Do I Need A Florida Car Accident Attorney To File A Claim On My No
You do not need an attorney to file a claim with your no-fault insurance carrier. However, it is always helpful to have an attorney provide guidance and answer any questions you may have during the insurance claim process. Additionally, if your PIP provider denies your coverage or your costs exceed the limits of your policy, then you may want to examine your case with a car accident attorney to determine your best legal course of action.
Contact Our Car Accident Attorneys Immediately After A Crash
If youve been injured in a car accident in Clearwater, its in your best interest to seek legal representation from an experienced personal injury lawyer at Carlson Meissner Hart & Hayslett as soon as possible. Let us review your case, help you understand your legal options, and guide you through the process of fighting for the compensation you deserve. With our help, you can secure the compensation you are entitled to by law.
What If The Amount You Need Exceeds What Is Covered In Floridas No
Its important to note that no-fault doesnt mean that you cant make a claim against the at-fault driver for causing injuries in a car accident. If the compensation you need to pay for property damages, medical bills, and lost income exceeds the states injury threshold or your PIP coverage, then you can choose to file a lawsuit against the other driver. Florida is a no-fault state, but if your injuries are severe, permanent, or debilitating, you may still choose to file a claim.
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What Happens When You Get Into A No
You might hear people talk about a no-fault car accident. This does not mean that no one is at fault. In states that have no-fault laws, some people use this term to describe a car accident that occurs in a no-fault state.
Every car accident has a cause and determining who is liable for your accident is one of the ways you can collect the most compensation for your injuries and damages.
Injuries That Span Beyond The Pip Coverage
For you to file a personal injury lawsuit against the person responsible for the accident, the injuries suffered must qualify as serious. Injuries that can help you shed the limitations of Floridas no-fault insurance laws are:
- Significant disfigurement or scarring
- Loss of life
You are not limited to making a PIP claim under your insurance policy if your injuries fall under the above categories. Through a personal injury lawsuit or third-party car insurance claim, you can hold the party at fault responsible. Upon filing a personal injury lawsuit, you can seek compensation for all categories of economic and non-economic losses.
In many car accidents in Florida, it is common for damages to extend beyond the PIP insurance coverage. Medical treatment is costly and can easily blow out of proportion. PIP coverage should not be your only option for recovery. With the help of an experienced Florida car accident attorney, you can file a personal injury claim to seek compensation for all expenses associated with your injuries.
Carrying the PIP insurance ensures that you are covered in case of an accident. Even if the other driver is uninsured, you will get compensation for your injuries up to the policy limit. PIP insurance also helps to reduce the time and effort spent in handling insurance disputes. You will access money to cater to your medical expenses faster.
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What Does Pip Pay For
According to Florida Statutes § 627.736, PIP insurance pays for 80 percent of all reasonable and necessary medical expenses arising from your car accident. This includes emergency transportation, hospitalizations, surgical procedures, nursing services, dental work, and more. However, in order to receive coverage, you must seek initial treatment within 14 days of your accident.
PIP also provides 60 percent of your gross wages and loss of future earning capacity if you cannot work because of your injuries. The statute states that insurance companies must pay these disability benefits every two weeks.
If your loved one died from an accident injury, PIP will provide you with $5,000 in death benefits per covered individual. The insurance company pays these benefits on top of coverage for the deceaseds final medical expenses and lost wages.
To consult with an experienced car accidents lawyer today, call
Florida No Fault Insurance Agency
If you are on the lookout for insurance in the Sunshine state, then you owe it to yourself to find the best deal possible. That means comparing free insurance rates against multiple companies.
As you know, auto insurance covers you against the losses you may suffer in an accident. More importantly than that, it is a contract between the provider and yourself. This is a key factor to keep in mind before you sign on the dotted line. If you ever were “at fault” with one company, you could be stuck with them for a long time, so choose wisely.
Most Florida no fault insurance agency plans will have you agree to a contract which has you pay a monthly premium. The higher your deductible is, the lower your premium will be. Common coverage includes property, which pays for damages or theft, liability, which covers your legal responsibilities, and medical, which of course will cover treatment.
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Why You Should File A Claim After An Accident In Florida
Filing a claim after your accident would allow you to secure damages to pay for your accident-related losses and bills. Additionally, you will also have documentation that the accident occurred if you choose to take further action regarding the event.
Also, you might make a negligent driver in the accident think twice about operating their vehicle without care in the future. This person might even be you, as Florida does not consider fault when you file a claim against your policy.
