No one expects to be in a car crash, especially if you’re in the passenger seat and aren’t paying much attention to the road. If you’ve been in a car accident and weren’t the person driving, you may have questions or concerns like whether or not you can take legal action against the person (or people) who caused the wreck, and you’re definitely not alone. According to state agencies, in 2018, there were 397,812 total accidents of which included 251,970 injuries and 3,004 fatalities.
As a skilled personal injury attorney who has served Jacksonville and Jacksonville Beach, Florida for more than twenty years, I can answer your questions and help you determine your best course of action. I represent clients throughout the Northeast Florida-Jacksonville region, including Nassau County, Duval County, Clay County, and St. Johns County. Call the Glober Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation.
Florida Uses a No-Fault System
Some states require blame to be placed on one or all parties involved. In turn, the person or people found at-fault will then be required to pay for damages in a car accident. Florida, on the other hand, uses a no-fault system, which is a little different.
Florida’s no-fault system requires all parties in a car accident to file claims with their own insurance companies, if they are injured. The system further requires all Florida vehicle owners to have Personal Injury Protection Insurance, or PIP, as a part of their auto insurance policy. If an accident occurs, PIP pays for medical expenses and lost wages of those injured, regardless of who is at fault.
There are limitations with PIP, however. Basic PIP can pay only up to $10,000 of medical expenses and lost wages. Further, if a medical expert determines that an injury is a “non-emergency” then your PIP coverage for medical expenses is limited to $2,500. Also, certain treatment options are excluded from coverage, such as acupuncture and massage therapy.
Filing a Claim as a Passenger in Florida
As a passenger in an accident, you have just as many rights to file a claim as either driver involved. Your options for filing a claim after a Florida car accident include:
- Filing against the driver of the car you were in and their insurance company.
- Filing against the other driver and their insurance company.
- Filing against both of the involved drivers and their respective insurance companies.
- Filing against your own car insurance company if you own a vehicle.
An experienced personal injury attorney can help you through the process.
If PIP Insurance Doesn’t Cover All Expenses
The expenses that result from an accident can be numerous and costly. If you’re forced to stay home from work while you recover, you could potentially lose your source of income. Because car accident injuries can be so costly, the PIP coverage may not cover all your expenses, which can be overwhelming.
In Florida, if PIP insurance does not cover all of your losses, you can make claims against the liability coverages of all people responsible for causing the accident. Claims like this are different from PIP in that you must show that a person was at fault before prevailing in a claim against their liability coverage. But often liability coverage offers compensation in amounts far greater than PIP coverage.
It’s important to note that every situation is different so you should contact a knowledgeable personal injury attorney to help you explore your options based on your unique circumstances.
Compassionate Legal Guidance
My past experience managing GEICO’s litigation office in Jacksonville allows me to understand how insurance companies defend against injury claims and how lawyers hired by insurance companies defend injury cases in court. I use this knowledge to help my clients pursue fair compensation.
As your personal injury attorney, I will do everything I can to guide you to the compensation you deserve as you focus on healing. You will be fully informed through every step of the process so you won’t have to worry about being left in the dark regarding your case.
Call the Glober Law Firm in Jacksonville, Florida today to schedule a free consultation. I cannot wait to meet you and help you seek compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.