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Updated by Ginny Powell on Sep 10, 2018
Headline for 10 Key Facts about Auto Accident Insurance Claims in Florida
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10 Key Facts about Auto Accident Insurance Claims in Florida

No matter how much most of us dread it, recovering from an auto accident usually means dealing with the insurance companies. Whether you were told that you can expect a speedy recovery or you are facing months or years of rehabilitation, securing coverage for your medical bills and other losses will be crucial to minimizing the long-term effects of your accident-related injuries. If you have been injured in an auto accident in FL, here are 10 things you need to know about dealing with insurers.


Auto Insurance is Mandatory Under Florida Law

Under Florida law, all drivers are required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) and $10,000 in property damage liability (PDL) coverage. Personal injury protection allows you to seek coverage under your own insurance policy, and most auto insurance claims start with a claim for PIP.


Florida is a “No-Fault” Auto Insurance State

Florida is among the minority of states that has adopted a “no-fault” auto insurance law. Under this law, you have the right to file for PIP regardless of who was at fault in the accident. However, this law also means that you only have limited options for seeking fault-based compensation.


But, It is Still Possible to Seek Fault-Based Compensation

Despite Florida’s “no-fault” auto insurance law, it is still possible to file a claim against a fault-based driver if you suffered a severe and permanent injury.


Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Benefits are Limited

Why would you want to file a fault-based claim if you have PIP coverage? The answer is simple: PIP benefits are limited. While $10,000 may sound like a lot, it can go very quickly if you are facing mounting medical bills, prescription costs, loss of income, and other losses. Also, PIP only covers direct financial losses resulting from an accident, so it does not provide any compensation for pain, suffering, or emotional trauma.


Proving Your Right to Coverage Isn’t Easy

Even with Florida’s “no-fault” insurance law, securing coverage is not easy. The insurance companies will look for any excuse to deny payment, and they will not help you understand your rights.


It is Up to You to Protect Your Rights

As a result, when filing an insurance claim, it is up to you to protect your rights. If you rely on the insurance companies to treat you fairly, you will almost certainly end up with less than you deserve.


Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UIM) Coverage Can Provide an Alternate Source of Financial Recovery

Florida has one of the highest rates of uninsured drivers in the nation. If you were hit by an uninsured driver or you were involved in a hit-and-run, your uninsured/underinsured motorist (UIM) policy may provide an alternate source of financial recovery.


If You Aren’t Happy with Your Settlement Offer, You Have the Right to Go to Court

If your insurance company (or the at-fault driver’s insurance company) offers a settlement, it is your choice whether or not to accept. If you are not happy with the insurance company’s offer, you have the right to take your claim to court.


Once You Settle, Your Claim is Over

If you accept an insurance settlement, your claim will be over. As a result, you need to be very careful about accepting any money from the insurance companies. It is important to make sure you have a clear understanding of your current and future losses before you settle, and you need to keep your long-term best interests in mind.


An Experienced Attorney Will Be Able to Help Maximize Your Financial Recovery

Finally, due to the complexities involved, when dealing with an auto accident insurance claim, it is best to hire experienced legal representation. A skilled auto accident attorney will be able to explain your rights, help you avoid costly mistakes, and deal with the insurance companies on your behalf to make sure you take home the compensation you deserve.