If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a car accident caused by the negligent actions of another party, you should be able to recover various types of compensation. Typically, individuals are able to recover compensation for their medical bills, property damage expenses, and even their lost wages if they are unable to work due to their injuries. However, we want to discuss how recovering lost wages works after a vehicle accident in Florida, particularly examining the no-fault system in this state.
Typical Wage Recovery Through Florida’s No-Fault System
When we examine information from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV), we can see that every driver in Florida is required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection. Drivers must also have a minimum of $10,000 in property damage liability to pay for any vehicle damage they cause to another person’s vehicle in an accident.
This represents Florida’s no-fault system. The vast majority of vehicle accidents will be resolved through individuals making insurance claims with their own insurance carrier after an accident occurs, regardless of who caused the incident. Personal injury protection insurance will pay for 80% of all medical expenses arising due to the incident.
In addition to that portion of medical bills, personal injury protection will also pay for 60% of a person’s gross wages lost and loss of future earning capacity if they cannot work due to their injuries. Florida law says that insurance carriers are required to pay lost wage disability benefits every two weeks until an individual is able to return to work or until the limits of their policy have been exhausted.
Stepping Outside of the No-Fault System
In some cases, it may be possible for vehicle accident victims to file a claim directly against another party, even in this no-fault insurance state. Florida law allows individuals to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit against another driver when the injury is considered severe or permanent. In these situations, it will be necessary to prove that the other party’s negligent actions directly caused the accident.
Filing a claim against another party opens up the possibility of recovering more than just 60% of lost wages. In fact, a successful claim could result in an injury victim recovering complete compensation for their lost wages.
If you believe that you may be able to step outside of the no-fault insurance system in Florida after a vehicle accident, we encourage you to reach out to a skilled car accident attorney as soon as possible. These claims can be incredibly challenging, and an attorney will need to conduct a complete investigation and handle all communication with other parties on your behalf.
When Should You Call an Attorney?
We encourage you to contact a vehicle accident lawyer in Florida as soon as possible after the incident occurs, within a day or two if you can. Try to contact an attorney before the insurance claim process gets started through the no-fault system. Your attorney will need to determine relatively quickly whether or not it is possible to file a claim against the at-fault driver. The sooner an attorney can get involved and begin their investigation, the better your chances are at securing the compensation you need.