Uninsured Motorist Crash Attorneys in Tampa
Florida drivers are advised to buy Uninsured Motorist Coverage when they are choosing auto insurance policies. A driver must carry $10,000 coverage for Property Damage Liability and $10,000 for Personal Injury Protection. Those amounts are the state minimums. All insurance companies in Florida are required to offer additional Uninsured Motorist Coverage. However, many drivers do not get optional coverage to save money. This move can backfire because the cost of additional Uninsured Motorist Coverage is small compared to the financial security it can provide after a crash.
Nearly one of every five motorists in Florida are uninsured. The state has the highest rate of uninsured drivers in the nation. Although Florida abides by a no-fault insurance law for car crashes, a policy with minimum coverage will seldom take care of the total damage costs after a serious wreck. If an injured driver’s insurance isn’t enough to cover damages, they can usually file a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier.
If the other driver’s insurance isn’t enough, or the driver doesn’t have insurance, the victim should contact an uninsured motorist crash attorney in Tampa uninsured motorist accident lawyers to discuss other potential avenues of compensation, such as personal injury claims.
What Should I Do After a Crash Involving an Uninsured Driver?
After an accident with an uninsured driver, call the police to report injuries and damage. Then, give the officers a statement once they arrive on the scene. Choose your words carefully during this conversation. Police could misconstrue statements such as “I’m sorry” or “I couldn’t stop in time” as fault admissions. Your statement could come back to haunt you later, so just give brief and honest answers. Take photos of the accident scene before it’s cleared. Pictures of vehicle damage and your injuries may become crucial evidence later in a lawsuit.
You should seek medical attention even if you think your injuries are minor. Sometimes, symptoms take time to manifest, so any delay in treatment could seriously affect your medical condition and make an unseen injury worse. If you delay medical treatment, it could also poke holes in your story in a future lawsuit or insurance claim against an at-fault driver. Your doctor will give you a report listing your injuries, potential future complications, and recovery plan. This document is another vital piece of evidence if you choose to pursue legal action.
Insurance Laws in Florida
In Florida, a motorist driver must have the minimum coverage for Property Damage Liability and Personal Injury Protection. However, it’s also a good idea to carry additional coverage. With an extremely high rate of uninsured drivers in the state, maintaining Uninsured Motorist Coverage and Bodily Injury Liability Coverage is a wise decision. Your premiums shouldn’t increase more than $100 per year, which is a reasonable amount compared to the protection you’re provided.
An uninsured motorist coverage policy can assist with damages, such as:
- Medical bills, up to the policy limit
- Future medical bills related to a crash
- Lost wages that aren’t covered by a no-fault insurance policy
- Future wage losses resulting from a wreck
- Coverage for victims of hit-and-runs
- Non-economic damages such as pain, suffering, and loss of life enjoyment
Potential Insurance Complications
Although you can get protection in Florida from Uninsured Motorist Coverage beyond the basic no-fault insurance requirements, it won’t cover damage to a vehicle or property. Insurance companies tend to offer additional coverage for these kinds of concerns, so check for available options with your carrier.
Before you sign an insurance policy, do your research on the company. Even though they may offer enticing premium rates, their track record of past policyholder interactions may not be stellar. Check online to see what people are saying about them when it comes to claimants, processing claims, pushback from claims adjusters, and past legal issues concerning coverage denial.
There’s no set formula for determining how much a settlement will be for a car accident in Florida. The amount depends largely on the auto insurance coverage that drivers carry. It gets even trickier in cases where uninsured motorists are involved. When there’s not enough insurance to cover all the costs of a serious crash, and the at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance, the victim should call Bulluck Law Group in Tampa and talk to one of our uninsured motorist accident attorneys.
How to Build a Lawsuit
Florida is a no-fault state, so an accident victim must first use their auto insurance policy to cover medical bills and lost wages. After that, they can file a claim for property damage against the at-fault driver’s insurance. Florida only allows injured drivers to file personal injury lawsuits for serious accidents, typically those that result in fatalities, permanent disabilities, or very extensive property damage. There’s a four-year time limit for filing a personal injury lawsuit regarding a serious car wreck in Florida. So it’s important to reach out to an attorney immediately and start building a case.
Compensation & Damages in Uninsured Motorist Claims
As long as law enforcement can identify and find the at-fault driver, that person will face legal repercussions for driving without insurance, including driver’s license suspension and fines. In some instances, the at-fault driver could face jail time for a seriously damaging crash or a wreck that stemmed from aggressive or reckless driving. They may also face charges if any criminal activity was connected to the accident.
The injured motorist’s insurance is unlikely to take care of all the costs involved in a serious car crash. The at-fault driver in an uninsured motorist accident case doesn’t have insurance coverage. Therefore, to get any additional compensation, the injured motorist must file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. Depending on the nature of the accident and what the insurance policy covers, plaintiffs can then get compensation for additional medical bills and lost wages beyond their insurance coverage in addition to non-economic damages such as suffering and pain.
How Can a Lawyer Help?
Florida motorists should keep in mind the state adheres to a pure comparative negligence law. That means a plaintiff who was partly at fault for their damages may still get compensation. However, the court will reduce the plaintiff’s reimbursement by their degree of fault in causing the crash.
Having the right uninsured motorist accident attorneys can make a huge difference in a case where there’s not enough insurance to cover damages. The Bulluck Law Group in Tampa has extensive experience dealing with all kinds of car wreck claims, including ones involving uninsured motorists. Our team is not afraid to take on difficult insurance companies that deny or reduce coverage without a fair cause.
Contact the Bulluck Law Group Tampa, Florida office today to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys. We can help you better understand your insurance coverage and handle dealing with the insurance companies, so you can focus on your recovery.