Understanding the No-Fault System: When Do You Need a Lawyer to File a Car Accident Claim?
Under Florida’s no-fault system, most people injured in an auto collision file a car accident claim based on their personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. They usually navigate this process on their own to recover money for their medical care and a portion of their lost wages. Those with more severe injuries should consult a Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer.
We recommend talking to a car accident attorney about your crash and legal options if your injuries require surgery or hospital care. Florida law allows some accident victims to pursue fault-based claims or sue the at-fault driver for compensation.
Under Florida Statutes § 627.730, Florida’s no-fault law, most people hurt in a collision in the state must first turn to their insurance coverage to cover the medical bills and lose wages from an auto accident. All drivers must carry personal injury protection coverage, which pays up to $10,000 for medical bills and lost wages, regardless of who is at fault.
However, many people qualify to file fault-based auto insurance claims. If you want to hold the at-fault driver accountable for serious injuries or have a problem with your insurance company when filing a PIP claim, you might want legal representation after a car accident.
Most auto accident law firms provide free consultations for victims. You can speak to someone who leads these cases regularly and can provide a careful assessment of your options based on your case’s facts and injuries.
When Does Fault Determination Matter in a Florida Car Accident?
When a crash victim files a PIP claim, the insurance carrier does not consider fault when they pay the claim. They only look at the medical bills and other documentation to show the covered expenses and losses. Fault determination in car accidents only comes into play when the victim is pursuing a case against the other party involved.
When someone suffers serious crash injuries, their PIP’s insurance policy limits likely won’t cover all their expenses and losses. Florida law allows the victim to pursue financial compensation from the negligent driver who caused the crash under these circumstances.
To recover money in a fault-based claim, the accident victim must show that the other party acted negligently, carelessly and/or recklessly and caused the collision. A personal injury attorney often handles these cases, investigating what happened and documenting fault and liability.
What Compensation Is Available for Car Accident Injuries in Florida?
Compensation for car accident injuries in Florida depends on how the victim pursues compensation. PIP auto insurance policy coverage includes paying for:
- The necessary medical care up to policy limits
- Partial income missed during recovery
- Some related expenses up to daily limits
When they seek compensation through a fault-based claim or lawsuit, the recoverable damages available could include:
- Medical expenses, current and future
- Missed income during recovery
- Miscellaneous related expenses
- Pain and suffering and other non-economic damages
As you can see, a fault-based claim allows those who qualify to seek and secure more types of compensation. This includes non-economic damages, which are often worth several times the economic costs of a crash case.
How Will a Florida Car Accident Attorney Help With My Claim?
Many injury victims in the state pay for their care through no-fault claims. However, those with serious injuries could pursue additional damages beyond those covered by PIP policies through fault-based cases. If they filed these claims or lawsuits, an attorney could handle the case for them.
If you are in this position, reach out to our team. We will evaluate your compensation options and offer legal counsel based on your situation. We could pursue pain and suffering, medical care coverage, income losses, and other damages on your behalf.
While we handle a car accident case, our clients can focus on their health and healing. We handle the rest. Connect with our legal team when you realize you might have serious injuries. We must develop a compelling case to hold the at-fault party accountable as soon as possible. Florida Statutes § 95.11 generally gives us up to two years after the crash to sue, but the sooner we start, the more time we have to devote to your case.
Discuss Your Florida Car Accident Claim Options With Our Team
At the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato, our car accident team provides free case consultations for victims hurt in Florida crashes. We can explain Florida’s no-fault laws and how they can affect your case. We can also manage settlement negotiations with the insurance company.Call us today at (954) 633-8270. We have someone available to take your call and evaluate your case. Contact us to learn more.