Car accidents and lawsuits are handled uniquely per case, depending on the state in which you live. The state of Florida is one of a dozen states that has a “no-fault” car accident law. This means that when you have an accident in the state of Florida, your insurance company will pay all of your expenses or only a portion of them. This includes your medical bills and lost earnings. It makes no difference who was at fault in the accident, your own insurance company pays.
If the accident causes serious injury, it may step outside the boundaries of the no-fault law. One of the stipulations of the no-fault law is that the injured person cannot claim pain and suffering from their own insurance carrier. However, if medical bills exceed a certain dollar amount or if there is a very serious injury resulting in the ability to go beyond the no-fault law, the injured person can pursue legal action and compensation from the at fault driver. This is why establishing fault is still necessary.
There Are Always Exceptions
There are accidents that are not this easily solved. While the law was intended to streamline accident claims and allow them to be managed outside the court system, there are those accidents that need more extensive consideration.
An example would be a car accident involving multiple vehicles. If six cars are involved in an accident, there are six insurance companies involved. In some cases, the accident is caused by one negligent driver, and he or she may even receive a ticket from the police, but that is not where this legal situation ends. The evidence must be looked at carefully. Your attorney must be able to prove who was at fault. In a no-fault state, it could be determined that each driver was partially at fault, but to what percentage?
If there is a serious injury, you may find yourself in a storm of litigation. This is when you need a personal injury attorney. He or she must prove that the other drivers, road conditions, or negligence from others caused the accident and therefore you are not responsible for extensive damages and medical cost.
So, If I Cause An Accident I Cannot Be Sued?
This is not exactly true. The no-fault law only covers a victim’s expenses (medical costs and loss wages) that are under $10,000.00. If the victim was injured and hospitalized, one visit could exceed that dollar amount. If there are broken bones, serious cuts, injuries requiring surgery, x-rays, CAT scans, and other tests, you will find that $10,000 maximum is not even close to what the expenses will be. At that point, the victim’s car accident attorney will look to you for compensation. Make no mistake about it, at this point you need an attorney to defend you. Your car accident lawyer will use the evidence in the case to attempt to disprove or reduce your liability in the case. If the person is permanently injured, the costs will be more than you can imagine.