Wearing a seat belt significantly increases the odds of surviving a Florida car crash. Not only can failing to buckle up raise the chance of death or serious injury, it also could reduce the amount of compensation that a victim is entitled to recover following an accident.
When Florida courts allow for a reduction to a plaintiff’s right to damages for failing to wear a seat belt, this is referred to as the “seat belt defense.” The following are five facts about this defense:
- A victim’s injuries are often made worse by the secondary injuries that occur as a result of the failure to wear seat belts. It may not be fair to hold the defendant responsible for all of a victim’s injuries if they were significantly worsened by not wearing a seat belt.
- The defendant may try to prove that the victim was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident.
- The defendant also may try to prove that the victim had a fully functional seat belt available at the time of the crash.
- The defendant may allege that the failure to wear a seat belt caused or worsened the victim’s injuries, not his or her negligence.
- This can result in a reduction of all or a portion of the damages awarded.
Asserting or countering the seat belt defense in Florida requires the knowledge and guidance of an experienced professional. Attempting to pursue or defend against a claim following a crash without the guidance of an attorney could hurt your case. To learn more about the mistakes that you might commit, view our free guide, Seven Mistakes That Can Wreck Your Florida Accident Case. For more information, contact an experienced Florida car accident attorney today. Call the Law Office of Jeffrey Meldon and Associates today at their toll free number, at 800-373-8000.
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