In 2021, Florida experienced a total of 401,533 car crashes, including 3,445 fatal accidents and 163,961 crashes resulting in injuries. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), there have already been 146,074 vehicle crashes in Florida this year. The FLHSMV states that those accidents have resulted in 93,662 total injuries and 1,256 deaths. As vehicle accidents and crashes continue to occur throughout Florida, it is vital to be aware of the car accident laws in effect within the state.
Minimum Insurance Requirement
Florida does not require drivers to have bodily injury liability insurance coverage. This is uncommon as the majority of states require this type of coverage. Bodily injury liability insurance covers injury-related losses that a policyholder causes to other motorists if the policyholder is deemed responsible for the accident. Instead of requiring bodily injury liability insurance, Florida requires motorists to have a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection coverage and a minimum of $10,000 in property damage liability coverage. Personal injury protection coverage pays for a policyholder’s own losses following an injury from a collision while property damage liability coverage addresses property damage that the policyholder causes others in a collision.
Mandatory Police Reporting
There is a common misconception that automobile accidents must always be reported to the police. In Florida, drivers involved in a collision are required to report a crash to policy only if one of the following two things are true: (1) the crash caused a minimum of $500 in vehicle or property damage, or (2) the crash caused injury or death. If a crash does not meet either of those criteria, drivers may self-complete a “Driver Report of Traffic Crash Report” or a “Driver Exchange of Information” as detailed by the FLHSMV.
Determining Fault in Florida Accidents
Florida holds a “no-fault” car insurance policy as a state. In practice, this means that regardless of blame, drivers will recover insurance compensation from their own insurers. This involves making a claim through their personal injury protection coverage, which compensates policyholders for 80% of reasonable medical expenses incurred due to crash-related injuries, 60% of lost income due to crash-related injuries, and $5,000 in death benefits if a crash was fatal. If injuries are particularly serious, victims can recover further compensation outside of the no-fault system by pursuing personal injury claims. Florida makes use of pure comparative negligence, meaning that a victim can always make a claim for damages, regardless of their share of the blame. As a result, a motorist that was 90% responsible for a crash could still attempt to recover damages from the other driver.
Statute of Limitation
The statute of limitation for Florida car accident victims is four years. A statute of limitation restricts how long an individual has to bring a legal case regarding an incident. Statute of limitation rules exist to ensure that lawsuits are filed in a timely manner. In Florida, if a driver with serious injuries from a car accident does not act within the four-year limit, they can no longer pursue their case.
Have You Suffered Harm in a Florida Car Accident?
If you or someone you love has suffered harm from a Florida car accident, the lawyers at Friedman Rodman Frank & Estrada can help you understand your rights and the remedies available to you under Florida law. Our team of attorneys has successfully advocated for injured individuals throughout Florida for 46 years. Expenses from car injuries can quickly become overwhelming, and having an experienced roster of attorneys by your side can make a world of difference for your claim. Make sure that you make the most out of your claim and get the damages that you deserve. Contact our team at 305-448-8585 to schedule a free and no-obligation initial consultation with a lawyer at our office.