A Personal Injury Law Firm Serving the People of Bartow
Bartow, Florida is more than just a dot on a map to us – in fact, it’s where some of our friends and clients live. The “City of Oaks and Azaleas” is no impersonal metropolis, and we like it that way. There’s nothing like enjoying the town’s picturesque neighborhoods, strolling through Mosaic Park, or hiking the Fort Fraser Trail from North Wilson Avenue all the way down to Lakeland.
When you’ve been injured, however, none of that matters, at least temporarily. Attempting to resolve your personal injury claim on your own can be a frustrating experience – the party responsible may be evasive and the insurance company is likely to be dismissive. Meanwhile, you are in pain and your bills are piling up. You may even be out of work. What’s worse, you may not even realize that you are entitled to far more than simple compensation for your medical bills. Lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages are your legal entitlement under Florida personal injury law.
At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk, we won’t put up with any nonsense from the opposing party. Once you retain us, we are committed to reaching a quick and generous settlement for you through aggressive and ethical representation. We are not afraid to “slug it out” in court, however, if that is what the other side insists on.
Our 10 attorneys and 40 legal staff are 100 percent focused on the practice of personal injury law, to the exclusion of all other activities.
Some of Our Practice Areas
Following are only a few of the subfields of personal injury law practiced by our Bartow injury lawyers:
Car Accidents: Car accidents kill about 3,000 Floridians every year – that’s equivalent to a 9/11 every year on Florida roads. Meanwhile, about 160,000 are injured. It is safe to say that most of these accidents were the fault of one or another driver, meaning that many thousands of people are entitled to compensation under Florida personal injury law. Our Bartow injury lawyers are here to make sure you obtain the compensation that you deserve.
Truck Accidents: Truck accidents are a unique sort of vehicle accident because: (i) they tend to be more serious than other road accidents, and (ii) they often involve commercial drivers. Victims of truck accidents often suffer long-term disability, and wrongful death claims are common. Fortunately, the violation of trucking regulations is often a useful means of proving negligence.
Motorcycle Accidents: No one on the road is more exposed and vulnerable than a motorcyclist. Even a bicyclist is somewhat protected by slow speeds and short stopping distances. Furthermore, most motorists simply are not on the lookout for motorcyclists, resulting in many accidents that occur when a motorcyclist enters a driver’s blind spot.
Slip and Fall Accidents: Most slip and fall accident claims arise when owners and occupiers of public or private premises fail to keep their premises safe for visitors or warn of hidden dangers. Slippery floors can give rise to slip and fall claims, as can loose stairway railings.
Medical Malpractice: Medical malpractice is a shocking and frightening topic, due to the immense degree of trust we are forced to place in doctors and other medical professionals. When a doctor injures a patient through incompetent or careless treatment practices, justice demands fair compensation in the form of a medical malpractice award.
Dog Bites: Under most circumstances, Florida dog owners are considered strictly liable for injuries that occur when their dog bites someone, even if the dog had never acted aggressively before. Dog bites can cause a surprising amount of damage, including a lifelong fear of dogs. Fortunately for victims, most homeowners and renters are insured against dog bite liability.
Nursing Home Abuse: Even though nursing home abuse is one of the most despicable acts of negligence that a person can fall prey to, it is all too common throughout the United States, including Florida. Since nursing homes are highly regulated at both the state and federal level, one common approach to nursing home abuse claims is to look for regulatory violations that may have harmed the victim.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How can I recover damages in case of a hit and run accident?
If you have an uninsured motorist insurance policy, the terms of your policy might allow you to recover compensation for damages arising from a hit and run accident. Florida auto insurance law does not require motorists to purchase uninsured motorist coverage, although it is available as an option. If you do not carry this type of insurance, you may need to locate the offending driver.
Can I still recover for a DUI accident if the driver was acquitted of DUI in criminal court?
Yes, it is still possible to win a lawsuit against a driver who has already been acquitted of DUI. This is because the standard for guilt in a criminal prosecution is “beyond a reasonable doubt,” while the standard of liability in a civil lawsuit is merely a “preponderance of evidence” (proving a 51 percent likelihood of fault is enough to win).
Since “preponderance of the evidence” is a lower standard than “beyond a reasonable doubt,” you could potentially prove that the driver was intoxicated even though he or she was acquitted in criminal court. To win the case, you would still have to prove that the driver’s drunkenness caused the accident (again, by a preponderance of evidence).
Can I sue the defendant’s employer?
It depends. If the driver was on-duty and acting on behalf of his or her employer at the time of the accident (a Domino’s driver delivering a pizza, for example), the employer will be considered financially responsible for the liability of the driver. In the case of a commercial trucking accident, however, you are likely to run into a problem – most commercial truckers work as “independent contractors” rather than employees of the trucking company. In this case, the trucking company will be liable only if the company itself was negligent – by hiring a driver with a previous DUI, for example.
Can my claim be resolved out of court?
Yes it can, and in all likelihood it will be. Upwards of 90 percent of all personal injury claims are resolved through private settlement rather than jury verdict. That doesn’t mean that no lawsuit will be filed, however. When a defendant insurance company stubbornly refuses to offer an adequate settlement amount, it is sometimes necessary to file a lawsuit as a way of prodding the defendant to raise the offer. In some cases, filing a lawsuit is necessary to beat the statute of limitations deadline.
Can I file a personal injury claim if I am assaulted?
Yes, you can, and in some cases, you can collect a higher damage award than you could for an injury caused by negligence. Furthermore, since the burden of proof is lower in a civil lawsuit than in a criminal prosecution, you can win a personal injury lawsuit over an assault even if the defendant is acquitted in criminal court or plea bargains his or her way into a lesser charge.
Of course, you might discover that the defendant cannot afford to pay a claim and carries no insurance that would cover an assault. Depending on the facts of your case, however, you might be able to sue a bar or nightclub for injuries caused by: (i) one of their employees (a bouncer who assaulted you, for example), or (ii) an intoxicated person to whom they sold alcohol.
Speak to a Bartow Personal Injury Attorney Today
Abrahamson & Uiterwyk is an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau and is are proud of its “AV” rating, the highest possible rating from Martindale-Hubbell, a national law firm rating system. The “A” signifies that the firm’s legal ability is “very high to preeminent.” The “V” denotes that our firm observes “very high” ethical standards.
After serving over 15,000 personal injury clients in central Florida over the past 25 years, we thoroughly understand the legal systems of just about every town in central Florida.
We are so confident in our abilities that, if we take your case, we will not charge you a dime in costs or fees unless we win. In other words, we don’t win unless you win too. You don’t even have to come to our office – we can evaluate your case over the phone and, when necessary, come to your home or office.
If you live or work in Bartow and you believe that you have a personal injury claim, call to speak with a Bartow Personal Injury Lawyer at 800-753-5203, or contact us online by email or live chat, so that we can review your case and provide you with a free case evaluation.