Florida experiences on average a little under 1,000 car accidents every single day. This leads to more than 200,000 injuries each year. If you’ve sustained injuries in a car accident, please read on and contact an experienced Broward County car accident lawyer to learn more about how Florida’s car insurance system works and how we can help you.
How does Florida’s car insurance system work?
Florida is one of about a dozen states that follows some variation of a no-fault car insurance system. Under this system, drivers are required to have personal injury protection, which covers you and certain others, and Property Damage Liability insurance, which covers damage to someone else’s vehicle in an accident you caused. In most cases, your own insurance pays for your medical bills and other economic losses. Your ability to file a lawsuit and recover compensation for non-economic losses like “pain and suffering” is limited under these rules. While it’s possible to file a third-party insurance claim or lawsuit against the at-fault driver, your injuries must meet certain criteria.
What is a “serious injury” under Florida law?
In order to pursue a liability claim against the person who caused your car accident, you must have experienced at least one of the following as a result of the incident:
- Significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- Permanent injury, within a reasonable degree of medical probability
- Significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement
Under state law, you have four years, starting from the date of the crash, to file your car accident case.
What is comparative negligence?
If your injuries meet the above criteria and the court finds that the other driver is entirely at fault, the other driver, through their insurance carrier, will pay to compensate you for medical bills, lost wages and other losses you suffered. However, under the comparative negligence system, your award will be reduced by a percentage equal to your share of fault. For example, if the jury awards $100,000 in damages, but finds you were 40% responsible for the accident, you’re entitled to 60% of that amount, i.e. $60,000. Interestingly, even if you’re found to be, say, 90% responsible, you’re still entitled to 10% of the damages, but you’ll be responsible for 90% of the other driver’s damages. If you’re unsure where you stand, contact a competent Broward County personal injury attorney to determine the best path forward.
Contact Our Experienced Broward County Firm
If you require legal representation for matters of personal injury, family law, criminal defense, commercial litigation, or aviation litigation, look no further than The Finizio Law Group. Our firm has decades of combined experience representing clients from all walks of life, and we are here to put those years of experience to work for you as well. Contact us today to schedule your initial consultation with our team and to learn more about our services and how we can assist you.