Compensation for Drivers and Passengers of Car Accidents

Last updated Friday, March 24th, 2023

Compensation for Drivers and Passengers of Car Accidents

Car Accident CompensationA severe car accident that killed an 81 year old in Florida

33,081 people were injured in car accidents in Tampa last year.

The ugly truth you don’t get to see is that the accident was only the beginning of their downward spiral.

It’s hard enough to recover from a devastating car accident, but it’s worse when you can’t even pay your medical bills and repair your damaged property.

Just because you’ve been in a car crash, it doesn’t mean you have to watch the rest of your life crash. Whether someone knocked you down on Sheldon Road, or ran a stop sign on I-275 and rammed into your minivan, you deserve to be compensated.

Florida has a no-fault accident law, which means anyone injured in a car accident must first seek compensation from their own insurance provider, irrespective of whose fault it is.

No-fault insurance laws are tricky to navigate when it comes to serious and non-serious injuries and damages. Every driver in Florida is mandated to have $10,000 of personal injury protection insurance.

But you know insurers will fight you for every cent, which means you’ll only get a fraction of it. That’s barely going to cover the costs of serious injuries and damages to your car.

Secondly, jumping into a legal battle when you’re still recovering will probably double your stress overnight, especially if you do it on your own.

With an experienced Tampa personal injury lawyer by your side, you’ll be compensated for all your injuries, lost wages, and trauma, while you peacefully recover. If you have a claim, or are confused whether you have one or not, our team of expert car accident lawyers will be happy to guide you. We have won millions of dollars in damages helping car accident victims like you heal and secure their future.

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Car Accident Compensation for Drivers

You may be motivated to take legal action for your own reasons. Here are the most common reasons our clients have shared with us for pursuing a car accident compensation claim:

  • Holding a negligible driver responsible
  • Protecting fellow citizens from negligent drivers.
  • Covering their medical expenses and rehabilitation costs.
  • Getting compensation for damages to their vehicle and any other personal property.
  • Spreading awareness about the dangers of rash driving.
  • Ensuring insurance companies are held accountable for clearing their claims.
  • Trying to inspire new safety standards or industry changes.
  • Punitive damages.

Is it worth filing a lawsuit and throwing more money in the air to get the insurance payout you deserve?

No! It’s an investment in your future, your well-being, which a petty insurance payout just can’t cover.

Here’s what you can expect to gain if you’re a driver involved in a car crash in case you file a lawsuit:

  • Past and projected medical expenses.
  • Lost wages.
  • Property damage.
  • Limiting your ability to perform your job.
  • Vehicle damage.
  • Physical scars and disfigurement.
  • Emotional distress.
  • Disability.

Now that you know what you can get, it’s time to start preparing for your case with a warm-up.

Here are three simple steps you need to take before hiring a Florida car accident lawyer:

A man clicking photos of a damaged vehicle in a car accident1.      File a Police Report

It’s best to file a police report right after your car crash. They’ll direct an ambulance to your location and get everyone the medical care they need. At the same time, they’ll document the accident in as much detail as possible while you focus on recovery. A clear and objective report handed by them is hard to dispute by either party involved in a case.

2.  Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company

Most insurance providers demand you to urgently inform them about your accident. The Florida 14-day accident law requires you to seek medical attention within 14 days of your crash. If you delay this process and don’t report it, your insurer will limit the compensation you can get through Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits.

3. Start Documenting Your Case

Sending a lawyer without evidence to court is a lot like sending a soldier unarmed into a conflict zone. If there’s only one thing you need to do to help your lawyer build a bulletproof claim, it’s documenting the impact of your accident in a crystal-clear way.

Firstly, prioritize documenting who was involved in the accident, the wages you lost, and the medical expenses you had to bear.

To give your lawyers the ammo they need to support your car accident lawsuit, try to also document the following:

  • The scene of the accident.
  • Time of accident.
  • Weather conditions during the accident.
  • Witness names and their contact details.
  • Recorded witness statements.
  • Pictures and videos of your injuries and property damage.

