Does Auto Insurance Cover Bicycle Accidents in FL?
In many states, if a driver hits you on your bicycle, their auto insurance should cover your injury and property-related losses. However, the auto insurance landscape in Florida is quite different, as we are a no-fault insurance state.
The following are options bicyclists have to seek compensation for their injuries and losses from a collision. If you need to file a claim, always first consult with an experienced Tampa bicycle accident attorney.
In Florida, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits may be available to cyclists involved in accidents with motor vehicles. PIP is no-fault insurance coverage that provides compensation for medical expenses and lost wages, regardless of who was at fault.
If a cyclist is struck by a motor vehicle, their own PIP coverage may apply. This means that their own auto insurance policy, if they have one, could potentially cover their medical bills and a portion of their lost income, up to the policy limits.
However, it's important to note that PIP coverage is not mandatory for cyclists in Florida, as it is for motor vehicle drivers. Therefore, not all cyclists will have PIP coverage available to them. If the cyclist does not own a motor vehicle and therefore does not have an auto insurance policy, they would not have access to PIP benefits.
Further, PIP coverage is limited to $10,000 in Florida for serious injuries (the limits are much lower for non-emergency injuries). A cyclist’s medical bills and other losses routinely exceed these limits since bike injuries tend to be severe.
In cases where PIP is not available or sufficient, cyclists may need to pursue a liability claim against the at-fault party. Consulting with a bicycle injury attorney experienced in handling bicycle accident claims in Florida can help determine the best course of action for seeking compensation after a bike crash.
Third-Party Injury Claims for Bike Crashes in Florida
Third-party injury claims are often necessary to seek compensation for bike injuries and damages. This is a legal action taken against the at-fault party, typically the driver of the motor vehicle that hit the cyclist.
For a successful third-party liability claim, the cyclist must prove their injuries meet the seriousness threshold and that the driver's negligence or wrongful actions directly led to the accident. Negligence in a bicycle accident may involve actions like distracted driving, speeding, failure to yield, or violating traffic laws.
Proving negligence is a complicated and often challenging matter, and you want to hire an injury attorney to handle this process immediately. Never speak with insurers or accept a settlement from PIP or another driver’s insurance company without advice from a legal professional.
Let Our Tampa Bicycle Accident Attorneys Assess Your Rights
Seeking the guidance of an experienced personal injury attorney in Florida is essential to navigate the complexities of PIP or third-party injury claims after a bicycle accident. Even claims with your own insurer can be difficult, and you should be focusing on your injuries.