Anyone can get into a car accident, regardless of how carefully they drive. According to data from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, there have been 178, 684 crashes in the state just in the first part of 2019. For those driving on Florida roads this summer, here are three important things to know:
What “comparative negligence” means for your recovery
Florida follows the comparative negligence standard to determine liability in an auto accident case. Under the comparative negligence system, each person involved in the accident is held liable to the extent they are found to be at fault. If Nick is found to be 40% at fault, he is responsible for 40% of the damages sustained by Daisy. This also has an impact on how much someone can recover in their personal injury case. Their compensation is generally reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to them.
Florida’s auto insurance requirements
Anyone with a vehicle registered in Florida must also carry auto insurance with both personal injury and property damage protection. However, Florida is in the minority of states to require “no-fault” coverage, also known as personal injury protection insurance. No-fault insurance, as the name implies, reimburses the policyholder for damages regardless of who caused the accident. Because of this, drivers in Florida are more often dealing with their own insurance company after a crash rather than the other driver’s.
Use your auto insurance to cover medical costs relating to the accident
In most cases where someone incurs a medical expense, their first thought is to seek coverage under their health insurance policy. However, the personal injury protection insurance required by Florida law covers your medical expenses as well. Your regular health insurance can cover deductibles or copays, but be sure to use your auto insurance as the primary method of paying medical bills following an accident.