Seat Belt Defense | Car Accident Attorney Orlando

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Anytime you have been injured in any type of accident, there are always two primary questions: (1) who caused the accident and (2) what are the extent of your injuries.  (There are other important questions, like whether the defendant had a duty to you and whether the defendant breached that duty, but the primary areas of focus for most Orlando personal injury attorneys regarding potential accident cases are causation and the extent of medical /bodily injury damages).

There’s This Thing Called “Comparative Negligence,” Which Can Lower The Value Of Your Claim

Basically comparative negligence means that both parties to an accident theoretically could have contributed to either causing the accident itself or making the injuries worse.   And, very often the jury hears and sees evidence regarding the relative fault of both parties. That’s what we call comparative negligence.  In other words, both parties were potentially negligent, so we ask the jury to compare the negligence of both parties and literally assign a percentage to the relative degrees of fault.  Then they have to determine your damages.  And, assuming the jury finds that the defendant had some percentage of fault, the defendant only has to pay the percentage of damages that they actually caused.  This is where the seat belt defense becomes important.

Enter The Seat Belt Defense

Based on comparative negligence principles, insurance defense attorneys can use the seat belt defense to say that you should share some degree of responsibility for the extent of your injuries.  You probably know that the law requires you to wear a seat belt when operating a vehicle.  The law also requires anyone who is 16 years old, or older, and riding as a passenger in the front seat, to wear a seat belt.  So basically defense attorneys are permitted to argue that violating this traffic law is some evidence of comparative negligence, that is, some evidence that your actions contributed to the extent of your injuries.

What If You Were Not Wearing A Seat Belt?

Then you are going to need a skilled Orlando car accident attorney to make the most of other arguments and evidentiary admission issues.  Very often creative strategy is the key throughout all phases of difficult lawsuits.  There are many defenses just like this one that can reduce the value of your claim.  But a skilled Orlando car accident attorney may potentially be able to reduce the impact of these defenses by employing creative and unique strategies throughout any car accident lawsuit.

If You Have Been Injured In A Car Accident, And Want To Speak With An Attorney Rather Than A Case Manager Or Paralegal, Call Tina Today For Highly Personalized Service Throughout Your Lawsuit.  No Cost Or Obligation For The Call.  No Fees Unless I Recover Something For You.  (407) 803-2139.




About the Author:

Tina Willis is a serious injury, accident & death lawyer, based in Orlando, Florida, although she accepts cases throughout the state of Florida, and in Georgia, where she is also licensed. She vigorously prosecutes serious injury and death cases caused by auto accidents, semi-truck accidents, slip and fall accidents, products & premises liability cases, as well as medical malpractice. Ms. Willis operates a boutique law firm from Orlando, Florida, focused on maintaining a reasonable case load so that she can provide personalized service to all of her clients. She spends a tremendous amount of time helping her clients understand how they can help increase the value of their cases, sometimes significantly. After graduating second in her class from Florida State University College of Law in 1995, Ms. Willis worked as an attorney for two large Atlanta defense firms, where she practiced excess insurer defense, and worked on countless multi-million dollar cases. Ms. Willis also worked as a law professor at Barry University. She has also recovered millions for her own accident clients. Ms. Willis has attained many impressive industry awards, including (1) being nominated as a “Ten Best Female Lawyers” in Florida, by the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys; (2) being selected as one of the “10 Best Florida Lawyers,” by the American Institute of Legal Counsel; (3) being selected as a National Trial Lawyers as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer; (4) being selected as a “10 Best” Client Satisfaction Award, from the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys; (5) being a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Club (fewer than 1% of attorneys nationwide are members); (6) being selected by as one of the 20 best Orlando medical malpractice lawyers; (7) being selected as a Number One Personal Injury, Car Accident & Wrongful Death Attorney By Orlando Style Magazine, based on client and other attorney ratings; (8) being selected as one of the “Three Best Rated” Orlando Accident Attorneys based on handpicked selection; (9) achieving a “superb” perfect “10.0” AVVO rating as an auto accident attorney (10) having many 5-star client reviews all over the Internet, and (11) being named one of Orlando’s “Ten Best” personal injury attorneys by Thumbtack rating system. Before you hire another Florida personal injury lawyer, you owe it to yourself to speak with Ms. Willis. Consultations and representation never cost you a penny until she wins your case.
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