How the Insurance Claims Process Works After A Car Accident
Attorney Armando Edmiston explains how to get the compensation you deserve
One of the most complicated things to deal with after a car accident in Tampa can be filing a claim. If you have been injured in a crash caused by another driver, knowing what to do and how to deal with insurance companies can be overwhelming. Many insurance companies will try to get you to accept a “low ball” offer, which is often far less compensation than what you need and deserve. That’s why it’s important that you talk to someone who thoroughly understands how the insurance claim process works.
Tampa lawyer Armando Edmiston can help you with your car insurance claim every step of the way. Attorney Edmiston and the talented legal team at Armando Personal Injury Law know what to do because we have been doing this work for years. We have recovered millions of dollars for injury victims and their families in Tampa and across Florida. You can count on us when it matters most.
How do I file an insurance claim after a car accident in Florida?
Florida has a unique no-fault car insurance system. Specifically, all drivers in Florida are required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. Due to Florida’s PIP insurance system, you will need to take the following steps when filing a claim after a car accident:
- Seek immediate medical attention. This is a very important step for several different reasons. First, your health and well-being could be at risk. Second, if you do not have any proof that you were injured, you will likely have a hard time obtaining the financial compensation you deserve. You have 14 days from the date of your crash to seek medical treatment from a licensed medical professional. Otherwise, your claim might automatically be denied.
- Obtain a copy of your official Florida car accident report. Make sure the accident report is accurate and truly reflects what happened in your crash. If you’re not sure how to read your crash report, contact an attorney and ask them to help.
- Contact your insurance company and tell them you have been in a car accident caused by another driver. Because Florida is a no-fault state, you will need to file a claim with your own insurance company.
- PIP insurance in Florida only covers 80 percent of medical bills. Again, your PIP insurance policy only covers up to $10,000 in medical bills. As a result, if your medical bills add up to $10,000, your PIP insurance policy would cover $8,000 worth of medical bills, leaving you to pay the remaining $2,000 in medical bills.
- You should not have to pay for medical bills not covered by your PIP insurance policy. If another driver caused your crash, you can pursue a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company. An experienced car accident attorney can help you do so.
- If your medical bills exceed your insurance coverage, you can seek financial compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Dealing with the other driver’s insurance company can be very complicated. That’s why a lot of crash victims are advised to hire an attorney when dealing with insurance companies.
- Florida is a modified comparative negligence state with a 50 percent bar rule. That means if you are more than 50 percent at fault, you can’t recover compensation from the other driver. If you are less than 50 percent at fault, you can recover, but your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
- If your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company makes a settlement offer, be cautious. In most cases, settlement offers don’t even come close to covering all your accident-related expenses. Insurance companies know this and they’re hoping you’ll simply accept their money and not ask for more, which you have every right to do.
- If your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company denies your insurance claim, you may need to file a lawsuit in order to obtain the financial compensation you deserve. Here again, it’s critical that you have an experienced attorney on your side who can help you navigate your way through Florida’s legal system.
Don’t underestimate the complexity of your insurance claim. If you were injured in a Tampa car accident, get the help you need now from an experienced lawyer. Contact Armando Personal Injury Law and schedule your free case evaluation. We make your problems our problems.