Photo of Richard Ansara - Attorney at Law
No Fee Unless SuccessfulCall Us 24/7 at (888) 267-2728
Richard Ansara Attorney at Law

There is no law that says you must hire – or be provided with the services of – a personal injury lawyer. However, if you have suffered serious injuries, it’s important to understand that the legal rules implicated in many Florida personal injury cases can be complex. In some instances, insurance companies refuse to settle in good faith. In trying to handle the matter on your own without the assistance of a Fort Lauderdale injury lawyer, you may soon find that you’re in over your head. Worse, it can cost you more than the attorney’s fees you’d pay.Fort Lauderdale injury lawyer

The civil justice system makes personal injury representation more accessible by stipulating that Florida injury cases must be accepted on a contingency fee basis. What that means is plaintiff’s don’t pay attorney’s fees up front – or at all if they don’t win. Attorneys have incentive to be honest with you about the merits of your case, the extent of your damages and your chances at winning a favorable settlement or verdict.

That said, you might not need an attorney, particularly if your injuries are very minor. An injury lawyer will tell you will tell you upfront in a free initial consultation whether you can benefit from their services – or not. Continue reading

More than 4,100 people died in large truck crashes in a single recent year – 30 percent more than a decade ago. These collisions largely result in deaths to passenger vehicle occupants, primarily because trucks weigh 20-30 times as much, take up to 40 percent longer to stop and are frequently operated by fatigued drivers.truck accident lawyer

One bright spot is that technology is increasingly on the side of those hoping to hold drivers, carriers and truck owners responsible for negligent driving and truck maintenance.

Historically, Florida truck accident investigations were limited to photographs of crash scene, snapshots of vehicles and witness testimony. Expert witnesses helped to reconstruct the crash and fill in the details of what happened.

Pertinent information in a truck accident lawsuit includes:

  • The area of impact in the road.
  • The angles of the impact.
  • Speed of the vehicles involved both prior to and at the point of impact.
  • Determining motorist reactions to whatever occurred prior to the crash.

Continue reading

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, one might assume that traffic accidents and roadway deaths are on the decline. After all, fewer people are traveling short and long distances and many are hunkered down under stay-at-home orders. Unfortunately, as our Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys understand, it appears that may not be the case in some areas.Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers

For example, the Houston Chronicle reported that despite half as much road traffic, car accident deaths were only down about 20 percent this March compared to a year ago.

Some anecdotal observations are that while there are undoubtedly fewer vehicles on the road, some motorists are using this as an excuse to speed, blow through stop signs or fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. Pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents – which have always been a major problem in Florida – may even see an uptick as an increasing number of people are running and biking to maintain optimal cardiovascular fitness and also as an excuse to break the monotony of staying at home.

Just as in any other time, most accidents are caused by driver error or carelessness. There may be a feeling that traffic rules can be flouted because “nobody else is on the road,” so it doesn’t matter whether you make a full stop or look twice before making a left turn. The fact is, we should all assume we’re going to be sharing the road with others no matter how quiet the streets seem. Continue reading

Accidents happen. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, they happened more than 6.4 million times a year, killing more than 37,000 and injuring more than 2.7 million.Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer

Perhaps just as scary is the fact that nearly 27 percent of Florida drivers have no insurance.

Even drivers who carry the minimum amount of insurance won’t have enough to cover your damages in the event of a serious crash. Although Florida law requires drivers to carry $10,000 in personal protection and $10,000 in property damage coverage, it doesn’t strictly require bodily injury coverage, which is paid to others hurt if you’re negligent in causing a crash. Drivers are required to be responsible for up to $20,000 in bodily injury coverage per crash ($10,000 per person), but having insurance to cover that amount isn’t strictly required.

What this means, as our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers can explain, is that smart Florida drivers don’t waive or skimp on their uninsured/underinsured motorist benefits. It one of the best and sometimes the only way you’ll get anything close to full compensation for your injuries after a crash. Continue reading

Pedestrian accident deaths in the U.S. are at their highest level in decades – and Florida ranks No. 1 nationally. Florida pedestrian accident lawsuit

The simple act of going to work on foot, walking your dog or enjoying an after-dinner stroll is increasingly a risk to your safety in the Sunshine State. The Governors Highway Safety Administration reported more pedestrian accident deaths in 2018 than in the last 30 years. With nearly 6,230 pedestrians killed that year, it was 4 percent more than the year before and higher than it’s been since 1990.

In fact, as our Fort Lauderdale injury attorneys can explain, while motor vehicle deaths have been steadily falling over the last year, pedestrian accident fatalities have spiked by 35 percent.

Why Pedestrians are at Greater Risk

Part of the reason pedestrians are at greater risk on our roads has to do with physiology. There are more large trucks on the road, and an increasing number of drivers are opting for larger vehicles, like sport utility vehicles. These are far more likely to kill a pedestrian than smaller, more compact cars simply due to the size and weight differential. Continue reading

Florida’s personal injury protection (PIP) auto insurance model was designed to help lower insurance costs and discourage costly civil court claims for every little fender bender. And yet, research shows Florida drivers pay the third-highest auto insurance bills in the nation – roughly $1 billion annually. Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer

Recently, bills were introduced by state lawmakers that would reform the no-fault auto insurance system in favor of a bodily injury coverage model. It’s not the first time lawmakers have tried. For three years running, similar bills have failed to gain enough traction.

