According to Florida law, any accident in Tampa must be reported under the following circumstances.
- Damages apparently worth $500 the vehicles
- Injuries of any kind
- A person dies
- A vehicle needs to be towed away from the accident scene
- A commercial vehicle was involved
- A driver was driving under the influence
It is better to report a car accident while you are at the accident scene. However, attending to injured people is the priority, and if anyone needs to be taken to the hospital, it should be done first. Florida car accident laws give you ten days to report a car accident. In case the police do not arrive at the scene of the crash, you should make a report with the date, time, and place where the accident occurred, the make, model, and color of the vehicles, names, and contact details of the people involved and any eyewitnesses. You should also report details regarding the insurance coverage of both drivers. Hire a Tampa car accident lawyer who can help file the case.
Not filing a car accident report under the situations listed above can lead to serious consequences. You could be given a traffic violation citation, fines, or in some cases, even jail time.
You are given up to fourteen days to request medical care after an accident. However, it is better to seek medical attention immediately and not wait. Health complications that are not apparent immediately after a crash may arise later. Moreover, it will make things easier for any compensation claims you may wish to make.
Florida has a no-fault insurance system, where no matter who caused the accident, both parties should claim insurance under their Personal Injury Protection (PIP) plan. Although Florida laws do not require you to inform your insurance company of a crash, it is advisable to do so. If you delay receiving medical care for more than 14 days after a car crash, your PIP may be denied.
Insurance companies need to see the reports of the injuries you suffered before processing your claim. When these reports are prepared sooner rather than later, it is more obvious that they are a consequence of the accident and not because of something that happened later. Injuries that are treated and documented later allow insurance companies to deny coverage. You will then have to pay massive medical bills from your savings.
Despite Florida’s no-fault laws, some accidents may lead to a personal injury lawsuit; filed to claim compensation for direct consequences like income lost because of days off from work due to injuries sustained. It can also be due to indirect consequences like the decreased potential for future earnings and mental or physical suffering.
In any of these situations, the process is more complex than you may be prepared for. You will often find that paying your insurance premium is far smoother than getting the insurance carrier to process and approve your claim. Negotiating with insurance companies and claiming personal injury compensation requires skill and legal experience. It’s wise for you to seek legal representation. A Tampa Car Accident Lawyer will be able to give you the right advice and guide you through the process.