"Who Will Pay For My Florida Auto Accident?"
Sarasota accident attorneys you can trust explain how the system works
Auto accidents in Florida can be devastating. Your car could be totaled. You could be seriously injured. You might not even be able to work for weeks or months or even longer as you recover from your injuries.
Knowing what to do after a serious motor vehicle accident can be confusing. And if you don't take strong legal action right away, you might not get the money you rightfully deserve for your crash. That's why it's important you contact a law firm that knows how the legal system works in Florida. That's why you need Farrow & Pulice.
Florida 'no fault' insurance system
Florida's insurance system is different than other, neighboring states. Florida has a "no fault" car insurance system. That means you deal directly with your insurance company first after your accident, regardless of who is at fault.
However, you can take legal action against the at-fault driver in certain circumstances. In order to do so, your injury needs to exceed Florida's "injury threshold." Specifically, you need to have sustained a significant, permanent injury in an accident.
Often, there's much debate about whether or not someone's injury is permanent or significant. That's why it's important to speak with an attorney at our law firm as soon as possible. We can serve as your voice with the insurance companies and help you prove that your injury meets Florida's injury threshold.
Who decides who's at fault in a car accident?
Insurance investigators are often the ones who decide who's the at-fault driver. These investigators base their decision on evidence ranging from eyewitness testimony to your officials Florida Traffic Crash Report.
What you say to police officers and insurance investigators also plays a major role in deciding who caused your crash. That's why we always advise accident victims to keep their comments to police to a minimum and to never admit fault or wrongdoing.
As far as insurance investigators are concerned, we strongly recommend not talking to them at all. Anything you say could be used as evidence to reduce or deny your accident. Knowing what to do after a car accident can dramatically change the outcome of your claim.
Florida auto insurance requirements
Florida requires drivers to have the following minimum amounts of car insurance:
- $10,000 for personal injury protection benefits, also known as PIP
- $10,000 for property damage liability benefits, known as PDL
Such limits are significantly lower than many other states. It's also important to note that Florida does not require drivers to have collision coverage, which covers property damage to your vehicle in an accident.
That's why many people choose to get more insurance coverage. To understand why, consider that many car accidents end up costing people hundreds of thousands of dollars - or sometimes even more.
That's why it's important to have enough insurance coverage. And that's why it's critical that you have an aggressive legal team on your side, fighting for your rights. As your attorney, we will do everything we can to help you obtain the maximum compensation.
What you can be compensated for after your crash
Many people might not realize just how many accident-related expenses they can be compensated for after a crash. Depending on what type of insurance you have - and the circumstances surrounding your crash - you may be able to be compensated for:
- Medical expenses
- Lost income
- Vehicle repairs (or replacement)
- Lost future income (if you cannot work)
- Pain and suffering
During your lifetime, all of these expenses can add up to hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars. That's why it's important to contact an experienced Florida accident attorney as soon as possible to discuss the details of your case.
"How long do I have to file an accident claim in Florida?"
In Florida, you have 4 years to file a claim or take legal action after your car accident. This deadline is known as the statute of limitations. Occasionally, you can file a lawsuit after the statute of limitations has expired. But such circumstances are very unusual.
In most cases, if you wait longer than 4 years to take legal action, you lose your right to pursue compensation from the at-fault driver, the at-fault driver's insurance company or another party. That's why it's important to take legal action right away.
Another reason why it's critical that you file a lawsuit or pursue other legal action right away - evidence often disappears over time. The longer you wait, the harder it often becomes to find the facts you need to build a strong legal case. Evidence can include:
- Eyewitness testimony
- Official accident report
- Investigation of actual crash site
Accidents involving uninsured or underinsured drivers
Even though all drivers in Florida must have car insurance, that doesn't mean everyone does so. Some drivers choose not to get auto insurance. And if one of these drivers crashes into your car, getting the compensation you deserve can be very complicated.
The same is true for accidents involving drivers who do not have enough insurance. Such drivers are known as underinsured drivers. And in both cases, you will likely need to take legal action, depending on what type of insurance you have.
If you have uninsured/underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage, you can file a claim with your own insurance company. If you do not have UIM coverage, you will then need to explore other possible legal options. We can review your insurance policy with you and explain all the options available to you. That's why we want to meet with you as soon as possible.
How our law firm can help you
Accident victims only have one opportunity to obtain all the money they will need to cover all accident-related expenses for the rest of their lives. Insurance companies know this. That's why they often make low-ball offers immediately after an accident. They know that if they can convince accident victims to accept such an offer, they can save a fortune - by not paying you the full, true cost of your accident.
Don't let insurance companies dictate what happens to you. Find the peace of mind you deserve. Put the power of Farrow & Pulice to work for you. Contact our law firm right now for your free case evaluation.