The clearer your documentation, the more generous your compensation will be. Our team of expert personal injury lawyers here at Rebein Law will take care of the rest.

Filing a compensation claim

Here’s what you can expect when you file a car accident compensation claim:

A severely damaged car in a car accident

  • Your personal injury attorney will send a demand letter to your insurance company highlighting the compensation you’re seeking. They will include all essential evidence of medical bills, property damage, and lost wages as part of it.
  • You can file a complaint against the insurance company if they reject your claim. Your lawyer will update all the information in your demand letter.
  • Your personal injury lawyer will lead a thorough investigation of the accident and your condition. They’ll gather all the evidence related to your injuries and damages. It’ll be followed by you and the defense presenting sworn evidence about your claim.
  • Once your insurance provider reviews your claim and gives their judgment about what compensation you’re entitled to, that’s when you need to be cautious. Don’t take the first offer even if it sounds like it’ll compensate your current damages. Insurance agents are notorious for driving a hard bargain. So if they say it’s the best they can offer you upfront, take it with a pinch of salt.Our lawyers here at Rebein Law are trained to deal with their negotiation tactics and deceptions. Leave it to us to review their offer and get you a better settlement. In fact, getting you a bigger compensation than the offer you currently have is what we guarantee when you hire us.
  • If you’re lucky, your attorney will negotiate a reasonable compensation amount before your case goes to trial. Generally, only 95% cases get settled before a trial.
  • Your lawyer will have to prove the liability of the defendants in court and show how they played a part in your injuries and losses. The judge or jury will ultimately review the arguments of both parties and settle the compensation amount.

There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all compensation. Accidents are unpredictable and every case demands attention to a variety of factors.

Here are the key factors that play a part in settling your claim:

  1. Insurance

Your insurance policy along with the policies of anyone else involved in the accident will strongly impact your compensation claim. These policies have unique limits for:

  • Bodily injuries.
  • Different coverage for people involved in the accident.
  • Vehicle repair or other property damage.

If the driver who is primarily at fault doesn’t have insurance or is underinsured, it can have a big impact on the settlement amount.

  1. Liability

If you can prove liability without a doubt, your claim will be undeniable. Every driver has to fulfil their duty to care about other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. Texting while driving, drunk driving, or driving while tired are all examples of violating that duty.

Remember – if you can easily establish liability, you don’t even have to worry about taking on an expensive trial. The defending parties will willingly settle before it even begins.

Florida also follows a comparative negligence standard. It means both drivers involved in a crash may share some liability. What happens if someone texting and driving crashed into you while you changed lanes without signaling? A court may establish that you share 20% of fault for the accident. So if you were are owed $100,000 in damages, you’ll only be compensated with $80,000.

  1. Medical Expenses

A good settlement is meant to relieve your immediate and future medical expenses. You have to account for the number of medical appointments, bills, and rehab you’ll have to go through. Don’t expect a huge payout to cover a few bumps and bruises. But if you’ve suffered a broken orbital bone or third-degree burns in the car crash, you’ll get a much better settlement.

  1. Ability to Work

You may end up spending several months recovering after an accident. Or you may even suffer a long-term disability that impacts your ability to work.

In addition, this means if someone is not able to return to work at all, the potential lost income could include decades. As a result, this is going to drive up the value of a car accident settlement.

  1. Miscellaneous Expenses

It’s easy to document your medical expenses and property damage, but there are a ton of other expenses that you may overlook. Minor expenses add up quickly. For example – driving back and forth to the hospital, renting a temporary vehicle, and hiring someone to help you with daily activities while you heal.

That’s why it’s best to maintain a post-accident journal to track them all. of daily living while the injuries heal. They can make your compensation claim stronger.

Car Accident Compensation for Passengers

A Driver and the Passenger feeling massive jerk because of a car accident You’re entitled to the same types of settlements available to drivers. However, it’s more challenging to establish liability in these cases. That’s why it’s great to get a FREE case review with our experienced Tampa car accident lawyers before you file a claim. We have won hundreds of settlements for both drivers and passengers involved in car accidents.

