We’re you in a rear-end collision Florida? Wondering what can you do? Unfortunately, these types of accidents happen all too often. Your life could be turned upside down by the physical, financial, and emotional consequences. In 2022, there was an average of 1,050 accidents per day in Florida. Furthermore, there was an average of 668 injuries per day and 9 fatalities per day. And of the nearly 400,000 crashes in Florida in 2022, rear-end collisions were the most common.
However, you have rights as a victim.
Florida is a No-Fault State for Auto Accidents
The idea of Florida being a ‘No-Fault’ State for Auto accidents is misleading. All this means is that every driver is required to carry a minimum level of insurance that helps cover medical bills after a car accident. These benefits are called Personal Injury Protection (PIP). Sometimes they are called ‘No-Fault’ benefits because they cover a portion of your medical bills regardless of who was at fault for causing the crash.
PIP insurance covers 80% of the first $10,000 of medical expenses from a crash. It can also cover 60% of wages lost because you missed work from the crash. These benefits are intended to resolve very minor accidents where people have minimal injuries that resolve after minimal treatment.
However, for accidents that involve more extensive treatment or accidents which result in a permanent injury, the more traditional system of proving fault to be able to collect damages still applies. When you’re seriously hurt in a Florida rear-end collision or another type of accident, you can pursue the other motorist under a theory of liability called negligence in the practice of law. When the other driver is at fault and has insufficient coverage, you may be able to recover under your own policy’s Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage for your injuries and damages.
Proving Negligence in a Florida Rear-End Collision
With a negligence-based case, we need to prove certain essential elements to recover compensation. This includes:
- The other motorist had a duty to exercise reasonable care when driving
- The other motorist breached this duty
- The breach of duty was the direct cause of the accident in which you were hurt
- You suffered losses due to your injuries
Under Florida law, the motorist in the rear position is determined to be negligent in most cases.
Comparative Fault May Affect Your Claim
Though the driver behind you is often at fault in a rear-end collision, you should note that your own actions could affect your claim under Florida’s statute on comparative negligence. If you contributed to the accident your compensation may be reduced by the amount of blame attributable to you, or even barred if your fault is determined to be greater than 50%.
In a Florida rear-end collision, examples of comparative fault may include:
- Stopping suddenly for no reason
- Not having properly working brake lights
- Driving well under the speed limit without your lights on when’s it’s dark.
At Weinstein & Cohen, we have more than 50 years of combined experience fighting for accident victim’s rights. Our experienced Miami and Naples accident attorneys at Weinstein & Cohen will put your priorities first. If you or someone you care about has been injured or involved in an accident across South Florida or Southwest Florida, contact the Miami and Naples personal injury lawyers at Weinstein & Cohen at 305-374-1011 or 239-793-3331, or visit fairnessforall.com for an absolutely free legal consultation to learn more about your options.