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Florida Car Accidents: FAQs

Being involved in a car accident can be traumatic, upsetting, and even life-changing. If you’re involved in a car accident, you’ll likely have many questions.

Keep reading for the answers to some of your questions.

Frequently Asked Questions About Car Accidents in Florida

What must I have to legally operate a vehicle in Florida?

You must have the following to legally operate a motor vehicle in Florida:

  • Driver’s License
  • Minimum auto insurance coverage
  • Vehicle registration

How much auto insurance am I required to carry in Florida?

Any vehicle with a current Florida registration must carry the following:

  • A minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection coverage
  • A minimum of $10,000 in Property Damage Liability coverage
  • Continuous coverage even if the vehicle is not being driven or is inoperable

What are Florida’s “no-fault” insurance rules?

While most states follow a traditional tort system in regards to car accidents, Florida is one of about a dozen states that follows a no-fault car insurance system. This means that after a car accident, drivers and covered passengers in Florida turn to their own insurance companies for coverage for their financial losses up to the limits of their policy, regardless of who caused the collision. This is known as "Personal Injury Protection," or "PIP" coverage.

What should I do if I’m in an accident with more than one driver?

Be sure to obtain the following from all drivers at the scene of the accident:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Contact information
  • Driver’s license information
  • Insurance information
  • Vehicle registration information

If you’re involved in an accident with more than one driver, you may need to file a claim with all involved drivers’ insurance policies. It’s wise to contact an experienced car accident attorney to help with this kind of case because it can get complicated fast.

What should I do if I’m involved in a hit-and-run accident?

If you’re injured as a result of an accident and the other driver flees the scene, do the following:

  1. Try to get as detailed a description of the vehicle as possible - the vehicle’s color, make, model, and license plate number, if possible
  2. Call for help so your injuries are tended to
  3. Call the police to come and take an accident report - keep in mind that you don’t have to admit fault for the accident
  4. Take photos of the property damage and personal injuries if possible
  5. Gather the names and contact information of any witnesses present

Should I provide a recorded statement to the insurance company?

Not necessarily. Having your attorney provide a statement for you is your best option. However, you may also make your statement over the phone or in writing, if you prefer. Just keep in mind that you don’t have to provide your statement as soon as it’s asked of you. You can take the time you need to prepare your statement before providing it to the insurance company to make sure you explain the event exactly as you remember it.

What should I do if I’m in an accident and don’t have insurance coverage?

It’s best not to let your insurance coverage lapse. If you are in a wreck and you don’t have insurance coverage, you may be able to pursue bodily injury and property damage compensation from the at-fault driver’s policy. If the at-fault driver also doesn’t have auto insurance, you’re not left with many options for any type of compensation.

Do I need to have the police take an accident report if my injuries are minor?

No matter how minor your injuries are, or even if you’re not injured at all, it’s still a good idea to have the police come and take an accident report. You may not realize the extent of your injuries for hours, days, or even weeks following a wreck. It’s common for accident victims not to feel the pain of injuries sustained right away.

Having a police report can make a big difference in the outcome of your claim. Without this documentation, it can be very difficult to retrieve compensation from insurance companies because then it’s just he-said-she-said, which provides no legitimate proof of what actually happened.

Should I see a doctor after an accident even if I don’t feel injured?

As mentioned above, you may not feel the pain of your injuries directly after the accident. The pain can be delayed for hours, days, or even weeks after the crash. It’s a good idea to have yourself checked out by a medical professional just in case.

Additionally, this documentation can be very helpful for your claim. If you attempt to recover damages for injuries later, the insurance company isn’t likely to take you seriously if you don’t have the medical documentation to back up what you tell them.

How much time do I have to file a car accident lawsuit?

The state of Florida allows injured accident victims four years from the date of the accident to file suit. This time limit is referred to as the “statute of limitations.”

However, if your loved one died as a result of a car accident caused by another driver, you have two years from the date of your loved one’s death to file suit.

It’s important to file within the statute of limitations because the court will likely throw out your case if you attempt to file past the deadline.

We’re Here to Support You

If you’ve been injured in an accident as a result of another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. Our attorneys here at Harmon Parker, P.A. are highly skilled in the area of car accident personal injury law and have helped many other people just like you obtain justice. Let us see if we can help you, too. Don’t wait—contact our office with your case right away.

Call Harmon Parker, P.A. today at (813) 452-4144 to learn more about how we can help you recover over a free consultation.