Get in a Car Accident without Insurance
If you get in a car accident without insurance, you may face serious financial hardships. You may be responsible for your medical bills, vehicle repair bills, and other losses, as well as losses the other involved party incurs.
If you caused the car accident, you may be personally liable for damages to the other party. On the other hand, if you were not at fault, the other party may be responsible for some of your expenses. Determining liability is critical in this situation, so you may wish to seek advice from a Fort Myers personal injury lawyer who has experience handling car accident cases.
Florida Law Requires Drivers to Carry Insurance
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) states that drivers must show proof they carry insurance meeting minimum requirements before they can register a vehicle. These minimum requirements include:
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance: Drivers must carry a minimum of $10,000 in PIP coverage. Regardless of who causes the accident, PIP provides up to $10,000 for medical expenses for the driver and any passengers in their car.
- Property Damage Liability (PDL) insurance: Drivers must also carry a minimum of $10,000 in PDL coverage. PDL covers damage that the driver causes to another person’s property.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Florida
Even if you never get in an accident, if you are caught driving without insurance in Florida, you will face penalties from the government. These penalties include:
- License and registration suspension of up to three years, or until you purchase a valid insurance policy
- A license reinstatement fee of up to $500
If you do get in an accident without insurance, you may face additional financial hardships related to losses from the accident. You may be responsible for your own losses, as well the other driver’s expenses, depending on whether you were at fault.
Medical Expenses After a Car Accident
Florida is a no-fault state, which means that no matter which driver was at fault, each driver pays their own medical bills (up to $10,000) with their PIP insurance. If you do not have insurance, you must pay those bills yourself. If you suffer serious injuries, your medical bills can quickly add up.
However, you should not be responsible for the other party’s medical bills, unless the accident was your fault and they suffer severe injuries. In that case, they have the right to sue you for their damages.
Property Damage Expenses After a Car Accident
If you caused the accident, your PDL would normally pay for the repair or replacement of the other driver’s vehicle. However, if you did not have PDL insurance at the time of the accident, you will be personally responsible for those expenses, which can be high in value.
On the other hand, if you did not cause the accident, then the other driver’s PDL insurance should pay for the repair or replacement of your vehicle.
How a Lawyer Can Help With Your Car Accident Case
Determining who was at fault in this situation is critical. If the other party proves you were at fault for the accident, you may be on the hook for tens of thousands of dollars or more in bills for medical care, property damage, and other expenses.
If you choose to hire a car accident lawyer in Fort Lauderdale to help with your case, they can investigate the accident, gather evidence showing who was at fault, and help you avoid paying for unnecessary expenses. They will:
- Investigate the accident: Both the police and the other party’s insurance provider will investigate the accident. They may try to blame the accident on you so they can avoid paying any damages. We will independently investigate what happened and advocate for your best interests.
- Estimate your losses: You may be able to recover losses for your property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering from the other party’s insurance provider. We will use evidence to estimate the value of these losses.
- Negotiate a settlement: We will negotiate a settlement with the other party’s provider.
- File a lawsuit: We may have to sue the other party to recover your losses. Florida Statute § 95.11 gives you just four years after the accident to sue, so contact us promptly after the accident for legal advice.
Can You Afford to Hire a Lawyer?
While you may think you cannot afford to pay a personal injury lawyer, you can! Our team works on contingency, which means we take our fees directly from your settlement or court award. We do not require any payment upfront, which means it’s not a problem if you don’t have cash on hand. We only get paid if we win your case.
Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato are Ready to Help
If you got in an accident without insurance, the other party may try to blame it on you and hold you personally responsible for their losses. A Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer with the Law Offices of Wolf & Pravato may be able to help you untangle the legal complexities of your case, avoid paying more than your fair share, and potentially recover damages from the other party. Call (954) 633-8270 today for a free consultation.