Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Accidents
Car accidents often cause significant injuries that are not only painful but also require costly treatment. While insurance benefits can cover some of the costs incurred due to collisions, not all drivers have insurance, and many motorists lack adequate coverage to reimburse injured parties for their losses. If you were hurt in a crash caused by a driver with inadequate insurance, there are measures you can take to recover damages, and it is prudent to speak to an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your rights. The seasoned Florida attorneys of Cardoso Law, PLLC are proficient at helping people harmed by uninsured and underinsured motorist accidents fight to protect their interests, and if you engage our services, we will work tirelessly to help you seek the compensation you deserve. Our office is in Pensacola, and we regularly represent people in car accident cases throughout Florida.Florida’s Insurance Laws
Florida law requires all people who own cars registered in the state to carry a minimum amount of personal injury protection (PIP) and property damage liability (PDL) coverage. Specifically, under the current law, motorists must have at least $10,000 in PIP and $10,000 in PDL coverage. PDL benefits provide compensation for the damages an insured driver causes to another person’s vehicle. Florida is a no-fault state, which means, in part, that PIP benefits cover the cost of an injured party’s medical care up to his or her policy limits, regardless of whether the injured party or another motorist caused the accident. In accidents involving substantial injuries, however, the minimum PIP coverage is often insufficient to cover the costs of the injured party’s medical expenses.
Notably, bodily injury liability insurance, which is coverage that obligates an insurance company to pay for the medical expenses of people hurt in accidents caused by their insureds, is not required under Florida law. Further, even if drivers have bodily injury liability coverage, it may not be enough to cover the losses they cause. Florida does not require drivers to purchase uninsured or underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage, which offers benefits for losses sustained in collisions caused by drivers with little or no insurance coverage, either.Seeking Compensation After an Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Accident
When people suffer injuries in car accidents, they will typically file claims with their insurers. If an injured party’s PIP benefits are inadequate cover the cost of necessary medical care, he or she may seek compensation from the person that caused the accident in a civil lawsuit. In many cases, though, the responsible party will lack adequate coverage or funds to compensate the injured person for the losses sustained. In such instances, the injured person may be able to recover additional from his or her insurance company.
Whether the injured party is owed additional benefits depends on whether the subject policy provides UIM coverage. If so, the injured party will likely have to produce evidence establishing that another party is responsible for the collision that caused the injuries, which may be accomplished via police reports, eyewitness statements, and video and photographic evidence of how the crash occurred. The injured party must also prove the extent of the damages caused by the accident by providing medical bills, documentation of lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses.Meet with an Experienced Pensacola Attorney
People hurt in collisions frequently suffer not only physical and emotional harm but also incur financial losses as well, and in many instances, the parties that caused their injuries lack the insurance coverage necessary to adequately compensate them. If you were hurt in an uninsured or underinsured motorist accident, it is smart to meet with an attorney to discuss your options for seeking damages. The experienced Florida car accident attorney of Cardoso Law, PLLC have the knowledge and resources needed to help you seek the best legal result available under the facts of your case. We have an office in Pensacola and we frequently represent people hurt in collisions in lawsuits in Pensacola, Ferry Pass, West Pensacola, Cantonment, Brent, Bellview, Century, Milton, Navarre, Gulf Breeze, Jay, Crestview, Fort Walton Beach, and Niceville. We also aid people in car accident cases in other cities in Santa Rosa, Escambia, and Okaloosa Counties and throughout Florida. You can contact us through the form online or at (850) 466-2073 to schedule a meeting.