Key West is the southernmost city in the contiguous United States and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. If you or a loved one suffered serious injuries due to the negligent actions of another person or company, we are here to help. We have a proven track record of success against some of the largest defense law firms and insurance carriers throughout Monroe County and Florida.
We will not let a defendant or insurance carrier blame the victim for their insured’s mistakes. Each one of our clients receives dedicated and individualized attention regarding their case. Our law firm is committed to helping you and your family receive the maximum amount of care and compensation you may be entitled to under Florida law. Learn more about how we can help you during a FREE consultation by dialing (305) 694-2676 to speak with Key West personal injury lawyer Prosper Shaked.
What Kind of Cases Do Personal Injury Lawyers Handle?
All different types of accidents can lead to personal injuries in the Florida Keys. However, Monroe County is unique in that it leads the nation in maritime and boating accidents. Some of the most common types of personal injury cases that we handle include the following practice areas:
- Car accidents and other types of auto accidents
- Trucking accidents (i.e., 18 wheelers, semi tractor-trailers, tankers, and other box trucks)
- Boating accidents
- Waverunner, Jet Ski, and other accidents involving personal watercrafts
- Parasail, wakeboard, and tubing accidents
- Swimming pool accidents, including negligent supervision by a lifeguard
- Product defects
- Amusement park accidents on rides
- Hotel negligent security and accidents
- Uber accidents or Lyft accidents, including other ridesharing accidents
- Bus crashes
- Medical malpractice cases, including birth injuries, failure to diagnose, surgical medical malpractice as well as many others
- Nursing home abuse
- Assault and battery
- Construction site accidents
- Slip and falls and general premises liability
- Cruise ship injuries
- Bicycle accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Wrongful death
What Damages Can I Recover in a Personal Injury Case?
While there is a diverse range of personal injury cases, the one consistent thing in all personal injury cases is “damages.” Damages refer to compensation that you and your family may be eligible for under Florida law. For victims involved in a personal injury lawsuit, damages are typically awarded in the form of monetary compensation. The most common types of damages awarded include the following:
- Past pain and suffering – from the date of the accident until the date of payment
- Future pain and suffering – an amount for the rest of your life measured from the date of payment to the end of your calculated life expectancy
- Lost wages – wages lost due to the accident, disability, doctor appointments, surgeries, or other causes
- Lost future wages – a calculation is done on your behalf to determine an estimate of how much you may lose in future earnings due to not being able to work because of your injury
- Nursing care – part-time or full-time around-the-clock care in serious or catastrophic cases, especially in birth injury cases
- Property damage
- Assisted living care
- Punitive damages – only in rare and exceptional cases of gross negligence or wanton disregard for other’s safety
- Medication costs
- Medical expenses – this includes any past, present, and future medical bills that you may incur as a result of your disability and injuries
- Assistive devices (i.e., crutches, walkers, wheelchairs, cane, etc.)
- Loss of consortium – this refers to the deprivation of familial relationships due to the injuries sustained
- Wrongful death – including burial costs and funeral expenses
- Vehicle or residential modification (i.e., modifications that allow independence within the home or vehicle modifications that enable an individual to continue to operate their motor vehicle)
Legal Representation For Serious Injuries in the Florida Keys
At Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA we represent clients who have suffered life-changing catastrophic injuries. Some of the more common types of injuries that we work with include:
Spinal cord injuries (SCIs) – According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC), accidents and intentional violence make up almost 89% of all cases of SCIs. Motor vehicle accidents cause an average of 38.6% of all spinal cord injuries in the United States. This type of injury can result in permanent severe, or temporary damage to the spinal cord. Damage can result in paralysis of a victim’s legs, arms, torso, hands or even affect their breathing depending on which vertebrae level is damaged. This catastrophic injury can affect a victim significantly, depriving them of their independence and potentially requiring a need for around-the-clock care to assist with their activities of daily living. Victims may be unable to perform their job duties as well, resulting in a loss of wages.
Internal organ damage – Injuries to internal organs are quite severe and can result in permanent damage or even require removing the affected organ. If a victim is not fortunate enough to survive, organ damage resulting in wrongful death often causes the victim extreme agony and suffering. If a victim is fortunate enough to survive, organ damage can create the need for organ transplants, dialysis, medication therapies, and many other medical treatments, all of which are costly.
Amputation – The loss of a limb is a severe and irreversible type of injury. Victims often require prosthetics and may need a mobility device (i.e., wheelchair) which can be quite costly. Most victims who suffer an amputation will have physical, emotional, and financial burdens to overcome.
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) – This is one of the most common types of injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents. TBIs are defined as the interference with the proper functioning of the brain due to a bump, blow, jolt, or other impacts to the head. TBIs can range from mild to severe and can cause a long-term alteration in brain function due to tissue damage in the brain. According to the CDC, the leading causes of TBIs are falls (52%) and motor vehicle accidents (20%).
