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Been Hurt in a Uber or Lyft Accident?

It’s a Friday night and you’re headed to the local bars for a night of drinking and hanging out with friends. You know you’re going to be drinking so you and your friends decided that you’re going to Uber (or Lyft) to and back from the bars that night. You request your ride and it arrives. You jump in all excited because this night is going to be a much needed stress reliever after a long week.

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As you’re on your way to the bar, your driver slams into another car. Your neck hurts, your back hurts, and may have suffered a serious injury. The good news for you is that Uber and Lyft are both insured to take care of you in those instances involving car accidents.

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Uber and Lyft are both major companies now worth billions of dollars; as such, they make sure that their drivers are covered for $1 million dollars in both liability and in uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.  In contrast, many Florida motorists carry only $10,000 in injury liability or don’t have coverage at all.

The level of insurance covering  Uber and Lyft means that those injured in an accident where they are not at fault may be able to obtain more complete compensation for the medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering following an accident.

It’s important to have the representation of a talented and experienced Lyft or Uber accident lawyer who is able to obtain the best results possible. Cox, Golondrino & Lafrance PA wants you to know that you may be entitled to significant compensation if you are in one of the following categories:

  • A motorist or passenger injured in a collision where a ridesharing driver was at fault.
  • A ridesharing driver injured in an incident where another motorist was at fault.
  • An injured passenger in a ridesharing vehicle, regardless of which driver is at fault

Cox, Golondrino & Lafrance PA has experience handling huge policy limits and have successfully negotiated settlements for countless of happy clients.

Have you or a love one been injured in a car accident? Give us a call now! 954-982-2124. Or schedule an appointment right away!

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10 Things you Definitely Must Do after an Accident

Imagine taking, I-95 to go home from work during rush hour. Everybody is in a hurry, there are trucks all over the highway, people changing lanes without signaling, people driving while on their phones… someone gets distracted and it happens, that dreaded crash. When it happens you’re in a brief state of confusion. What happened? Where am I? Then you begin to realize you’ve been in a car accident and the frustration sets in and although you were not at fault, you feel like you could have avoided it. Either we’ve been in that situation or someone we know has and it sucks. The good news is that these situations can be managed to produce a positive outcome.

You got into an accident?

  1. CALL THE POLICE

The first thing you should do after an accident is call the police. Even if it just a minute scratch or your car appears to be intact, YOU might not be. You probably don’t feel pain any pain right after the crash but you might feel it the day after. And if you want to be able to claim compensation and benefits from insurance companies, you must notify the police of the crash. Take pictures of the scene, take pictures of your car, take pictures of any injuries because you need those receipts.

  1. GET THE CONTACT INFORMATION

In these tense and frustrating situation its best to keep your cool. There is no need for a situation like a car accident to spill over into something else. So keep cool and politely (as best you can) exchange driver information and insurance with the other driver. Also be sure to ask witnesses for their name and information.

  1. CALL A LAWYER

Call your lawyer if you have one and if you don’t… GET ONE. It is important to know what your rights are and what the appropriate course of action is. Also, after you call your lawyer, call your primary care physician. Your lawyer, that you smartly contacted after your accident, will work hand in hand with your medical care provider to fill out all the required forms correctly and stop the insurance company from denying your claim.

  1. LET YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY KNOW

Let your insurance company know about your accident right away; the same day if possible. While yes, you have a 7-day time frame to let your insurance company know, you need to cover all the bases if you want to become eligible for any benefits and compensations.

  1. CHECK YOUR INSURANCE POLICY

It’s important to know what your policy covers and does not cover.

  1. GO TO YOUR DOCTOR’S APPOINTMENTS AND REHABILITATION TREATMENTS.

If after your consult with your doctor it is recommended that you attend chiropractic or rehabilitative treatment, you must do it. These treatments are key for you to go back to your regular activities and be without pain. These also help to show the extent of your injuries and to obtain the compensation you deserve.

  1. KEEP COPIES OF YOUR RECORDS

It is important that you keep a copy of every document related to your accident. Be it the police report, that you definitely should request a copy after the report is made, your insurance claim, all correspondence with the insurance company as well as all your medical records, prescriptions and all documents that are connected to your accident. Remember, keep those receipts, back everything up. Talk the talk and walk the walk.

  1. KEEP TAB OF YOUR HEALTH

What is that you could physically do before the accident but can’t do anymore? Are you still able to care for yourself, go to work, drive, take care of your responsibilities? Or have all these activities been put on hold because you can’t longer do them after the crash? These are all important points that you should keep in mind and that you need to keep track of because it can be extremely relevant when it’s time to settle or recover for your claim.

  1. DON’T WASTE TIME, ACT.

Listen, it’s hard. You were just involved in an accident, your car may be a disaster, you are probably in a lot of pain. But remember the silver lining I mentioned earlier? Well, you can only get it if you act fast. All the paper work comes with deadlines and it is extremely important for these deadlines to be honored. Make sure you inform your insurance company right away and that you submit a claim against the driver who was at fault for the accident within reasonable time. The longer you wait, the harder it will get to recover benefits and get compensated. ACT. FAST.

