New Law Office Opened, Hyper focused Auto Accident Law Website Launched

Franklin & Stites office 133 west robinsonNew Law Office Opened
In late January we opened a new law office at 133 West Robinson Street, Orlando, FL, 32801. It’s on the corner of Robinson and Garland Ave, right next to interstate 4. We recommend you call ahead prior to coming by our office to set up an appointment with one of our attorneys. Walk-in’s are welcome but calling ahead will minimize your wait time. New client consultations are always free. The office hours are from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday and Saturdays are strictly appointment only. Often times the phone is still answered after closing. If your work schedule does not allow you to visit us during office hours we can work to find a time that will work best for everyone.
Hyper focused Car Accident Law Website Launched
Auto Accident Attorney Charles Franklin has just launched a new website dedicated to helping inform victims of auto accidents. The new site offers a plethora of information about what to expect if you are involved in a car accident. Below links a few examples:
Driving when bad weather strikes in Florida
Learn your options if the driver who hit you did not have car insurance
Find out about the different kinds of auto accident lawsuits
Know what compensation may be available for different car accident injuries
Learn what not to say when dealing with insurance companies
Remember this information should be used for general knowledge only. The best way to find out what to do after a car accident is to contact one of our attorneys. Our no obligation pricing allows anyone to hire a experienced car accident attorney. If we don’t recover compensation for your auto accident, you don’t owe us anything. No sign on fees, no retainer fees, nothing unless we secure compensation for your injuries. Learn more at www.theorlandocaraccidentlawyer.com
We Have Begun Traveling to New Clients
The Freedom Law Firm has expanded service area from Orlando to all of central Florida. Though our main offices are still in downtown Orlando we have started offering home and hospital visitation for new clients. We understand certain injuries prevent some clients from being able to travel and can schedule a time to visit you after a phone consultation. We drive to homes and hospitals around central Florida to personally meet with new clients.

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A new inside look at the primary influences of a car accident case

the 4 influences that make or break a personal injury claim

Car insurance is often misunderstood. Florida requires it. People grudgingly pay for it once a month and most of the time, will never have to use it. It would benefit our state as a whole if everyone actually understood their own policies. Drivers who don’t carry insurance may not fully understand the risk they are putting themselves and others in. It is often assumed that the settlement amount will directly correlate to the severity of injuries. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.  The amount a car accident victim receives from a settlement depends on a few variables but most importantly the type of insurance the at fault driver had during the accident. It is kind of a gamble when someone hits you. Are they insured? Do they have enough insurance to cover the cost of your injuries? We have put together a infographic that explains the 4 primary influences of a car accident lawsuit.

You can view the entire infographic at: http://theorlandocaraccidentlawyer.com/index.html#The-4-influences-of-a-personal-injury-case

 

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Paying For Car Insurance With A Zero Deductible Is Usually Not Much More Expensive

not much more expensiveWe’ve spoken about the legislative intent of our Florida Motor Vehicle No Fault Law and the general tenets and parameters thereof.  Many people mistakenly think an at fault driver will pay their medical bills, or think that their health insurance will pay them.  As previously indicated, an at fault driver’s insurance company only pays the 20% of your medical expenses not covered by your own policy, and state law requires you to use your own policy no matter who was at fault.  I reiterate you have nothing to worry about in terms of an increase in rates, etc. (beyond small increases most of us see annually due to inflation, etc.) and moreover, your health insurance will tell any doctor, etc. that state law requires you to use your own auto policy’s no fault benefits as primary coverage.

If you have a deductible on your Personal Injury Protection (no fault coverage) get a rate quote for a zero deductible, you will find that it is very little difference in premium dollars.  If you’ve been in a recent accident or would just like to have your policy reviewed, call The Freedom Law Firm, 407-883-2618.

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Is Your “Full Coverage” Really What You Think It is? You May Have Been Mislead

not enough insurance coverageI spoke at some length earlier about the legislative intent of the Florida Motor Vehicle No Fault Law, originally written and passed in the 1970′s and its evolution, and about the definition(s) of our permanency threshold, an integral part of that law and will expand on both later.

