What Does “No-Fault Insurance” Mean?
Florida is one of twelve states that follows a no-fault insurance model for car insurance. But what does no-fault insurance mean? It basically means that if you are injured in a car accident, then your own car insurance will pay some of your medical bills and lost wages. This payment is made regardless of who was at fault for the accident.
No-Fault Insurance in Florida
In Florida, no-fault insurance is also known as personal injury protection (PIP). Every driver is required to have a minimum of $10,000 in PIP coverage on their car insurance policy. You can opt to have more coverage if you wish. PIP will cover 80% of your medical bills and 60% of lost wages or lost income that you incur as the result of a car accident. Your PIP coverage is also subject to any deductible you may have. PIP also pays a $5,000 death benefit is someone dies as the result of a car accident. To obtain coverage from your PIP, you must seek medical treatment for your injuries within fourteen days of the accident. A key component of PIP is that you can’t receive compensation for any pain and suffering you’ve experienced as a result of the accident.
What if You Were Seriously Injured?
If the severity of your injuries exceeds a certain threshold, then it is likely that your medical bills will be substantial, and you’ll have missed a significant amount of time from work. In that case, you may be able to recover from a negligent party’s liability insurance. You may be able to recover for pain and suffering in addition to your medical bills and lost wages. However, many drivers in Florida do not carry liability insurance or do not have enough insurance. If you have your own uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage, you may be able to make a claim for additional damages. UM coverage would pay any medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages after the PIP coverage has been exhausted.
Contact a Tampa Bay Car Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, navigating the insurance system can be difficult. You may want the help of an experienced Florida accident attorney. At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk we’ve been helping accident victims in Tampa Bay for over 30 years. Contact us online or call us at 800-538-4878 to set up your free consultation today.