Melbourne Car Accident Lawyer
Car Accidents in Brevard County & Throughout Florida
Since 1963, Nance Cacciatore has represented injured car accident victims and families who have lost their loved ones in fatal car crashes. We have the experience, resources, and skills that can make the difference between winning and losing a car accident case.
At Nance Cacciatore, all our partners are Board-Certified in Civil Trial Law by the Florida Bar or are Board-Certified Civil Trial Advocates by the National Board of Trial Advocacy—or hold both certifications. Our firm also includes an in-house investigator who is a former police officer with strong connections to local law enforcement agencies.
We know how to investigate car accident claims. We know how develop a convincing legal argument. And we know how to protect your rights and fight for the compensation you deserve.
Common Causes of Car Accidents
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Driving recklessly
- Running red lights and stop signs
- Weather conditions
- Unsafe lane changes
Your Rights After a Car Accident
Florida is one of several states that follows a “no-fault” system when it comes to auto accidents. This means that, after an accident, you can typically recover compensation for specific damages by filing a claim with your own insurance provider. Your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, which is mandatory for anyone who operates a car or similar four-wheel vehicle in Florida, covers various damages—but PIP coverage is limited.
In Florida, all drivers must carry car insurance in the following amounts:
- $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) coverage
- $10,000 in property damage liability (PDL) coverage
Bodily injury liability, which covers expenses incurred by others due to an accident you cause, is not mandatory in Florida. However, it is a good idea to purchase this type of coverage, as it protects you in the event another motorist sues you after an accident.
As you can see, the minimum amount of PIP coverage you are required to have is only $10,000. However, car accident victims often incur medical bills and other expenses that far exceed this limit. Additionally, PIP does not cover non-monetary losses, such as pain and suffering. To recover for excess damages and non-economic losses, you will have to go outside the no-fault system and file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
How to Go Outside Florida’s No-Fault Car Accident System
It is not always possible (nor appropriate) to step outside the no-fault system. However, there are many occasions when it is not only possible but necessary.
To go outside the Florida no-fault car accident system and sue an at-fault driver, you must prove the following:
Your injuries meet the state’s “serious injury” threshold
- Bone fracture
- Permanent impairment of a limb or internal organ
- Significant impairment of a bodily function
- Significant disfigurement
- Substantial, total disability for at least 90 days
- Another motorist acted negligently, recklessly, or wrongfully
- The other motorist’s conduct was the proximate cause of your injuries
- You suffered measurable damages in excess or outside of those covered by PIP
At Nance Cacciatore, we conduct comprehensive investigations and analyses to evaluate our clients’ damages and identify all possible avenues of compensation. We are happy to discuss the specifics of your case with you during a free, no-obligation consultation.
Types of Motor Vehicle Accident Cases We Handle
We handle all types of car and motor vehicle accident cases, including those involving:
- Bicycle-vehicle collisions
- Distracted drivers
- Drunk driving accidents
- Florida’s Turnpike (SR 91)/I-95 crashes
- Hit and runs
- Low-speed car accidents
- Minor-impact collisions
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian-vehicle collisions
- Rear-end collisions
- Truck accidents
- Uninsured/underinsured motorists
Our clients include auto accident victims with everything from soft tissue damage to catastrophic injuries, such as spinal cord injuries, amputations, and brain injuries. People with severe injuries such as these need compensation as soon as possible so they can deal with their extraordinary medical expenses, lost income, and rehabilitation concerns.
We are also known for our compassionate, yet tough, representation in wrongful death cases resulting from fatal car accidents. To date, our approach has helped us recover millions of dollars for our clients, including numerous seven- and eight-figure results and many historic, precedent-setting successes.
Common Car Accident Injuries
- Head Injuries
- Broken Ribs
- Scrapes and Cuts
- Internal Bleeding
How We Can Help
We believe car accident victims have two responsibilities: they need to recover as quickly as possible from their injuries, and they need to keep their lawyers informed about their health status.
