Car accidents can be a traumatic and stressful experience, especially when your car is totaled. If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Florida and your car has been deemed a total loss, it’s important to know what steps to take next. Here’s what to do if your car is totaled in a Florida car accident:
Contact your insurance company
The first thing you should do is contact your insurance company to report the accident and the damage to your car. Your insurance company will send an adjuster to assess the damage and determine if your car is a total loss. If your car is deemed a total loss, your insurance company will provide you with a settlement offer.
Know your rights
Under Florida law, you have the right to dispute your insurance company’s settlement offer if you believe it is unfair. You can hire an independent appraiser to assess the damage to your car and provide you with a second opinion. If you and your insurance company cannot come to an agreement, you may be able to file a lawsuit to recover the fair value of your car.
It’s important to gather as much evidence as possible to support your insurance claim or potential lawsuit. Take pictures of the damage to your car, the accident scene, and any injuries you sustained. Get contact information from any witnesses to the accident. Keep all receipts and records of any expenses related to the accident, such as medical bills or car rental fees.
Understand your insurance coverage
Make sure you understand your insurance coverage and what it includes. Florida is a no-fault insurance state, which means that your own insurance company will pay for your medical expenses and lost wages, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. However, if the other driver was at fault, you may be able to file a lawsuit to recover additional damages.
Consider your options
If your car is totaled, you’ll need to decide what to do next. You can accept your insurance company’s settlement offer and use the funds to purchase a new car. You can also keep the damaged car and have it repaired, although this may not be a practical option if the damage is extensive. If you still owe money on your car loan, you’ll need to continue making payments until the loan is paid off.
Consult with an attorney
If you’re unsure about the settlement offer or feel that your insurance company is not treating you fairly, it’s a good idea to consult with an experienced attorney. An attorney can help you understand your legal rights and options, negotiate with your insurance company on your behalf, and ensure that you receive fair compensation for your losses.
Don’t sign anything without reviewing It
Before signing anything related to your insurance claim or settlement, it’s important to review it carefully and make sure you understand what you’re agreeing to. If you have any questions or concerns, consult with an attorney before signing anything. Once you sign a settlement agreement, you may be giving up your right to pursue further legal action.
Take care of yourself
Finally, it’s important to take care of yourself after a car accident. Seek medical attention if you’re injured, even if you don’t feel any pain at first. Follow your doctor’s instructions for recovery and don’t rush back to work or other activities before you’re ready. Take time to rest and recover, both physically and mentally.
Consider the future costs
In addition to the immediate costs of the accident, it’s important to consider any future costs that may arise. For example, if you sustained a serious injury that may require ongoing medical treatment or rehabilitation, you’ll need to factor those costs into your settlement. Similarly, if you’re unable to work for an extended period of time or are left with a permanent disability, you may be entitled to compensation for lost income and future earning potential.
Throughout the claims process, it’s important to keep thorough records of all communication with your insurance company, medical providers, and any other parties involved in the accident. This includes emails, phone calls, and written correspondence. Keeping accurate records will help you stay organized and ensure that you have evidence to support your case if you need to take legal action.
Finally, it’s important to stay patient throughout the claims process. Insurance claims can take time to resolve, especially if you’re disputing the settlement offer or pursuing legal action. It’s important to stay in communication with your attorney and insurance company and to be patient while the process plays out.
Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A is a law firm with experienced attorneys who can help you if your car is totaled in a Florida car accident. Here are some ways we can assist you:
Provide legal guidance
The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A, can provide you with legal guidance and help you understand your rights and options. We can advise you on the best course of action to take, whether that means negotiating with your insurance company, filing a lawsuit, or pursuing alternative dispute resolution methods.
To build a strong case, it’s important to gather as much evidence as possible. We can help you gather evidence related to the accident, such as police reports, witness statements, and medical records. We can also work with accident reconstruction experts to reconstruct the accident and determine liability.
Negotiate with insurance companies
Insurance companies may try to offer you a settlement that’s lower than what you’re entitled to. Our attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A can negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf and work to ensure that you receive fair compensation for your losses.
Represent you in court
If negotiations with insurance companies fail, the attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A can represent you in court. We have extensive experience in Florida car accident cases and can help you navigate the legal system and pursue your case to a favorable outcome.
Handle the legal process
Dealing with the legal process can be overwhelming, especially when you’re recovering from an accident. The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A can handle the legal process for you, including filing paperwork, communicating with insurance companies, and representing you in court.