In 2020, over 3,000 Floridians died in car accidents. This number is only a small fraction of non-fatal car accidents that did result in injuries.
Florida is a no-fault state, which means that when you get in a car accident, you turn to your own insurance to cover the damages. The big question is, what if you don’t have insurance?
Can you file a crash claim without insurance in Florida? Without a claim, who will cover your damages? What other penalties might you face without having insurance?
Read on to learn more about what to expect after getting into a car accident in Florida without car insurance.
What to Expect After an Uninsured Accident
First, let’s talk briefly about the legal implications of driving a car without insurance. In the state of Florida, you are required to have at least partial car insurance. This includes $10,000 of PIP (personal injury protection) coverage and $10,000 of property damage coverage.
If the car belongs to you and you have not insured it (or let the insurance policy go), you can face some serious penalties, including:
- license suspension until you prove that you have purchased insurance
- a $150 fee to reinstate your license
- license plate suspension
That said, if the other driver caused the accident, you should still call the police. Yes, this means that you may have to face penalties for driving without insurance. However, a police report can go a long way when it comes to filing a car crash claim, especially when you or your passengers were injured.
What If the Car Accident Was Your Fault?
If the car accident was your fault, you will not have grounds to file a car crash claim. However, if you’re lucky, the other driver will be able to cover all of their related expenses (like medical bills and property damage) with their own insurance. But, if the expenses outweigh their coverage, they can bring a claim against you.
In addition to those possible expenses, you will need to pay for your own medical bills and property damage out of pocket.
What If the Car Accident Was the Other Driver’s Fault?
As we mentioned earlier, Florida is a no-fault state. That means that if both drivers involved in a crash are insured, they begin by filing a claim with their own insurance. They can then use their own coverage to pay for things like property damage and medical bills related to the crash.
When you don’t have insurance, you have no policy to file your claim with. If the other driver was at fault, can you receive compensation from their car insurance?
The answer is sort of. If you were injured in the accident, you may be able to receive compensation from the other driver’s bodily injury coverage. You cannot receive compensation from their personal injury protection coverage.
However, bodily injury coverage is not currently required in Florida. That means that the other driver may not have that insurance-provided compensation to offer.
What If the Car Was Insured by Someone Else?
As an uninsured driver, you’re in the worst shape if you were driving your own car. What if you’re an uninsured driver because you don’t own a car? What if the car you were driving belongs to someone else who does have insurance?
If you were driving someone else’s insured vehicle with their permission, you’re in luck. Their insurance will provide at least some compensation. The vehicle owner will be able to access their own property damage coverage to pay for vehicle repairs and you may be entitled to some of their personal injury protection coverage, as well.
What If the Insurance Policy Doesn’t Cover Damages? Do You Sue?
Let’s look at a few different scenarios. One is that you were driving your own car without insurance and an insured driver caused an accident that resulted in your injuries. The other is that you were driving someone else’s insured car and an insured driver caused an accident that resulted in your injuries.
Now, let’s say none of the insurance coverage that you’re entitled to can cover the cost of your medical bills and other financial burdens. What are your options?
Believe it or not, you can file a car crash claim against the other driver. However, you will need to hire a skilled car crash attorney, first.
Fighting a car crash claim when you were driving without insurance isn’t easy. Whether you’re up against the other driver’s insurance company or the other driver, themselves, you will need legal guidance. Without a lawyer, it will be next to impossible to get a ruling in your favor.
What If Neither Driver Has Insurance?
What happens if neither you nor the other driver involved has insurance? While this isn’t a common occurrence, it can happen and the outcome isn’t great.
When neither driver has insurance, neither driver can appeal for coverage. Both are left with the expenses related to the car accident. While the driver who was not at fault can sue the driver that was, it’s not a guarantee that coverage will be provided, as the other driver may not have the means to do so.
Hire a Lawyer to File a Car Crash Claim Without Insurance
When you get into a car accident and have no car insurance in a no-fault state, things can get dicey fast. If the accident was not your fault, be sure to call the police first, seek medical attention second, and contact a lawyer third.
Do you want RHINO Lawyers to represent your Tampa car accident claim? Contact us to get a free case consultation over video chat or via email. From there, you can decide if we’re the lawyers you want in your corner as you seek compensation.
CONTACT A TAMPA AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
In short, after a car accident, you may not know your rights. Above all, don’t struggle through the process alone. Actually, our personal injury team is here to help you with any legal needs you might have regarding your accident.
Lastly, let RHINO Lawyers answer your questions and review the facts of your case with a Free Consultation. So, get started by completing the “Free Instant Case Evaluation” or by calling us any time, day or night, at 844.RHINO.77.