of serious injury. If, for example, you are hit by a negligent driver while running an errand for your employer, this is considered a workplace accident. Any injury that you sustain in the scope and course of your employment is subject to worker’s compensation.
It is important to understand the difference between worker’s compensation and personal injury. The worker’s compensation system aims to get workers paid quickly. It does not require proof of fault—only that the injury occurred on the job. Unfortunately, however, workers’ compensation only has limited coverage. It pays for all medical expenses related to the injury and a portion of your lost wages.
To obtain compensation for all of your lost wages, pain and suffering, and other intangible losses, you would have to file a personal injury claim. In the example above of a car accident while running a work errand, the injured worker could sue the negligent driver for all of her pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and other losses.
Worker’s compensation coverage can get very complicated when a personal injury claim is also involved. There are also certain circumstances in which you must choose to file either a personal injury or workers’ compensation claim. This is why it is so important to consult with an experienced St. Petersburg personal injury lawyer who can help explain your legal rights and determine the best strategy for your case.
Defective products injure millions of people each year, and many seemingly safe products become extremely dangerous when manufacturers or retailers defectively design, manufacture, or market them. One of the most dangerous types of product liability occurs in vehicles. A defective car or truck can easily kill multiple victims in a single accident. This is why auto manufacturers will voluntarily pay to recall and repair vehicles rather than settle personal injury lawsuits resulting from accidents caused by the defect.
Vehicles are not the only consumer goods that are subject to recall the United States. Every year, government agencies issue hundreds of recalls of dangerous food and household goods. Products for children and babies are also frequently recalled because children cannot always avoid injuries that would be an obvious danger to an adult. Manufacturers of products for children are still liable for all injuries the product causes to a child—even if an adult would not have sustained harm in the same way.
There are many different types of injuries that you can sustain in an accident. Your personal injury settlement will be affected by the amount of your medical bills and the pain and suffering you endured due to your injuries. This means that more serious injuries usually result in larger settlements. Here are some of the most common injuries our clients sustain in accidents:
While it is awful to think about, the fact is that the most serious injuries result in death. When a victim suffers fatal injuries through negligence, surviving family members have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the negligent person or company. For example, surviving family members could file a wrongful death against a negligent driver, a doctor who committed medical malpractice, or a property owner who allowed a fatal danger to remain on the land.
Injuries to the brain and spinal cord are among the most permanent—and costly—of all personal injuries. If a victim cannot work, or walk, or take care of their basic needs, then a personal injury settlement must pay for the extensive care that the victim will require for the rest of his or her life. These expenses often include medical bills, in-home care, rehabilitative services, lost wages, and any other losses the accident caused. As you can imagine, these expenses quickly run into the millions of dollars.
Insurance companies often try to downplay these injuries as “not that serious.” The fact is that a broken bone, whiplash, and nerve strains can be incredibly painful. You are entitled to compensation for this suffering, and you should not let an insurance adjuster tell you that it’s “not that bad.” Remember, the insurance company is not on your side.
Florida accident victims have legal rights that must be protected. Remember, the defendant’s insurance company is not on your side. You need an experienced St. Petersburg injury attorney who knows how to fight for the compensation you deserve.
At Nicoletti Walker Accident Injury Lawyers, our skilled accident lawyers know how to handle all types of personal injury cases. We have helped many injury victims throughout southern Florida protect their legal right to compensation. Call (727) 845-5972 or contact us online for your free consultation. Don’t delay—the sooner you have an attorney on your side, the better we can protect your legal rights.
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