Should I Sue That At-Fault Driver After a Car Accident?

If you have been in a car accident in Florida, you will want to know your legal options. The most important step after an accident is to seek medical attention and contact an attorney. That being stated, every state has auto insurance requirements, and Florida is one of twelve states that follows the no-fault insurance law. This means that when there is a car accident, each driver’s insurance company will cover their injuries and property damage, regardless of fault. So, in Florida, you might be wondering, “should I sue after a car accident?”

Should I sue?

All drivers are required to purchase a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and $10,000 in Property Damage Liability (PDL). The reason for these requirements is to protect the driver in the case of an accident. PIP covers necessary and reasonable medical expenses, such as medical bills, hospitalization costs, rehabilitative care, physical and occupational therapy, and surgeries, as well as lost wages in some instances; PDL coverage pays up to 80 percent or $10,000 of the property damage caused by the insured driver or someone else driving the vehicle.

However, a moderate-to-severe accident will exceed these minimum auto insurance requirements. After these accidents, the injured person will want to consult with an attorney about a personal injury lawsuit. If the at-fault driver was negligent, a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver is how the injured party can recover damages. Damages may be economic, such as medical bills and lost wages, to non-economic, such as pain and suffering. For example, if an injured person’s medical bills surpass the $10,000 afforded by their PIP coverage, they can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. While drivers may purchase a policy that is beyond the minimum auto insurance requirements, depending on the severity of the accident, the policy may or may not cover the damages.

Moreover, it is important to consult with an experienced attorney about your options even if you think that insurance may compensate you for your losses. An experienced attorney can help you navigate negotiations with the auto insurance company so that you receive the settlement you deserve.

Situations in which a lawsuit will likely be filed occur when the at-fault driver was also negligent. For example, a driver may be at-fault for the accident but perhaps the driver was also negligent, meaning that they had a duty of care, breached that duty, and the breach of this duty was the proximate cause of injuries.

When someone suffers permanent injuries as a result of a car accident, such as loss of an important bodily function, scarring or disfigurement, or amputation, they will want to sue the at-fault driver for damages. Of course, if an individual has died in a car accident, their loved ones have a right to file a lawsuit and sue for damages.

While drivers who are sued for negligence are always considered at-fault in car accidents, drivers who are deemed at-fault were not decidedly negligent. An attorney can help determine whether or not the at-fault driver in your accident was also negligent. If you think you might need or want a lawyer to assist you, contact us today.