What claims can I make in a personal injury action and what type of insurance is available?

What claims can I make in a personal injury action and what type of insurance is available? 

Auto Insurance in Florida

In order to register an automobile, Florida law requires that the vehicle has personal injury protection (PIP) and property damage liability (PDL) automobile insurance. A vehicle is not able to be registered without current proof of insurance. Even if the car is not being used or is broken, it still must be insured if it has a license plate. Most auto insurance policies in Florida include two types of insurance – PIP and PDL.

  • Personal injury protection (PIP) covers the individuals in a car accident, even if they are at fault for the accident. PIP coverage helps pay some of your medical bills resulting from the accident. The minimum PIP required in Florida is $10,000. 
  • Property damage liability (PDL) covers the cost of the damage done to other property as a result of the accident. The minimum PDL required in Florida is also $10,000. 

After an automobile accident, a person can file a claim with their insurance company regardless if the accident was their fault or not. Depending on the type of insurance coverage purchased, the insurance company may provide the insured driver with compensation for the vehicle damage and up to $10,000 for their medical bills. The payout provided by the insurance company may or may not be enough to cover the damages. If an injured party’s own policy does not cover all of their property damage and medical bills, victims can file a claim against the at-fault driver. Those responsible for car accidents must be held accountable so that victims can receive the compensation they deserve. 

Damages from an Auto Accident

The injured party is able to seek compensation from the at-fault driver for their injuries and damages. The typical losses resulting from a car accident commonly include:

  • Medical bills – this includes tests, appointments, hospital bills, ambulance bills, and treatment expenses due to the accident.
  • Lost wages – income that the injured person lost because they were not able to work due to an injury.
  • Future lost wages – earnings that the victim would not be able to receive in the future due to the injury. This amount is calculated based on the capacity of the individual to earn money, not the amount that they have earned in the past. 
  • Pain and suffering – mental and emotional stress caused by the accident.
  • Property damage – damage to a victim’s personal property due to an accident. 

Damages Exceeding Insurance Policy Limits

If the damages exceed the coverage or the amount offered by the at-fault driver’s insurance company, an injured victim should contact an attorney in order to maximize their chances of compensation. The lawyer will review all aspects of the case and determine the best way to take action. If your claim is worth more than the available policy limits, there are a few ways to seek compensation. There are a number of possible sources of recovery, including your own uninsured motorist policy, umbrella policies, multiple defendants, and bad faith claims.

In order to be successful in filing these claims, it is necessary to collect evidence proving the other driver was negligent and therefore responsible for the accident. If the injured victim and their lawyer feel that the compensation offered by the insurance company is fair, the case can be settled before ever going to trial. If the amount of damages exceeds the available insurance policy limits, then the defendant may be held liable for the remaining damages over the policy limits. A lawyer, like a personal injury lawyer from Jeff Murphy Law, can help navigate these complicated insurance policies and ensure that the plaintiff maximizes their compensation for damages.