Back or neck injuries – This type of injury is quite common in personal injury accidents and often results from a motor vehicle accident, trucking accident, or other accident involving a force of impact. However, slip and falls, or trip and falls, can also result in back or neck injuries.
Crushing damage – Any type of crushing damage is devastating. Construction accidents are primarily responsible for these serious injuries due to the use of heavy equipment and machinery. Certain safeguards should be put in place to prevent these injuries, but unfortunately, people still get hurt every day. Workers with crush damage may lose limb function or suffer limb impairment. Some individuals may require an amputation of the limb if it is severely damaged. If a crush injury involves the abdomen or head, survival is improbable.
Sensory impairment or loss – Loss of a sense can be quite life-altering, especially if it involves the senses of vision or hearing.
Scarring and disfigurement – scarring and disfigurement can result from many different events, including car accidents, trucking accidents, dog bite injuries, or animal attacks. Scarring and disfigurement can result in an individual needing to undergo plastic surgery. Scarring and disfigurement can be quite upsetting and emotionally distressing for an individual to deal with.
What to Do if You or Your Loved One Was Injured in Key West
If you or your loved one was hurt or killed in a Florida accident, there are specific steps you should take to preserve your rights. Waiting to act can make it more difficult to gain compensation for damages due to the injuries sustained. The following are some steps to take:
- Call 911 when a serious injury or incident has occurred – Law enforcement will provide emergency medical services and document the accident.
- Seek evaluation from a medical professional – If you were injured, it is best to seek medical attention as quickly as possible. The longer you wait to seek medical treatment, the worse it is for your health and your personal injury case.
- Collect names, phone numbers, and addresses of all people involved, including first responders, as they may provide valuable witness testimony in your case.
- If the opportunity arises, take photos and videos – Photographic evidence is the strongest type of evidence because pictures do not lie. The strength of your case will depend on the strength of the evidence there is to present.
- Do not give any statements to your insurance company, as the insurance company will try to diminish your claim. If you suffer injuries due to a car accident, you will need to notify your auto insurance carrier. It is highly recommended that you seek legal representation before speaking with an insurance company. We handle all communication with insurance companies for our clients.
- Keep track of all the medical appointments that you go to as a result of the injury, and keep notes of how your activities are impacted due to your injury.
Wrongful Death in Key West
Sadly, some people do not survive the injuries they sustained in serious accidents. It is incredibly distressing to lose a loved one due to another person’s negligent or intentional actions. Family members and survivors are left to deal with the medical and funeral expenses incurred due to their loved one’s accidental death.
Common damages from wrongful death cases that the family may gain include the following:
- Funeral and burial expense coverage
- Medical bill coverages, including for emergency services
- Loss of income of the victim if he was financially supporting others
- Loss of consortium
- Property damage
- Emotional distress
- Punitive damages in rare and exceptional cases
There is a limited window of time to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida. The statute of limitations is two years. This means that the wrongful death lawsuit must be filed within two years of the death.
Can I Still Pursue a Personal Injury Case If I Was Partially At Fault?
Some injury victims will blame themselves for an accident, especially a slip and fall, trip and fall, or a single-vehicle auto crash. An insurance adjuster may even blame the victim too. But the truth is, in all of these examples and any other type of case, there are often other parties who are much more—if not wholly—liable for a victim’s injuries.
But sometimes, a victim may indeed be partially at fault. That happens all the time, and it does not bar a claim. Victims who are injured can still be eligible for compensation, even if they contributed to causing the accident or injury.
Florida follows a modified comparative negligence system. In this system, the victim is eligible to receive compensation in accordance with the proportion of responsibility assigned to each defendant, but only if the victim’s own responsibility is 50 percent or less. If the victim is deemed responsible for more than 50 percent of the liability, they are barred from recovering damages from the defendant. This means that victims can still seek compensation if they contributed to their injury or accident. The amount of compensation that they can recover will be reduced by their proportional percentage of fault. For instance, if a victim were 10% at fault and recovered $100,000, the award would likely be reduced to $90,000. However, if the victim is found to be more than 50 percent at fault, they will be barred from recovering anything at all.
Key West Personal Injury Attorney Offering Free Consultations
Our goal is to maximize our clients’ compensation while ensuring they obtain the best medical treatment possible. Learn how we can help you today by calling (305) 694-2676 for a free case evaluation with Prosper Shaked. There is no upfront risk or out-of-pocket expenses to hire our law firm to represent you in a car accident, slip and fall, medical malpractice, birth injury, or any other type of personal injury case. We have years of experience successfully representing clients throughout Key West, Key Largo, Marathon and all other parts of Florida.