What To Do if the Person Who Hits Your Car in Florida Does Not Have Insurance?
Most drivers who get into an accident in Florida carry at least the minimum amount of car insurance required by law. But the reality is that the minimum amount of insurance required by law in Florida only covers property damage and the at-fault driver’s own medical bills (up to $10,000 through their PIP coverage). Unfortunately, many Floridians do not carry any bodily injury coverage that would pay for the injuries of the person they hit. And some Floridians do not carry any auto insurance at all.
If you are in an accident caused by one of these drivers, you likely have many questions and concerns. The best thing you can do to help yourself is to contact an experienced Sarasota car accident attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can help you determine the best course of action, depending on the specifics of your circumstances.
What Auto Insurance Coverages Does Florida Require?
By law, any vehicle with a current Florida registration must:
- Have PIP and PDL (property damage liability) insurance at the time of vehicle registration
- Carry a minimum of $10,000 in PIP AND a minimum of $10,000 in PDL
- Maintain continuous coverage even if the vehicle isn’t being driven or is inoperable
- Purchase the insurance policy from an insurance carrier licensed in Florida
Without the required amounts of auto insurance, drivers can face serious consequences such as losing their driver’s license and having to purchase more expensive auto insurance in the future. Not to mention, they could be held personally liable for any damages they cause.
You Were Hit by Someone Without Insurance, Now What?
After the accident, make sure you call the police. You will want to ensure accurate documentation of the accident and the other driver’s lack of insurance.
Florida is a no-fault insurance state. As such, all drivers in an accident must file a claim with their own insurance company before pursuing other compensation methods. The good news is that your own PIP (personal injury protection) insurance, as required under Florida laws, will cover at least some of your damages. Your insurance company will be liable for the following:
- Medical bills (up to $10,000 through your PIP coverage)
- Property damage to your vehicle
- Any other coverages you carried, such as collision or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, at the time of the loss, because the other driver did not have insurance.
Suppose you sustained severe injuries above and beyond what your PIP coverage will pay for. First – right now – you should be sure to have uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage on your policy. Your UM coverage will kick in when the person who hits you has no coverage, or does not have enough coverage to pay for your damages.
If you are stuck in a situation where the person who hit you does not have any, or enough, bodily injury coverage, your Sarasota car accident lawyer can determine if it is worth it for you to litigate your claim against the at-fault party or your own insurance company. Since the at-fault party does not have an insurance company to protect them, a judge could potentially order them to use their assets to pay for your damages. All of the same information applies if you are in an accident with a hit-and-run driver.
Let a Skilled Sarasota Car Accident Attorney Oversee Your Claim
Being hit by any driver is alarming, but being in an accident caused by a driver without enough insurance can be even more disconcerting. If this happens to you, you need a skilled Sarasota car accident lawyer by your side to help you recover monetary compensation for your damages. You’ll find such a lawyer at Matthews Personal Injury Law. Call us today at 941-877-5800 or reach out online to book your no-obligation consultation.