Is It Worth Suing After a Car Accident?
If you have suffered a car crash in Pensacola, FL, you may be entitled to compensatory damages. However, the insurance company may refuse to honor your claim, or your damages may well exceed the insurance policy. This is where you can consider suing the at-fault party with help from a car accident lawyer.
Insurance claims have limitations. In the case of more serious injuries, it is well worth it to consider other legal options, like speaking with a lawyer at Gross & Schuster, P.A. for the guidance you need.
Insurance Claims and Their Limitations
Florida is a no-fault auto insurance state. This means that your first option after an accident is to file a claim with your insurance company. The claim is filed under personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, which is mandatory for all Florida auto insurance policies.
PIP insurance offers numerous benefits. The key advantage is that your medical treatment costs and lost wages are immediately covered. Because of this, you can file a claim with your insurer and get reimbursed right away. This is in contrast to third-party claims, which can take a long time.
The problem is that PIP insurance offers limited coverage. It covers 80 percent of your medical expenses from the personal injury, up to a maximum of $10,000. If your injury costs exceed this sum, you have to pay out of your pocket or look for other options. These include third-party insurance claims and a formal lawsuit against the negligent party.
Third-Party Liability Insurance Claims
Florida laws allow you to go outside the PIP insurance system and file a liability claim directly with the at-fault party’s insurer. Under Florida law, this is possible when the following happens:
- Your injury costs exceed $10,000.
- You suffer permanent injury or permanent disability.
- You suffer significant and permanent scarring.
- The victim dies in the car accident.
If any of these conditions exist, it is possible to go outside PIP insurance coverage and directly seek damages from the negligent party’s insurance company. Such a claim is known as a third-party liability claim.
If the insurer refuses to accept your claim, offers a settlement that is too low, or otherwise uses delaying tactics, you can consider a personal injury lawsuit.
Filing a Lawsuit
A lawsuit brings your claim to the courtroom. It can take some time to settle the lawsuit after a formal hearing. You may also need to spend money on court procedures.
This is why it is a good idea to launch a personal injury lawsuit in Florida only if your losses are significant. If most of your injuries are already covered under PIP insurance, an additional lawsuit to seek a small amount may not be worth the effort.
Let a Pensacola Car Accident Attorney Help You
At Gross & Schuster, P.A., we have been handling Pensacola car accident cases for decades. Our lawyers help car crash victims seek damages for their injuries and other losses. We work with you to see which legal options best help you recover the maximum compensation you deserve.
Call us today at 850-434-3333 to discuss your claim with our lawyers over a free consultation. You can also reach out by filling out the following online contact form.