With an estimated 1,250 golf courses, it is no shock that Florida also leads the nation in golf cart accidents and deaths. Beyond the golf course, golf cart injuries are becoming increasingly common in retirement communities, college campuses, sports events and airports, where golf carts are common modes of transportation. A 2008 study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine found that nearly 150,000 people, ranging from 2 months to 96 years old, were hurt in golf cart accidents from 1990 to 2006. A large percentage of these injuries are a result of someone’s negligent acts. There are some questions you may have if you are injured in a golf cart accident and the lawyers at our firm can help you answer them and evaluate the merits of your case.
How Much Time Do I Have To File My Lawsuit?
You will first want to make sure you are within the time limits for filing a golf cart accident claim. A Florida resident injured in a golf cart accident must file a claim against the other party within four years of the date of the accident. If you fail to file your lawsuit in that time, your claim may be permanently barred.
Who Might Be Liable for My Injury?
Under Florida law, a golf cart is considered a dangerous instrumentality, just like a car. An owner can be held responsible for your injury if he or she negatively entrusts his golf cart with a driver. A golf cart driver may also be responsible for an injury if he/she is found to be driving negligently. Finally, owners and managers of facilities where golf carts are owned or rented could also be held liable for negligence if the golf carts are not properly maintained.
How Do I Establish That Someone Should Be Liable For Negligence?
On the legal end, there are a few steps to establishing a negligence claim. Firstly, you as the injured party must prove that the at-fault party owed you a duty of “reasonable care.” This duty refers to a person’s obligation to act as a prudent person would under the same or similar circumstances. You must also show that at-fault party’s breach of that duty directly caused your injury.
In order to establish these parts of a negligence claim, you will want to start gathering evidence related to your accident. You will want to obtain a professional inspection of the golf cart and an examination of the scene where the accident occurred. You will also want to gather recorded accounts from any witnesses who saw the accident occur.
What Damages Can I Receive?
If you can establish the necessary elements of your claim, you may be entitled to a wide range of damages. These damages may include pain and suffering, lost wages, psychological trauma, daily household expenses, property damage, physical scarring or disfigurement, and compensation for medical bills.
If you have been injured in a golf cart accident in West Palm Beach, Boca Raton or Stuart, the experienced golf cart accident lawyers at Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, PLLC may be able to help you. Our law firm has access to professional investigative resources who can help you gather evidence in support of your claim. Contact us today to hire a personal injury lawyer who will help ensure you understand your legal rights for your individual case.