Is Florida An At
Florida might be the butt of many jokes, but you can ensure youre not part of the punchline by being aware of your legal rights.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident in Florida, its in your best interest to know your rights.
One of the things you need to know is whether Florida is considered an at fault or no fault state.
Read on to learn more information that might keep you out of a bind.
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Florida Auto Insurance Requirements
According to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the following guidelines must be in place before a car may be registered with the state.
- You must have proof of minimum coverage of $10,000 in personal injury protection insurance. This will cover 80 percent of medical expenses up to the policy amount for covered injuries, no matter who caused the crash.
- You must have proof of minimum coverage of $10,000 in property damage liability coverage. This pays for damage to another persons property caused by you or another driver using your insured vehicle.
- Continuous insurance coverage must be kept in place even if the vehicle is inoperable or never driven.
- Your auto insurance policy must be purchased from an insurance carrier licensed to do business in Florida.
- You must maintain Florida insurance coverage continuously throughout the registration period. This is required no matter where the vehicle is located .
It is illegal to drive without automobile insurance in Florida. Failure to maintain the required coverage may lead to suspension of your drivers license/registration. Reinstatement fees cost up to $500.
If you would like to read more about how no-fault automobile insurance works, download the Florida Department of Financial Services: Automobile Mobile Insurance Toolkit for more details.
Who Is Covered By Florida No Fault Personal Injury Protection
PIP coverage is kind of complex. You buy it as part of the insurance you purchase on your car, but it covers you in situations even when youre not in that car. It also sometimes covers your relatives, if they live with you, or your passengers. Here are some of the basics of how PIP coverage works.
If you have PIP coverage for a vehicle, it will reimburse you for injuries incurred while driving in your vehicle, while riding as a passenger in a vehicle, and if youre injured by someone elses vehicle while you are a pedestrian or biking. Your PIP coverage will also cover any relatives who live in your household who are injured while driving in a vehicle, riding as a passenger, or walking or biking when struck by a vehicle. If those relatives have their own PIP coverage, it will apply, not yours.
Your PIP coverage will also cover other people who drive your vehicle with your permission and uninsured passengers in your vehicle.
If the accident occurs in a state other than Florida, your PIP will only cover your injuries if your are driving your insured vehicle at the time of the accident.
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Is No Fault Coverage Mandatory In Florida
Yes. Florida car accident laws require every owner or registrant of a motor vehicle to have no fault coverage. The law is called the Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law
The statue does not include motorcycles in its definition of motor vehicle. So motorcycles are not required to have PIP coverage. The statute also requires nonresident owners of vehicles to have no-fault coverage if the vehicle is physically present in Florida for more than 90 days of the preceding 365 days.
As with some of the other auto insurance requirements, Florida technically gives another option to buying a PIP insurance policy. Most people dont make use of this option since it is usually more difficult and costly than just buying the insurance coverage. The other option is to provide security in the form of a surety bond or by furnishing a certificate of self-insurance issued by the Florida Department of Highway Safety.
A Few Other Things To Keep In Mind
When you first obtain your insurance, your provider will issue you a Florida Insurance I.D. card. You must be ready, at all times that you are operating your vehicle, to show it to any law enforcement officer who asks to see it. If you are asked and do not have it, you may be ticketed.
If your drivers license or license plates have been suspended for not obeying the financial responsibility or no-fault laws, you cannot obtain a temporary replacement license for any reason, even for work purposes.
Anyone who makes a false statement or commits forgery in regard to their vehicle insurance may be found guilty of committing a second-degree misdemeanor.
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When And How To File A Pip Claim In Florida
Florida has strict rules to follow when filing a claim for PIP. The most important is treatment for any injuries must happen within two weeks of the car accident to be eligible for PIP reimbursement. Your claim will not be accepted after two weeks. Due to a high incidence of insurance fraud in the state of Florida, your insurer has up to 60 days to investigate your claim for any falsehood but must pay for your damages within 30 days, even if there is suspicion.
If your case is not straightforward, or your insurance company is giving you issues, it may be a good idea to get a personal injury lawyer to ensure you get your payment. In the meantime, you should keep a log of all of your medical expenses following the accident.
For the work loss benefits, you will need to submit a “Wage and Salary” verification that is filled out by your employer. The verification documents your wages in the 13 weeks prior to the accident. A lawyer might help ensure your employer fills out the verification in a timely manner. You may also be required to get a note from your physician detailing how you are disabled.
