6 Car Accident Myths Tampa Bay Drivers Should Stop Believing
Posted By Darrigo & Diaz
Over the past few weeks, we’ve heard a lot of information about accidents in Tampa Bay that is simply not true. And, in some cases, believing these misconceptions could actually hurt your chances of receiving full insurance coverage for your injuries and damages.
If you are involved in an accident in Tampa Bay, we strongly encourage you to contact our experienced team of injury attorneys to schedule a free consultation to learn about your options and legal rights. But in the meantime, here are the 6 car accident myths that Tampa Bay should top believing.
Myth #1: Rear-end collisions are always the fault of the rear driver.
One of the most enduring myths about car accidents is that a person who has been rear-ended in a crash is never liable for the accident. While this is true most of the time, there are many things that can place rear-end collision fault on another party, such as:
- – A third-party driver’s actions
- – The front vehicle’s brake lights not working properly
- – A manufacturer defect in the brakes of the front vehicle
Myth #2: I walked away from my car accident and I feel fine, so I don’t need to see a doctor.
A major mistake that accident victims make is delaying or refusing medical treatment. Certain injuries can take up to 24-72 hours to manifest, while others, such as concussions and internal bleeding, may not be visibly apparent.
Also, under Florida law, you have only 14 days after a car accident to seek medical attention and still qualify for Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. If you don’t go to a doctor or otherwise get medical care within 2 weeks, you may not be able to file a PIP insurance claim and you will have to pay out-of-pocket for your medical bills.
Myth #3: Hiring an attorney is expensive and not worth the headache.
This is a big misconception. First, you should never pay out of pocket for a personal injury attorney in Tampa Bay. You should only hire an attorney who works on a contingency basis. Second, hiring an attorney will reduce the stress and hassle of filing an insurance claim.
Finally, data shows that when you hire a lawyer to represent you, on average, you receive 3.5x more money then if you were to handle the claim on your own. This means that even after your lawyer takes a fractional percentage from your settlement to cover legal fees, you still end up with a larger settlement amount.
Myth #4: I can file an insurance claim at any time—there aren’t deadlines.
False! In Florida, you have 4 years from the date of the crash to file a claim and pursue compensation for an injury. If you miss the deadline, the court will most likely dismiss your case. Note, you also have only 14 days from the date of the crash to seek medical attention.
We strongly advise you to not wait to file a claim or receive medical care. The best thing you can do after an accident in Tampa Bay is contact an experienced personal injury attorney right away. An attorney will be able to provide you with guidance on what to do next and help you understand your legal rights and options.
Myth #5: It is mandatory to give the insurance companies a recorded statement after the car accident.
False! You DO NOT have to give the insurance company a recorded statement. Insurance companies will try to get you to admit fault or partial fault, have you downplay your injuries, or twist your words.
In the 20+ years we have been handling car accident cases in Tampa Bay, we have seen many people give a pre-mature statement to the insurance company, only for the insurance company to use that statement against them. So be safe: call us before you call them.
Myth #6: The settlement offer that your insurance company makes is the maximum amount your claim is worth.
This is not entirely true. Insurance companies will try to pay as little as possible for your claim. Oftentimes, they will undervalue your car replacement, lost wages, or the ongoing cost of your medical treatment.
This is why it is so important to contact a Tampa Bay car accident attorney who can help you understand what your case is worth and what you should and should not accept from your insurance company.
Injured in an accident in Tampa Bay?
Call us immediately at 866-930-6435
Car accidents can be devastating, stressful, and tremendous burdens for you and your family. But help, support, and guidance is one phone call away.
The personal injury team at Darrigo & Dia has over 20 years of experience helping thousands of injury victims and their families recover from serious accidents in Tampa Bay. From the moment you contact us, we will give you straightforward, honest answers to all of your questions. We will inform you of your options and legal rights. We can help you find local medical specialists. We will even handle the insurance companies on your behalf.
We offer free consultations and you do not have to pay anything, unless we win your case.
Call 866-930-6435 now to schedule your complimentary meeting with our experienced Tampa Bay car accident attorneys.