Few things are more frustrating and can be more costly than a car accident. Most car accident injuries require treatment and even minor injuries can incur significant costs.
Fortunately, our car accident lawyers can help you with you recover compensation for your injuries. You can recover your economic damages by filing an insurance claim with your own provider. To cover additional damages like pain and suffering, you will usually need to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver.
For a free case assessment with our experienced car accident lawyers, contact the Law Offices of David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. at (954) 751-4258 today.
How to Recover Compensation After a Car Accident in Aventura, FL
Florida insurance rules do not make it easy in certain cases to recover compensation as the process is rather complex. Your own insurance will be the first avenue to compensation and will usually be followed by a third-party liability claim against the at-fault driver. In the event you suffered serious injuries, you can file a lawsuit. Our car accident attorneys can help you along every step of the process so that you recover the compensation you deserve.
Filing a No-Fault Insurance Claim
In Florida, every driver is obligated to have personal injury protection (PIP) insurance in case they or their passengers are involved in a car accident and injured. The advantage of having PIP insurance is that it provides compensation despite who was at fault for the collision, which is why it is referred to as “no-fault” insurance. Nevertheless, it only covers a limited amount of your damages.
Unfortunately, PIP insurance is designed in Florida to cover only up to 80% of your medical bills and 60% of your lost wages for the time your injuries caused you to miss at work. Additionally, most PIP insurance policies have a maximum coverage of $10,000, leaving victims potentially facing out-of-pocket expenses. Further, PIP will also not cover your non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. To recover your remaining damages, you will typically need to file a third-party insurance claim against the other driver to get paid for your remaining damages. If you suffered serious injuries, you would likely be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Filing a Third-Party Claim Against the Other Driver
When you’re injured in a car accident caused by another driver, your PIP insurance should cover your medical bills and lost wages up to a certain limit. However, if your damages exceed that limit, you will need to file a third-party insurance claim against the other driver’s insurance company to receive full compensation. Keep in mind that there is a $10,000 coverage limit for most policies, so filing a third-party claim is often necessary.
It’s important to understand the process of filing a third-party insurance claim and what it entails. You’ll need to gather evidence, such as police reports and medical bills, and submit a demand letter to the other driver’s insurance company. The claims adjuster will then investigate the accident and determine fault before making an offer to settle.
Filing a Lawsuit
When you’re injured in a car accident, your insurance claims will likely not be enough to cover all of the damages you have sustained. In some cases, you will need to file a lawsuit to recover pain and suffering damages. It’s important to note that PIP insurance does not cover pain and suffering damages, which can be a significant financial burden for car accident victims. However, Florida law only allows you to file a lawsuit for pain and suffering if you meet the “serious injury” threshold.
To meet this standard, Florida law must consider your injuries serious. This can include losing a body part or the function of a body part, as well as scarring and disfigurement, but the scarring or disfigurement must be significant enough to meet the threshold. Miscarriage and wrongful death are also considered serious injuries that overcome the threshold.
Damages You Could Recover After a Car Accident in Aventura, FL
If you are injured in a car accident, you may be able to recover money for your injuries. The type of damages that you could recover after a car accident depends on the circumstances surrounding your case. Economic damages are the most commonly awarded, but non-economic damages are typical in a lawsuit with serious injuries. In the most severe cases, punitive damages might be awarded.
Economic damages are monetary losses that can be proven with receipts, bills, or other documentation. These include medical expenses related to your treatment and rehabilitation from your injuries. You can recover reimbursement for past medical bills as well as future medical care that is needed because of your injuries.
If you are unable to work due to your injuries, lost wages can also be recovered. You could also receive compensation for lost wages if you had to return to work but in a diminished capacity. This can happen if there is a long recovery period or if you were unable to return due to additional injuries that result later from your accident.
Non-economic damages are often referred to as “pain and suffering” because these damages compensate victims for their physical pain and mental suffering caused by an accident. Non-economic damages include physical pain, emotional distress, loss of companionship, and other damages that are not based on financial loss.
These types of damages are harder to quantify and are less often awarded than economic damages. Thus, these types of damages must usually be proven with expert testimony from a doctor who specializes in treating patients with injuries like the ones you have sustained. As mentioned, these damages can only be recovered in a personal injury lawsuit.
Punitive damages are meant to punish the defendant for his or her wrongful conduct and deter others from acting similarly in the future. They are not intended to compensate for any actual losses suffered by the plaintiff. Punitive damages can be awarded only if the defendant willfully engaged in reckless conduct that caused an accident. Reckless conduct is defined as engaging in an activity despite knowing there was a substantial risk that it could result in serious injury or death if something went wrong while performing said action. If a reckless driver caused your injuries, you can request the court grant those damages in your lawsuit, which it has the discretion to do.
Our Aventura, FL Car Accident Lawyers Can Help
Contact the Law Offices of David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. at (954) 751-4258 for a free case consultation with our experienced car accident lawyers.