At Nance Cacciatore, we take care of everything else, including but not limited to:
- Analyzing the accident and preserving evidence
- Conducting criminal and other background checks on the other driver
- Reviewing the recall and maintenance history of the other vehicle, if necessary
- Notifying the insurance companies of the pending claim
- Monitoring our clients to determine how they are doing medically
Our goal in all of this is to get car accident victims the compensation they need as quickly as possible without jeopardizing the value of their case. We do this by preparing every case as if it will be tried, putting the insurance company on notice that we are willing to take our chances with a jury. We have a reputation for getting results quickly because of our aggressive approach. We don’t let files sit on a shelf and wait for a fair settlement that may never come. Instead, we actively and aggressively represent our clients from the moment they hire us until the moment their cases are resolved.
Contact Nance Cacciatore for a Free Consultation
If you have suffered an injury due to a car accident, contact a personal injury lawyer at Nance Cacciatore today. Let us put our experience, knowledge, and resources to work for you.
Based in Melbourne, Florida, our car accident attorneys serve all of Brevard County and the surrounding areas, including Palm Bay, Titusville, Cocoa, Daytona Beach, and Vero Beach. We offer free consultations and contingency fees, meaning we do not collect any attorney fees unless/until we recover compensation on your behalf.
Frequently Asked Questions About Car Accidents
The Nance Cacciatore Legal Team is Here to Answer All Your Legal Questions!
If you have recently been injured in a Florida car accident, you probably have a lot of questions about how to proceed with your insurance claim and whether legal assistance would help. At Nance Cacciatore, our attorneys have over 150 years of combined experience in injury law. Based in Melbourne, our legal team has represented injured clients throughout the state of Florida since 1963 in car accident claims of all kinds. Our expertise and experience have introduced us to many common questions and concerns our clients have had over the years. This page includes frequently asked questions about the aftermath of car accidents that can help you gain a better understanding of where you stand following a serious wreck.
Read on to learn more about your legal options after a car crash or contact us to discuss the specifics of your case during a free, confidential, and no obligation case evaluation today.
What Should I Do After an Accident?
We recommended doing the following after a car wreck:
- Seek medical attention. Call 911 if you or anyone involved has sustained serious injuries. If emergency treatment isn’t needed, visit a doctor for a checkup at your earliest convenience to ensure you haven’t suffered internal injuries, such as a back or brain injury. Medical treatment is as vital to your health as your medical records will be to your case later on, so don’t hesitate to get a check up even if you feel “fine.”
- Take pictures of the accident scene. Photograph the crash site as soon as possible from as many angles as you can. Focus your camera on the vehicles involved, any property damage, and bodily injury. Additionally, photograph anything else you think may help your case, such as current weather conditions, tire skid marks, nearby traffic signs, and more.
- Exchange contact and insurance information with the other motorists. Additionally, if there were eyewitnesses, ask for their contact information in case they need to later make a statement on your behalf.
- File a police report. Call law enforcement to the scene and cooperate with them fully when they ask questions so that the accident report is as accurate as possible. Get a copy of the report (or the report number) for your records.
- Contact your insurance company and inform them you have been in an accident. However, do not sign anything or agree to any settlements until your medical condition has been fully assessed and treated.
- Reach out to a local car accident lawyer for a free consultation. An attorney can help you determine whether you have a claim as well as inform you of your legal rights and options.
What if the At-Fault Driver Does Not Have Insurance, or Leaves the Scene Before I Receive Their Information?
When the driver who hit you is unknown or doesn’t possess adequate insurance coverage to pay your claim, you may feel as though you are out of luck. Fortunately, there are ways to potentially work around this and recover the compensation you are owed.
Florida follows a no-fault system when it comes to car insurance and accident claims. This means that, as opposed to states with traditional fault-based systems, you do not necessarily need to prove that another driver was to blame for the crash in order to file a claim for compensation. Rather than bringing a claim against the at fault driver’s insurance company, you can seek compensation from your own insurance provider in the form of personal injury protection (PIP). All Florida motorists must have PIP on their insurance policy, which pays up to $10,000 for medical and disability claims and $5,000 in death benefits.
