Florida Personal Injury Law – What You Need to Know

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March 18, 2019
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Florida Personal Injury Law – What You Need to Know

Whether from a dog bite, slip and fall, boating accident or automobile collision, if you have been injured in the state of Florida, the top priority on your list of things to investigate is personal injury laws. This is especially important if you believe that the accident or incident was caused by someone else. To win money in your case, you need to show that another party was careless, reckless, or negligent and that your injury was caused by that negligence. You should learn everything you can about personal injury laws in Florida to make sure that you are well informed and increase your chances of a successful personal injury claim.

If you have been injured in an accident, Chambers Medical Group has several clinic locations in Florida.

Personal Injury Laws in Florida

To collect money after suffering a personal injury in Florida, in most cases, you must show that the other party involved:

  1. Had a duty to prevent you from getting injured, but failed in that duty
  2. Directly caused your injuries as a result of that failure
  3. Caused you to suffer damages as well

However, it is important to bear in mind that automobile accidents are the big exception to personal injury laws in Florida. The state is a no-fault state, which means that no matter who was at fault, the insurance company of each party involved in the collision will pay for your medical treatment. The law in Florida requires every driver to carry a PIP, or Personal Injury Protection policy, covering a minimum of $10,000 per person per crash. This money will pay for injury care as well as lost wages.

The law in Florida does allow you to file a personal injury lawsuit following an automobile accident if the injuries you have sustained are serious. Under Florida personal injury law, serious personal injuries are defined as those that result in:

  • Significant loss of an important function of the body that is also permanent
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement that is quite significant
  • Permanent injury other than disfigurement or scarring
  • Death

If you believe that you have suffered a serious injury in a car accident and are eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit, it is a good idea to consult a Florida personal injury lawyer.

Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims in Florida

No matter which state you are in, one of the first things you should do when you are planning to file a personal injury claim is find out the deadline for filing lawsuits. Like every other state, Florida has a statute setting the deadline for the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit in civil court against the individual or business that might be legally liable for your injury. This law is known as the statute of limitations.

Under the statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Florida, you have 4 years from the date of the accident or incident to file a lawsuit in the state’s civil courts. You can find this law in Florida Statute Annotated Section 95.11(3). If you do not file your case within this time frame, it is more than likely that the court will refuse to hear it. There are rare cases in which you may not “discover” that you actually suffered an injury for a period of time after the accident or incident that resulted in the injury. In such instances, the window of time to file a lawsuit could be extended.

It is important to bear in mind that the statute of limitation mentioned here applies to most but not all lawsuits in Florida seeking compensation for losses that are related to a physical injury. For example, as in most states across the United States, there is a specific statute of limitations in the state for lawsuits over injuries resulting from medical malpractice.

Comparative Negligence Law

In some cases, the party you are trying to hold liable for your injuries may say that you are actually to blame – at least, partially – for causing the accident or incident that resulted in your injuries, and/or worsening those injuries. If you are, in fact, partially to blame for your injuries, it can have an impact on the amount of compensation that you can receive from other parties who are at fault.

In cases like these, the state of Florida follows what is referred to as a “pure comparative negligence rule.” As per this clause, the amount of compensation that you could receive could get reduced by an amount equal to your percentage of fault for your injuries, or the accident or incident. Florida courts are obligated to follow this in a personal injury case, and if you are dealing with an insurance adjuster outside the court system, keep in mind that there is a chance that they will raise the comparative negligence rule during settlement negotiations.

Get Top-Notch Care for Personal Injury in Florida

If you have suffered a personal injury in an accident or incident caused by someone else’s negligence, make sure that you receive the best treatment and care at Chambers Medical Group. Please schedule an appointment or simply call 1-866-BackMan today or 800-243-DOCS.

Chambers Medical Group has personal injury doctors in several medical clinics in the greater Tampa area and surrounding communities.


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