What Happens If I Am Hit By An Uninsured Motorist?
Almost all states require motorists to have a minimum amount of auto insurance before they can get behind the wheel of a vehicle. Despite this law, many motorists drive with not enough insurance or maybe even no insurance at all.
Florida has one of the highest rates of uninsured motorists, at more than 20%. What this means is that if you are driving in the Sunshine State, you have a high risk of getting in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver.
This can be a frustrating situation. What happens next? Will you receive compensation for your injuries and other damages? Here’s what you need to know.
What Are My Options?
If you have been involved in a car accident caused by an uninsured motorist, you do have several options:
- Personal injury protection. All Florida drivers are required to have personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, so if you are fully insured, you may be able to recover compensation after an accident involving an uninsured driver. However, under Florida law, you will need to receive medical care within 14 days of the accident. PIP insurance covers 80% of reasonable medical costs and 60% of lost wages, as well as $5,000 for death benefits. You, your relatives living in your home, those driving your car with permission, and passengers are all covered.
- Uninsured motorist coverage. Another option is to get uninsured motorist coverage. While Florida does not require it, it is good to have. You probably have it included in your insurance policy unless you rejected it in writing. There are typically two types of uninsured motorist insurance: bodily injury coverage and property damage coverage. If you can prove the other driver was at fault, your uninsured motorist insurance may pay your claim.
- File a lawsuit. If your PIP insurance doesn’t cover all your damages and you don’t have uninsured motorist insurance, you do have a final option: filing a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. However, to succeed, you must prove that the other driver was negligent. Therefore, you need evidence that the driver owed you a duty of care, the driver breached this duty of care, the breach caused your accident, and you suffered damages as a result. However, keep in mind that if the at-fault driver has minimal assets, it will be difficult to recover much from a lawsuit.
Contact Us Today
Getting hit by an uninsured motorist can be a frustrating situation, but know that there are options. You are still able to obtain compensation for damages if you follow the proper protocols.
The Florida uninsured driver accident attorneys at Meldon Law are here to help you when drivers disobey the rules. We’ll take the burden off your shoulders so you can focus on recovery. To schedule a free consultation, fill out the online form or call our office at (800) 373-8000. We have three offices to serve you: Gainesville, Ocala, and Fort Lauderdale.