So much has been said about drivers involved in car accidents in Florida, but what about the passengers? They do have rights too! If you’re a passenger in a vehicle that’s been involved in a car accident in Orlando or anywhere else within Florida, here’s everything you need to know.
Can I file a claim for being a passenger in a car accident in FL?
Yes, as a passenger in a vehicle involved in an accident, you have a better chance of filing a successful claim after the accident. This is because Florida practices the comparative negligence system.
This system establishes the parties at fault, usually drivers of the two vehicles, and determines the extent of liability. As the passenger, you don’t have to worry about being held partially responsible for the accident. In addition, this gives you an excellent chance to file a claim if you get injured during the accident.
What type of claim can I file as a passenger in a car accident?
Each accident varies depending on the circumstances. However, you can file a claim if you suffer any damages, such as medical, lost wages, etc.
Can I file a claim against both drivers who caused the accident?
If you were a passenger in one of the vehicles involved in the accident and suffered damages, you can file a claim against both drivers. The jury will then decide the percentage of liability for each driver, including the amount you’re entitled to as compensation for your damages.
Here’s a practical example.
Suppose you’ve been involved in an accident and suffered damages worth $100,000, and evidence shows that both drivers were at fault. In that case, the jury will determine the extent of liability for each driver.
So if they decide that Driver A is responsible for 70% of the damages, they’ll need to pay you $70,000. The other driver (Driver B) will then settle the remaining 30%, which translates to $30,000.
Florida laws give insurance companies up to 30 days to issue payments after a ruling. At the end of 30 days, any outstanding payment would be subject to interest rates.
But there’s also another rule you need to keep in mind.
Florida is a no-fault state, which requires every driver involved in an accident to file a claim with their own insurance company even if they were not at fault. In addition, Florida drivers are required to have Personal Injury Protection and Property Damage Liability coverage.
PIP covers injuries or damages suffered by:
- The insured
- Relatives who live in the same household as the insured
- Individuals driving the insured’s vehicle
- Passengers traveling in the insured’s vehicle
- Other individuals struck by the insured’s car
Regardless of who was at fault during the accident, PIP covers 80% of the medical bills of individuals listed in this policy. It also covers up to 60% of lost wages. However, the victims of the accident have up to 14 days to file a claim.
Florida’s no-fault policy comes in handy for claims worth $10,000 or less. Such claims don’t have to go through extensive court processes to reach a reasonable settlement.
Contact a car accident attorney in Orlando if you need help filing a claim
Florida car accident laws are complicated; you’ll need the help of an expert car accident attorney to interpret these laws and establish the best strategy to file a claim. Even if the claim doesn’t have to go to court, you still need an attorney to represent you when dealing with the driver’s insurance companies. And, if you’ve suffered any serious injuries, an experienced Orlando car accident attorney will help you get treatment and the much-needed rest as they fight for your rights in court.