Understanding Florida Motorists’ Right To Compensation

Recently, the Bradenton Herald reported on a three-vehicle accident on U.S. Route 41 in Bradenton, Florida that occurred on Thursday evening that left two motorists injured. According to the story, at approximately 11:00 p.m., the driver of a Toyota Corolla heading south on Route 41 spun out of control, striking a wall on the shoulder and then rolling back into the southbound lane of traffic.

The motorist driving a Chevrolet Metro behind the Corolla attempted to steer left around the wreck and lost control, eventually coming to a stop in the northbound lane. A driver traveling in the northbound lane was unable to avoid a collision with the Metro. The 27 year-old woman driving the Corolla, who was seriously injured and taken to a nearby medical center, was cited by police for careless driving.

What are your legal rights after a Florida car accident?

With more and more motorists on the road every day, these types of incidents are becoming increasingly common. Safety features built into newer vehicles are trying to address the consequences of each accident, but those safety features rarely actually prevent accidents. It is important for Florida motorists to understand their rights under the law so as to be protected in event they are injured in a motor vehicle accident.

Florida is one of twelve U.S. states that employs a “no fault” insurance scheme. Under a no-fault insurance scheme, when motorists are involved auto accidents which results in injuries to either party, each driver must submit any claims for compensation to his or her own insurance company, regardless of whether either party is determined to be at fault for the accident. Florida requires that motorists carry a minimum of $10,000 of personal injury protection (“PIP”) and additional $10,000 of property damage liability (“PDL”).

PIP covers necessary medical treatment and other economic damages that might arise from a motor vehicle accident, including up to 80% of medical bills and up to 60% of lost wages.

Florida Insurance and Auto Accidents

Sometimes, an individual’s PIP coverage may be insufficient to compensate all of his or her damages. If the injured party suffers a permanent injury, the law allows that person to sue the other driver for damages, which are not limited to PIP. Florida law defines a “permanent injury” any injury that results in one or more of the following:

● A significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function;
● Permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, other than scarring or disfigurement;
● Permanent and significant scarring or disfigurement; or
● Death.

Incidents such as the accident in Bradenton demonstrate that anyone can easily become the victim of a negligent driver. If you or someone you know has been injured in a motor accident, you may need legal representation to protect your right to compensation. It is imperative that it your claim be evaluated by an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the accident to preserve your right to compensation.

The Miami car accident lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. have extensive experience representing auto accident victims who have been injured in motor vehicle accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle crashes, and other accidents due to negligent drivers. If you or someone you know has been injured in an automobile accident, contact the attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. today.

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