I want to talk today about a very…very…misleading phrase.  Many times I’ve heard clients or prospective clients say “I have full coverage on my vehicle.”  Unfortunately, all too often this is what that person heard from an insurance agent who actually issued them Florida’s minimum requirements to register, tag and operate a vehicle on Florida roads.  Florida only requires no fault coverage (Personal Injury Protection or “PIP” for short) which pays medical expenses and lost wages to $10,000 with basic coverage and property damage liability coverage at $10,000 to pay for the vehicle damage for anyone you may be involved in an accident with where you were at fault.  PIP pays the benefits outlined regardless of who was at fault, hence the term no fault law, HOWEVER…Florida allows up to a $1,000 deductible on such coverage and pays medical expenses at 80% once a deductible is surpassed.  If you are in an accident and deemed to be at fault and take an ambulance ride to the emergency room, and let’s say you don’t have health insurance, between the ambulance, hospital, emergency room doctor (which is a separate bill) and a radiologist’s bill for reading x-rays at the emergency room, you can easily wind up with $1,000 owed or more.  So as you can see “full coverage” is often very misleading.  If you’ve been in an accident, our consultations are free with no obligation and we will be happy to give you a detailed analysis of your own auto insurance policy and any other driver deemed to be at fault or partly at fault will analyze their insurance company’s declaration of coverages and let you know what we can do for you.

The Freedom Law Firm407-883-2618.

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What Is The Florida No Fault Law & How Does It Work After A Car Accident? (Part 2)

compensation for pain and sufferingRemember our discussion of the legislative intent of Florida’s No Fault Law and the pecking order, or order of priority, of entitlement to those benefits.

The converse side of the coin in a manner of speaking is that to recover money for pain and suffering (the 20% of medical expenses and 40% of lost wages are compensable, payable, by an at fault driver’s liability insurance coverage without regard to this rule) you must have sustained a permanent injury.  That said, residual (lasting) stiffness, soreness and / or loss of range of motion meets the law’s definition of permanent impairment and the American Medical Association‘s Guides on the subject.  Overall get yourself checked out by a doctor and if you need treatment, get it.  With purely muscle strain, we can still probably recover thousands of dollars for you for pain and suffering with all your medical bills and attorney’s fees paid.  The Freedom Law Firm, 407-883-2618, call today for a free consultation!

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What Is The Florida No Fault Law & How Does It Work After A Car Accident? (Part 1)

florida legislationWe spoke yesterday of a key change to Florida’s Motor Vehicle No Fault Law requiring injured victims to seek medical treatment within fourteen days of an accident or lose $10,000 or more in medical expense and lost wage benefits.

Today I’ll discuss the basic parameters of that law and the legislative intent.  Indeed, one of my staff members knows a retired physician in Lake County who was a former Florida state representative and later a Florida state Senator.  In the early 1970′s at committee level he helped write what was called the Florida Motor Vehicle Reparations Act, later becoming officially named what everyone called it…the No Fault Law.  So we know a good deal about legislative intent as we’ve often discussed with the man who helped write the law over forty years ago.  Then later we will discuss the definitions of “permanency threshhold”.

The basics of the No Fault Law are that if you are a Florida resident and injured in the operation, maintenance or use of a regular highway passenger four wheeled vehicle (motorcycles don’t count and there are other excluded classes of vehicles such as taxicabs and city buses), you are entitled to $10,000 in medical expense and lost wage benefits from your own policy NO MATTER WHO WAS AT FAULT.  If you were not at fault, you have nothing to worry about in terms of an increase in premiums or being dropped.  When we say your own policy, this is defined in a particular order under that law:

1.  If you own a car, truck or van those benefits come from your policy again no matter who was at fault and NO MATTER IF YOUR VEHICLE WAS EVEN INVOLVED IN THE ACCIDENT.

2  If you do not own a vehicle or it is disabled, but live with a relative who owns a vehicle, the benefits come from the resident relative’s coverage and again, fault does not matter and whether or not the vehicle was involved doesn’t matter.

3.  If you do not own a vehicle and don’t live with a relative who does, you draw your benefits from the vehicle you occupy at the time of the accident.

