Fiol Law Group|Posted in Car Accidents on February 13, 2018
Florida’s no-fault insurance applies to every car accident across the state, and an attorney who understands these complex laws will be your best ally. This law requires everyone to have their own no-fault insurance so they can cover themselves, no matter who was at fault in the accident. It is also known as personal injury protection, or PIP. PIP also applies to pedestrians and cyclists injured by vehicles and children injured on school buses.
The no-fault insurance is a $10,000 insurance policy that the law forces you to have. Its purpose is to pay the medical bills or lost wages a victim may suffer after accident. If, at any point, you get in an accident, no matter who is at fault, you may receive up to $10,000 – depending on the circumstances. After an accident, all people involved deal with their own their own insurance companies.
One of the technicalities about the rule is that the personal injury protection only covers 80% of the medical bills and only 60% of lost wages. This means that you will end up still owing money after the medical bills and lost wages in most situations. Additionally, if you were not permanently injured and the total money that you lost was less than $10,000, you may not file a lawsuit against the other driver for the amount that you still owe after the PIP, even if the other driver was clearly at fault.
Advantages for Drivers of Florida’s PIP Law
One of the main advantages of Florida’s no-fault rule is the way it affects litigation. Using this system reduces the number of possible lawsuits, which greatly reduces the cases in the state that need to be processed. This simplifies things for the person injured. Instead of needing to debate with another insurance company and another person, you can immediately get the care that you need. There is no time spent trying to decide who is at fault.
Exceptions to Florida’s PIP Rule
If a person suffers a permanent injury from the accident, he or she may not pursue a lawsuit against the other driver. Florida law defines a permanent injury as significant and permanent loss of an important body function, permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability, significant scarring or disfigurement of any kind. If you have suffered one of these extreme injuries, you are exempt from the no-fault rule and have the option of taking the other driver to court.
The other clear exception to the no-fault rule is if the financial losses that you experienced because of the accident add up to more than $10,000. If that happens, you can file a lawsuit against the other driver for any cost that the personal injury protection did not cover.
If You Need or Want to Pursue a Lawsuit
If you were in an accident where you sustained a permanent injury or had to spend more than $10,000 to recover, you need help from a Florida insurance company that knows the ropes and can handle insurers. The Tampa accident attorneys of Fiol & Morros Law Group can explain your rights, Florida’s insurance policies, and your legal grounds for a personal injury lawsuit in a free consultation.