Understanding the Laws and Regulations Concerning Automobile Accidents
Understanding the laws and regulations surrounding car accidents can get complicated. That’s why many people choose to partner with collision lawyers. Experienced attorneys understand local, state, and federal law inside and out. This allows them to build the strongest possible cases for their clients.
Our team can listen to the details of your car accident case and explain the laws and regulations that may apply. Of course, if you ever have questions about your specific situation, feel free to call us at (954) 633-8270.
Car Accident Lawsuits Come With Filing Deadlines
Many car accident cases settle outside of court. Our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers could help you seek compensation through an insurance claim rather than a lawsuit.
Still, if a lawsuit becomes necessary, you must comply with the state-mandated filing deadline. Each state has filing deadlines you must follow when you decide to act against a liable party. In Florida, for example, Florida Statutes § 95.11(3)(a) details the lawsuit filing deadlines. Here, you generally have four years to file your injury lawsuit with our Miami personal injury lawyer.
Matters change slightly if you want to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Under a similar statute, you have two years to file your case. It’s best to get started on your case early to avoid missing your chance to pursue compensation.
Some Exceptions Could Toll Your Filing Deadline
Florida Statutes § 95.051 notes that, if certain factors exist, the state could toll your filing deadline. For instance, imagine that the other driver gave you a fake name at the accident scene. Because of this, you can’t initiate legal proceedings because you don’t know their true identity.
In that instance, the state could toll your filing deadline until you learn the other driver’s identity. In another scenario, if you were injured as a minor, you could have additional time from the date of your 18th birthday to file your case.
Only Certain Parties Can File a Wrongful Death Claim or Lawsuit
You may have lost a loved one because of a fatal car collision. If so, you could file a wrongful death claim. Florida Statutes § 768.21 notes that a personal representative of the decedent’s estate can initiate this legal action. They pursue damages on behalf of the decedent’s beneficiaries.
You may ask: “Who is my loved one’s personal representative?” This party is usually named in the decedent’s will. Yet, if the decedent passed away without a will, the courts could appoint a representative. Our team can evaluate your wrongful death case and manage your legal obligations.
Some States Operate on a No-Fault Insurance System
Florida Statutes § 627.7407 deems Florida a no-fault state. This requires all motorists to carry at least $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) and $10,000 in property damage liability coverage. Then, when an accident happens, they can file a claim with their own insurer and pursue damages.
You can seek compensation from your insurer, even if you caused some or all of the crash. Some circumstances allow you to file a third-party claim with the at-fault driver’s insurer. Your Florida car accident lawyer can explain this possibility and help you understand your options.
The Burden of Proof Is on You––the Injured Party
As the injured party, the burden of proof rests on your shoulders. You must have adequate evidence showing that because another party’s negligence caused your accident and injuries, you have compensable losses. Supporting evidence in your case could comprise:
- The accident report
- Black box data
- Photos of the accident scene and your injuries
- Videos of the collision, such as traffic camera footage
- Eyewitness testimony
- Information from an accident reconstruction specialist
Our Miami car accident lawyers aren’t just legal advocates; we’re also investigators. When you entrust us with your case, we can gather the information needed to prove you deserve compensation.
Florida Prohibits These Practices Behind the Wheel
You must prove negligence to successfully recover damages in a car accident case. Proving negligence means establishing that another party’s carelessness or recklessness caused your accident. Florida considers these behind-the-wheel actions to be negligent:
- Texting and driving. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) deems texting and driving illegal. If a driver’s distraction caused your collision, this could constitute negligence.
- Motorist intoxication. Florida Statutes § 316.193 notes that drinking and driving is illegal, and a guilty party could face criminal charges. They could also have financial liability if they cause an accident.
- Speeding. Florida Statutes § 316.183 outlaws unreasonable speeding. It notes that motorists must keep up with the flow of traffic and maintain a speed that is “reasonable.” Otherwise, they could be found liable for the crash.
Contact Us Today for Help Understanding the Laws and Regulations Surrounding Car Accidents
Our team understands the laws and regulations that apply to car accident cases. That’s why we feel confident about managing your legal matters. If you were in a collision, contact or call the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato at (954) 633-8270. We can discuss your accident, injuries, and more during a free consultation.