Yes! In Florida, a lawsuit can be filed and damages sought for pain and suffering where the driver has sustained a permanent injury! A no-fault state, like Florida, operates under a no-fault auto insurance system as provided by Florida Statutes. This means that state law requires drivers to have personal injury protection, PIP insurance, which only deals with a portion of the driver’s initial medical bills and lost wages up to the PIP coverage amount, no matter who is the at-fault party.
Below, we will answer common questions regarding PIP insurance that you may have as an auto accident victim.
Understanding PIP Coverage
After sustaining an injury in an auto accident in a no-fault state, it’s important to receive medical care immediately. In Florida, no-fault insurance law requires individuals to seek medical treatment within 14 days of the crash. If you don’t adhere to this deadline, you may not receive benefits from the PIP coverage in your auto policy.
Even if the treatment for your accident-related injuries exceeds the amount of your PIP policy, you must open a PIP claim, and your PIP insurance should be the primary insurance following the crash up until the full PIP coverage limit is exhausted.
Suing a Negligent Driver in a No-Fault State
If your accident-related damages include severe or permanent injuries and exceed your PIP policy amount, you may be allowed to sue the negligent driver for pain and suffering damages. In this situation, you may sue to reap compensation for the damages, including but limited to:
- Medical bills that exceed the PIP policy limits
- Future medical expenses for accident-related injuries or conditions
- Lost wages or loss of earning capacity
- Accident-related property damage
- Permanent disability
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
For motor vehicle crashes occurring after March 24, 2023, Florida has a two-year statute of limitations for negligence claims, including personal injury lawsuits. So, time is of the essence to reap your rightful compensation after a crash. An injured car accident victim should immediately contact a local experienced personal injury attorney for a free consultation following a crash.