It has been eight years since the most significant updates were made to F.S. 627.736, Florida’s PIP law, which requires one’s own auto insurer to extend up to $10,000 in coverage following a Florida car accident, regardless of fault. In 2012, lawmakers imposed restrictions on how much PIP coverage one could receive based on the severity of one’s injury. Insureds can now only glean $2,500 in PIP compensation for medical and disability benefits if the claimant didn’t suffer an emergency medical condition.

To pursue coverage outside of Florida’s no-fault system from the other driver, one must first meet the serious injury threshold, requiring evidence of permanent loss of a significant bodily function, permanent injury, significant and permanent scarring or death.

The Sunshine State is one of only a handful to adopt a no-fault approach to auto insurance. The two new bills that seek to alter the current model SB 378 and HB 771. These measures would shift the emphasis from personal injury protection coverage to a bodily injury model and require at least $25,000 in bodily injury coverage. Continue reading

Every year, there are roughly 1.7 million rear-end collisions on U.S. roadways, killing some 17,000 and injuring another 500,000. That’s according to a report from the National Transportation Safety Board, which has been pushing for years for automakers to make collision avoidance systems standard in all vehicles. The NTSB estimates 80 percent of deaths and injuries resulting from rear-end crashes could be avoided with such systems, available in some makes and models, but not yet all. Fort Lauderdale rear-end collision

As Fort Lauderdale injury lawyers can explain, the occasion of a rear-end collision carries with it the rebuttable presumption of negligence by the driver in the rear. A rebuttable presumption is a legal presumption made by the court, taken as try unless someone can prove otherwise. Thus, it is presumed that the driver in the rear of a rear-end collision was in the wrong because he/she is required by law to maintain an assured clear distance.

An increasing number of rear-end collisions are caused by driver distraction, particularly with smartphones. Evidence that a driver was distracted at the time of a collision can be used as additional evidence of negligence in car accident litigation.

However, as noted in a recent Florida car accident lawsuit ruling by Florida’s 5th District Court of Appeal, the presumption that the rear driver’s negligence was the only cause of a crash can be rebutted if there is any evidence from which a jury can infer the front driver was also negligent. In other words, the rear-end collision rebuttable presumption doesn’t supersede the state’s comparative negligence system, as outlined in F.S. 768.81, wherein a claimant’s own fault contributing to an injury proportionally diminishes the amount of damages he or she can collect. Continue reading

Motor vehicle manufacturing and design defects can’t be overlooked as possible catalysts in fatal or injurious Florida car accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports there were 30 million vehicles recalled last year, down just slightly from the 29 million the year before, though a significant drop from the record-high 50 million recalled in 2016. A quarter of the cars recalled haven’t been repaired, and these figures don’t include the vehicles with defects not yet identified/admitted by manufacturers.Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers

Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers can explain that when a vehicle defect or defective vehicle part plays a role in a crash or exacerbation of injuries, product liability claims may be filed against the auto maker.

Tesla is among the latest to come under intense scrutiny after a number of serious injuries and fatalities resulting from a range of alleged defects that plaintiffs in numerous injury and wrongful death lawsuits say rendered their electric cars unreasonably dangerous. Continue reading

When a close relative is no longer able to manage his or her own affairs, many difficult choices must be made. One of those is the type of authorization necessary to handle one’s affairs for them – the two most obvious being guardianship and power of attorney (POA). guardianship lawyer

As a Ft. Lauderdale guardianship lawyer can explain, the terms are sometimes referred to as interchangeable, but in fact they confer very different rights for very different purposes.

Both power of attorney and guardianship can be used when a person is unable to pay their bills, cash checks or make important decisions. One can obtain both guardianship and power of attorney, but sometimes only one or the other is necessary. Continue reading

For those injured in a car accident, the term “subrogation” can seem foreign. Given that it deals with complex insurance benefits and contracts and that such negotiations often occur between insurers and attorneys behind the scenes, most never have much cause to consider it. But if you’re injured in a Fort Lauderdale car accident, health insurer or auto insurer subrogation rights can have a substantial impact on the amount you actually collect, so it’s important to have at least a basic concept of what it entails.car accident lawyer

What is Subrogation?

The term “to subrogate” means to substitute one party for another with regard to a legal claim or debt. The purpose of subrogation is to enforce final payment of compensation from the driver who was at-fault – and to prevent double recovery.

So after a car accident, let’s say your underinsured auto carrier covers a percentage of your lost wages. If you win a claim against the other driver – and part of the damage award includes lost wages – your UIM insurer would have a subrogation right to reclaim all or some of its money from your damage awards. Continue reading

Contact Information