If you’re a passenger involved in a car accident, you can file a claim against the following parties:

  • The driver whose car you were traveling in.
  • Any other driver who was to blame for the car crash.
  • The insurance provider of the car owner.
  • Your insurance provider if you’re the owner of a car being driven by your immediate family member.

The process for filing a passenger claim involves the same steps that we outlined above for drivers who choose to do it. It’ll only require coordination between more parties to document your evidence successfully.

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Free CallCLICK TO CALL (813) 544-4225
Our experienced Tampa car accident lawyers know exactly what to do to get YOU the Maximum Settlement.

Can I receive compensation if I was partially at fault for the accident?

You can seek compensation even if you were partially at fault for causing the car accident. Florida follows a comparative negligence standard, which means both drivers involved in a crash may share some liability. Your compensation amount will directly depend on how much responsibility you share in causing the accident.

How long do I have to file a compensation claim?

The State of Florida has established a strict statute for personal injury claims. You have up to four years from the date of accident to file your claim. It’s not possible to take any legal action beyond that period. The sooner you hire your attorney and file your suit, the more likely you’ll be compensated when you really need it.

What if the other driver is uninsured?

It’s easy to feel unsettled when the driver you’re filing a claim against has no insurance or is underinsured. Does it mean you’ll walk away empty-handed? Absolutely not. All drivers in Florida are mandated to have personal injury protection insurance (PIP) up to $10,000.

You can still file a suit against the driver if their PIP can’t cover your expenses.

It’s more challenging when the driver lacks both insurance and personal assets to compensate you. In that case, you can take advantage of your own uninsured motorist coverage to cover your losses.

Can I receive compensation for a rental car while my car is being repaired?

Yes. You can be compensated for any expenses directly or indirectly related to your accident. So it’s important to carefully document all the expenses you bear after the accident. Your lawyer will help you identify any expenses that will strengthen your claim.

What if my insurance company denies my claim?

Insurance companies are renowned for finding any loophole and vague reasons to deny claims. It may be disheartening at first, but it could be a silver lining. How? Because you still have the option to hire a personal injury lawyer and file a suit to collect damages.

A lawyer will review your rejected claim and the evidence you presented and advise you what the best course of legal action is.

Can I receive compensation if I was in a car with a driver who caused the accident?

Yes. Passengers are entitled to seek the same damages that drivers can file for if they were involved in a car accident, including:

  • Past and projected medical expenses.
  • Lost wages.
  • Property damage.
  • Limiting your ability to perform your job.
  • Vehicle damage.
  • Physical scars and disfigurement.
  • Emotional distress.
  • Disability.

What if the driver of the car I was in is uninsured?

There are three ways to seek compensation if your driver was uninsured and you were involved in an accident:

  • Your PIP coverage – for minimal injuries and minor property repair.
  • Uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage, or collision coverage.
  • Filing a suit against the driver who was at fault.

Can I receive compensation if I wasn't wearing a seatbelt?

Florida abides by a comparative negligence standard when it comes to personal injury claims. So not wearing a seatbelt doesn’t mean you can’t seek compensation for your losses.

Yes, it does help your insurer and other defending parties to limit your compensation. However, an experienced car accident attorney will be able to prove that it wasn’t the defining factor for the injuries and damages you endured. So you’ll still end up with a fair compensation.

Can I receive compensation if the driver of the car I was in is a family member?

Yes. If you were a passenger in a car driven by your family member, you can still seek compensation.

However, insurance companies can make it quite tricky to approve your claim when family members are involved. You need an experienced personal injury lawyer to prove that your claim is genuine.

What if I have pre-existing injuries?

You can’t include a pre-existing injury as part of your car accident claim. However, you can definitely be compensated if the car crash aggravated a pre-existing injury. You have to immediately consult with your physician and clearly establish any increase in pain intensity and how it affects your range of motion.

Whether you’re a driver, passenger, or a pedestrian, if you’ve been involved in a car crash, you deserve to be fairly compensated without adding any more stress to your life. Call us for a FREE case review today and let’s start getting your life back on track.

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