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Car Accident

Who Determines Fault After a Car Accident?

If you were involved in a car crash, you understand how traumatic the experience can be. However, you may not know that the process of pursuing compensation for damages and injuries can be just as difficult. Florida is a no-fault state, which means that the majority of automobile collision compensation is paid by insurance policies. How then, do you go about determining fault for such an accident? Today, we review how to determine fault after a car collision and how to best pursue compensation and/or a lawsuit if needed.

Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Laws

Often, there is no need to figure out who was at fault after a car accident as the state follows no-fault insurance laws. These laws require those individuals involved in a car accident to pursue compensation for injuries and damages through their own insurance – even if one individual is found to be at fault for the collision.

It is important to note that the more aware you are of your own insurance policy benefits and limitations, the better prepared you will be in the event of a car accident. Florida residents should consider the following before determining fault or seeking a lawsuit:

  • Your insurance policy will be your primary source for financial reimbursement
  • You do not need to prove lack of fault to collect financial compensation
  • Your insurance premium could increase after a car accident regardless of fault
  • You can file a lawsuit if damages exceed available coverage

Determining Fault in a Car Collison in Florida

If a lawsuit is pursued, a judge determines who is at fault after a car collision happens from information and evidence collected by both individuals involved in the accident, their legal representatives, and their insurance companies. This may also include information from the police officers who responded to the accident and filed a report. There are four components to establishing fault:

Duty of care

The driver held a certain legal duty of care for the injured individual’s safety and overall wellbeing.

Breach of duty

The driver was negligent and breached the duty of care whether intentionally or through negligence.

Causation

The event that caused the accident to occur, often the breach of duty.

Damages

If the accident resulted in certain damages to the car or injuries to the individual involved.

Florida Statutes require the driver involved in an accident involving injury or death to a person, or at least $500 estimated vehicle or property damage to immediately call law enforcement. As Florida is a no-fault insurance state, a driver must have a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) coverage to cover medical bills, vehicle damage, potential lost wages, and any other damages. Drivers must also maintain a minimum of $10,000 in property damage liability (PDL).

If you were involved in a car accident and need help establishing the at-fault’s party’s duty of care, contact our office at (352) 310-8169 today.

Evidence to Determine Fault

Forms of evidence that helps establish fault include but are not limited to the following:

  • Police reports
  • Photographs or videos at the scene of the crash
  • Witness reports
  • Damage reports

Discuss Your Case with an Experienced Lawyer from Our Firm

All car accident cases in Florida must be filed within 4 years of the collision. As it takes time to collect evidence, assess damages, and build a case, it would be beneficial for you to seek legal counsel so you can focus on your recovery. Our legal team at Bauer Law Group, P.A. is here to assist you with your car accident case regardless of fault.

Contact us online or call our office at (352) 310-8169 to learn more about our legal services.

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