Consider the following scenario: A pedestrian walks in front of your automobile, causing you to stop short. The pedestrian, who didn’t appear to be hit or injured at the time, now claims that you ran her over and ultimately sues you for her personal injuries. You advised your insurance company of the incident and they agreed to handle the case.
Although you believe the insurer will work in your best interest, you still have some concerns and wonder whether you should seek out legal counsel of your own. You were pregnant at the time of the incident and still are. Doctors have advised you that it is a high-risk pregnancy, and this entire situation has caused you a great deal of stress. You’re wondering if you can countersue. A deposition has already been scheduled; however, given your current health condition, you do not want to be subjected to the deposition.
So, what can you do? First and foremost, seek legal guidance from your own lawyer. While it is true that having a pedestrian walk in front of your car can be a traumatic experience, it may be difficult for you to countersue if you only experienced emotional distress and no physical injuries. In Florida, typical victims of car accidents sue only when they have sustained serious physical injuries — emotional trauma alone is not grounds for damages in most cases.
However, if you were physically hurt, you should be able to sue both for the physical pain and for any mental anguish or emotional distress you experienced. Typically, you would need a doctor to diagnose emotional issues due to your mental anguish to successfully claim emotional distress.
Why You Should Work With a Fort Lauderdale Injury Lawyer
With respect to the case the pedestrian has filed, you need to make sure your interests are being protected. You don’t want to be responsible for any losses above and beyond what the insurance company would be required to pay, and you cannot count on your insurer to completely look out for your interests. Working with your own lawyer might be a wise idea, as he or she will be able to advocate for you and deal with the insurer on your behalf as much as possible.
Help from an attorney can priceless. For example, your lawyer may be able to help you get the deposition moved, or he or she can arrange to do the deposition in a less stressful manner, such as over the phone instead of in person. You cannot simply ignore the deposition, but if there is a medical reason why you can’t do it at the scheduled time, then a change may be made.
David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. helps individuals who have been involved in collisions. We offer free consultations, so please contact our legal team to learn more about your rights under the law and the possibility of suing if you sustained any physical damage due to the crash.