4.  If you do not own a vehicle nor live with a relative who does and were not occupying a vehicle when you were injured by another driver, i.e., you were a pedestrian or on a bicycle

(but not on a motorcycle) that is the one time you draw your no fault benefits from the vehicle that strikes you.

Again, later on we will discuss the permanency threshhold and what The Freedom Law Firm, 407-883-2618 can do for you.  We can explain your coverages in more depth than your agent and make recommendations.

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What Has Changed With The Florida No Fault Law For 2013?

change to florida no fault lawQ:  I have read some things in the newspaper and seen one clip on the evening news about changes in state law for auto accidents.  What can you tell me?

A:  The most important change to Florida’s Motor Vehicle No Fault Law which was revised in January of this year is that an injured victim involved in an auto accident here and who is a Florida resident must seek treatment within 14 days of an accident or they lose $10,000 (per person) in medical expense and lost wage benefits.  Even if you feel you’re “not really all that hurt” (stiffness, soreness) you owe it to yourself and often your family to at least get checked out.  Not to tell you a horror story, but sometimes it’s worse than you might think.  We are in the 21st century and with the advent of MRI, again, get checked out by a doctor and we can help in that regard.  Tomorrow I will talk about Florida’s “threshhold” to collect for pain and suffering and the legislative intent of state law and its transition over the years.  One of my staff knows a former Florida legislator (now retired) who helped write this law in the 1970′s so we’re pretty well versed.  Further questions?  Call The Freedom Law Firm at 407-883-2618.

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Do Law Firms Help Their Clients Locate Better Medical Providers?

ambulance after car accidentQ:  My wife was in an accident three days ago and got checked out at the hospital.  I want to be sure her followup care is with a very well credentialed doctor and I’m not enamored of lawyers on TV.  Can you help us? Do law firms help their clients locate better medical providers?

A:  Yes.  The physicians we work with (of a variety of specialties) are most often board certified and excellent caregivers, who also testify very well.  Insurance companies know this law firm means business therefore we maximize claims.  Our consultations are free and we are happy to meet after hours.  The Freedom Law Firm, 407-883-2618; we look forward to hearing from you!

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Am I Able To Use My Friends Car Insurance Since I Don’t Own A Car And We Were Hit By A Drunk Driver?

drunk-drivingQ:  I was riding with a buddy and we got hit by a drunk driver.  The police gave us his insurance information before carting him off to jail and it’s a good company, one of the biggest.

I got checked out by paramedics and so did my friend but we didn’t go to the emergency room because we were worried about an ambulance bill and hospital bill.  I don’t own a car and I live alone but my buddy has good insurance.  This was four days ago.  Can you help us?

A:  Yes.  You should call us immediately as our consultations are free with no obligation and if you do not seek medical treatment within 14 days of the accident you EACH lose $10,000 in medical bill and lost wage benefits.  As you do not own a car or live with a relative who does you draw these benefits from the vehicle you occupied, that is from your friend’s insurance policy.  We can help your friend on his car damage for free, and pursue a settlement (money) for each of you versus the drunk driver’s insurance company.  Unless we are successful, you owe us nothing.  The Freedom Law Firm, 407-883-2618, we look forward to your call!

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Do I Have A Case If I Was Hurt Jumping Out Of The Way Of A Reckless Elderly Driver?

dinning out doorsQ:  I was sitting under an umbrella the other day dining outside at a little cafe.  An elderly woman jumped the curb and careened toward us.  Several patrons leapt out of her way and I dived but hit the pavement hard.  She stopped and the police came out.  We were all given her insurance information.  I own a car and so does my wife.  I am very stiff and sore.  How does this work?

A:  Under Florida’s No Fault Law, the coverage on your and/or your wife’s auto (may be pro-rated) covers your medical expenses and lost wages if they apply up to $10,000 or more if you carry supplemental coverage, no matter who was at fault, and even though your car wasn’t involved.  You don’t have to worry about a raise in rates or anything and you can check that with your agent.  It is IMPERATIVE you seek medical treatment within 14 days of the accident or you lose those benefits.  We can help in that regard.  We will pursue the elderly driver’s insurance company for a settlement for you for pain and suffering and you owe us nothing unless we are successful.  The Freedom Law Firm, 407-883-2618 - we look forward to your call!

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