If you’ve been involved in a car accident in the state of Florida then you likely have questions. Gilbert and Smallman has answered some of the most frequently asked questions below, but if you have additional questions please call us today for your free legal consultation.
What does it mean that Florida is a no-fault state?
You may have heard that Florida is a no-fault state. Basically what this means is that no matter who was at-fault for the car accident, your car insurance company must pay the first $10,000 worth of lost wages and medical costs. When you get this insurance, it’s referred to as PIP. The advantage to this is that you can see your own doctor. If you need help setting up your claim, reach out to Gilbert and Smallman.
What happens if my bills are more than $10,000
In the event that your PIP benefits are exhausted, then the at-fault driver becomes responsible for damages. In many cases, just visiting the emergency room can eat up the entire PIP benefit. If additional medical care is needed, or if you must take time off of work, then you’ll likely need to work with a personal injury attorney who can ensure you get the compensation you’re entitled to for your damages.
Do I have options if the at-fault party doesn’t have insurance or has too little?
This depends. If you have UM coverage (uninsured motorist) on your own policy then you have protection. Carrying this coverage will raise your monthly premium but it does protect you in this specific type of situation. It’s not uncommon for a person who’s at fault in an accident to have no insurance. If you don’t have UM coverage then you can’t make a claim against their insurance. You may be able to sue them personally for assets but in many cases they won’t have assets worth suing over.
That said, if you have your own UM, you’ll be protected. We always recommend that our clients carry as much UM coverage as they’re allowed to or that they can afford. If you have UM insurance, don’t assume that your insurance company is going to simply hand over what you’re entitled to. Remember that their business model is not taking care of you – it’s minimizing how much they pay out in benefits. Gilbert & Smallman is here with a free consultation to help you learn what your options are.