  1. STAY AWAY FROM SOCIAL MEDIA!

I get it, we live in a super connected world and we feel like we must share all the good and bad that happens to us on social media. But please, don’t share anything about your accident. Do not post pictures or make any statements about your accident on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or any platform. Because if you do, your words, more likely than not, are going to get twisted. Insurance companies can access your social media sites and depending on what you wrote about the accident or the pictures that you posted, they might make it difficult or be unwilling to settle your case in a timely manner or give you the amount of money that you truly deserve.

Cox, Golodrino & Lafrance PA

If you or someone you know have been injured in a car accident please give us a call at 954-982-2124. Some is waiting to take your call NOW!

6 Step Guide to Picking the Best Divorce Lawyer for You

Divorce is scary. It is a big change. Your family is changing. Where you live is changing. In short, life is changing.

In those changing times, it’s often a struggle to know where to turn for help with the process. One of the common stories we hear about is people going through lawyer after lawyer looking for someone who understands their pain.

Divorce can be time consuming and expensive without the right lawyer. So in order to save time and money we have 7 quick steps that are designed to put you in the right state of mind when looking for a lawyer.

  1. Be Realistic

This is the most important thing. If you’re looking for someone to inflict pain on your ex and have someone listen to your complaints you might be better off in therapy then with a lawyer. Every time you talk with a lawyer the clock is running.

You want to call and spend an hour complaining about all the wrong your ex has done fine – but you’re paying for it. A better use of your energy would be discussions with your lawyer about what he or she needs from you to move the process along. Your lawyer will appreciate it and so will your bank account.

2. Interview and Research Potential Attorneys

Ask friends, family, and search on the internet for the names of lawyers who handle divorce. Once you have the names give each of them a call. How does their staff answer the phone? Do they encourage you to come for an office appointment? Do they sound sure about being able to handle your issue?

When you meet with the lawyer ask about their history, who they have represented, their rates, and client policies (i.e. does the lawyer provide monthly updates, etc.). Ask to meet associates and all others who will be handling your case.

3. Know What You Want

While most lawyers will not tell you this, you do not always need a lawyer. If your divorce is an uncontested one you can often hire a lawyer for a flat fee to work out the details with your ex. You can also go to mediation and work out whatever details in mediation. Those are less expensive options.

If you have a contested divorce know what exactly you want. A divorce is a negotiation you will have to do a little give and take in order to come to a resolution you both can live with. We often advise clients to always look at the big picture because getting caught in the weeds

4. Identify Atleast Three Different Lawyers

Not all lawyers are the same. We all might have the same license to practice law but not all lawyers have the same training and experience. Idealistically you should hire someone who specializes in family law. However, that should not be the end all be all with regard to hiring a lawyer. You need an attorney who understands the process, communicates, and negotiates well. This is important because most divorces and family law cases are a matter of negotiation rather than a full blown fight. Another thing to consider is whether or not the lawyer you hire is gifted at trial. If negotiations breakdown and trial is set its best to have someone who is battle tested and ready.

5. Meet with and Conduct Research on the Potential Lawyers

Give them a call. Ask about experience, the types of clients they represent, why they chose to do family law, their contact policy, etc. Not every lawyer will discuss all of these things on the phone and some may encourage you to come to the office for a consult. If you do meet with the lawyer also ask about their staff and the people who would be working on the case.

6. Make Your Choice

This one is the easiest and probably the hardest make it a choice.

 

Houson R. Lafrance

The Police Did Not Read My Miranda Rights Does My Case Get Dismissed?

We often get asked this question by clients. The short answer is no. The long answer requires a little more explaining and for our clients they appreciate knowledge.

Miranda rights are those constitutional rights that each of us has to remain silent (aka not have your own words be used against you in court) and to talk with a lawyer before answering police questions.

Miranda rights are invoked when an individual is in police custody only if the police want to question you. It doesn’t matter whether you’re on the street in handcuffs or in the jail house they cannot use your statements against you without reading Miranda.

The exception is when a defendant randomly blurts out things without being asked any questions by a police officer. Those statements can be used against the defendant because the police did not solicit the response.

As a general rule getting statements suppressed do not get an entire cased dismissed. Instead what it can do it create leverage to get a better plea deal from the prosecutor. For example, I filed a motion to suppress statements in a Grand Theft case where the client was alleged to have stolen tires from an auto shop.

The State had a video of the incident (which was not the greatest) and the testimony of a witness who did not see the crime happen but who could place my client at the scene around the time the tires were stolen. My client was arrested when he returned to the store to return a defective product the same day.

The police arrested him and began questioning him without the benefit of reading him Miranda. When I got the police report it was clear from the report that Miranda had not been read and my client even told me it had not been. I filed a motion to compel discovery from the State for all evidence related to the alleged confession. The State advised me there was none so I filed a motion to suppress statements.

The plea offer prior to filing the motion was 24 months in Florida State Prison (my client had a long criminal history and had recently been released from prison). On the day of the motion the State offered my client time served on the felony, which my client took because he did not want to risk going to trial (even though in my opinion he had a great trial case).

If the judge had granted the motion the case would not have been dismissed. But the statements/confession would not be admissible at trial. However, the motion being filed made the prosecutor reevaluate her case and she realized that she might have not had the best case for trial.

 

 

Houson R. Lafrance