What If The Costs Exceed $10000
There are some exceptions to the no-fault insurance law in Florida. First, a person whose medical bills and lost wages total more than $10,000 may recover those economic damages from at-fault drivers or their insurance company. The victim does not have to prove that he or she has a permanent injury to recover these economic damages.
Another exception applies to accident victims who have suffered a permanent injury from a car accident. Where an accident victim proves permanent injury, he or she may recover economic damages and also damages for intangible items like pain and suffering and loss of the capacity for the enjoyment of life. Florida law defines a permanent injury as the following:
- significant and permanent loss of an important bodily function
- permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, other than scarring or disfigurement
- significant and permanent scarring or disfigurement or
Whether an individual has suffered a permanent injury is a question for the jury. Permanent injuries vary from case to case and need not be visible injuries. For example, most traumatic brain injuries involve permanent damage, as do injuries to the discs in the back and neck.
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What The Law Does Say
Every motorist in Florida must have, at a minimum, $10,000 of PIP coverage. This PIP coverage is used to cover medical bills and lost wages you may suffer in an accident, no matter who is at fault.
When a car accident occurs in a No-Fault state, both drivers file a claim with their own insurer to have their medical and other costs covered. For contrast, in an at-fault state, the driver may file a claim with other drivers insurer, or sue the other driver to prove fault and to determine who is responsible for paying the damages.
After A Traffic Accident What Are The First Steps To Take
If a negligent driver injures you, but that driver has no insurance and no other way to cover your damages, a UIM policy covers your medical costs and lost income beyond the $10,000 of PIP benefits.
If you sustain injuries in the Tampa Bay area in a traffic collision or if you have questions about any particular accident case, reach out to a personal injury attorney who can answer your questions and explain how Florida law may apply to your own situation. But after any traffic crash, drivers should take these steps first:
Seek medical treatment immediately. Even if you do not think that you are injured, get medical attention within 24 hours if at all possible. Your health must be your top priority, and if you take legal action, you will need the medical records.
If you are injured in traffic by a negligent driver, dont speak to any insurance company representative or sign any documents. Let a trained negotiator your personal injury attorney handle the negotiating on your behalf.
Floridas time limit the statute of limitations is usually four years for personal injury claims generated by traffic collisions, but you should actually seek an attorneys advice as soon as possible if a negligent driver injures you.
If you have been injured by negligence in Florida, take the time to understand your rights and consider your legal options.
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How Much Does Pip Cost In Florida
In Florida, the minimum and the maximum amount of PIP you can have is $10,000. To reduce the cost of your premium, you have several options. You can opt for a higher deductible the maximum being $1,000. When you get a quote, you can choose to exclude work loss or whether you want your PIP to cover the residents of your household. In either case, we recommend you compare quotes from multiple local insurers in order to get an affordable rate.
The following are sample car insurance quotes from a 30-year-old driver from Jacksonville, where prices reflect the state average.
Going with a higher deductible is often the best way to reduce your premium. Opting out of work loss only knocks off a modest amount from your yearly rate. Before you opt for the $1,000 deductible, however, remember you will still be responsible for the 20% of your medical bills your PIP won’t cover. Be sure you would be able to cover those charges as well as pay $1,000 out of pocket.
Ies With Potential Liability
There are various situations where there could be different parties who have liability for aiding you in your car repairs. In other words, depending on your situation, there could be other ways that you could potentially pay for your car repairs together with a No-Fault type policy. You have to carry $10,000 in property damage coverage as part of the law in Florida.
However, there are some situations where you could go over the cap from the at-fault partys limit through their insurance company. These situations often depend on a third party.
For example, if the driver was currently at work during the accident, and there was some neglect on their part, theres always the possibility that you could get additional funds through that company. Additionally, there are situations where there were no road signs to warn the drivers about unsafe conditions, so public organizations could be liable and it may be possible to get the additional funds from there as well.
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What Else Does Pip Insurance Cover After A Car Accident In Clearwater
PIP insurance covers more than just medical expenses. This type of insurance policy will also cover a portion of your lost wages if you are disabled as a result of car accident injuries.
Your insurance company will determine how much income you are losing by looking at your income from the 13 weeks prior to the accident.
PIP insurance will also cover up to $5,000 in death benefits if someone is killed in an accident, regardless of who was at fault.