Additionally, optional insurance coverage known as uninsured motorist (UM) coverage is also available to Florida auto insurance policyholders. If you are injured in a hit and run accident, for example, and the driver is unknown, UM coverage will be able to provide compensation—if you opted for it on your policy.
However, severe injury and wrongful death cases may require additional compensation to cover every loss. Another way to seek coverage is to meet Florida’s threshold injury test, which is detailed in the Florida Statutes. If you or a loved one qualifies, you may be able to seek additional compensation directly from the at fault driver or your UM insurance.
Review your insurance policy to ensure you have PIP, UM, or any other type of coverage that may help in such situations. We understand that auto insurance coverage can be complicated, especially in our state. If you have any questions about your insurance policy and your options for pursuing compensation, feel free to contact us for your free consultation.
What if the Accident Was Partly My Fault?
Florida is a pure comparative negligence state when it comes to car wrecks and other accidents. This means that accident victims can still recover partial compensation for their injuries no matter how negligent they also were—even in cases in which their degree of fault is higher than the defendant's. However, the victim’s damages will be reduced based on what percentage they are found to have been at fault for their own injuries.
For example, if the plaintiff (the injured party) was speeding when the defendant (the at fault party) took an illegal turn and crashed into them, both parties may be deemed responsible for the crash. If the plaintiff is considered 30% responsible for the accident due to the fact that they were speeding, their settlement amount will therefore be reduced by 30% in order to compensate for the shared negligence.
More Questions? Call Now for a Free Consult!
If you have questions or concerns that are not addressed on this page, or if you are ready to discuss the unique factors of your specific case, please do not hesitate to reach out to Nance Cacciatore for the legal counsel and representation you deserve.
What should I do after a car accident?
The first thing you should do after any accident is check yourself and others for injuries. If necessary, call 911. You should also remain at the scene and wait for paramedics and/or the police to arrive. Provide local law enforcement with an official report and, if you do not receive emergency medical attention at the scene, go to a doctor as soon as possible. You will also want to notify your insurance company about the accident right away, as this may be required by your policy. We encourage you to refrain from speaking to anyone from the other insurance company about the accident; do not provide any statements and do not post about the accident on social media. It is also a good idea to contact an experienced attorney, like those at our firm, for help with your claim.
Can I get paid for my pain and suffering after a car accident?
In Florida, you can only recover for non-economic damages, like pain and suffering, if you go outside the state’s no-fault system. Your PIP insurance does not cover these types of damages. To go outside the no-fault system, you must prove that you have suffered “serious injuries” as defined by the state. You must also prove that someone else was at fault for the accident, or that they were at least partially to blame.
What types of damages can I recover after a car accident?
In Florida, PIP insurance covers medical expenses and lost wages, as well as certain miscellaneous monetary losses. It also provides compensation to surviving family members who have lost a loved one due to a fatal car accident. So, generally speaking, you can typically recover compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other miscellaneous costs—such as in-home care, house cleaning, etc.—after a car accident. If you wish to recover non-economic damages (those without a specific dollar value), you will need to go outside the no-fault system. Not everyone is eligible to go outside the no-fault car accident system; our attorneys can help you determine if you have grounds to file a car accident lawsuit against an at-fault driver or another liable party.
How much does it cost to hire a personal injury lawyer?
Personal injury lawyers handle cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that you are not responsible for any upfront or out-of-pocket expenses. Instead, your attorney will receive a percentage of your total recovery (usually around 33 – 40%). In other words, if your attorney does not recover a settlement or verdict for you, they do not get paid. This has two benefits: it ensures that your attorney will work hard to secure results on your behalf, and it means that you will not have to pay for any attorney fees out of your own pocket. We can discuss our fee structures with you during a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.